Janey GordonIntroduction 1
Janey Gordon Introduction Community radio broadcasters are working to make the airwaves acces- sible and open, and to transform radio into a medium in the service of their communities. With radio activists from around the world as your guides, this book of fers a voyage to the heart of the alternative airwaves, and an understanding of why these activists have a passion for radio. — Girard 1992: 10–11 It is now twenty years since Bruce Girard closed his introduction to A Passion for Radio with the words above and I can think of no better way to start this book, since once more radio activists, each with a passion for community radio will be your guides through its chapters. All the authors of Community Radio in the Twenty-First Century are activists and prac- titioners as well as being academics with first-hand experience of involve- ment in this third tier of broadcasting, which is neither commercial nor state run. In the second decade of the twenty-first century concepts of what a ‘community’ is, have sometimes become somewhat muddied and clichéd. Governmental and non-governmental authorities have found ‘community’ a convenient tag to give respectability to their favourite projects. The term ‘community’ has a number of very dif ferent yet distinct meanings, depend- ing on who is using the word, sociologists, psychologists, anthropologists or archaeologists for example all have a slightly dif fering view. Robert Putnam comes from a Public Policy discourse and his work concerning groups of people who come together...
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