THE PUBLIC AS THE MEDIUM OF DEMOCRACY

Tomo Jantol ; Faculty of Political Science, University of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia

Fulltext: pdf (99 KB), Croatian, Pages 11 – 22

Abstracts
As the medium of democracy, the Public is a communicational trace of the
missing Collective Sovereign: the People or Demos. In political life, we often
refer to the People, but in reality the People does not make a community. It is
instead a notion, a missing Sovereign, the one who exists as concept but does
not speak for oneself. The community is yet to be established, and this can be
done only by communication. The aim of such communication is to formulate
norms, rules and principles which are to be implemented or encouraged
in public life. On a more normative level, this can be done in the process of
writing a Constitution. The other objective is to discuss the concept of public
good. This is left to communicational functions of the Public. The concept of
the Public is left to citizens, who communicate with other citizens, and thus
create public opinion. By doing that, the Public is here to remind the government
that somebody else is to be Sovereign, i.e. that there is also the People.
The Public is thus a substitute for the “missing Sovereign”. There can be no
Democracy without this role of the Public.

Keywords
public; democracy; communication; public opinion; media