Podcast #9: The Revolt of the Public and the Crisis of Reputation, with Martin Gurri

In this episode, CARP media outreach director Deirdre Jane Prigge speaks with former CIA media analyst Martin Gurri, whose 2014 book The Revolt of the Public and the Crisis of Authority in the New Millennium details how a “tsunami of information” has stripped institutions of the authority they once took for granted. He joins us on the podcast to explain who the public and the elite are, why the public is so receptive to character assassination attempts, and how “old-fashioned virtues” like humility and courage can help individuals and organizations protect their reputations in a media environment hungry for scandal. Martin and Deirdre also discuss why prophecy is useless, the greatness of Leonard Bernstein, and how Martin became a hero in France.


Podcast #8: The Power (and Pain) of Silence, with Dr. Kipling D. Williams

In this episode, CARP media outreach director Deirdre Jane Prigge and Dr. Williams, a Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Purdue University, discuss ostracism’s evolutionary roots, how it works, and why no one is immune to its effects. He also explains how a chance encounter with two Frisbee players led to the development of his ball toss and Cyberball experiments, innovative methods to study how ostracism works in the lab. Finally, Dr. Williams shares why some people recover from ostracism more quickly than others, what we can learn from the stories of amazing people who survived and thrived after experiencing ostracism and exclusion, and how you can help others cope with its effects. 

Podcast #7: Political Communications 101 with Sarah Isgur

In this episode, CARP media outreach director Deirdre Jane Prigge speaks with Sarah Isgur, former Justice Department spokeswoman and legal podcaster par excellence. Sarah draws from her experience on three presidential campaigns and in all three branches of government to explain what political communications professionals really do, why some character attacks work and others fail, and why Olympic curling is the best metaphor for political communications. She also shares what it was like to prepare Carly Fiorina for the 2016 Republican primary debates, her experiences as a target of character assassination, and her tips for aspiring communications professionals. 

Podcast #6: The Art and Science of Psychological Profiling, with Dr. Ekaterina Egorova

In this episode, Dr. Sergei Samoilenko talks to Ekaterina Egorova. Dr Egorova is the founder and president of Niccolo M Strategic Communications Agency, Russia’s leading political consulting and public relations firm. She’s also the founder of Political Profiler, an American company specializing in psychological profiles of political leaders. Dr. Egorova goes all the way back to the Russian Empire to discuss the history of psychological profiling, how her firm develops profiles of political leaders, and who benefits from this method of understanding and forecasting leaders’ behavior in wartime and peacetime alike. She also shares what we can learn from studying politicians’ posture, tone of voice, and even their childhood drawings. 

Podcast #5: The Savage Mirror: Political Humor, Caricature, and Saturday Night Live, with Dr. Chris Gilbert Podcast

In this episode, recorded before the 2020 presidential campaign, Jennifer Keohane talks with rhetorician and political humor expert Christopher J. Gilbert about what made Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump such a comedic tour de force. They also discuss the relationship between democracy and comedy, what caricatures say about character, and whether politicians should go on late-night TV.

Podcast #4: Toppling Statues and the Damnation of Memory, with Martijn Icks and Eric Shiraev

In this episode, originally recorded in June of 2020, historian Martijn Icks and political psychologist Eric Shiraev travel to ancient Egypt, the Roman Empire, and Eastern Europe to put the toppling of statues in historical perspective. They explore the history of what the Romans called “the damnation of memory,” the many reasons why people destroy, deface, and remove monumental art, and how this form of iconoclasm has changed over time. Finally, they offer their own modest suggestions on how we might reconcile the past and present. 

Podcast #3: Talking Character Assassination and Political Campaigns with Jason Jay Smart

In this throwback episode from the 2020 presidential campaign, Dr. Eric Shiraev interviews Jason Jay Smart, an international political strategist and campaign manager who has worked in Ukraine, Moldova, and Kyrgyzstan. Smart is also a graduate of George Mason University. Here, Eric and Jason discuss the reasons why some character attacks work and others don’t (hint- it’s all about culture), the real difference between the United States and Kyrgyzstan, and why dictators should tolerate a little protest. 

Podcast #2: Villains or Minions? An Interview with Author and Sociologist James Jasper

In this episode, Dr. Sergei Samoilenko interviews James M. Jasper, professor of sociology at the City University of New York. Jasper is the author of multiple books, including “Public Characters: the Politics of Reputation and Blame” and “The Emotions of Protest.” Here, James and Serge discuss the difference between character and characters, how character assassins transform minions into villains, and why sociologists should study rhetoric.

Podcast #1: An Interview with Eric Dezenhall, Author and Crisis Management Guru

In this episode originally posted on the CARP Lab Youtube channel, Dr. Sergei Samoilenko interviews Eric Dezenhall, CEO of Washington, D.C.-based PR firm Dezenhall Resources. Dezenhall is also a prolific author. His books include Glass Jaw: A Manifesto for Defending Fragile Reputations in an Age of Instant Scandal and False Light, a novel based on his experiences in crisis communications. Here, Serge and Eric discuss the many myths of crisis management, why crises are definitely not opportunities, and why entertainers don’t make good clients.