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Lecture 1

CS203 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Communication Studies

Communication Studies
Course Code
Greigory De Peuter

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16 September 2015
1: Introduction
3 Keywords
1. Theory: a system of ideas which explain practice
Multiple competing theories or explanations
Attempts to account for the way things are and the way they might be
Reputation for being abstract, arguably we are all doing theory all the time
Informs behaviour, practices, outlooks
• Practical
Not opposed to action
An exercise in making what is familiar strange
Taking a critical theory in this course
Critical in the sense of challenging assumptions we may be inclined to take for granted
Not abstract, personal
2. Concepts
Concepts are tools for analysis
Orient our thinking, open pathways for thought
A good concept may unsettle habitual ways of thinking, give fresh perspective
Unlike appealing to opinion, a good concept will create possibilities for thinking beyond what is already
known or assumed
Appealing to opinion is the opposite of thinking
“Toolbox” of concepts
3. Traditions: A community of scholars, the body of research that a body of scholars produces
• Passageways
A school of thought
A shared set of concerns, approaches, and a conceptual lexicon
• Debates
Concepts come from intellectual traditions
Concepts should be contextualized within tradition
One way to organize a mental map of communication studies, relies upon many intellectual traditions
Theme: Power
• How
• Where
• Embodied
At play in interactions
Designed into space
ex. the classroom is designed according to a hierarchy
How are they perpetuated
How is it contested
What sources of counter power exist
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