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ABSTRACT. Global democracy and world governance demand a transnational public sphere in order to circulate information, balance conflicting interests of international actors and create a common understanding of a shared global responsibility. However, this article points out the ambivalent role of the global media and its recipients. Using the scope of the history of political thought (Sartre, Tocqueville), the author takes a critical stance towards the possible development of passive voyeurs who consume the worldwide presentation of human suffering. Moreover, he analyses the abuse and control of information passed through the global media system by single groups, especially terrorists. Hence, the transnational public sphere might contribute to a working global democracy but could also evoke phantom menaces. pp. 139–151

Keywords: global democracy, transnational public sphere, voyeurism, terrorism, media system, Jean-Paul Sartre

OLIVER HIDALGO
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Institut für Politikwissenschaft
Universität Regensburg

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