Dialog, Society, and Elites
Yankelovich, 159-218 and Stewart, 503-531, 558-565, 568-575, 598-607, 611-615
- Moving dialog into the community
- There have been a number of successful attempts to diffuse community and societal problems via dialogue
- Well done, such dialogue creates a transcendent eloquence that results in understanding and acceptance, if not forgiveness
- True compassion comes in such understanding, acceptance, and forgiveness.
- If we cannot understand, accept, and forgive, we are doomed to conflict
- Such dialogue is not easy
- It is not just a matter of conversation
- But of interaction style, expectations, perceptions, and attributions
- It requires rules like those that Yankelovich has supplied
- Here is a summary set from Deborah Tannen:
- Don't demonize those with whom you disagree
- Don't affront their deepest moral commitments
- Talk less of rights, which are nonnegotiable, and more of needs, wants, and interests.
- Leave some issues out
- Engage in a dialogue of convictions. Don't be so reasonable and conciliatory that you lose touch with a core of belief you feel passionately about.
- The key to dialog is balancing presence and identity
- Proxy dialog via television
- It has worked
- Is it really the only option
- Could it work given
- The focus on ratings
- The entertainment undercurrent of TV
- Will sex and violence always trump dialogue on TV?
- Are there alternatives?
- Internet discussions
- Reporting of dialogue as news
- Would our elites allow it to work?
- Innis' argues no
- That every society is characterised by a media elite that seeks to preserve its power and status
- The biggest justification: the myth that the public cannot contribute to policy
- is this what the incessent surveys about what we know are really all about?
- But we don't live in Innisian times
- Where a single new medium dominated the landscape
- Many new media contend on an ongoing basis
- The question is, can we use them for "good"?
- The truth is that the path to dialogue cannot be a silver bullet that is delivered through just one medium
- It requires sharing across a variety of media such that a new community is formed in the intersection of the two that existed before.
|| -- Last edited September 18, 2015 |
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