This volume is a study of the orchestration of cordial concurrence at the quadrennial nominating conventions of the two major political parties. The phrase cordial concurrence pertains to a party's endorsement of a candidate at the national convention whose nomination occurred elsewhere. Since the candidate is the product of primaries and caucuses, the convention's primary function involves not the nomination of the party standard-bearer, but the mobilization of party resources in support of a decision rendered elsewhere. Smith and Nimmo oppose the view that national political conventions serve no major purpose and are relics from the past. Instead, they explain that the conventions are products of institutional coordination and reflect the institutional qualities of American democracy.
This definitive analysis examines how political party conventions mobilize resources through political, governmental, and media institutions in a telepolitical era. This volume discusses the history and background of cordial concurrence. It then explores what happens at the conventions and how the media, especially television coverage, has affected this institution. Finally, the authors examine the comments of the critics of national political conventions. This intriguing work will provide both educators and professionals interested in political communication with new insight as to how the conventions are a microcosm of all that is American politics.
About the Author
LARRY DAVID SMITH is Assistant Professor of Communication at Purdue University. He is the author of several articles concerning political communication in general abd the national conventions in particular. He has also contributed to many other volumes, including Campaigns in the News (Greenwood Press, 1987).
DAN NIMMO is Visiting Scholar, Department of Political Science, Baylor University. He was formerly Professor of Communication and Adjunct Professor of Political Science at the University of Oklahoma. Considered by many in the field to be the father of political communication, he is a member of several editorial boards and a frequent book reviewer for Choice and several political magazines. He is the author of 25 books and numerous articles on political communication.
Table of Contents
National Party Conventions: The Political Orchestration of Cordial Concurrence
From Concert Halls to Opera Houses: The Evolution of National Convention Orchestration
Political Impresarios: Parties, Media and Galleries as Orchestrators
Picturesque Stages and Patriotic Programs: Concurrence in Orchestrating Places, People, and Events
Stages, Pits, Floors, Balconies, and Boxes: The Parties Productions at National Political Conventions
Melodies and Discords: TV Coverage of the Democratic National Convention in Atlanta
Grand Old Party or Ruptured Harmony? TV Coverage of the Republicans in New Orleans
"The Number of Genuine Music Lovers is Probably Very Low": Chanties of Criticism and Reform
Voices in Concert: The Interinstitutional Orchestration of Politics