The phenomenon of technological hazards, whose existence is only revealed many years after they were initially produced, shows that the question of our responsibilities toward future generations is of urgent importance. However, the nature of technological societies means that they are caught in a condition of structural irresponsibility: the tools they use to know the future cannot encompass the temporal reach of their actions. This article explores how dominant legal and moral concepts are equally deficient for helping us understand what (...) future-oriented responsibility requires. An alternative understanding of responsibility is needed, one which can be developed from phenomenological and feminist concepts of care. Care, by opening up for us an understanding of the diversity of values that are constitutive of a worthwhile life, also connects us to the future as the future of care. As such, it provides us with ethical resources that can guide us in the face of uncertainty. (shrink)
Ulrich Beck's best selling Risk Society established risk on the sociological agenda. It brought together a wide range of issues centering on environmental, health and personal risk, provided a rallying ground for researchers and activists in a variety of social movements and acted as a reference point for state and local policies in risk management. The Risk Society and Beyond charts the progress of Beck's ideas and traces their evolution. It demonstrates why the issues raised by Beck reverberate widely throughout (...) social theory and covers the new risks that Beck did not foresee, associated with the emergence of new technologies, genetic and cybernetic. The book is unique because it offers both an introduction to the main arguments in Risk Society and develops a range of critical discussions of aspects of this and other works of Beck. (shrink)
The article argues that the relationship to time is at the root of what makes us human and that culture arises with and from efforts to transcend death, change and the rhythmicity of the physical environment. Time can be tracked through systems of time measurement and later transformed from a process of nature into clock time, a time to human design that is abstracted from context and content. In this form time can be traded with all other times. With contemporary (...) science and new information and communications technologies, which operate in a new all-encompassing temporal spectrum that extends from nanoseconds to millennia, clock time is no longer appropriate to the associated present-oriented transactions and futures are traversed in the dual sense of the word. By historically locating temporal relations, the article provides both a new understanding of socio-cultural relations and a perspective on social change. (shrink)
This article considers the relevance of time theory for Beck's theory of reflexive modernization and vice versa. It focuses in particular on discontinuity in the context of continuity, on decontextualization, naturalization and responsibility as key concerns of both perspectives on the industrial way of life. It makes explicit the temporal underpinnings of that cultural form with respect to five Cs: the creation of time to human design, the commodification of time, the compression of time, the control of time and the (...) colonization of time. It concludes that explicit concern with temporal relations shows reflexive modernization in action and facilitates improved knowledge for deliberative change. (shrink)
This paper seeks to bring a time perspective to the discourses of globalization and development. It first connects prominent recent gender-neutral discourses of globalization with highly gendered analyses of development, bringing together institutional—structural analyses with contextual and experiential data. It places alongside each other ‘First World’ perspectives and analyses of the changing conditions of people in the ‘developing’ world who are at the receiving end of globalized markets, and the international politics of aid. To date, neither of these fields of (...) expertise has made explicit the underpinning time politics of globalization. Naturalized as status quo and global norm these temporal relations form the deep structure of globalization and its neo-colonialist agenda. The paper uses feminist epistemology to explicate the taken-for-granted time politics of globalization and time-based ontology to render visible the gender politics of globalization. The combined conceptual force makes connections where few exist at present, maps complex processes and traces naturalized relations. It offers not a new or better theory of… but an approach to globalization that makes transparent hitherto opaque relations of power and it identifies openings for change, resistance and alternative political practice. (shrink)
Cet éditorial a paru le 30 janvier 2022 à l'occasion du 30e anniversaire de la revue Time & Society. Thirty years ago, as founding editor of Time & Society, l set out the challenges for contributors in the Editorial to the first issue. T&S was launched as an international trans-disciplinary journal, primarily straddling the sciences and humanities. This involved taking great care that all published communications connected with readers outside contributors' own - Brèves.