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Book part
Publication date: 22 November 2016

Justin Cruickshank

In this paper I argue that the liberal problem of religion, which defines religion in terms of dogmatism or opaque justifications based on ‘revealed truth’, needs to be…

Abstract

Purpose

In this paper I argue that the liberal problem of religion, which defines religion in terms of dogmatism or opaque justifications based on ‘revealed truth’, needs to be rethought as part of a broader problem of dialogue, which does not define religion as uniquely problematic.

Methodology/approach

Habermas argues for religious positions to be translated into ‘generally accessible language’ to incorporate religious citizens into democratic dialogue and resist the domination of instrumental rationality by enhancing ‘solidarity’. I contrast this with Rowan Williams’ and Gadamer’s work.

Findings

Williams conceptualises religion in terms of recognising the finitude of our being, rather than dogmatism or opacity. This recognition, he argues, allows people to transcend the ‘imaginative bereavement’ of seeing others as means. Using Williams, I argue that Habermas misdefines religion, and reinforces the domination of instrumental rationality by treating religion as a means. I then use Gadamer to argue that the points Williams makes about religion can apply to secular positions too by recognising them as traditions subject to finitude.

Originality/value

This is original because it argues that the liberal problem of religion misdefines both religion and secular positions, by not recognising that both are traditions defined by finitude. To reach, dialogically, a ‘fusion of horizons’, where religious and secular people are understood non-instrumentally in their own terms of reference, will take time and not trade on immediately manifest – ‘generally accessible’ – meanings.

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Reconstructing Social Theory, History and Practice
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-469-3

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Rethinking Ethics Through Hypertext
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-426-7

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Book part
Publication date: 22 November 2016

William Outhwaite

After some discussion of Habermas’ model of reconstruction and the ways in which he and others have applied it to the European Union (EU), I venture some remarks about the…

Abstract

Purpose

After some discussion of Habermas’ model of reconstruction and the ways in which he and others have applied it to the European Union (EU), I venture some remarks about the development of EU law and European democracy.

Methodology/approach

I trace the way in which a meta-theory of social science can be extended to illuminate questions of political and constitutional legitimacy.

Findings

It is found that Habermas’s model points to the double character of EU citizenship, in which one is a citizen both of the Union and of one if its member states, and the corresponding creative tension between these two levels of governance.

Originality/value

A contribution to the so-far rather under-developed theorisation of the political philosophy of a united Europe.

Details

Reconstructing Social Theory, History and Practice
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-469-3

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Book part
Publication date: 20 May 2011

Harry F. Dahms

For Weberian Marxists, the social theories of Max Weber and Karl Marx are complementary contributions to the analysis of modern capitalist society. Combining Weber's…

Abstract

For Weberian Marxists, the social theories of Max Weber and Karl Marx are complementary contributions to the analysis of modern capitalist society. Combining Weber's theory of rationalization with Marx's critique of commodity fetishism to develop his own critique of reification, Georg Lukács contended that the combination of Marx's and Weber's social theories is essential to envisioning socially transformative modes of praxis in advanced capitalist society. By comparing Lukács's theory of reification with Habermas's theory of communicative action as two theories in the tradition of Weberian Marxism, I show how the prevailing mode of “doing theory” has shifted from Marx's critique of economic determinism to Weber's idea of the inner logic of social value spheres. Today, Weberian Marxism can make an important contribution to theoretical sociology by reconstituting itself as a framework for critically examining prevailing societal definitions of the rationalization imperatives specific to purposive-rational social value spheres (the economy, the administrative state, etc.). In a second step, Weberian Marxists would explore how these value spheres relate to each other and to value spheres that are open to the type of communicative rationalization characteristic of the lifeworld level of social organization.

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The Vitality Of Critical Theory
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-798-8

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Radical Proceduralism
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-721-0

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Book part
Publication date: 30 May 2017

Ângela Cristina Salgueiro Marques and Luis Mauro Sá Martino

This chapter elaborates a phenomenological framework for the concept of “communication” by drawing mainly on the notion “lifeworld,” created by Husserl and developed by…

Abstract

This chapter elaborates a phenomenological framework for the concept of “communication” by drawing mainly on the notion “lifeworld,” created by Husserl and developed by Habermas. The concept of “lifeworld” is approached as a communication-grounded idea.

The chapter is a theoretical essay, grounded mainly on bibliographical research. Main sources are the two volumes of HabermasThe Theory of Communicative Action (Habermas, 1987), seconded by other works by the German philosopher and some commentators as Stein (2004) e Pizzi (2006). The chapter endeavors to show that the phenomenological notion of “lifeworld” might be key to a critical understanding of main constructivist approaches in communication theory. It could be particularly illuminating where the focus is on a “reality,” which results from intersubjective interactions in everyday life. Most communication theories are media-centered, which means that they regard the “media,” both in its technical and institutional aspects as the main focus of the communication process. This chapter argues that the “lifeworld” is a far broader way to understand communication as a form of social interaction, whether mediated by media technologies or not. The chapter discusses the concept of “lifeworld,” framing its relational and communicative aspects as fundamental to the notion of “reality” as an interactive social creation. It also proposes the understanding of “communication” grounded on this phenomenological notion. Finally, it discusses some problems and limits of this approach, offering an alternative approach to conventional communication theory.

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Article
Publication date: 31 December 2020

Michael Hofmann

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the reception and impact of Jürgen Habermas’s global academic best seller in the USA between 1974 and 2018. It specifically…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the reception and impact of Jürgen Habermas’s global academic best seller in the USA between 1974 and 2018. It specifically addresses the consequences of the long delay in the publication of the English translation of Habermas’s 1962 public sphere concept until 1989 in the context of Habermas’s paradigm shift from the Kantian ideal of a participatory democracy to a systems-theoretical interpretation of deliberative democracy, which informs Between Facts and Norms (1992/1996).

Design/methodology/approach

This paper can be classified as a “conceptual paper” that draws on empirical research, namely, Adrian Rauchfleisch’s (2017) bibliometric co-citation analysis of two decades of public sphere research, which features a multi-dimensional scaling of these research communities based on the distance matrix of the co-citation network.

Findings

As the 22,000 scholarly citations for structural transformation as of April 2018 already indicate, this paper confirms in detail that Habermas’s original public sphere concept attracts significantly more academic interest on an interdisciplinary basis than Between Facts and Norms, which no longer pursues a critical theory of contemporary democracy. Instead, this shift toward a uniquely sophisticated theory construction in the realm of normativity produces a work in Rechtstheorie (Thomas McCarthy) that is by definition removed from political practice. The paper demonstrates that only the criteria developed in structural transformation can be applied to the analysis of constitutional crises in the USA.

Originality/value

This paper was researched and written solely by the author. All sources are clearly identified.

Details

Kybernetes, vol. 50 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0368-492X

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Article
Publication date: 9 October 2009

Joachim Kernstock and Tim Oliver Brexendorf

The authors propose applying Habermas's “theory of communicative action” (TCA) to discuss the benefits of incorporating the concept of interaction in the field of…

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Abstract

Purpose

The authors propose applying Habermas's “theory of communicative action” (TCA) to discuss the benefits of incorporating the concept of interaction in the field of corporate brand management. The purpose of this paper is to gain suggestions for interactions derived from Jürgen Habermas's social theory.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper refers to Habermas's TCA in terms of its implication for stakeholder interactions within corporate brand management. Based on review of the sociological literature of Habermas's TCA, this approach offers a more detailed picture of corporate brand management. Bodies of literature are selected, examined and the TCA has been connected to corporate brand management to provide a research background and a managerially useful insight of human interactions.

Findings

The social theory of the German social‐philosopher Jürgen Habermas provides certain starting points for classifying interactions. The paper introduces Habermas's proposed forms of human action. Furthermore, it relates to the cognitive, moral‐expressive and aesthetic‐expressive knowledge interest areas, Habermas's validity claims of communicative actions as well as context and world relations.

Research limitations/implications

The study of Habermas's TCA considers one stream in sociological theory. Other theories may provide further insights for corporate brand management.

Practical implications

The paper shows managerially useful implications for managing stakeholder interactions within corporate brand management. Management can use the developed patterns of thought as a starting point for managing interactions with stakeholders.

Originality/value

The paper introduces Habermas's TCA within the field of corporate brand management. Moreover, it facilitates a more comprehensive understanding of implications for managing interactions within the field of corporate brand management.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 14 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 1999

Sun Hyung Park

For nearly two decades, in the field of educational administration, Bates’s critical theory has been one of the most vigorous challenges to the value neutral approach of…

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2081

Abstract

For nearly two decades, in the field of educational administration, Bates’s critical theory has been one of the most vigorous challenges to the value neutral approach of traditional theories. He has been a key voice claiming that such theories are ideological and mainly concerned with protecting vested interests and class divisions in society. Despite their theoretical endurance and practical implications, the main ideas advocated by Bates’s critical theory have not been examined seriously in the field. This paper analyses the main ideas of Bates’s critical social theory in three ways. First, the major intellectual influences that shaped Bates’s theory are examined. Second, those areas where Bates and Greenfield shared similar views yet took different approaches are considered. Finally, the main arguments that critics raised against Bates are examined and evaluated.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 37 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 9 October 2019

Alexander Buhmann, Øyvind Ihlen and Craig Aaen-Stockdale

Meta reviews are central for mapping the state of the field, consolidating the heterogeneous public relations body of knowledge, and pointing to new potential research…

Abstract

Purpose

Meta reviews are central for mapping the state of the field, consolidating the heterogeneous public relations body of knowledge, and pointing to new potential research directions. Habermas is one of the most influential contemporary social theorists and his work has repeatedly been used in public relations scholarship. While some have maintained that his work has been most influential in the development of public relations theory, this stream of research has never been reviewed empirically.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, the authors present a bibliometric literature review of 263 public relations research articles published between 1980 and 2016 that cite and use Habermas’ work. A network analysis of these publications based on the technique of bibliographic coupling was used to identify common forms of application, research themes, as well as patterns of impact.

Findings

Results show that the use of Habermas has grown significantly, specifically in the recent decade. At the same time, researchers have a narrow focus specifically on earlier developments in the theory. Finally, we discover three main topical research clusters that have been influenced by the theory: public relations and the public sphere, dialogic stakeholder relationships, as well as public relations and communication ethics.

Originality/value

The findings map out an important stream of scholarship in the field by showing where public relations scholars have been and where the research community has not ventured yet. Based on the results of our analysis, the authors propose directions for research to advance future theory development in public relations using Habermas’ work.

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 23 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

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