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By Zygmunt Bauman

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'Community' is a type of phrases that feels stable: it's reliable 'to have a community', 'to be in a community'. And 'community' feels stable as a result meanings which the note conveys, them all promising pleasures, and commonly the type of pleasures which we want to event yet appear to miss.

'Community' conveys a dead ringer for a hot and cozy position, like a fire at which we hot our palms on a frosty day. in the market, on the street, all kinds of hazards lie in ambush; in the following, in the neighborhood, we will sit back and think secure. 'Community' stands for the type of international which we lengthy to inhabit yet which isn't, unfortunately, on hand to us. at the present time 'community' is one other identify for paradise misplaced - yet for a paradise which we nonetheless desire to discover, as we feverishly look for the roads which could lead us there.

But there's a expense to be paid for the privilege of being in a neighborhood. group provides safety yet turns out to deprive us of freedom, of the precise to be ourselves. safeguard and freedom are both worthwhile and coveted values that can be balanced to some extent, yet infrequently totally reconciled. the stress among defense and freedom, and among neighborhood and individuality, is not going ever to be resolved. we won't get away the trouble yet we will take inventory of the possibilities and the risks, and at the least attempt to keep away from repeating previous errors.

In this significant new publication, Zygmunt Bauman takes inventory of those possibilities and hazards and, in his targeted and tremendous model, deals a much-needed reappraisal of an idea that has develop into principal to present debates in regards to the nature and way forward for our societies.

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Additional resources for Community: Seeking Safety in an Insecure World (Themes for the 21st Century Series)

Sample text

Cool' means 'flight from feeling', 'from the messiness of real intimacy, into the world of the easy lay, the casual divorce, and non-possessive relationships'. Given a complete loss of faith in radical political alternatives, cool is now primarily about consumption. This is the missing 'cement' that fills the gaping contradiction - cool is the way to live with the lowered expectations by going shopping . . Personal taste is elevated into a complete ethos; you are what you like, and what you therefore buy.

The 'powerful and successful' may be, unlike the weak and the 60 Two Sources of Communalism 60 defeated, resentful of communal bonds - but like the rest of men and women they find life lived in the absence of community precarious, often dissatisfying and on occasion frightening. Freedom and communality may clash and conflict, but a compound lacking one or the other won't make for a satisfactory life. The need for both ingredients is, if anything, felt yet more strongly because life in our fast globalizing and deregulating society which brought the new cosmopolitan elite into being, but which has been famously described by Ulrich Beck as Risikogesellschaft, risk society, is a Risikoleben, a life of risk - in which 'the very idea of controllability, certainty and security .

The contrived plight of the rats-in-a-maze seemed a faithful laboratory replica of the daily predicament of humansin-the-world. If today the behaviourist parallels have lost most of their persuasive power and are all but forgotten, it is not because the insinuations of spiritual kinship with rats have been belatedly found offensive for the human side of the comparison, but because the vision of a solid, cut-in-hard-rock labyrinth no longer chimes well with the experience ordinary humans have of the world in which 45 Times of Disengagement they live.

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