Toward Robust Public Engagement: The Value of Deliberative Discourse for Civil Communication

Rhetoric & Public Affairs, Volume 17, Number 2, Summer 2014, pp. 287-322

37 Pages Posted: 10 Dec 2014

See all articles by Don Waisanen

Don Waisanen

City University of New York - School of Public Affairs

Date Written: Summer 2014

Abstract

This article explores questions about “civility” in the 2012 election. Through an analysis of media discussions raising the term, four themes are constructed focusing on the limitations of civility discourse. While seeking to preserve the best that civil orientations afford, I argue that adding a deliberative approach to such discourse addresses moments when civil appeals appear to be most limited. This essay fınds that working between civil and deliberative constructs provides an instructive perspective for understanding the workings of and possibilities for public discourse during situations when civility rhetoric is typically raised. Relative to civil communication — and associated concepts such as dialogue and advocacy — specific norms, benefits, examples, and implications of a deliberative rhetorical vision are charted for problem-solving, public policy contexts.

Suggested Citation

Waisanen, Don, Toward Robust Public Engagement: The Value of Deliberative Discourse for Civil Communication (Summer 2014). Rhetoric & Public Affairs, Volume 17, Number 2, Summer 2014, pp. 287-322. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2535544

Don Waisanen (Contact Author)

City University of New York - School of Public Affairs ( email )

Baruch College, One Bernard Baruch Way
Box D901
New York, NY 10010
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.donwaisanen.com

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