Home » The Filipinos and the Philippines in Nora Cruz Quebral’s Development Communication Discourse: Strengthening Communication’s Groundedness in a Nation’s Context

The Filipinos and the Philippines in Nora Cruz Quebral’s Development Communication Discourse: Strengthening Communication’s Groundedness in a Nation’s Context

ABSTRACT

The very first definition of development communication (DevCom) was articulated in 1971 by Nora Cruz Quebral. Since then, DevCom has continually flourished in the Philippines and its Asian neighbours as a field of study and practice. Quebral, a Filipina, is now widely recognised as one of the pillars and leading scholars of DevCom in Asia and the whole world. But how exactly has Quebral invested the Filipinos and the Philippines with meanings in her discourse of DevCom as a field of study and practice purportedly grounded in the context of developing nations and communities, and what are its implications? Informed and guided by Laclau and Mouffe’s Theory of Discourse, this paper identifies Quebral’s key articulations of DevCom, the Filipinos and the Philippines in her discourse, and discusses some implications of the discourse for the scholarship and practice of DevCom. It concludes that Quebral’s DevCom discourse argues that differences in socioeconomic experiences among nations have necessitated the rise of another field of communication more appropriate for and grounded in the realities of developing nations and communities. However, the discourse could have also articulated the field of DevCom more in relation to the historical, political, cultural and ethnolinguistic experiences of a developing nation and its people—in this study, that of the Philippines and the Filipinos. What has been barely articulated in the discourse has important implications for DevCom scholarship and practice.

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