The Sociologist Who Could Save Us From Coronavirus—a recommended article by Adam Tooze
|Ulrich Beck (1944-2015)|
Back in 2011 I got hold of a copy of Ulrich Beck’s, then recently published book, A God of One’s Own. I was, and remain, very taken with much of what he said in it. A good example of how I have tried to use his insights in my own work can be found in the following address I gave in July 2019:
But, despite being so taken with his words, what I never did was go back to read his most famous book The Risk Society; you know what it’s like . . . I had other subjects and thoughts on my mind that seemed more important to follow up. But that was then and this is now, and the COVID-19 event has changed/refocussed so much of both my own and wider society’s thinking, so, when I saw the following article by Adam Tooze on the webpage of the Foreign Policy magazine (which draws on the insights found in The Risk Society) I was already primed to click the link and read the article. It strikes me as the most helpful piece I’ve yet read on why the COVID-19 event has been so discombobulating to our culture and what kind of strategies we may have to employ to get through this event in the best way possible. In short, I’d highly recommend to readers of this blog that, like me, they click through to the article and take a look.
Ulrich Beck was a prophet of uncertainty—and the most important intellectual for the pandemic and its aftermath.
By Adam Tooze