Democracy, Inc.: The Press and Law in the Corporate Rationalization of the Public Sphere

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University of Illinois Press, May 31, 2005 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 200 pages
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In Democracy, Inc., David S. Allen exposes the vested interests behind the U.S. slide toward conflating corporate values with public and democratic values. He argues that rather than being institutional protectors of democratic principles, the press and law perversely contribute to the destruction of public discourse in the United States today.

Allen utilizes historical, philosophical, sociological, and legal sources to trace America's gradual embrace of corporate values. He argues that such values, including winning, efficiency, and profitability actually limit democratic involvement by devaluing discursive principles, creating an informed yet inactive public. Through an examination of professionalization in both the press and the law, corporate free speech rights, and free speech as property, Democracy, Inc.  demonstrates that today's democracy is more about trying to control and manage citizens than giving them the freedom to participate. Allen not only calls on institutions to reform the way they understand and promote citizenship but also asks citizens to adopt a new ethic of public discourse that values understanding rather than winning. 
 
 

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Contents

The Rise of Corporate Rationalization
15
Corporate Rationalization and Democratic Institutions
49
The Law
82
The First Amendment and Public Life
101
Managing the Property of Public Life
123
Toward
144
Notes
161
Index
195
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About the author (2005)

David S. Allen is an associate professor of journalism and mass communication at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. He is the coeditor of Freeing the First Amendment: Critical Perspectives on Freedom of Expression.
 

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