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9 th DOHA INTERFAITH DIALOGUE 2011 Social Media Mirroring Social Change. Challenges and Chances for Interfaith Dialogue Thomas A. Bauer, Department of Communication University of Vienna, Austria European Society for Education and Communication (ESEC) thomas.bauer@univie.ac.at.

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9 th doha interfaith dialogue 2011 social media mirroring social change

9th DOHA INTERFAITH DIALOGUE 2011Social Media Mirroring Social Change

Challenges and Chances for Interfaith Dialogue

Thomas A. Bauer, Department of Communication

University of Vienna, Austria

European Society for Education and Communication (ESEC)


main theses going into depth by means of theoretical concepts
Main Theses: Going Into Depth by Means of Theoretical Concepts
  • Challenge of Rethinking the Methods and Concepts of Notion and Knowledge
  • Cultural Turn in Understanding Communication: open the mind for new paradigms
  • Cultural Turn in Understanding Media: focus on mediality as the code of social construction of meaning
  • Constructivist Understanding of Social Change: change happens though an observation uploaded with interest of change
  • Communicational Understanding of Religion: the communicational environment for the narration of God
communication culture i
Communication Culture I
  • From Structural (what) to Cultural (why) Observation :

Instead of analysing the structural systems (too much taking about “the media”) recent communication/media studies interpret communication/media as cultural construction of meaning (values, sense)

All social order is an agreement of and through communication (even mediatized): all immaterial reality does not have its meaning by itself, but by communication of experience, perception and observation

  • Communication – a Cultural Concept for Acting & for Observing the Sociability of Human Existence

Action related to the antagonism of power / subordination and to distribution of influence (vertical, hierarch. tendency / discourse model) Observation related to control certainty: you – me relation and identity and identification (horizontal, heterarchicaltendency / dialogue-model)

communication culture ii
Communication Culture II
  • Communication – not the tool or the instrument (power & influence) but the social environmental (setting, frame) of mutual perception and attention (common frame for you and me)
  • Communication – discourse: the cultural model of social order through consensus ( focus: unification, assimilation of sight) & dialogue: the cultural model for distinction and differentiation (focus: the other, surprise)
  • Communication in context of religion: the cultural model for communification of (unified frame for) difference in and diversity of construction of sense and distribution of sociability of sense (meaning)
rethinking media
Rethinking Media
  • Media as tools and instruments – industrial perspective, concept of technical plausibility – affirmative perspective
  • Socialized use of media (assimilated, restrictive, repressive) vs. social use of media (authentic, situational, emancipative) usage of media as a social practice of being aware of each other: media becomes media through using the media (usage is the topos of communication)
  • Media Competence: from media organized to medialized exchange of experience un order to construct open meaning
social change mind habit relation
Social Change : Mind Habit Relation
  • Social Media represent on a technological and sociological level the principle of changeability of observation and self-observation (self-realization) of mankind: Change of mind, of habit and of relationship
  • Social Change (observing our observation) is the matter of dialogical (dialectic) communication in the interest (need) of constructing reality
  • Social Change as Media Change: from mass media-communication to mediatized mass communication: new social order (new paradigm of trust) for a next-to-next-society: individual sovereignty, option of casual connectivity, ubiquitious presence, instant relevance, heterarchy, heresy (choice) etc.
what to be aware of
What to be Aware of?
  • The communicative structure of religion in context of social media (cultural change) structurally will change in all societies interfered by social mediallty(medialized sociability: society constituting itself in model of media-mass- communication / religion in a new communicational environment will change its ontology and its social (political) meaning
  • From causal to casual model of communication: the role-model of symbolic interaction turns successively into a more casually interchanged individually mimetic model of (explorative) construction of sense
  • Because of loss of trust in institutions in general (at least in western or westernized societies), religion as the primary&radical reference of the communicative practice of society in need of interpretation of reality – successively replacing the institutional performance of religion thus challenging the institutional performance of religion: growing gap of competence and credibility?
  • Anthropological Model: Communication as destination against uncertainty: mutually exchanged re-mind of the experience that is might be the destiny of mankind’s existence to be undefined/ undetermined
  • Bauer, Thomas A. (1980): Streitpunkt Dogma. Wien: Böhlau
  • GIDDENS, Anthony (1990): The ConsequenceofModernity. Stanford
  • FLUSSER; Vilém (2003): Kommunikologie. Frankfurt: Fischer
  • KROTZ, Friedrich: (2008): Kultureller und gesellschaftlicher Wandel im Kontext des Wandels von Medien und Kommunikation. In: Thomas, Tanja, Hg. Medienkultur und soziales Handeln. Wiesbaden: 43 - 62
  • LUHMANN, Niklas (1974): Sinn als Grundbegriff der Soziologie. In: Habermas, Jürgen / Luhmann, Niklas: Theorie der Gesellschaft oder Sozialtechnologie – Was leistet die Systemforschung? Frankfurt/M: 25 –100: suhrkamp
  • LUHMANN, Niklas (1968): Vertrauen. Ein Mechanismus der Reduktion sozialer Komplexität. Soziologische Gegenwartsfragen, Neue Folge, ed.. byL. Neundorfer, H. Schelksky und F.H. Tenbruck. Stuttgart
  • MEAD, George Herbert (1973): Geist, Identität und Gesellschaft Frankfurt: suhrkamp
  • SCHELKLE, Waltraud (2000): Paradigmsofsocialchange: modernization, development, transformation, evolution. Frankfurt: Campus
  • SCHMIDT, Siegfried J. (1994): Kognitive Autonomie und soziale Orientierung. Konstruktivistische Bemerkungen zum Zusammenhang von Kognition, Kommunikation, Medien und Kultur. Frankfurt
  • TAYLOR, Charles (2002): Die Formen des Religiösen in der Gegenwart. Frankfurt: suhrkamp
  • WILLIAMS, Raymond (1958): Culture and Society 1780-1950. Cambridge