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Sociologie politique d'une expérience de démocratie participative. Le cas d'une radio communautaire au Sénégal

Abstract : Aspiring to “give a voice” to the poor people of Pikine, a suburb of the Senegalese capital, “Local Debate” is an interactive political programme of the community radio Air’Jeunes, created in the late nineties at the initiative of youth associations in the Dakar region with support from a major Canadian NGO. This thesis explores the use of this programme by local citizens in three main areas where activists and proponents of participatory democracy are committed to developing citizen action mechanisms, aiming to correct the defects and shortcomings under the democratic ideal of representative government: the role of citizens in the production system of local public goods, symbolic relationships between elected leaders and electors, and the public space for debate on public policies and the actions of representatives. Based on an ethnographic field study conducted in three phases between 2006 and 2011 in the radio production studio and the show’s listening sites, it appears that, even if the programme has enabled forms of contestation of local authority to be voiced publicly without mediation, the realisation of the original project faced an unfavourable local context marked by the lack of resources given to local officials to exercise their newly decentralised powers and a local political journalism polarised around two dominant forms, leaving little room for debate: the antagonistic journalism of big private groups and small informal press, and the legitimising journalism of the public service group. Despite their militant commitment to the project, radio staff and hosts whose social origins and educational backgrounds distance them from the forms of consumption of information goods and activities of Pikine’s inhabitants, as well as the dynamic activities of informal neighbourhood associations in the suburbs of Dakar, have gradually yielded to forces of attraction exercised by mainstream private radios, influencing their vision of their professional future and, in turn, their journalistic practice .
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Yacine Diagne. Sociologie politique d'une expérience de démocratie participative. Le cas d'une radio communautaire au Sénégal. Science politique. Université Paris Dauphine - Paris IX, 2014. Français. ⟨NNT : 2014PA090018⟩. ⟨tel-01373766⟩



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