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Complicity in Discourse and Practice



  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after July 12, 2021
ISBN 9781032072876
July 12, 2021 Forthcoming by Routledge
144 Pages

 
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Book Description

It is commonplace to say that we are living in troubled times. Liberal democracy is in crisis. Academic freedom is seriously constrained. The media offers less insight and analysis than could be expected given the proliferation of communication tools. Based on decades of research into the social and ideological functioning of discourse and with a focus on politics, universities, and the media, Jef Verschueren offers an analysis of current practices, asks whether we are all complicit, and makes suggestions for what we can do.

Central to this book is the notion of derailed reflexivity, referring to the observation that politics, institutions, and news reporting tend to be excessively aimed at public opinion, impression management, and clicks, to the detriment of policies addressing social justice issues, high-quality service, and media content. Highlighting that education is the corner stone for democratic choices and ensures that we can critically assess media content, this book shows that shared responsibility can be a source of hope and that everyone has the power to intervene.

Complicity in Discourse and Practice is a call to action for readers and a plea for actively minding the ecology of the public sphere.

Table of Contents

PROLOGUE

ONE — IN SOCIETY

Terror and complicity
Ideas, influence, and power
Politics – and where it’s gone
Derailed reflexivity
Enlightened condescension
Walls and borders
Of tongues ordinary and sublime
Identity
Political respect
Solidarity

TWO — AT THE UNIVERSITY

Winners and losers
An academic cytokine storm
Totalitarianism light

THREE — THROUGH THE MEDIA

The information funnel
Reflexivity on display
Info on demand
Asocial media

RECAP — SHARING RESPONSIBILITY

PROSPECT — AN ECOLOGY OF THE PUBLIC SPHERE?

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Author(s)

Biography

Jef Verschueren is Emeritus Professor of Linguistics at the University of Antwerp and Secretary General of the International Pragmatics Association