Most of us think that new media have made public discussion and pronouncements less civil. Is this true and if so what are the consequences for public debate and communication? Do please join us online on Thursday, 23 July at 7.30pm BST for the first in a series of events in which a distinguished panel will share their thoughts on the issues at hand.
The event will open with a short presentation from Texas by Prof. Emily Sydnor, Assistant Professor of Political Science at Southwestern University and author of Disrespectful Democracy: The Psychology of Political Incivility.
She writes: ‘research demonstrates that negativity and rudeness in politics have been increasing for decades. But how does this tide of impolite-to-outrageous language affect our reactions to media coverage and our political behaviour?’ She argues that ‘citizens now need to be able to tolerate or even welcome incivility in the public sphere in order to participate in the democratic process. Yet individuals who are turned off by incivility are not brought back in by civil presentation of issues.’
The discussion, chaired by Prof. James Raven, Chair of the ESU, will be led by our panel: Teresa Bejan, Associate Professor of Political Theory in the Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Oxford and author of Mere Civility: Disagreement and the Limits of Toleration, and David Howarth, Professor of Law and Public Policy at the University of Cambridge, former MP for Cambridge, and former Electoral Commissioner.
A donation of £10 per person is suggested.