This book examines the insecurity that besets our lives in the contemporary world, whether as a result of natural disasters, human negligence or, more recently, threats to security in the form of terrorist activity, which itself gives rise to new fears: fear of travel, agoraphobia, distrust of others and existential anxieties.
Revealing the connection between the two components of our insecurity, as reflecting on and conditioning human existence, and producing social problems, the author brings this to bear on the notion of security that modernity had sought to guarantee to its citizens – a notion that has slowly crumbled with the crisis of modernity and with the emergence of the "liquid" world.
Now insecurity is endemic and has so firmly become part of us as to be accepted as an unpleasant aspect of normality that we must live with. However, the necessity of living in a risk society in which security has emerged as important does nothing to dispel the fear that accompanies us at all times. An engagement with the thought of Bauman that explores fear as an accompaniment to the end of modernity and its assurances, State of Fear in a Liquid World offers developments of the thesis of liquid modernity and will appeal to scholars and students of sociology, social theory and politics with interests in individualisation, social change and (in)security.
Table of Contents
Preface: A silent companion in a liquid world
- Phobos, a God repressed
- Fear of the machine
- Human adaption to the machine
- Natural and moral disasters
- Danger as an everyday experience
- Social security and individual insecurity
- Fear of Invasion
- Fear of Exclusion
- Waste in our future
- The frailty of personal relationships
- Forms of reassurance
- Globalization and "overclass"
- The Panopticon inside the net
- The anxiety-inducing State and the management of insecurity
- Unde malum? A temporary conclusion
Carlo Bordoni is a sociologist, journalist, former lecturer at the University of Florence and Director of the Academy of Fine Arts, Carrara (Italy). He writes for the Italian newspaper Il Corriere della Sera and its literary supplement, la Lettura, for the quarterly Prometeo, and the journal Social Europe online. He is the author of State of Crisis with Zygmunt Bauman, The End of Equality (Routledge, 2016) and Interregnum: Beyond Liquid Modernity.