+353-1-416-8900REST OF WORLD
+44-20-3973-8888REST OF WORLD
1-917-300-0470EAST COAST U.S
1-800-526-8630U.S. (TOLL FREE)


A Private Sphere. Democracy in a Digital Age. Edition No. 1. Digital Media and Society

  • ID: 2249503
  • Book
  • June 2010
  • 200 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
1 of 3
Online technologies excite the public imagination with narratives of democratization. The Internet is a political medium, borne of democracy, but is it democratizing?

Late modern democracies are characterized by civic apathy, public skepticism, disillusionment with politics, and general disinterest in conventional political process. And yet, public interest in blogging, online news, net-based activism, collaborative news filtering, and online networking reveal an electorate that is not disinterested, but rather, fatigued with political conventions of the mainstream.

This book examines how online digital media shape and are shaped by contemporary democracies, by addressing the following issues:

  • How do online technologies remake how we function as citizens in contemporary democracies?
  • What happens to our understanding of public and private as digitalized democracies converge technologies, spaces and practices?
  • How do citizens of today understand and practice their civic responsibilities, and how do they compare to citizens of the past?
  • How do discourses of globalization, commercialization and convergence inform audience/producer, citizen/consumer, personal/political, public/private roles individuals must take on?
  • Are resulting political behaviors atomized or collective?
  • Is there a public sphere anymore, and if not, what model of civic engagement expresses current tendencies and tensions best?

Students and scholars of media studies, political science, and critical theory will find this to be a fresh engagement with some of the most important questions facing democracies today.

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
2 of 3

Acknowledgements vii

1 Contemporary Democracies, Civic Engagement, and the Media 1

Media and the mythology of the new 7

Old and new democracy 11

The conditions of contemporary democracy 12

A new(er) civic vernacular 15

2 Public and Private Expression in Contemporary Democracies 25

The dichotomy of public and private over time 26

The dichotomy of public and private at present 37

Privacy as commodity 42

A trichotomy: the social 48

3 Converged Media, Converged Audiences, and Converged Publics 51

Convergence in everyday life 53

Convergence of technologies 61

Convergence of spaces 68

Convergence of practices 74

Technology as the architecture of the new 78

4 The Question of Citizenship in a Converged Environment 80

A long history of imperfect citizenship 81

The past and contemporary citizenship modalities 88

The liquid citizen: a combined model of fl exible citizenship 107

5 The Public Sphere, Expired? On the Democratizing Potential of Convergent Technologies 112

The public sphere in contemporary democracies 113

Access to information 120

Reciprocity 121

Commercialization 123

A new kind of public 125

6 A Private Sphere 131

Five new civic habits 138

1 The networked self and the culture of remote connectivity 138

2 A new narcissism: blogging 144

3 The rebirth of satire and subversion: YouTube 150

4 Social media news aggregation and the plurality of collaborative fi ltering 152

5 The agonistic pluralism of online activism 157

The private sphere and the networked citizen 161

References 168

Index 194

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
3 of 3
Zizi A. Papacharissi Department of Broadcasting, Telecommunications, and Mass Media, Temple University.
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown