Do You Agree With Habermas That The Commercialisat Essay
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Do you agree with Habermas that the commercialisation of mass communication has undermined the public sphere?
Jurgen Habermas was born in June 1929 and is viewed as one of the most influential modern day theorists. Habermas was part of what is known as the second wave of theorists following in the footsteps of Adorno and Horkheimer. Habermas associated himself with the Frankfurt school of thought and is arguably most famous for his book ‘The structural transformation of the public sphere’ first published in 1962 and later translated into English in 1989 in which he charted the rise and fall of what he named the ‘Public sphere’. Habermas documented the change from what he called a ‘liberal public sphere’ which emerged during the time of the Enlightenment and the American and French revolutions and how it promoted political discussion and debate to that of a ‘media dominated public sphere’. In this essay I will explain Habermas’s views on what he claims is the undermining of the public sphere and discuss whether his belief is correct or whether he simply favours and idealist view of the bourgeois public sphere.
Habermas stated that the emergence of the public sphere originated in the early 18th century coffee shops and salons across Britain, France and Germany. ‘Habermas's point is not that the idea of the public came into being in early modern Europe but that the idea of the public cohered in this period with unprecedented explicitness’ (Mckeon, 2004). They were used as a forum in society created by citizens coming together to discuss and debate issues of public importance. The public sphere was seen by Habermas to be a space which mediated between the private concerns of individuals in their familial, economic, and social life contrasted to the demands and concerns of social and public life (Antonio & Kellner, 1992). It’s where the bourgeois met to discuss