By Edward A. Comor
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Additional info for Communication, Commerce and Power: The Political Economy of America and the Direct Broadcast Satellite, 1960-2000
A world society composed of states and non-state corporate entities. In a hegemonic order these values and understandings are relatively stable and unquestioned. They appear to most actors as the natural order of things. They are the intersubjective meanings that constitute the order itself. Such a structure of meanings is underpinned by a structure of power, in which most probably one state is dominant but that state's dominance is not sufficient by itself to create hegemony. Hegemony derives from the ways of doing and thinking of the dominant social strata of the dominant state or states insofar as these ways of doing and thinking have inspired emulation or acquired the acquiescence of the dominant social strata of other states.
Again, a precise explanation of who 22 Communication, Commerce and Power these imperialists are, their motivations, and the complexities of their efforts to dominate others is missing. Because culture, as the object of inquiry, is itself under-theorized, efforts to specify how cultural imperialism works (or does not work) remain largely unrealized. As long as culture is conceptualized as little more than something that can be readily manipulated by controlling information flows or, more generally, as a functional derivative of the systemic needs of capital, little progress will be made following the prescient work of Schiller and others.
Using Cox and the work of other critical students of IPE, the following chapters redress Schiller's essential limitations while, in the process, also elaborating on what remains lacking in Gramscian approaches - a theorization of the role of culture in general and knowledge in particular in hegemonic orders and counter-hegemonic projects. These and other points are discussed in what follows, beginning with a largely empirical analysis of early US tetesatellite developments and the public and private sector structures forged in relation to their history.