By Jose Mariette
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22 Coalitions of anxiety rely not on class knowledge but on risk knowledge, which regularly lacks direct personal experience (1992b: 53). Therefore all the competitions, conﬂicts, and negotiations of deﬁning risks and risk knowledge become crucial, and all the institutions which provide us with knowledge, such as the media, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and consumer organizations, gain importance. indd 38 11/6/2007 3:40:07 PM Risk Society and Reﬂexive Modernization 39 As a result, the political potential of the risk society rests on the production, dissemination, and negotiation of knowledge about risks.
The “risk society is not an option which could be chosen or rejected in the course of political debate. It arises through the automatic operation of autonomous modernization processes which are blind and deaf to consequences and dangers. 6 Beck derives the self-transformation of modernity from the immanent contradictions of modernization and counter-modernization (1992b: 13). First modernity (or industrialized modernity, or simple modernity) transforms itself by the application of modern principles to the (semi-modern) institutions of first modernity.
Research in Reflexive Modernization Research Center has shown that it is not the clear-cut change from early modern either/or logic to the both/and principle, but new and different mixtures of both principles that indicate reflexive modernization. The new complements rather than supplants the old in many respects. indd 44 Unambiguous, institutionally guaranteed boundaries (between social spheres, between nature and culture, between scientific and unscientific) Source: Beck et al. 2003: 22. 3 General Criteria for Reflexive Modernization A multiplicity tending toward the dissolution of boundaries Recognition of this multiplicity Postmodern society 44 Jens O.