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Liquid Love: On the Frailty of Human Bonds

ISBN: 978-0-7456-2489-1
176 pages
June 2003, Polity
Liquid Love: On the Frailty of Human Bonds (0745624898) cover image
This book is about the central figure of our contemporary, ‘liquid modern’ times – the man or woman with no bonds, and particularly with none of the fixed or durable bonds that would allow the effort of self-definition and self-assertion to come to a rest. Having no permanent bonds, the denizen of our liquid modern society must tie whatever bonds they can to engage with others, using their own wits, skill and dedication. But none of these bonds are guaranteed to last. Moreover, they must be tied loosely so that they can be untied again, quickly and as effortlessly as possible, when circumstances change – as they surely will in our liquid modern society, over and over again.

The uncanny frailty of human bonds, the feeling of insecurity that frailty inspires, and the conflicting desires to tighten the bonds yet keep them loose, are the principal themes of this important new book by Zygmunt Bauman, one of the most original and influential social thinkers of our time. It will be of great interest to students and scholars in sociology and in the social sciences and humanities generally, and it will appeal to anyone interested in the changing nature of human relationships.

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Foreword.

Chapter 1 Falling In and Out of Love.

Chapter 2 In and Out of the Toolbox of Sociality.

Chapter 3 On the Difficulty of Loving Thy Neighbour.

Chapter 4 Togetherness Dismantled.

Notes

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Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Leeds and the University of Warsaw
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  • The latest book by Zygmunt Bauman, one of the most original and influential social thinkers of our time.

  • Offers an original analysis of the central figure of our contemporary, ‘liquid-modern’ times – the man or woman with no fixed or durable bonds.

  • Explores the changing nature of human relationships, especially the uncanny frailty of human bonds, the feeling of insecurity that frailty inspires, and the conflicting desires to tighten the bonds yet keep them loose.

  • Builds on the concept of ‘liquid’ bonds previously discussed in relation to social and political life in Liquid Modernity.
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"Bauman is a social theorist whose work just gets better and better, which is pretty amazing if one considers his prolific output during recent years."

Anthony Elliott, University of the West of England

"This book is timely and shows accurate observation, lucid thinking and much background knowledge and wisdom"

John Calder, Camden New Journal

"Its thoughtful examination of our predicament is invigorating - like a cold shower."

New Internationalist

"Liquid Love is invaluable for grasping the problems of living in a globalized world and inspiring individuals effectively to resolve them."

Contemporary Sociology

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Liquid Love: On the Frailty of Human Bonds (US $19.95)

-and- Culture in a Liquid Modern World (US $17.95)

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