Individualization argues that we are in the midst of a fundamental change in the nature of society and politics. This change hinges around two processes: globalization and individualization. The book demonstrates that individualization is a structural characteristic of highly differentiated societies, and does not imperil social cohesion, but actually makes it possible. Ulrich Beck and Elisabeth Beck-Gernsheim argue that it is vital to distinguish between the neo-liberal idea of the free-market individual and the concept of individualization. The result is the most complete discussion of individualization currently available, showing how individualization relates to basic social rights and also paid employment; and concluding that in
The Berlin Wall has collapsed. But a chorus of criticism is shaking and blocking the West. Are we a society of egoists? One might almost think so if one reviewed the slogans echoing through the public sphere: the dissolving of solidarity, the decline of values, the culture of narcissism, the egoism trap, entitlement ...