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Democracy, Inc.: The Press and Law in the Corporate Rationalization of the Public Sphere
by David S. Allen
University of Illinois Press, 2005
eISBN: 978-0-252-09040-0 | Cloth: 978-0-252-02975-2
Library of Congress Classification KF2750.A9395 2005
Dewey Decimal Classification 343.730998

In Democracy, Inc., David S. Allen exposes the vested interests behind the U.S. slide toward conflating corporate values with public and democratic values. He argues that rather than being institutional protectors of democratic principles, the press and law perversely contribute to the destruction of public discourse in the United States today.

Allen utilizes historical, philosophical, sociological, and legal sources to trace America's gradual embrace of corporate values. He argues that such values, including winning, efficiency, and profitability actually limit democratic involvement by devaluing discursive principles, creating an informed yet inactive public. Through an examination of professionalization in both the press and the law, corporate free speech rights, and free speech as property, Democracy, Inc. demonstrates that today's democracy is more about trying to control and manage citizens than giving them the freedom to participate. Allen not only calls on institutions to reform the way they understand and promote citizenship but also asks citizens to adopt a new ethic of public discourse that values understanding rather than winning.

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