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Craig Smith

Professor Emeritus

Department of Communication

View CV 


Dr. Smith retired from NC State in 2012 after 28 years in the UNC system. graduated from Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, Ohio and worked at radio and television stations in Ohio and Indiana before earning his M.A. (1974) and Ph.D. (1976) from Purdue University. After serving on the faculties of Mississippi State University (1975-76) and Memphis State University (1976-81), he joined the UNC Chapel Hill faculty (1981-90) and UNC Greensboro (1990-99). He chaired the Communication Departments at Detroit’s Wayne State University (1999-2002) and NC State (2002-2007). He returned to full-time teaching at NC State (2007-2012).

Dr. Smith also served as President of the Southern States Communication Association, Editor of the Southern Communication Journal, as graduate officer of three departments, as chair of several divisions of the National and Southern Communication Associations. 

Teaching and Research Interests

Craig Allen Smith studies the ways that people use communication to
govern their communities. His work investigates three general

1. COMMUNICATION AND ELECTION CAMPAIGNS: How do people communicate within democratic political systems to elect their national leaders? See for example CA Smith, PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN COMMUNICATION (Polity 2010).

2. PRESIDENTIAL RHETORIC: How do national leaders behave rhetorically to exercise national leadership and influence public opinion? See for example CA Smith & KB Smith, THE WHITE HOUSE SPEAKS (1994) and CA SMITH & KB SMITH (eds.), THE PRESIDENT AND THE PUBLIC (University Press of America, 1985).

3. PERSUASION AND SOCIAL MOVEMENTS: How do people who feel excluded from democratic political systems behave rhetorically to affect leaders’ rhetoric, public opinion, the political system and their perceived relationship to it? See for example CJ Stewart, CA Smith & RE Denotn, Jr, PERSUASION AND SOCIAL MOVEMENTS, 6th ed (Waveland, 2012).


The sixth edition of Persuasion and Social Movements with Charles J. Stewart and Robert E. Denton, Jr., will be published in 2012.

Presidential Campaign Communication: The Quest for the White House (Cambridge: Polity Press,  2010).

Other books include The White House Speaks: Presidential Leadership as Persuasion
(Praeger, 1994) with Kathy B. Smith, Political Communication (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1990) and The President and the Public: Rhetoric and National Leadership (1985) edited with Kathy B. Smith.

Academic journal articles and chapters are listed in the attached Vita.


Ph.D. Communication Purdue University 1976

M.A. Communication Purdue University 1974

B.A. Speech and Government Baldwin Wallace College