A Return to the People? Popular Democracies and/or Populism in the 2.0 Public Sphere

Wednesday, 13 July 2016: 09:00-10:30
Location: Hörsaal 23 (Main Building)
RC14 Sociology of Communication, Knowledge and Culture (host committee)

Language: French and English

At the beginning of the 21st century, information and participation asymmetries created by traditional media have been challenged by new technologies that reinvigorated the civil society and changed media policies.
Optimists argued that the widespread use of the Internet for social networking, blogging, etc. fosters participatory (popular) democracy. Politicians and media are no longer the sole producers of political information; new actors from civil society, citizens, NGOs activists could contribute with equal influence on the political decision. 
Pessimists argued that the populist movements of the twentieth century, far from being displaced by the rise of the networked media and communication platforms incorporated the non-hierarchical characteristics of 2.0 communication to spread their populist rhetoric and coagulate regular people into movements that challenge the hard core of the democratic system. These scholars argued that movements like Podemos in Spain, Piraten in Germany or Tea Party in the USA were destined to remain marginal without the on-line communication. 
The goal of this session is to bring together researches on the changing relationship and/or tensions between populism and popular democratic movements, in order to make sense of the challenges of the relationship between people, (new) media and political institutions.
Session Organizers:
Daniela ROVENTA-FRUMUSANI, Bucharest University, Romania and Adriana STEFANEL, University of Bucharest, Romania
Civil Society and the Right-Wing Radicalization of the Public Sphere in Hungary
Virag MOLNAR, The New School for Social Research, USA
The Rise of a New Populist: Monica Macovei's 2.0 Electoral Campaign
Adriana STEFANEL, University of Bucharest, Romania
Internet Memes in Designing of New Meanings: Structural Transformations and Social Interpretations
Valeriya VASILKOVA, Saint Petersburg State University, Russia; Zinovyeva NADEZHDA, Saint Petersburg State University, Russia
The Increase in Human Capital through Sharing Images on Virtual Space
Abbas FAGHIH KHORASANI, University of Tehran, Iran; Mohammad Reza JAVADI YEGANEH, University of Tehran, Iran; Mohammad TAVAKOL, University of Tehran, Iran