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Expressive Rationality: A Different Approach for Understanding Participation in Municipal Deliberative Practices
Karlstads universitet, Avdelningen för medie- och kommunikationsvetenskap.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5097-6218
2008 (English)In: Communication, Culture and Critique, Vol. 1, no 2, 203-221 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Why do people engage in municipal deliberative practices? The aim of this article is to explore inhabitants’ motivations for participating in deliberations organized by Civic Committees in the south Swedish municipality of Helsingborg. I have done this through an ethnographic study, observing deliberative practices and interviewing inhabitants, politicians and municipal officials in Helsingborg. This study is also theoretically inspired. I argue that the Civic Committees are inspired by deliberative theories of democracy in order address changing patterns of political participation in late modernity. It is especially the deliberative focus on rationality as communicative, rather than instrumental that is attractive for a municipality trying to reorient civic participation back to its institutions. However, by focusing on the issue of motivation, I argue that neither the instrumental nor the communicative account of rationality is satisfactory in fully understanding inhabitants’ motivations for participating in municipal deliberative practices in late modernity. With a focus on identity, I therefore suggest a more expressive account of rationality.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 1, no 2, 203-221 p.
National Category
Media and Communications
Research subject
Media and Communication Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-206263OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-206263DiVA: diva2:676558
Available from: 2013-01-21 Created: 2013-08-29 Last updated: 2015-02-25

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Svensson, Jakob
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