cod. 1004582

Academic year 2022/23
1° year of course - First semester
- Marco DERIU
Academic discipline
Sociologia dei processi culturali e comunicativi (SPS/08)
"discipline tecniche dell'informazione e della comunicazione"
Type of training activity
30 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

At the end of the course students are expected to be able to:
- understand the importance of animating a public space for political and environmental discussion; to recognize the different subjects involved in the public debate and the different forms of communication used (texts, images, gestures and actions); to remember the main changes in the evolution of political and environmental communication.
- to be able to apply the learnt contents and carry out a complete analysis of different materials (texts, speeches, photographs, advertising, videos, etc.) with regard to statements and contents, narrative styles, emotional dimensions and reference values.
- to be able to interpret, evaluate and criticize the different forms of public intervention of a political and environmental nature with autonomy, reflexivity and rigor.
- to know how to communicate and compare ideas and opinions in a public debate, recognizing the complexity and legitimacy of different points of view, without renouncing one's own.
- to be able to participate with more awareness and with more critical tools in public life, preparing to take their responsibilities in front of the most important political and environmental issues that arise in particular in the relationship between different peoples, generations and species.


The course does not require special prerequisites.

Course unit content

Course Title: From post-democracy to ecological democracy.

Course program:
The course starts with a general introduction to political communication, outlining the subject of study, history and evolution, the different subjects involved, as well as the different dimensions and implications.
An analysis will be proposed of the progressive simplification of communication and of the political debate, of the declining trust in democratic institutions and of the emergence of what has been called "post-democracy".
The risks associated with the continuous rhetorical reference to the logic of emergency (ecological, health, warfare) and the possible consequent technocratic and authoritarian drifts will therefore be investigated.
In conclusion, the link between political regeneration and environmental regeneration will be analyzed and the possible elements of an ecological democracy will be investigated.

Full programme

First part:
- Introduction to the course and general information
- What is political communication
- Approaches and perspectives of analysis of political communication
- Electoral communication

Second part:
- The simplification of the political debate and the blind alleys of political communication
- The crisis of confidence in the institutions and the debate on "post-democracy"

Part Three:
- The rhetoric of emergency (ecological, health, warfare)
- The possible consequent technocratic and authoritarian drifts.
- Political crisis and ecological crisis: the link between political regeneration and environmental regeneration.
-A democracy capable of the future: the paths of ecological democracy


Marco Deriu, Rigenerazione. Per una democrazia capace di futuro, Castelvecchi, Roma, 2022.

An extensive bibliography will be provided on the topics covered during the course in which to choose additional texts to write a paper for the exam.

Teaching methods

The course uses and integrates different teaching methods: lectures; dialectical and interactive lessons based on solicitations, interaction and moments of discussion; text analysis; vision, commentary and discussion of movies and documentaries. The course also includes seminar meetings with scholars and experts in the field of political, environmental and social communication, journalism and environmental sciences.

Assessment methods and criteria

The exam preparation for both attending and non-attending students consists of a general preparatory work (study of the course handouts) and a written thematic study (In-depth thesis).

For the thematic deepening:
Students must choose one of the course topics (see the course's thematic bibliography) and TWO texts related to it to conduct personal study. The In-depth thesis of 10-15 pages (18,000-25,000 characters including spaces) will be sent by email at least five days before the appeal to and will be discussed orally on the date of the appeal. Exclusively for attending students it is also possible to arrange research and in-depth study for small groups (2-3 people max.) Provided that the individual contribution in writing by each participant is clearly indicated in the essay (the length of the essays must be relatively proportional to the number of people involved).
The in-depth thesis, which forms the basis of the examination, will be judged on the basis of the following criteria:
- consistency with the course topics;
- originality in the proposed survey;
- ability to deepen, problematization and critical discussion of the chosen subject;
- breadth and appropriateness of bibliographic and documentary references compared to the in-depth literature used and to the materials of the course;
- exhibition capacity and quality of writing.
The exam consists of an interactive discussion around the contents of the essay.

The student who did not carry out the research and personal study required from the two selected books or who does not demonstrate an adequate understanding of the analyzed problem or the basic themes of the course will be considered insufficient. It will be assessed: sufficient or discreet, the student who has diligently carried out the research and the personal deepening and that proves to be able to handle with ownership the concepts and terms of the discipline; discreet or good, who in the discussion and discussion will show a greater capacity for elaboration and critical analysis; very good or excellent, who will have explored the matter in a more in depth and autonomous way, for example by consulting critical editions or by making comparisons on single editions of texts or different edition criteria. The votes will be expressed in thirtieths. The vote is communicated at the end of the test itself.

Other information

The thematic bibliography for further study and the course materials can be downloaded from the Elly 2022 platform, by entering the website of the course "Sociology of political and environmental communication"