Communicative Constructivism and Mediatization


Corresponding author: Hubert Knoblauch; e-mail:


The article (a) proposes communicative constructivism as a theoretical framework for conceptualizing mediatization. Communicative constructivism elaborates social constructivism and links it to Habermas' theory of communicative action. By highlighting the neglected role of objectivations, it allows the recognition of knowledge, body, performance, and objects as part of communicative action. Communicative action results in communicative forms which constitute the institutions of the communicative culture of society. Linking actions and objects, mediatization is (b) part of any communicative action. As communication cultures vary with respect to the forms of communication, contemporary society can be defined by certain features of mediatization. Since these features are to be determined empirically, the article will (c) hint at their consequences for the diagnosis of contemporary society.