Zygmunt Bauman

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Zygmunt Bauman

Full name

Zygmunt Bauman November 19, 1925 (age 85) Pozna , Poland 20th / 21st-century philosophy Western Philosophy Continental philosophy · Marxism · Postmodernism


Era Region


Main interests

Ethics · Political philosophy · Sociology

Notable ideas

Modernity's struggle with ambiguity, resulting in the Holocaust, postmodern ethics, "liquid" modernity

Influenced by[show]

he completed his M. Initially. since 1971. Because of this he was never awarded a professorship even after he completed his habilitation but . Bauman. He admitted. Poland. [edit] Biography Zygmunt Bauman was born to non-practising Polish-Jewish parents in Pozna . his dismissal caused a severe. though temporary estrangement from his father. the magazine states. Bauman has become best known for his analyses of the links between modernity and the Holocaust. distinguished himself as the leader of a unit that captured a large number of underground combatants. Further. During the period of unemployment that followed. According to semi-official statements of a historian with the Polish Institute of National Remembrance made in the conservative magazine Ozon in May 2006. As Bauman did not share his father's Zionist tendencies and was indeed strongly anti-Zionist. Bauman confirmed that he had been a committed communist during and after World War II and had never made a secret of it. including Socjologia na co dzie ("Sociology for everyday life". Bauman remained close to orthodox Marxist doctrine. where his teachers included Stanis aw Ossowski and Julian Hochfeld. has resided in England after being driven out of Poland by an anti-Semitic campaign. a military unit formed to combat Ukrainian nationalist insurgents and part of the remnants of the Polish Home Army. and in 1954 became a lecturer at the University of Warsaw. engineered by the Communist government which he had previously supported. the author cites evidence that Bauman worked as an informer for the Military Intelligence from 1945 to 1948. as well as the exact circumstances under which it was terminated.A. When Poland was invaded by the Nazis in 1939 his family escaped eastwards into the Soviet Union. which reached a large popular audience in Poland and later formed the foundation for the Englishlanguage text-book Thinking Sociologically (1990). and of postmodern consumerism. In May 1945 he was awarded the Military Cross of Valour. however. 1964). from 1945 to 1953 Bauman held a similar function in the Internal Security Corps (KBW). after his father approached the Israeli embassy in Warsaw with a view to emigrating to Israel. working as a political education instructor and taking part in the battles of Kolberg (now Ko obrzeg) and Berlin.[1] In an interview in The Guardian. that joining the military intelligence service at age 19 was a mistake even though he had a "dull" desk-job and did not remember informing on anyone. Professor of sociology at the University of Leeds (and since 1990 emeritus professor). During a stay at the London School of Economics. the nature and extent of his collaboration remain unknown.Zygmunt Bauman (born 19 November 1925 in Pozna ) is a Polish sociologist who. Published in Polish in 1959. in 1925. where his supervisor was Robert McKenzie.sociology had temporarily been cancelled from the Polish curriculum as a "bourgeois" discipline -. where he remained until 1968. In the KBW. Bauman went on to serve in the Soviet-controlled Polish First Army. a translated and revised edition appeared in English in 1972. He went on to study philosophy at the University of Warsaw . he prepared a comprehensive study on the British socialist movement. but influenced by Antonio Gramsci and Georg Simmel. Bauman had risen to the rank of major when he was suddenly dishonourably discharged in 1953. Bauman first studied sociology at the Warsaw Academy of Social Sciences. his first major book. he became increasingly critical of Poland's communist government. Bauman went on to publish other books. However.[2] While serving in the KBW. after his former teacher Julian Hochfeld .

Bauman over a number of books began to develop the position that such order-making efforts never manage to achieve the desired results. However. originally published in Poland in 1960. Indeed. [edit] Work Bauman's published work extends to 57 books and well over a hundred articles. there are always social groups who cannot be administered. Bauman. bureaucracy. the Chief of the Polish Communist Secret Police. . Faced with increasing political pressure and the anti-Semitic campaign led by Mieczys aw Moczar. rules and regulations. rationality and social exclusion. Bauman came to write of the stranger as the person who is present yet unfamiliar. among which are globalization. European society. his third language. consumerism. Bauman exerted a considerable influence on the anti. with his last book on the subject being Memories of Class.was made vice-director of UNESCO's Department for Social Sciences in Paris in 1962. society's undecidable. With the March 1968 events. which drove most remaining Poles of Jewish descent out of the country. [edit] Modernity and rationality In the late 1980s and early 1990s Bauman published a number of books that dealt with the relationship between modernity.or alter-globalization movement. Bauman de facto inherited Hochfeld's chair. [edit] Early work Bauman's earliest publication in English is a study of the British labour movement and its relationship to class and social stratification. he has published almost exclusively in English. the anti-Semitic campaign culminated in a purge. Bauman was married to writer Janina Bauman (she died on 29 December 2009 in Leeds[3]) and has three daughters. he first went to Israel to teach at Tel Aviv University. from the late 1990s. Having had to give up Polish citizenship to be allowed to leave the country. When life becomes organised into familiar and manageable categories.[5] He continued to publish on the subject of class and social conflict until the early 1980s. architect Irena Bauman. he continues to describe himself as a socialist. including many intellectuals who had fallen from grace with the communist government. The noted Israeli civil rights lawyer Michael Sfard is his grandson. Since then. and morality. who cannot be separated out and controlled. in what he later came to term its 'solid' form. it involved control over nature. Bauman renounced his membership in the governing Polish United Workers' Party in January 1968. involved removing unknowns and uncertainties. who had lost his chair at the University of Warsaw. painter Lydia Bauman. In his book Modernity and Ambivalence Bauman began to theorise such indeterminate persons by introducing the allegorical figure of 'the stranger. and his repute has grown exponentially. where he intermittently also served as head of department. following Freud. and Professor of mathematics education Anna Sfard. hierarchical bureaucracy. modernity and postmodernity.' Drawing upon the sociology of Georg Simmel and the philosophy of Jacques Derrida. and he has never rejected Marxism entirely [7] The Marxist theorist Antonio Gramsci in particular remains one of his most profound influences. came to view European modernity as a trade off. was among them.[8] Bauman.[4] Most of these address a number of common themes. before accepting a chair in sociology at the University of Leeds.[6] Whilst his later books do not address issues of class directly. he argued. control and categorisation ² all of which attempted to gradually remove personal insecurities. making the chaotic aspects of human life appear well-ordered and familiar. he argued. had agreed to forego a level of freedom in order to receive the benefits of increased individual security. Bauman argued that modernity.

contended that the same processes of exclusion that were at work in the Holocaust could. in different styles of food. because he cannot be controlled and ordered. the division of labour into smaller and smaller tasks. Such fragmented lives require individuals to be flexible and adaptable ² to be constantly ready and willing to change tactics at short notice. different fashions and in tourism it is possible to experience the allure of what is unfamiliar.In Modernity and Ambivalence Bauman attempted to give an account of the different approaches modern society adopts toward the stranger. Rather. Bauman developed the argument that the Holocaust should not simply be considered to be an event in Jewish history. his books have tried to avoid the confusion surrounding the term 'postmodernity' by using the metaphors of 'liquid' and 'solid' modernity. to use the title of one of his books. on the one hand. And he argued that for this reason modern societies have not fully taken on board the lessons of the Holocaust. Social forms and institutions no longer have enough time to solidify and cannot serve as frames of reference for human actions and long-term life plans. Procedural rationality. and to enjoy life. is always the object of fear. plan actions and calculate the likely gains and losses of acting (or failing to act) under conditions of endemic uncertainty. like the philosopher Giorgio Agamben. is an attempt to give a full account of the dangers of these kinds of fears. it is generally viewed . [edit] Postmodernity and consumerism In the mid and late 1990s Bauman's books[10] began to look at two different but interrelated subjects: postmodernity and consumerism. the person outside of society's borders who is constantly threatening. he is the potential mugger.[9] the Final Solution was pictured by him as an extreme example of the attempts made by societies to excise the uncomfortable and indeterminate elements existing within them. Yet this strange-ness also has a more negative side. He argued that. nor a regression to pre-modern barbarism. In Bauman's analysis the Jews became 'strangers' par excellence in Europe. and the tendency to view rule-following as morally good all played their role in the Holocaust coming to pass. Bauman argued. Bauman's most famous book. the taxonomic categorisation of different species. The stranger. offering few lessons. This switch.[11] [edit] Liquid modernity Liquid modernity is Bauman's term for the present condition of the world as contrasted with the "solid" modernity that preceded it. reversed Freud's 'modern' trade-off: this time security was given up in order to enjoy increased freedom. for instance. but in these books he writes of these fears being more diffuse and harder to pin down. he argued. the passage from "solid" to "liquid" modernity has created a new and unprecedented setting for individual life pursuits.to use Bauman's metaphor . Bauman. freedom to purchase. [edit] Awards and honours . to consume. In his books on modern consumerism Bauman still writes of the same uncertainties that he portrayed in his writings on 'solid' modernity. Since the turn of the millennium. Individuals have to splice together an unending series of short-term projects and episodes that don't add up to the kind of sequence to which concepts like "career" and "progress" could be meaningfully applied.like a picture hanging on a wall. which are amorphous and which have no easily identifiable referent. the Holocaust should be seen as deeply connected to modernity and its order-making efforts. Drawing upon Hannah Arendt and Theodor Adorno's books on totalitarianism and the Enlightenment. and to an extent do. in a consumer-oriented economy the strange and the unfamiliar is always enticing. confronting individuals with a series of challenges never before encountered. so individuals have to find other ways to organise their lives. In liquid modernity the individual must act. According to Bauman. to abandon commitments and loyalties without regret and to pursue opportunities according to their current availability. 'liquid fears' .it had altered from being a society of producers to a society of consumers. In his books in the 1990s Bauman wrote of this shift as being a shift from 'modernity' to 'post-modernity'. Indeed they are. Bauman began to develop the position that a shift had taken place in modern society in the latter half of the 20th century .fears about paedophilia. Modernity and the Holocaust. still come into play today.

Warszawa: Iskry. He has been awarded in 2010. 10. "Towarzysz 'Semjon': Profesor Zygmunt Bauman. 1962 (with Szymon Chodak. 11. ^ Aida Edemariam. "Professor with a past". The Evolution of the British Labour Movement: A Sociological Study. Warszawa: Ksi ka i Wiedza. ^ Press release: Prince of Asturias Awards: Alain Touraine and Zygmunt Bauman. 27 May 2010 13. Open University. jointly with Alain Touraine.[12] The University of Leeds launched the The Bauman Institute within its School of Sociology and Social Policy in Bauman's honour in September 2010. ruch. 1998. Jakub Banaszkiewicz): Systemy partyjne wspó czesnego kapitalizmu [The Party Systems of Modern Capitalism]. 12. "Passion and pessimism". 53. 1972. 1959: Socjalizm brytyjski: ród a. ^ The Bauman Institute | University of Leeds [edit] Bibliography [edit] Books by Bauman [edit] Warsaw period y y y y y y y y 1957: Zagadnienia centralizmu demokratycznego w pracach Lenina [Questions of Democratic Centralism in Lenin's Works]. doktryna polityczna [British Socialism: Sources. 2. news from Polish newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza 4. ^ Memories of Class: The Pree-History and After-Life of Class. ^ See in particular Modernity and Ambivalence. Warsaw: Ksi ka i Wiedza. Philosophy. Cambridge: Polity/Blackwell. ^ Between Class and Élite. ^ Madeleine Bunting. Warszawa: Pa stwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe. Polity. 2007 The Guardian interviewer erroneously claims that the Ozon article was written by Bogdan Musial. ^ See In Search of Politics. The Guardian. . filozofia. Elite: A Sociological Study on the History of the British Labour Movement]. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul 7. 1960: Kariera: cztery szkice socjologiczne [Career: Four Sociological Sketches]. Prince of Asturias Award for Communication and Humanities. Warszawa: Ksi ka i Wiedza. 23/2006. 1991. 3. April 28. Political Doctrine]. Warsaw: Ksi ka i Wiedza. Warszawa: Pa stwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe. 1962: Spolecze stwo. ^ An incomplete bibliography can be found at Leeds University's website 5. ^ Modernity and the Holocaust. 1960: Z dziejów demokratycznego idea u [From the History of the Democratic Ideal].Bauman was awarded the European Amalfi Prize for Sociology and Social Sciences in 1992 and the Theodor W. p.[13] [edit] References 1. the Príncipe de Asturias Prize for Communication and the Humanities. Movement. Warszawa: Iskry. 6. Consumerism and the New Poor. intelektualny patron nowej lewicy. April 5. w ktorym yjemy [The Society We Live In]. elita: Studium socjologiczne dziejów angielskiego ruchu robotniczego [Class. ^ Piotr Gontarczyk. Adorno Award of the city of Frankfurt in 1998. a conservative Polish historian working in Germany. the intellectual patron of the New Left. no. 1961: Z zagadnie wspó czesnej socjologii ameryka skiej [Questions of Modern American Sociology]. Manchester: Manchester University Press. it was written by Institute of National Remembrance employee Piotr Gontarczyk. and Modernity and the Holocaust. In fact. Cambridge: Polity. 1960: Klasa. ^ Janina Bauman nie yje. 1990. 1999. in: Ozon. The Guardian. Musial had simply repeated Gontarczyk's findings in the German Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. Juliusz Strojnowski. 2003 8. was an officer and agent of the communist security apparatus]. 9. by oficerem i agentem komunistycznej bezpieki" [Comrade "Semjon": Professor Zygmunt Bauman. ^ Such as Work.

Cambridge. ISBN 0-335-20155-5 1998: Globalization: The Human Consequences. ISBN 0-7456-2172-4 2000: Liquid Modernity. Leeds: University of Leeds Department of Sociology. Cambridge. Essays in Postmodern Morality. ISBN 0-8419-0240-2 1976: Towards a Critical Sociology: An Essay on Common-Sense and Emancipation. ISBN 83-7150-313-X 1998: Work. ISBN 009-132531-5 1982: Memories of Class: The Pre-history and After-life of Class. New York: Routhledge. Philadelphia: Open University Press. ISBN 0-7100-9196-6 c1985 Stalin and the peasant revolution: a case study in the dialectics of master and slave. London. 1965: Wizje ludzkiego wiata. MA: Basil Blackwell. London: Demos. Anna Zeidler-Janiszewska) Humanista w ponowoczesnym wiecie rozmowy o sztuce ycia. ISBN 0-415-06750-2 1992: Mortality.Ethics After Certainty. ISBN 0-8014-2397-X 1990: Paradoxes of Assimilation. Cambridge. ISBN 0631-19267-0 1996: Alone Again . yciu sztuki i innych sprawach [A Humanist in the Postmodern World Conversations on the Art of Life. MA: Basil Blackwell. Warszawa: Pa stwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe. 1995: Life in Fragments. Studia nad spo eczn genez i funkcj socjologii [Visions of a Human World: Studies on the social genesis and the function of sociology].Y. Ithaca. Questions and Concepts]. Intellectuals. Warszawa: Iskry. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. ISBN 0-907427-18-9 1987: Legislators and interpreters . Warszawa: IK. ISBN 0-8014-2603-0 1992: Intimations of Postmodernity. the Life of Art and Other Matters]. 1964: Socjologia na co dzie [Sociology for Everyday Life]. Warszawa: Pa stwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe. N. Ithaca. Toru : Wydawnictwo Naukowe Uniwersytetu Miko aja Kopernika. The Evolution of the British Labour Movement. Warszawa: Iskry.y y y y y y 1962: Zarys socjologii. Ideals. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. New York: New York University Press. ISBN 0-335-15592-8 1989: Modernity and The Holocaust. Immortality and Other Life Strategies. New York: Columbia University Press. Mass. ISBN 83-231-0654-1 1997: (with Roman Kubicki. ISBN 1-898309-40-X 1997: Postmodernity and its discontents. ISBN 0-7456-1016-1 1993: Postmodern Ethics.: Basil Blackwell. ISBN 0-7100-8306-8 1978: Hermeneutics and Social Science: Approaches to Understanding.: Cornell University Press. N.On Modernity. Warszawa: Zysk i S-ka. [edit] Leeds period y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y 1972: Between Class and Elite. consumerism and the new poor. idea y. Science. An introduction for Everyone. ISBN 0-7619-5989-0 1976: Socialism: The Active Utopia. New Brunswick: Transaction Publishers. Cambridge: Polity. Ideologies].: Cornell University Press. New York: Holmes and Meier Publishers.Y. Philadelphia: Open University Press. Warszawa: Ksi ka i Wiedza. 1963: Idee. Cambridge: Polity ISBN 0-7456-2409-X . Preliminaria [Culture and Society. 1964: Zarys marksistowskiej teorii spolecze stwa [Outline of the Marxist Theory of Society]. A Sociological Study. ISBN 0-631-16361-1 1991: Modernity and Ambivalence. Zagadnienia i poj cia [Outline of Sociology. Ithaca. ISBN 0-74562012-4 1999: In Search of Politics. Cambridge: Polity. Post-Modernity. ISBN 0-631-18693-X 1994: Dwa szkice o moralno ci ponowoczesnej [Two sketches on postmodern morality]. N. 1966: Kultura i spo ecze stwo. Manchester: Manchester University Press ISBN 0-7190-0502-7 (Polish original 1960) 1973: Culture as Praxis. 1990: Thinking Sociologically. Warszawa: Pa stwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe. ISBN 0-8014-2104-7 1988: Freedom. nauce. ideologie [Ideas.: Cornell University Press 1989. London: Hutchinson. ISBN 0-7456-1791-3 1995: Cia o i przemoc w obliczu ponowoczesno ci [Body and Violence in the Face of Postmodernity]. London/Boston: Routledge & Kegan Paul.Y. Preliminaries].

Cambridge: Polity. ISBN 1-4039-1271-8 2005: Tony Blackshaw. Cambridge: Polity. Cambridge: Polity. Aalborg: Aalborg University Press. Zygmunt Bauman: Dialectic of Modernity. Bauman's Challenge: Sociological Issues for the 21st Century.). ISBN 0-7456-3987-9 2006: Moralno w niestabilnym wiecie [Morality in an instable world]. ISBN 0415082668 2000: Peter Beilharz. ISBN 0-7456-2634-3 2001: The Individualized Society. London: Sage. ISBN 978-0745647388 2009: (with Roman Kubicki. Modernity and its Outcasts. ISBN 0-7456-3514-8 2006: Liquid Fear. by Peter Beilharz]: The Bauman Reader. Bauman Beyond Postmodernity: Conversations. ISBN 87-7307-738-0 2007: Keith Tester. Cambridge: Polity. Anna Zeidler-Janiszewska) ycie w kontekstach. co przed nami. Pozna : Ksi garnia w. London: Routledge. ISBN 0-7456-3680-2 2006: Liquid Times: Living in an Age of Uncertainty.). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-83-614-0877-2 [edit] Books on Bauman y y y y y y y y y y y 1995: Richard Kilminster. Culture. ISBN 9780230221345 . Michael Hviid Jacobsen. ISBN 0-7456-4002-8 2008: Does Ethics Have a Chance in a World of Consumers?. Poul Poder (eds. 2nd edition.). Ian Varcoe (eds. Keith Tester (eds). Cambridge: Polity. Cambridge: Polity. ISBN 0-7456-2489-8 2003: City of fears. 2010: Mark Davis. ISBN 0-7619-6735-4 2000: Dennis Smith. ISBN 0-631-214925) 2001: Community. London: Ashgate. ISBN 0415-35504-4 2006: Keith Tester. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers. ISBN 0-7456-2506-1 2001 (with Keith Tester): Conversations with Zygmunt Bauman. ISBN 0-7456-4326-4 2009: Living on Borrowed Time: Conversations with Citlali Rovirosa-Madrazo. Cambridge: Polity. Michael Hviid Jacobsen.y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y y (2000 [ed. ISBN 0-7456-1899-5 2004: Keith Tester.] Warszawa: WAiP. Cambridge. Zygmunt Bauman (Key Sociologists). Palgrave MacMillan. [Life in contexts. city of hopes. Cambridge: Polity. Cambridge: Polity. Cambridge: Polity. Aldershot: Ashgate. London: Routledge. Freedom and Consumerism: A Critique of Zygmunt Bauman's Sociology. ISBN 0-7456-3403-6 2004: Identity: Conversations with Benedetto Vecchi. ISBN 0415409691 2008: Michael Hviid Jacobsen. The Sociology of Zygmunt Bauman: Challenges and Critique. Sophia Marshman. Rozmowy o tym. co za nami i o tym. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers. London/New York: Routledge. ISBN 0-6740-2780-9 2008: The Art of Life. ISBN 87-7307-783-6 2007: Anthony Elliott (ed. Wojciecha. ISBN 83-7015-863-3 2007: Consuming Life. Seeking Safety in an Insecure World. Cambridge: Polity. 2008: Mark Davis. The Social Thought of Zygmunt Bauman. The Contemporary Bauman. Cambridge: Polity. MA: Harvard University Press.Modernity and Revolution: Essays in Honour of Zygmunt Bauman. ISBN 0-7456-3164-9 2004: Europe: An Unfinished Adventure. Critiques and Annotated Bibliography 1989-2005. Conversations and Annotated Bibliography 1953-1989. ISBN 0754670600. Cambridge: Polity. ISBN 0-7456-2984-9 2003: Liquid Love: On the Frailty of Human Bonds. ISBN 0-63121929-3 2002: Society Under Siege. Cambridge: Polity. ISBN 0-7456-26645 2001 (with Tim May): Thinking Sociologically. London: Goldsmith's College. Aalborg: Aalborg University Press. Zygmunt Bauman: Prophet of Postmodernity (Key Contemporary Thinkers). ISBN 1-904158-37-4 2004: Wasted Lives. ISBN 0-7546-7271-5. ISBN 0-7456-3308-0 2005: Liquid Life. Conversations about what lies behind us and what lies ahead of us. Bauman Before Postmodernity: Invitation. Cambridge: Polity.

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