Need an argumentative essay on Habermas Theory of Public Sphere. Needs to be 4 pages. Please no plagiarism.
”Public’  was synonymous with ‘state-related’. the attribute no longer referred to the representative ‘court’ of a person endowed with authority but instead to the functioning of an apparatus with regulated spheres of jurisdiction and endowed with a monopoly over the legitimate use of coercion’ (Habermas,
1989: 18). From a sociological point of view, this change meant the transition from the totalitarian state to the liberal model of the bourgeois society. in other words, it meant the progressive emergence of a participatory public sphere, separated either from the private realm and the state. When this bourgeois society turned into a mass society during the end of the nineteenth century and the beginning of the twentieth, the limits between these two spheres became blurred. as Craig Calhoun suggests, a ‘refeudalization’ of society occurred (Calhoun, 1992: 21).
Habermas analyzes the effects of this rapprochement between the public and private spheres as the main cause of the progressive lack of reason in the public opinion and the resulting loss of public representation. With the rise of capitalism and the social welfare state, big companies took over the public sphere and people turned into merely consumers of gods. Democracy, for its part, became the scenario in which all these interests come into play.
The criticism of Habermas’ theory focuses on his concept of ‘public sphere’, which excludes much of the members of society. ‘Habermas’s critics argue that he idealizes the earlier bourgeois public sphere by presenting it as a forum of rational discussion and debate when in fact certain groups were excluded and participation was thus limited’ (Kellner: 7). The bourgeois public representation was restricted to white men, owners of some kind of property, which meant that women, non-whites and poor people were excluded of this participation, so Habermas’ concept of the ‘public sphere’ was just ideal. ‘The early bourgeois public spheres were composed of narrow segments of the European population, mainly educated, propertied men, and they conducted a discourse not only exclusive of others but prejudicial to the interests of those excluded’ (Calhoun, 1992: 3). An important number of members of the population were not part of this ‘public sphere’, thus contradicting the meaning of the word ‘public’ as a guarantee of accessibility for everybody and the concept of democracy itself (if we understand it as the participation of everybody in the public political processes). So, for a real ‘public sphere’, social inequality must be eliminated and open access to it must be guaranteed.
Some of the harshest criticism came from the feminist movement, whose proclamations were in full swing when the book was published. On the one hand it is the fact that the bourgeois public sphere excluded women from any public representation (as they were excluded throughout the history) and, on the other hand, it is the labour that women carry out in the private sphere (working at home, taking care of the children and the family, etc), which is vital for the development of the whole society. So, as Kate Millett stated in 1970, ‘personal is political’. This proclamation remarks that, throughout history, sex differences have been legitimated by political power,
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