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Late modernity (or liquid modernity) is the characterization of today's highly developed global
societies A society is a group of individuals involved in persistent social interaction In social science, a social relation or social interaction is any relationship between two or more individuals. Social relations derived from individual agenc ...

societies
as the continuation (or
development Development or developing may refer to: Arts *Development hell, when a project is stuck in development *Filmmaking#Development, Filmmaking, development phase, including finance and budgeting *Development (music), the process thematic material i ...
) of
modernity Modernity, a topic in the humanities and social sciences, is both a historical period (the modern era) and the ensemble of particular socio-cultural norms, attitudes and practices that arose in the wake of the Renaissance The Renaissance ...

modernity
rather than as an element of the succeeding era known as
postmodernity Postmodernity (post-modernity or the postmodern condition) is the economic or cultural state or condition of society which is said to exist ''after'' modernity. Some schools of thought hold that modernity ended in the late 20th century – in the ...
, or the postmodern. Introduced as "liquid" modernity by the Polish sociologist
Zygmunt Bauman Zygmunt Bauman (; 19 November 1925 – 9 January 2017) was a Polish sociologist and philosopher. He was driven out of the Polish People's Republic during the 1968 Polish political crisis and forced to give up his Polish citizenship. He emigrated ...

Zygmunt Bauman
, late modernity is marked by the
global Global means of or referring to a globe A globe is a spherical of , of some other , or of the . Globes serve purposes similar to s, but unlike maps, they do not distort the surface that they portray except to scale it down. A model globe of Ear ...

global
capitalist Capitalism is an economic system based on the private ownership of the means of production and their operation for Profit (economics), profit. Central characteristics of capitalism include capital accumulation, competitive markets, a price s ...
economies with their increasing privatization of services and by the
information revolution The term information revolution describes current economic, social and technological trends beyond the Industrial Revolution The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in Europe and the United States, in the p ...
.


Versus postmodernity

Social theorists and
sociologists This is a list of sociologists. It is intended to cover those who have made substantive contributions to social theory and research Research is "creativity, creative and systematic work undertaken to increase the stock of knowledge". It i ...
such as
Scott Lash Scott Lash (born December 23, 1945) is a professor of sociology Sociology is the study of society, human social behaviour, patterns of social relationships, social interaction, and culture that surrounds everyday life. It is a social science t ...
,
Ulrich Beck Ulrich Beck (15 May 1944 – 1 January 2015) was a well known German sociologist, and one of the most cited social scientists in the world during his lifetime. His work focused on questions of uncontrollability, ignorance Ignorance is a lack of ...
,
Zygmunt Bauman Zygmunt Bauman (; 19 November 1925 – 9 January 2017) was a Polish sociologist and philosopher. He was driven out of the Polish People's Republic during the 1968 Polish political crisis and forced to give up his Polish citizenship. He emigrated ...

Zygmunt Bauman
, and
Anthony Giddens use both this parameter and , birth_date to display the person's date of birth, date of death, and age at death) --> , death_place = , other_names = Tony Giddens , title = Director of the London School of Economics ...
maintain (against postmodernists) that
modernization Modernization theory is used to explain the process of modernization within societies. Modernization theory originated from the ideas of German sociologist Max Weber Maximilian Karl Emil Weber (; ; 21 April 186414 June 1920) was a German socio ...
continues into the contemporary era, which is thus better conceived as a radical state of late modernity. On
technological Technology ("science of craft", from Ancient Greek, Greek , ''techne'', "art, skill, cunning of hand"; and , ''wikt:-logia, -logia'') is the sum of Art techniques and materials, techniques, skills, Scientific method, methods, and Business proc ...

technological
and
social change Social change involves alteration of the social order The term social order can be used in two senses: In the first sense, it refers to a particular system of social structures and institution Institutions, according to Samuel P. Huntingt ...
s since the 1960s, the concept of "late modernity" proposes that contemporary societies are a clear continuation of
modern Modern may refer to: History *Modern history Human history, also known as world history, is the description of humanity's past. It is informed by archaeology Archaeology or archeology is the study of human activity through the recov ...

modern
institutional transitions and cultural developments. Such authors talk about a
reflexive modernization The concept of reflexive modernization or reflexive modernity was launched by a joint effort of three of the leading European sociologists: Anthony Giddens use both this parameter and , birth_date to display the person's date of birth, date of d ...
as post-traditional order which impact day-to-day social life and personal activities. Modernity now tends to be self-referring, instead of being defined largely in opposition to traditionalism, as with classical modernity. Giddens does not dispute that important changes have occurred since "high" modernity, but he argues that we have not truly abandoned modernity. Rather, the modernity of contemporary society is a developed, radicalized, "late" modernity—but still modernity, not postmodernity. In such a perspective, postmodernism appears only as a hyper-technological version of modernity.


Subjects

The subject is constructed in late modernity against the backdrop of a fragmented world of competing and contrasting identities and lifestyle cultures. The framing matrix of the late modern personality is the ambiguous way the fluid social relations of late modernity impinge on the individual, producing a reflexive and multiple self.


Characteristics

Zygmunt Bauman, who introduced the idea of liquid modernity, wrote that its characteristics are about the individual, namely increasing feelings of uncertainty and the privatization of
ambivalenceAmbivalence is a state of having simultaneous conflicting reactions, beliefs, or feelings towards some object. Stated another way, ambivalence is the experience of having an attitude towards someone or something that contains both positively and neg ...
. It is a kind of ''chaotic continuation of modernity'', where a person can shift from one social position to another in a fluid manner. Nomadism becomes a general trait of the "liquid modern" person as she or he flows through her or his own life like a tourist, changing places, jobs, spouses, values, and sometimes moresuch as political or sexual orientationexcluding her- or himself from traditional networks of support, while also freeing her- or himself from the restrictions or requirements those networks impose. Bauman stressed the new burden of responsibility that fluid modernism placed on the individualtraditional patterns would be replaced by self-chosen ones. Entry into the globalized society was open to anyone with their own stance and the ability to fund it, in a similar way as was the reception of travellers at the old-fashioned
caravanserai A caravanserai (or caravansary; ) was a roadside inn where travelers ( caravaners) could rest and recover from the day's journey. Caravanserais supported the flow of commerce, information and people across the network of trade routes covering As ...
. The result is a normative mindset with emphasis on shifting rather than on stayingon provisional in lieu of permanent (or "solid") commitmentwhich (the new style) can lead a person astray towards a prison of their own
existential Existentialism ( or ) is a form of philosophical inquiry that explores the problem of human existence and centers on the lived experience of the thinking, feeling, acting individual. In the view of the existentialist, the individual's starting ...
creation.


See also

*
Information societyInternet design and usage influence other areas, and there are discussions about how big the influence of specific media or specific modes of production really is. Frank Webster notes five major types of information that can be used to define informa ...
*
Neoliberalism Neoliberalism, or neo-liberalism, is a term used to describe the 20th-century resurgence of 19th-century ideas associated with free-market In economics Economics () is the social science that studies how people interact with valu ...

Neoliberalism
*
Network societyNetwork society is the expression coined in 1991 related to the social, political, economic and cultural changes caused by the spread of networked, digital information and communications technologies. The intellectual origins of the idea can be trace ...
*
Post-industrial society In sociology Sociology is the study of society, human social behaviour, patterns of social relationships, social interaction, and culture that surrounds everyday life. It is a social science that uses various methods of Empirical method, e ...
*
Second modernity Second modernity is a phrase coined by the German sociologist Ulrich Beck, and is his word for the period after modernity Modernity, a topic in the humanities and social sciences, is both a historical period (the modern era) and the ensemble ...
*
Late capitalism Late capitalism, or late-stage capitalism, is a term first used in print by German economist Werner Sombart around the turn of the 20th century. Since 2016, the term has been used in the United States and Canada to refer to perceived absurdities, ...


References


Footnotes


Bibliography

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Further reading

* * * * {{Modernism Modernity