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Drowning in liquidity: Zygmunt Bauman on happiness, ambivalence, and security

Chapter


Abstract


  • For Zygmunt Bauman, modernity is characterised by a series of contradictions; and rarely is this more apparent than in the contemporary pursuit of happiness. From his early work on socialism and utopia in the 1970s, through his contributions on ambivalence, mortality and ethics in the 1990s, and the application of his liquid modernity thesis to the topics of love, fear and identity in the 2000s, Bauman has consistently sought to comprehend the various ways in which modernity jeopardises human happiness. While many postmodern theorists of the 1990s celebrated the new era of reflexive modernisation as the liberation of individuals from outdated social structures, the work of Zygmunt Bauman provides a detailed overview of the emotional consequences that the new liquid era creates. In an era where neoliberal values pervade discourses on happiness and the good life, Bauman���s contributions provide a critical platform for engaging with happiness in contemporary Western culture.

Publication Date


  • 2019

Edition


Citation


  • McKenzie, J. (2019). Drowning in liquidity: Zygmunt Bauman on happiness, ambivalence, and security. In Critical Happiness Studies (pp. 162-176). doi:10.4324/9780203730119-11

International Standard Book Number (isbn) 13


  • 9781138304437

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85108747026

Web Of Science Accession Number


Book Title


  • Critical Happiness Studies

Start Page


  • 162

End Page


  • 176

Place Of Publication


Abstract


  • For Zygmunt Bauman, modernity is characterised by a series of contradictions; and rarely is this more apparent than in the contemporary pursuit of happiness. From his early work on socialism and utopia in the 1970s, through his contributions on ambivalence, mortality and ethics in the 1990s, and the application of his liquid modernity thesis to the topics of love, fear and identity in the 2000s, Bauman has consistently sought to comprehend the various ways in which modernity jeopardises human happiness. While many postmodern theorists of the 1990s celebrated the new era of reflexive modernisation as the liberation of individuals from outdated social structures, the work of Zygmunt Bauman provides a detailed overview of the emotional consequences that the new liquid era creates. In an era where neoliberal values pervade discourses on happiness and the good life, Bauman���s contributions provide a critical platform for engaging with happiness in contemporary Western culture.

Publication Date


  • 2019

Edition


Citation


  • McKenzie, J. (2019). Drowning in liquidity: Zygmunt Bauman on happiness, ambivalence, and security. In Critical Happiness Studies (pp. 162-176). doi:10.4324/9780203730119-11

International Standard Book Number (isbn) 13


  • 9781138304437

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85108747026

Web Of Science Accession Number


Book Title


  • Critical Happiness Studies

Start Page


  • 162

End Page


  • 176

Place Of Publication