The Study of Risk in the Light of Social Changes: Beck and Giddens

Misale Fiorenza


U. Beck and Giddens play a leading role in the development of new academic research field called 'theory of the risk society' that studies the risk in the light of social, economic and political contexts in which it manifests itself. The German sociologist Ulrich Beck starts from the assumption that globalization and technological progress are changing not only the way of understanding and addressing the risk but also its very nature. In postmodern society, rapid technological progress, coupled with an increasingly dense network of global connections, goes hand in hand with the production of new risks, such as those generated by atomic, genetic and chemical. Anthony Giddens, like Ulrick Beck, believes that modernity has led to a deep uncertainty that previous eras had never known. The prospect of Giddens differs from that of Beck in relation to the concept of trust that the British sociologist reserves particularly important, according to him, the global expert knowledge must regain the lost confidence, considering the fact that the risk can also be understood as opportunities, such as stakes in order to achieve certain results. Confidence is a psychological condition necessary to cope with risks, which otherwise would stop the action, making anxiety attack.

DOI: 10.5901/jesr.2017.v7n1p159

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Journal of Educational and Social Research ISSN 2239-978X(Print) ISSN 2240-0524(Online)

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