Living in and Coping with World Risk Society - 42nd St Gallen Symposium by Ulrich Beck – Movie Review Example

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The paper “ Living in and Coping with World Risk Society - 42nd St Gallen Symposium by Ulrich Beck” is a breathtaking example of a movie review on sociology. Ulrich Beck is one of the most recognized sociologists in the theory of modernity. Most of his books and journals deal with globalization and risks in the current society. His fellow British sociologist also gave his opinions and details on the issue of risk society. Research reveals that risk society is understood to be the way modernized society responds to the uncertainty that makes daily life.

Risks are becoming part of daily life in the current society. Additionally, several sociologists have come up with various definitions of this term. The most recognized sociologist that this paper will focus its research on in Beck and Giddens (Curran, 2015 p. 2). Ulrich Beck argues that “ Risk society is a systematic way of dealing with hazards and insecurities induced and introduced by modernization” (Beck, 2006). Modernization is a broad term that is classified in a relationship with several aspects of society. Some of the aspects that determine modernization include technological advancement, change in the organization set up and change in cultural aspects of the society.

According to Beck, risk society, therefore, deals with managing these hazards in society. He views modernization to be the most pertinent factor leading to the risks. Most of the risks are hazardous hence calling for immediate responses ensuring that the society can survive. Ulrich Beck’ s video titled “ Living in and coping with world risk society - 42nd St. Gallen Symposium” is very informative and insightful. Beck starts by welcoming his audience which is the students to the lecture.

He then brainstorms them with a question. The question goes “ what does living and coping with the world risk society mean? ” . By asking this question Prof. Beck creates a rapport for the students. The students expect that the presentation will be aimed primarily at answering this question. Prof. Beck then uses a very insightful example to make the students understand more about world risk (Beck, 2000). Beck uses an example of the commission that was established a couple of years ago by the US Congress.

The commission composed of linguistics, physicists, sociologists, biologists, and scientists. The commissioned was formed to develop a language or symbolism capable of warning against threats of nuclear attacks. The future generation was to benefit so much from this symbolism. The fact that the commission was composed of professionals from various sectors shows the seriousness of the issue. The risk of nuclear to the Americans and the future society is depicted to be so adverse. The US congress henceforth so the need to develop a quick and effective response to this treats(Beck, 2006). Additionally, Antony Giddens also gives his opinions and details on the issue of risk society.

He writes “ A society is increasingly preoccupied with the future generating the notion of risk” (Giddens). The British sociologist wants to bring out the idea that risks are closely related to the future. As people work for a better future, they encounter a lot of risks. These risks increase with the changing demands of the individual society’ s anticipation for the future (Jarvis, 2012).  


Curran, D. 2015. Risk society and Marxism: Beyond simple antagonism. Journal of Classical Sociology, 1-17. DOI: 10.1177/1468795X15600929

Beck, U. 2000. Living in and coping with world risk society - 42nd St. Gallen Symposium. Retrieved October 10, 2015, from

Shubik, M. 2009. Risk, Society, Politicians, Scientists, and People. Risk, Organizations, and Society Studies in Risk and Uncertainty, 7-29.

Beck, U. 2006. Living in the world risk society. Retrieved October 10, 2015, from Theory PDFs/Beck--WorldRisk.pdf

Adam, B., Beck, U., & Loon, J. 2013. The Risk Society and Beyond: Critical Issues for Social Theory. The Risk Society.

Cottle, S. 1998. Ulrich Beck, `Risk Society' and the Media: A Catastrophic View? European Journal of Communication, 13(1), 5-32. Retrieved October 10, 2015, from

Jarvis, D. 2012. Ulrich Beck, Globalization and the Rise of the Risk Society: A Critical Exegetic Analysis. SSRN Electronic Journal SSRN Journal. Retrieved October 10, 2015, from

Beck, U. 1992. Risk society: Towards a new modernity (Vol. 17). Sage Publications.

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