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Mediarchy

Yves Citton | Translated by Andrew Brown

We think that we live in democracies: in fact, we live in mediarchies. Our political regimes are based less on nations or citizens than on audiences shaped by the media. We assume that our social and political destinies are shaped by the will of the people without realizing that ‘the people’ are always produced, both as individuals and as aggregates, by the media: we are all embedded in mediated publics, ‘intra-structured’ by the apparatuses of communication that govern our interactions.

In this major book, Yves Citton maps out the new regime of experience, media and power that he designates by the term ‘mediarchy’.  To understand mediarchy, we need to look both at the effects that the media have on us and also at the new forms of being and experience that they induce in us.  We can never entirely escape from the effects of the mediarchies that operate through us but by becoming more aware of their conditioning, we can develop the new forms of political analysis and practice which are essential if we are to rise to the unprecedented challenges of our time.

Originally published by Seuil in 2017 with the title Médiarchie.

More information here.


Yves Citton is Professor of Literature and Media Studies at the University of Paris-8. His previous book The Ecology of Attention was published by Polity.

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