This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

What Did Habermas Mean By The "Public Sphere"?

1457 words - 6 pages

What did Habermas mean by the Public Sphere? Is this concept at all useful for understanding the role of the mass media in contemporary society?Jurgen Habermas by many is considered the most influential thinker in Germany; his ideas of the "public sphere" were developed in the enlightenment era of the eighteenth century and were considered revolutionary. These ideas in some parts of the world are still highly regarded and have become an integral part of the way in which some societies understand themselves.Habermas' primary goal was to develop a theory of communication rooted in a concept of an "ideal speech situation".In this essay I will discuss exactly what the "public sphere" is (also known as the "ideal speech community") and its usefulness in understanding the role of the mass media in contemporary society."All humans are created equal and should have equal rights in society; governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed, and those governed therefore have the right to change the government if they so wish."(The First Amendment to the US Constitution, 1971)This is part of the opening paragraph of what we know as the bill of rights, which is in summary about freedom, of religion of expression and of speech, to name a few. The 'Social space' where these rights are openly exercised is where 'The public sphere' can be found. This is not only where communication and congregation of all equal human beings takes place, but is also where governments are able to be monitored in terms of their actions towards securing the life, liberty and happiness of the people.For Habermas the Public sphere was a space in society where individuals were free to have open discussions unrestricted and free from the pressures imposed by dominant political systems and also from the interests of the state. The public sphere was a forum where individuals were able to freely express their views with one another on matters of general interest without any intimidation.The public sphere was not about personal matters but matters of general interest, which directly effected decision-making. What was under discussion were issues on political problems, as well as issues about society and culture."The public sphere can be seen as a map or model of modern society and is a useful yardstick by which the quality of existing democracies can be measured" (Gripsrud,2002.228).What Habermas wanted to achieve by the "ideal speech community" was the opposite to the simple social pyramid structure so often portrayed by aristocrats such as King Louis XIV's i.e. powerful kings and nobles at the top and masses of powerless people at the bottom.Habermas describes the formation of society through the use of different spheres. In the cultural public sphere, women, servants and all other dependent groupings of people were allowed to take part in some measure. In the political sphere however this was not the case. Much like today's society education and property were...

Find Another Essay On What did habermas mean by the "public sphere"?

Privatizing the Public Sphere Essay

1603 words - 6 pages the middle class. Privatized public space has become the new trend across many American cities. There are many interrelated factors that contribute to the elimination of a public sphere, these include but are not limited to: corporate ownership of property, gentrifying of neighborhoods, an ever increasing disparity between the rich and poor, and new landscape designs. All of these factors work cohesively with one another by instilling a

CTOs and the public sphere Essay

2086 words - 8 pages illness and reduce violence by ensuring medication compliance. However the truth is Community Committal's were incorporated into the US laws under what is known as Kendra and Laura's laws. These laws were developed due to two tragic incidences were these two women were killed by someone who was�diagnosed as mentally ill. Therefore these types of laws and bills were supported on the fears of society against those that are mentally ill as being

The Public Sphere of Athenian Women

1970 words - 8 pages Women are often excluded from discussion when looking at all periods of history from ancient Greece to our own Canadian history. The lack of sources pertaining to women was likely caused by the traditional view that women are, in some ways, inferior to men. Athenian women are usually studied in two domains: the private sphere and the public sphere. Many studies acknowledge that women are consumed by the family and remain in the home. However

Othello: Did He Mean What He Said?

761 words - 3 pages Othello: Did He Mean What He Said? Othello, as a man, represented something that is very familiar to us today. He represented a man, who, at best, was very confused about what love really was. We see this today as people do crazy things in the name of love. "Love" I am familiar with does not lead me to do anything crazy. Love actually helps me respect people more.Othello said, "Then you must speak of one that loved not wisely, but too well

What did freedom mean to harriet jacobs

1655 words - 7 pages did not have any rights that are now afforded to every citizen in the United States, and she expressed this by saying, “Pity me, and pardon me, O virtuous reader! You never knew what it is to be a slave; to be entirely unprotected by law or custom; to have the laws reduce you to the condition of a chattel, entirely subject to the will of another.” To those existing today, having individual freedom is often not thought of as something that can

Texts, Culture & Values Heroism- What did it mean in the past and does it still mean the same today?

1392 words - 6 pages Texts, Culture & ValuesHeroism- What did it mean in the past and does it still mean the same today?* This is the definition of a hero in a modern dictionary.o a man or boy admired for his bravery, great deeds, or noble qualities.o 2. a person admired for contribution to a particular field.o 3. the most important male person in a story, play, or poem.o 4. (Greek Legend.) a man of more than human strength, courage, or ability, especially a

What does Jack London mean by "The Love of Life"?

824 words - 3 pages , Bill, to help him but finds no assistance. "'Hey, Bill! Bill! I've sprained my ankle.' But Bill continued to stagger on through the foaming water." Instead, Bill kept on walking, and eventually abandoned him. Alone and devoid of supplies, the man's "love of life" will now be put to test by nature.It is the wish of every living thing in the world to stay alive, as is the man's. He, however, was willing to risk more than what others would in order

Public Sphere and The Ideals of a Democratic Society

1235 words - 5 pages communicative technologies actually enhance democracy as it promises. The idea of the public sphere was originated in the 18th century by a German Philosopher, Jürgen Habermas. Habermas explains that the goal of the public sphere was for private individuals to come together to form a public body (Habermas 1974, p.49). Doing so, it would enable private individuals to identify and discuss societal problems thus finding a way to influence political

The Study of Public Sphere in Modern China

3595 words - 15 pages than “those economic and political privileges of the bourgeoisie”. Additionally, Habermas also pointed out that mass media is becoming an important part of public sphere during time passing. Herbams argued that: “By “the public sphere” we mean first of all a realm of our social life in which something approaching public opinion can be formed. Access is guaranteed to all citizens. A portion of the public sphere comes into being in every

Twitter: The New Information Platform for Public Sphere

779 words - 4 pages problem of twitter in public sphere construction. The last part is the assumption that how to use the information source and the main transmission mode of twitter to explore new news platform. Twitter construct a new public sphere. The concept of public sphere first time presented by Hannah Arendt in her book ‘The human condition’. In this book, Arendt calls the public sphere as ‘the rise of the social’(Benhabid, 1996). After that, Jurgen

Corporal punishment with respect to the private and public sphere

1520 words - 7 pages 1 Introduction Corporal punishment is the unlawful intentional act of causing harm by physically inflicting punishment on the body of an offender or severely criticising the offender. There is a distinction in common-law between corporal punishment in the public sphere and in the private sphere. Corporal punishment on children in the private sphere is administered by parents. It is legally accepted in South Africa, provided that the requirements

Similar Essays

Jürgen Habermas’ Idea Of The Public Sphere

2247 words - 9 pages Jürgen Habermas’ idea of the “public sphere” is considered a communications revolution because it allowed for the transfer of information and ideas. This free flow of communication that grew out of the public opinion would allow democracy to prevail as it provided checks on powerful groups in society and allowed for critical discussions. Although Habermas’ notion of this democratic mechanism allowed for citizens to play a larger role in society

Jürgen Habermas: Public Sphere And Media Sphere

1297 words - 5 pages having public debate that cannot be considered by just being the continuity of what Habermas called the public sphere. This “cyborg politics” is an isolated way of doing it. People are at home, undercover by their cyber identity, and so are not judged anymore by their race, gender or sexuality. They watch TV alone, and do not share “at the street corner” anymore. For Yochai Benkler, “The network allows all citizens to change their relationship to the

Jürgen Habermas’ The Structural Transformation Of The Public Sphere

2229 words - 9 pages In this essay I will discuss Jürgen Habermas’ “The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: Inquiry into a category of bourgeois society” (1962), and the ideas presented surrounding the public sphere. What I will investigate is whether or not the post-modern phenomenon of new media (e.g. the internet) could in fact present a new-wave of public sphere, or is just another platform for mass-media. I will also explore the public sphere model

The Public Sphere Essay

1161 words - 5 pages who was actually present can be distributed. People could read about what went on in a certain celebration. Now people did not need to be physically present to witness the events, or more importantly, be influenced by political ideas; the parades affected more people than just the spectators. If more information is available to the general public, they will no doubt be more informed about what is going on in their country. This also