Newspapers and The Public

The first English daily newspaper, The Daily Courant, began publication is 1702. This might be called the beginning of the…

Jane Austen and Systems Theory

Jane Austen’s Emma (1815) has a lot in common with Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard (1904). Both deal with the transition…

Luhmann and Kenneth Burke

At a recent rhetoric conference in England, I started thinking about possible connections between Luhmann and Kenneth Burke. For rhetoricians,…

Ego, alter, and black boxes

The concepts of ego and alter should leave open whether they concern psychic or social systems . . . (Social…

The Harmonious Society

In Law as a Social System, Luhmann wrote, A functionally differentiated society is anything but a harmonious society with inbuilt…