By BECK, Ulrich _amp; BECK-GERNSCHEIM, Elisabeth.

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The racial doctrine of National Socialism is an extreme example of the ‘counter-modernization’ which stages a masquerade of the past in order to push back the ‘decadent’ tendencies of modernity (Beck, 1993: Chapter 4). It aims – using every means – to establish the unquestioned world of a re-integrated blood community. Marriage thus becomes a branch office of the state, a miniature state, the ‘germ-cell of the state’. It is the place where the ‘German race’ is reproduced. The commentary in the family register from the 1970s seems expressly to countermand the one just quoted.

O n t h e I m p o s s i b i l i t y o f L i v i n g M o d er n L i f e: t h e D e- R o u t i n i z at i o n o f t h e M u n d an e It is easily said: certainties have fragmented into questions which are now spinning around in people’s heads. But it is more than that. Social action needs routines in which to be enacted. One can even say that our thoughts and actions are shaped, at the deepest level, by something of which we are hardly or not at all aware. There is an extensive literature which stresses the relief afforded in this way by internalized, pre-conscious or semi-conscious routines – or more precisely, the indispensable role they play in enabling people to lead their lives and discover their identities within their social coordinates.

349) To some, such examples sound familiar. To others they seem alien – tales from a distant world. It is clear that there is no such thing as ‘the’ individualized society. Unquestionably, the situation in cities like Munich or Berlin is different from that in Pomerania or East Friesland. 3 What has long been taken for granted in one as a part of normal life, seems odd, irritating, threatening in the other. Of course, lifestyles and attitudes from the town are spreading to the country – but refractedly, with a different gloss.

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Individualization by BECK, Ulrich _amp; BECK-GERNSCHEIM, Elisabeth.


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