Critical theory refers to a concept and method concerned with challenging forms of domination and power relations that limit human potential, particularly the underpinning assumptions and approaches to knowledge, belief, and reality construction, and justificatory arguments. Critical theory encompasses a normative vision of society and has the ambition to realize particular values such as reflexive thought and self-realization.

This entry first summarizes the historical background of critical theory, then discusses the key theorist who has influenced the public relations discipline to date, Jurgen Habermas. This general introduction is followed by consideration of the influence of critical theory on public relations and the way in which critical theory may be applied to corporate reputation matters, in particular to corporate reputation management.


Historically, critical theory is associated with ...

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