Journalism (real and fake), social science, and the state of democracy
The Concordia Centre for Broadcasting and Journalism Studies (CCBJS) and Le Centre de Recherche Interdisciplinaire sur La Diversité et la Democratie (CRIDAQ) have collaborated to create a series of conferences and round tables in 2017-2018 on the timely theme of truth and democracy and the relations between Journalism, Politics, and Social Science.
On Tuesday, September 26, 'The Politics of Everybody: A Marxist-Queer View from the U.S.' brings Texas State University's Holly Lewis to Concordia to kick off the series. Lewis is active in the anti-fascist movement in her University. Her specific interest has been in critiquing the voluntarist counter-cultural sentiment in Western queer politics through an economic analysis.
As a whole, the conference series will ask quest speakers to address the following questions:
- How we can discuss a politics for everyone and everybody?
- Can democracy survive the next internet?
- Why journalism is so important for the deliberative form of democracy?
- How to document what politicians think as opposed to what they say?
- What truths (or lies) can journalism provide about health sciences?
- What intimate truths are journalists and anthropologists looking for?
- What can we learn about democracy from First Nations radio?
Journalism (real and fake) and the fate of democracy (its truths and post-truths) have suddenly become a hot topic around the world. A veritable political and media storm has social critics and pundits perplexed as to how to explain many of today’s political events. The storm is now affecting many vulnerable communities. It comes with a return of ethnic nationalism and the Brexit referendum, a new Cold War, and the globally publicized impeachment (“constitutional coup”) of the President of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff.
These examples are not simply a shift toward right-wing authoritarianism, bigger big business, militarization, or the scapegoating of minorities, but in many instances the fabulous denial of social facts journalists, politicians and social scientists are expected to trust in order to carry out their respective mandates in the production of democracy itself.
In many ways the perfect political and media storm around the world has occurred because the strengths in these fields have given way to their weaknesses. Many believe the political field is weakened to the point of absurdity (endless spin) and that journalism’s professional culture (as gatekeeper) of values of accuracy, reliability, autonomy, and truth is simply a cover for the interests of the most well-off (hence the accusation of being fake news). The social science "thinkers" have not been able to dam the storm surge either perhaps because of their own long divisive debate over the relations between knowledge, truth and power.
For more information or to stay updated on the program:
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