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Philosophical Profiles in the Theory of Communication

With a Foreword by Richard J. Bernstein and an Afterword by John Durham Peters

Edited By Jason Hannan

Philosophical Profiles in the Theory of Communication is the first book to draw systematic attention to the theme of communication in twentieth-century academic philosophy. It covers a broad range of philosophical perspectives on communication, including those from analytic philosophy, pragmatism, critical theory, phenomenology, hermeneutics, feminism, psychoanalysis, systems theory, and more. What emerges is a vital, long-neglected story about the theme of communication in late modern academic philosophy. Each chapter features a «profile» of a particular philosophical figure, with a brief intellectual biography, an overview of that figure’s contribution to communication theory, and a critical assessment of the significance of that contribution. The clear and accessible organization of the volume makes it ideal for courses in both philosophy and communication studies.


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Acknowledgements vii


Acknowledgements ________________________________________ This volume was several years in the making. It was conceived in the course of my graduate studies at Carleton University, where I first entertained the idea of putting an edited collection together. I am grateful for seminars and discussions with Michael Dorland, Chris Dornan, Marc Furstenau, Ross Eaman, Stuart Adam, and Paul Attallah, all of whom drew my attention to the importance of the philosophical tradition as a resource for communica- tion theory. The actual decision to put together a volume of essays on philosophy and communication theory was made with Robert Rutland in the summer of 2008. Although Robert was regrettably unable to remain involved in the pro- ject, his influence upon its development and final outcome has been decisive. I am indebted to him for his creativity in the original design of this book and for recruiting several outstanding contributors. I only wish he could have stayed on as my coeditor. What initially began as a modest collection in size and scope later ex- panded into a much larger and more diverse collection upon sending out a call for papers in the United States. The enthusiastic response to that call was not only a much-needed confirmation that this book would resonate with a great many people; it also presented something of an editorial challenge. I wish to thank Tina Sikka for her time and help during that crucial stage of the project. Her critical judgment and constructive suggestions have greatly sharpened the volume’s focus. A project...

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