This book explores how a variety of historically marginalised groups create their own 'public spheres', parallel to the mainstream public arena. Since such groups have been excluded from conventional public discourse and activity, they build their own infrastructures for opinion formation and expression. The book draws upon theory in sociology, philosophy, political science, and communications in order to understand communication patterns among the politically marginal at different points in history. Three diverse historical case studies (female-operated salons of eighteenth-century Paris, the black press of the 1930s, and the creation of The Masses), and a contemporary analysis of the Libertarian Party, illuminate the experiences of those who live on the fringe of the public sphere. Through synthesis of existing scholarship, and original archival research, Politics at the Margin demonstrates the centrality of political communication to the study of social action.
"Herbst nicely integrates oral history with close textual readings of important political discourse...thought-provoking." Journal of American History "Overall, Herbst's study is imaginative, innovative, and informative..." American Journal of Sociology "Overall, Herbst's study is imaginative, innovative, and informative..." American Journal of Sociology "Herbst nicely integrates oral history with close textual readings of important political discourse to offer a thought-provoking examination of these case studies. this work is important to scholars interested in cross-disciplinary work in history, political science, and communication studies." Dayle C. Hardy-Short, Journal of American History