A text that reveals the value and significance of community media in an era of global communication

With contributions from an international team of well-known experts, media activists, and promising young scholars, this comprehensive volume examines community-based media from theoretical, empirical, and practical perspectives. More than 30 original essays provide an incisive and timely analysis of the relationships between media and society, technology and culture, and communication and community.

Key Features

  • Provides vivid examples of community and alternative media initiatives from around the world
  • Explores a wide range of media institutions, forms, and practices—community radio, participatory video, street newspapers, Independent Media Centers, and community informatics
  • Offers cutting-edge analysis of community and alternative media with original essays from new, emerging, and established voices in the field
  • Takes a multidimensional approach to community media studies by highlighting the social, economic, cultural, and political significance of alternative, independent, and community-oriented media organizations
  • Enters the ongoing debates regarding the theory and practice of community media in a comprehensive and engaging fashion

Intended Audience

This core text is designed for advanced undergraduate and graduate courses such as Community Media, Alternative Media, Media & Social Change, Communication & Culture, and Participatory Communication in the departments of communication, media studies, sociology, and cultural studies.

Civil Society and the Public Sphere

Civil Society and the Public Sphere
Civil society and the public sphere

The chapters included in this section draw on two distinct but related concepts that are central to contemporary democratic theory: civil society and the public sphere. Civil society is by far the older of the two ideas—one with a “distinguished pedigree” in Western social and political thought (Hodgkinson & Foley, 2000). Conversely, the public sphere is a relatively new concept associated with the work of the German social theorist Jurgen Habermas (1989). Together, these two ideas have informed a great deal of thinking about the character, conduct, and constitution of democratic societies in the post-Cold War era. Indeed, debates surrounding civil society and the public sphere are common across a variety of disciplines, from ...

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