Introducing a new term to the sociological lexicon: ‘postemotionalism’, Stjepan G Mešstrović argues that the focus of postmodernism has been on knowledge and information, and he demonstrates how the emotions in mass, industrial societies have been neglected to devastating effect. Using contempoary examples, the author shows how emotion has become increasingly separated from action; how — in a world of disjointed and synthetic emotions — social solidarity has become more problematic; and how compassion fatigue has increasingly replaced political commitment and responsibility. Mešstrović discusses the relation between knowledge and the emotions in thinkers as diverse as Durkheim and Baudrillard

Conclusions: The Final Triumph of Mechanization

Conclusions: The final triumph of mechanization

Nearing the end of this discussion, the distinctive aspects of the contemporary social world conceived as postemotional as opposed to modern — based on the Enlightenment project — or postmodern — based on rebelling against the Enlightenment project — should be apparent. The Enlightenment project itself is spurious in the society of simulation. The need to make it a mechanized project demonstrates that its authentic power has been lost. Postemotional society is made possible by a social character that succeeded Riesman's other-directedness in which the bulk of people's emotional reactions have been reduced to being ‘nice’ versus indignant. The collective consciousness has all but disappeared, and has been succeeded by widespread Balkanization and social ...

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