In this interview, Terry Flew discusses the continued relevance of the nation-state and national media systems in an era of globalization, and the need for cross-national comparative research in media studies. He also discusses the benefits of the concepts of ‘voice’ and ‘participation’ over ‘citizenship’ for evaluating media systems, and criticises the overblown and dismissive use of ‘neoliberalism’ as a rhetorical flourish, in favour of developing it as an analytical concept grounded in empirical evidence. Drawing on Foucault’s work on both Weber and neoliberalism, Flew argues, helps us recognise the need for comparative work on institutions and national systems of government.
Available open access here: http://ojs.meccsa.org.uk/index.php/netknow/article/view/467
Here’s my review of Chris Berry, Janet Harbord and Rachel Moore’s edited collection, Public Space, Media Space, published in New Media & Society in November 2014.
Here’s my review of Andrew Pettegree’s The Invention of News: How the World Came to Know about Itself, published in Media History in September 2014.
Henry A. Giroux, whose book Neoliberalism’s War on Higher Education came out earlier this year, kindly agreed to answer some questions I had for him on neoliberalism, the public university and the role of the public intellectual in resisting, as well as critiquing, the neoliberalisation of academic life.
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.