Impossible Synchronization. Temporal Coordination in the Risk Society

Author(s): Esposito, Elena
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Our society is often understood and discussed as a society of non-contemporaneity (Ungleichzeitigkeit)— an issue that undoubtedly corresponds to a widespread and disturbing feeling in today’s society. Both at personal level and in communicative contexts one often has the impression of an interlacement and a contrast among different rhythms, temporal horizons, durations and terms, and the result is usually a sort of pressure and a sense of inadequacy. It seems to me, however, that the difficulties we have to face don’t depend so much on the fact that we belong to a culture (or even to the intersection among various cultures) of not-contemporaneity: such cultures have existed, we can describe them and we can reconstruct their relationship with time, but they didn’t have the problems of disorientation that seem to torment us today. On the contrary: we have them because our culture is rather a culture of contemporaneity, and this produces problems of synchronisation and a complexity of temporal relations we still cannot adequately deal with.

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Preferred Citation
Esposito, Elena: Impossible Synchronization. Temporal Coordination in the Risk Society. In: ZMK Zeitschrift für Medien- und Kulturforschung, Jg. 5 (2014), Nr. 2, S. 333-345. DOI:
 author = {Esposito, Elena},
 title = {Impossible Synchronization. Temporal Coordination in the Risk Society},
 year = 2014,
 doi = "\url{}",
 volume = 5,
 address = {Hamburg},
 journal = {ZMK Zeitschrift für Medien- und Kulturforschung},
 number = 2,
 pages = {333--345},
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