Here’s my article ‘Broadcasting and the Public Sphere: Problematising Citizens, Consumers and Neoliberalism’, published in Media, Culture & Society (36.5) in July 2014.
Abstract: Literature on broadcasting regulation in the UK often presents a narrative of decline, from an ethos of public service and citizenship to a neoliberal faith in market logic and the sovereign consumer that undermines the public sphere. Much of this discussion is weakened, however, by a lack of engagement with citizenship and consumption, and the reduction to unitary oppositions of what are actually protean distinctions. This weakness in the literature is particularly problematic when it comes to analysing contemporary changes unreflexively as ‘neoliberal’, because neoliberalism cannot be reduced to the passing of power from the state to the market, or to a simple process of privatisation or individualisation. Rather, neoliberalism involves the changing governmental relation between state and market, and between citizens and consumers. Consequently, engagement with theoretical debates on citizenship, consumption and neoliberalism will be recommended to provide a more sophisticated reading of broadcasting as a public sphere.