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The Discursive-Material Knot

Cyprus in Conflict and Community Media Participation

Nico Carpentier

The theoretical framework of the discursive-material knot consists out of a non-hierarchical ontology of the interactions of the discursive and the material, articulating the assemblages that are driven by this ontological setting as restless and contingent, sometimes incessantly changing shapes and sometimes being deeply sedimented. This book acknowledges the importance of discourse studies, in having produced a better understanding of the socio-political role of frameworks of intelligibility, and of materialism theory in highlighting the importance of the agentic role of materials. Still, the combination of the discursive and the material requires our attention in a much more fundamental way; that is where this book’s first platform aims to provide a contribution.

These ontological-theoretical reflections are not produced in a void, but they are put to work in this book, first in platform two, which consists of a discursive-material re-reading of three theoretical fields, dealing with practices that are all highly relevant in contemporary democracies: participation, community media and conflict (transformation). Finally, in the third platform, this book turns its attention to a particular social reality, analyzing the logic of the discursive-material knot in the particular context of the Cyprus Problem. This case study fills a gap by bringing community media and conflict transformation together, through the analysis of the role of the Cyprus Community Media Centre (CCMC), and its webradio MYCYradio, in contributing to the transformation of antagonism into agonism. Deploying a discursive-material analysis to study the participation and agonization (and their articulation) in CCMC/MYCYradio shows the complexity and richness of conflict transformation processes, in combination with the importance of organizations such as CCMC/MYCYradio for the betterment of society.

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Advance praise for The Discursive-Material Knot


Advance praise for

The Discursive-Material Knot

“The Discursive-Material Knot takes us to a highly significant, yet under-studied, region and provides a rich account of community based media in Cyprus. I particularly commend Nico Carpentier’s fine work to bring together the discursive and the material on the basis of a well-researched case. This is a must-read for anyone who is interested in discourse theory and community media.”

—Miyase Christensen, Stockholm University, Sweden

“Every few years a book offers great insight on the often contested relationship between citizen media and agency. The Discursive-Material Knot is one such remarkable contribution. Embracing both critical reflection of participation theories and analytical interpretation of empirical studies, this book articulates an original model that deepens understanding of community media and conflict transformation.”

—Tao Papaioannou, University of Nicosia, Cyprus

“This book is a must-read! Guaranteed to make you think about the role of community media and its impact on conflict transformation. Nico Carpentier provides a detailed and sensitive analysis of the Cyprus conflict from its past to its present and offers valuable insight into to the many mechanisms at play in shaping its future.”

—Shirin Jetha, independent consultant

“The Discursive-Material Knot will be an invaluable methodological toolkit for all those that will be researching community media organizations within the context of the ecological systems in which they operate. Its non-hierarchical nature and the use of a knot model for its analysis, is...

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