Critical Systems Theory: A Political Economy of Language, Thought, and Technology

Graham, Philip W. (1999) Critical Systems Theory: A Political Economy of Language, Thought, and Technology. Communication Research, 26(4), pp. 482-507.

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An emergent form of political economy, facilitated by information and communication technologies (ICTs), is widely propagated as the apotheosis of unmitigated social, economic, and technological progress. Meanwhile, throughout the world, social degradation and economic inequality are increasing logarithmically. Valued categories of thought are, axiomatically, the basic commodities of the “knowledge economy”. Language is its means of exchange. This paper proposes a sociolinguistic method with which to critically engage the hyperbole of the “Information Age”. The method is grounded in a systemic social theory that synthesises aspects of autopoiesis and Marxist political economy. A trade policy statement is analysed to exemplify the sociolinguistically created aberrations that are today most often construed as social and political determinants.

Impact and interest:

19 citations in Scopus
15 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 28799
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1177/009365099026004006
ISSN: 0093-6502
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: Sage
Deposited On: 23 Nov 2009 04:43
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2010 14:11

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