Liquid fear is a fear without apparent source, a derivative fear that results from the interiorisation of 'a vision of the world that includes insecurity and vulnerability' 3 ; such a condition, Bauman notes, 'even in the absence of a genuine threat' 3 will produce a reaction appropriate to the presence of real danger. Derivative fear thus acquires 'a self-propelling capacity' 3 and, decoupled from its putative cause, is used by the state to compel citizens' obedience in exchange for supposed protection against threats to their existence.
In liquid modernity, the state can no longer effectively deliver on its promise to protect people because the social stability on which its claims depend has been eroded by the uncertainties of global capitalism, and at the same time the inequities of this system have produced a context of physical threats to personal safety in the form of so-called terrorist violence. Liquid Fear analyses the state's methods of using this culture of pervasive but detached fear to ensure social passivity and thus secure the status quo.
Bauman finds symptoms of liquid fear in a number of features of contemporary Western life.
The credit-driven consumer economy is a sign of a desire to [End Page ] 'consume the future, so to speak, in advance — while there is still something left to be consumed' 9. A society that no longer believes in the future lives on credit, while a culture focused on saving 'grow[s] out of, and feed[s] on, a future one can trust — a future certain to arrive and, once it has arrived, to be not so dissimilar to the present' 9. A failure to save for or invest in the future is apparent also in our unsustainable levels of resource consumption and the refusal of the affluent West to recognise that its lifestyle is predicated upon the impoverishment of most of the world's population.
Deepening inequality is not an accidental, neglected but in principle rectifiable side-effect of certain uncalled-for, recklessly embarked on and insufficiently monitored undertakings, nor a result of a regrettable but rectifiable malfunctioning of an essentially sound system. It is rather an integral part of a conception of human happiness and comfortable living, and of the strategy which that conception dictates; the conception and strategy can be contemplated and entertained only as privileges , and are blatantly unsuitable for stretching wider — let alone for being stretched widely enough to be shared by the whole of humankind.
Zygmunt Bauman. Through his brilliant account of the fears and anxieties that weigh on us today, Bauman alerts us to the scale of the task which we shall have to confront through most of the current century if we wish our fellow humans to emerge at its end feeling more secure and self-confident than we feel at its beginning. Undetected country.
Liquid Fear on Spotify
NO YES. Liquid Fear. What's happening today, I think, is the turning of the pendulum. Among other things, it means Donald Trump. Donald Trump is in the limelight because who knows, perhaps the future president of the great United States. But you see the same trend in virtually every other country.
Increasingly, Bauman says, people want politicians who assert: "Give me the power and I will take responsibility for your future. According to Bauman, such leaders are capitalising on the feeling that "democracy is very strong in its mouth but not in its deeds". The memory of totalitarianism and strong leaders has faded among a younger generation, he says, so the current stage we find ourselves in means that many people accept the rhetoric of politicians such as Trump.
People are looking for "magic" in leadership, which he says is a waste of time, but "understandable" in the current climate. Bauman talks about those facing the largest uncertainty in our time: the refugees fleeing war and seeking new to build new lives in Europe.
He says there is a "psychological explanation" for what he deems a nervous reaction in Europe to refugees coming to the EU. But they are refugees now Refugees, he says, "embody all our fears" of losing everything. Bauman sees both sides of the story. And the human ability to endure their suffering and rejection is not limitless either. So we have to exercise what is called empathy, but - and that's a big but - unfortunately, going through that, there is no shortcut solution Coming to an understanding takes some time, the whole generation, even more than one generation, so we have to brace ourselves for a very difficult time coming.
He says: "You have to accept this is the situation. Let us come together and find a solution.
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