The original Democracy Plaza was established in 2004 by students at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) as a free speech space where students can write, listen, watch or deliberate with their peers on political ideas or issues. Democracy Plaza is THE definition of a "public sphere". The public sphere is an area in social life where people can get together and freely discuss and identify societal problems, and through that discussion influence political action. It is "a discursive space in which individuals and groups congregate to discuss matters of mutual interest" (1998, Hauser, p. 86 in "Vernacular Dialogue and the Rhetoricality of Public Opinion", Communication Monographs 65 : 83–107).
The mission of Democracy Plaza is to support the development of well-informed and engaged students through critical thinking and civil discourse on political ideas and issues. Located in the Lower Foyer of the Campus Center, Democracy Plaza is a perfect fit to help support BSU's commitment to modern social justice issues and a great example of an Academic and Student Affairs collaboration.
If your department would like to hold a conversation at Democracy Plaza as part of a class, please do the following:
1. Make a reservation with the Conference and Event Services Office (CESO) and request the "Lower Foyer" as your space.
2. Once you get your confirmation from CESO, send an email to Kayla Harvey in our office, who will begin the planning process with you and your department, including all your marketing and advertising needs using RCC Design, Video, and the Blog.
3. Promote your Democracy Plaza event with your classes and department to encourage participation.
Last Modified: October 7, 2011