Raymond Williams’ Communicative Materialism

Fuchs, Christian (2017) Raymond Williams’ Communicative Materialism. European Journal of Cultural Studies, 20 (6). pp. 744-762. ISSN 1367-5494

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Official URL: https://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1367549417732998


Raymond Williams is one of the most important and influential cultural theorists. Although he wrote on communication(s), the main reception of his works is today predominantly focused on his works on literature and culture. This article therefore presents an overview of his notion of communication and asks: How does Raymond Williams conceive of communication? How can we use his communicative materialism today for understanding digital communication? Williams advanced a materialist understanding of communication. His elements of a materialist communication theory help us to illuminate communication in the context of the base/superstructure problem, and ideology as a peculiar form of instrumental communication. He provides concepts that we need for a materialist understanding of digital media. The article concludes that we need the approach of communicative materialism for grounding a Marxist theory of communication that is relevant to the analysis of digital media. This article forms part of ‘On the Move’, a special issue that marks the twentieth anniversary of the European Journal of Cultural Studies.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: University of Westminster > Media, Arts and Design
SWORD Depositor: repository@westminster.ac.uk
Depositing User: repository@westminster.ac.uk
Date Deposited: 20 Nov 2017 16:45
Last Modified: 20 Nov 2017 16:45
URI: http://westminsterresearch.wmin.ac.uk/id/eprint/20479

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