Critically appraises the concept of the public sphere in the context of contemporary digital media - Coursework Example

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It is an area in the social life where individuals come together to discuss and identify the problems affecting the society and…
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Critically appraises the concept of the public sphere in the context of contemporary Jorgen Habermas defines public sphere as made of private people gathered together in a public and articulating the needs of the society to the state. It is an area in the social life where individuals come together to discuss and identify the problems affecting the society and through the discussion they influence the social and political action (Asen 2007). It is farther identified as the discursive space where individuals and groups gather to discuss matter of common interest and reach agreed judgment. The contemporary world is characterized by digital media as the internet (Burger 2006). The intent also acts as a public sphere where people bring together their opinion. The opinion generated from the public sphere can be channelized to the ruling government to act appropriate in regard to the need of the society. The societies consider the public sphere to be channel that they can use to voice their problems (Hauser 2005).
In the modern world and in a more democratic society, public sphere has been of great resource to the ruling government. Ideas and dialogue from their subject are posed in the You Tube and therefore they can easily read them. In most circumstance it is the source of production and circulation of the discussions that are critical to the state. The circulation process doe not only reach the state but the society as a whole (Rutherford 2004). In this respect the voice of the poor is herd and given the equal chances in the development project in the community. Dialogue, act of speeches, debate and discussion can be held together even though people are in different locations. The convergence of the information in one source makes retrieval for the future references in the societies (Goodnight 2007).
While the digital society appreciates the modern public sphere in the internet, it has become the major sources of propaganda and rumor mongering. The internet does not include the public opinion in totality. Only the a few people who are accessible to new technology enjoy while the rest does not. The poor’s voices cannot be herd while the rich continue to dominate creating the inequality the major challenge of modern democracy (Habermas 2009). Facts may be posed in the internet whose sources cannot be identified properly. In such cases it becomes arena of rumor and propaganda that cannot be relies upon. This is the major challenge that seems to hinder the well functioning of the public sphere in the modern society. Even though the use of technology is still advancing to mature, most of the society in the modern world has embraced the use of internet in almost in every sector of the economy (Habermas 2002).
In a nutshell, public sphere is a clear source of inspiration for public opinion, debate and dialogue. The members of the public voice out their voices and speak their mind out. In doing so the state would respond to them and solve the problem that they are facing. Even though the digital media would expand and improve the public sphere it has achieved not much as it is associated with other challenges of inequality among members.
Asen, R, 2007, "Toward a Normative Conception of Difference in Public Deliberation". Argumentation and Advocacy 25 (winter): 115–129.
Burger, T, 2006, "Further Reflections on the Public Sphere. In Habermas and the Public Sphere. Ed. Craig Calhoun. Trans. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Fraser, N, 2000, "Rethinking the Public Sphere: A Contribution to the Critique of Actually Existing Democracy", Social Text (Duke University Press) 25 (26): 56–80.
Goodnight, GT, 2007, "The Personal, Technical, and Public Spheres of Argument". Journal of the American Forensics Association.
Habermas, J, 2002, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: An Inquiry into a Category of Bourgeois Society, Thomas Burger, Cambridge Massachusetts: The MIT Press, p. 30
Habermas, J, 2009, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: An Inquiry into a category of Bourgeois Society. Trans. Thomas Burger with Frederick Lawrence. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Hauser, G, 2005, "Vernacular Dialogue and the Rhetoricality of Public Opinion", Communication Monographs 65 (3): 83–107,
Rutherford, P, 2004, Endless Propaganda: The Advertising of Public Goods. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. Read More
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