Media and Democracy

Exploration of the media industry–-print, electronics, and social media–-is represented as an expansion of the space of democracy. Media boom is also projected in relations to press-freedom, the right to information and freedom of speech which are regarded governing notions of democratic society. However, some cases like Bangladesh show that expansion of the media industry does otherwise as it contrarily reproduces the state-discourse and stateness in every sphere of social life. It also politicises regular happenings of everyday life within the framework of central political space. Through the media penetration in everyday life, people on the one hand become politically engaged and on the other hand, are segmented over political divide largely between the Awami League (AL) and the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP). Society consequently takes a by-polar shape disregarding potentialities of multi-polarity which at the end weakens the gravity of democracy. This project, with the critical examination of how media shapes notions of democracy in everyday life of ordinary people, investigates into whether expansion of media and strengthening democracy go hands in hands or both are counterproductive.

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