Call for Papers for a Special issue of CM Communication Management Quarterly on Histories of media(ted) participation

A major angle of vision on the history of democracy is to look at how it has been shaped by participation – as well as how the struggles for participation against various obstacles in different contexts has impacted on democracy. Over time, participation takes many forms and has many contingencies; the mechanisms of inclusion and exclusion are many and complex. We can conceptualise participation very broadly – for example involvement in the (democratic) culture of everyday life in a particular time and place. Alternatively, participation can be seen as engagement that touches base in some way with the sharing of power and has relevance for decision-making.

From our horizons in the TATS COST Action(*), the media understandably loom very large, and we imagine that there are countless ways in which one can formulate histories of democratic participation both in the media as well as through the media – having political import in equally different ways.

In this issue we envision a collection of high-quality articles that can address important historical contexts and moments, ie. decisive developments that have had lasting consequences, but also in-depth case studies into specific histories of media(ted) participation. The main focus is on histories of participation in and through the media. We envision both empirical studies as well as theoretic/conceptual articles. Issues of ownership, control, access, interaction, technology, legal parameters, political circumstances, and subjective and empowerment are some of the many possible relevant themes. How might we theorise participation in the non-democratic contexts from the past? What factors may have enhanced or hindered participation in particular historical settings? How do these histories show the practical, logistical, or even normative limits to participation? Is there a starting point of these forms of participation? Aren't the modernist conceptions of ownership and authorship necessary components to understand media participation (see Hamilton, 2003)? Even for engagement, was there political engagement in the feudal system, before democracy? Do we need to have conceived democracy to be able to speak of political engagement?

We are aiming for a good thematic mix of high quality articles. Especially TATS Cost Action members are invited to participate, but the call is open to non- TATS Cost Action members. Submissions – and inquiries – can be addressed to the editors (see below). 300 words abstracts should be submitted before 15 April 2013. The deadline for submitting the first draft version of the article is 1 September 2013, so that these draft versions can be presented at the COST Belgrade meeting on 18-20 September 2013. The final version should be submitted on 15 November 2013.

Hoping you will participate!

Nico Carpentier
Peter Dahlgren

(*) The Cost TATS Action is the Cost Action IS0906 “Transforming Audiences, Transforming Societies”, see for more information.