Media and Uncertainty| Understanding the Institutional Precarity of Journalism: A Macro Approach to the Civil Diminishment of Journalism

Sara Torsner


This article develops a conceptual framework for understanding risk to journalism, more specifically, risk to the standing of journalism as a civil institution generated by macro-level state and market forces of civil diminishment. While the state and market arguably belong to the most well-studied forms of power influencing journalism, it is argued here that the nature of risk to journalism is not sufficiently understood in terms of how it occasions the diminishment of the quality of civil life by distorting collective inclusive communication and association among members of society. To achieve this, the article builds on civil sphere theory to establish how the civil diminishment of journalism by anti-civil state power can be evaluated through the application of a principle of justification.


civil diminishment, civil life, civil sphere, institutional precarity, journalism, risk, principle of justification

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