B. van Ruler
- How public relations works: theoretical roots and public relations perspectives
- Public Relations Review
- Volume | Issue number
- 33 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)
Public relations is often studied from a managerial, instrumental perspective or a psychological, behavioral perspective. To understand the role of public relations in building trust or mistrust and to develop - or destroy - a license to operate, it needs also to be studied as a social phenomenon.
This special issue of Public Relations Review will attempt to broaden the theoretical scope of public relations studies by applying the works of a string of prominent social theorists - Jürgen Habermas, Niklas Luhmann, Michel Foucault, Pierre Bourdieu, Erving Goffman, Max Weber, and Anthony Giddens. What can be culled from using the perspectives of these scholars? None of them studied public relations as such, and hence it must be asked: can public relations fit into their theoretical frameworks, and if so, how?
The papers in this special issue discuss these questions, after giving short overviews of the theorists’ key concepts and contributions. This introduction locates the purpose of the special issue within a broader research agenda in public relations. It is argued for a pluralistic approach to the field.
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