Article

Deliberation

Michael A. Xenos

in Communication

ISBN: 9780199756841
Published online February 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199756841-0043
Deliberation

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“Deliberative democracy” refers to democratic processes based on thorough consideration and discussion of issues from a variety of perspectives. Although voting and other ways of tallying opinions are often part of deliberation, it seeks to go beyond the mere aggregation of preferences through processes of collective discussion. Scholarly interest in deliberative democracy is highly interdisciplinary, with major strands of work found in political theory and philosophy, as well as in social scientific disciplines such as political science, social psychology, and sociology. With its focus on discussion and the exchange of reasoned arguments, however, it should be no surprise that deliberation has drawn significant attention from communication scholars, particularly those focused on political communication. These scholars regularly find insight in work on deliberation that originates in other fields and make their own contributions in return. Following broader scholarly interest in the topic, communication researchers have explored deliberation in a number of formats. These “modes” of deliberation include Deliberative Polls, deliberation among candidates and voters during campaigns, and deliberation in small groups, public forums, and town hall meetings, as well as informal deliberation that takes place in mass media, online, and in everyday political discussions among citizens. Within and across these modes, research on deliberative democracy typically addresses substantive questions surrounding the potential effects of deliberation on the quality of opinions held by its participants, and their likelihood of future political and civic engagement.

Article.  8786 words. 

Subjects: Communication Studies

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