When the Internet Fails to Connect: A Study on a Russian-American Non-Reflexive Discourse
This study investigates the outburst of anti-Americanism among Russian Internet users during the Russia-Georgia military crisis of 2008. The paper analyzes the discussions of Washington Post articles at the Washington Post Internet forum and the Foreign Media Russian Internet site. This study shows that, despite numerous attempts by Russian users to deliver their messages to the American readers, their postings were ignored by the American users and global dialogue did not occur. It is this exclusion from the conversation, together with the denigration of Russia by writers in the United States that led to the intensification of anti-American sentiments among the Russians. The study makes clear that for the establishment of effective global public spheres access to new communication technologies and knowledge of English are inadequate, unless accompanied by the willingness to listen to others and a desire to understand them.
Formation of democratic societies of the Western type presupposes appearance on the historical scene of a new strong actor - the bourgeois class: "No bourgeoisie, no democracy" (Barrington Moore). The articulation and defense of vital interests of that class creates a new social space - "the bourgeois public sphere" which helps to make up "counterbalance" to absolutism of a corporate state - a civil society, the core of which is composed by public opinion. In the confrontation between the authorities and society one of the most important roles is played by the press that provides free debate and discussion of generally valid problems, especially economic and political. The recognition of the mass media role was stamped in its characterization in XIII century as "the fourth power". Technological development of the media incredibly expanded its functions, turning journalists into creating informational analogue of reality, saturating daily life with new meanings. Methods of the representation of reality, the specific nature of political influence of journalists - key members of the reflexive elites (Helmut Shelski), are the themes of this article.
Публичная сфера, журналистика, четвертая власть, порядки знания, Повседневность, научное и повседневное знание, экспертиза, Репрезентация, public sphere, journalism, fourth estate, orders of knowledge, Everyday life, scientific and everyday knowledge, Expertise, representation
The author explores the correspondence between the system of political views and values and the system of stylistic means used in public communication. On a material of public images of the Russian politicians this article suggests possible methods of assessment of compliance between the chosen rhetoric and declared political tasks and goals.
The paper deals with the creative works of an outstanding German philosopher-anthropologist Helmut Plessner. He addresses to an existential structure of individuality as to a social existence and considers it as the carrier of roles. He proves that social identification is based on the idea of the person possessing a social role, but not defined by it. Plessner starts with the idea of a duality of the role relation in which the performer identifies himself. Such identification appears as the only condition in the basic relation of a social role and a human nature. On this basis in the structure of duality of the human existence, a role connecting the carrier and its figure, Plessner finds a constant of sociality. Plessner addresses to an ontologic structure of the person, an eccentric pozitionality, within social subject and defines it as “duality structure in which the carrier of a role and a figure of a role are connected”. Plessner believes that what we find exactly in this structure is "a constant" which is the condition of “human generalization”, and considers it in a quality of “the unique constant in the basic relation of a social role and a human nature”.
According to the given article the main basis of the present political regime’s legitimacy in Russia seems to be the absence of institutionalized citizen’s communication across differences. In the absence of effective political competition and social critically media there is not public communication. This, in turn, does not generate the collective form of political change’s internalization. A consequence is the private character of political preference formation which rationality is aimed not at improvement of own political knowledge, but on improvement of own material welfare. For this reason the public sphere institutions/political communication institutions are devaluated as a basis of preference formation in the opinion of most citizens. The exclusion of the democratic institutions from possible ways to improve one’s personal situation does not conflict with interventions of the authoritarianism.