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The public intellectual and soft power
chapterposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Geoffrey Danaher
"This chapter constitutes a response to Paul Kelly's keynote address at the Australian Media Traditions conference: 'The State of the Press and Public Culture'. It reflects upon challenges confronting the role of public intellectual both within the field of higher education and within the public domain of the media. The chapter draws upon ideas of hard and soft power associated with American thinker Joseph Nye, as well as the work of contemporary French thinker, Pierre Bourdieu, which is useful in mapping tensions impacting on fields such as the media and academia. These tensions are explored within the context of developments in Australian higher education, public media and popular culture. While it is pessimistic about the opportunities for generating a public intellectual culture within the current climate, the paper also offers certain contentions for finding opportunities to promote such a culture. In its conclusion, the paper seeks to relate these contentions to the broad theme captured in this volume's title: Consent and Consensus."