Careers Advice for Teenagers Part One – Why You Can Never Do Enough to Make Yourself Employable

  So you’re 17 going on 18 and it seems like the end of A levels are ages away, but for some reason your damn tutors keep haranguing you about about preparing for your future career NOW. When it comes to career readiness, there is no such thing as enough, even if you are going […]

Summary of Zygmunt Bauman’s The Indivdualised Society (preface)

  It may sound odd doing a summary of a preface, but there is a lot of heavy stuff in here…. According to Bauman ‘Sociology can help us link our individual decisions and actions to the deeper cause of our troubles and fears – to the way we live, to the conditions under which we […]

TTIP – Putting Profit before People

The government is about to sign up to a treaty which will would allow companies like Sports Direct (just a random example) to sue a future government for increasing the minimum wage, if introducing such a policy damaged corporate profits. The treaty’s called the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership – And it’s seems to be […]

How the median income earner could retire at 52

Over the summer I worked out that a 35 year old earning the median salary could potentially retire at 52, if they just stop buying crap they don’t need now. In contrast, the expenditure levels of the average worker-consumer effectively tie them into working until the current standard retirement age of 68. This post is […]

Summary of Liquid Modernity Chapter Five – Community

Bauman starts of the chapter summarising the liberal-communitarian debate about the relationship beetween the individual and society. He reminds us that the individual according to the likes of Kant, Descartes and Baccon, could come to truth by using pure reason, and that all individuals if just left alone from the distortions of community would arive […]

Work in Low Pay, No Pay Britain

In this latest Thinking Allowed podcast on ‘Low pay, no pay’ Britain Laurie Taylor talks to the sociologist, Tracy Shildrick, about her prize winning study of individuals and families who are living in or near poverty. The research was conducted in Teesside, North East England, and focuses on the men and women who’ve fallen out […]

Summary of Liquid Modernity Chapter Three – Time/ Space

With a few comments… Summary of Chapter Three of Liquid Times by Zygmunt Bauman – Time/Space In the first section Bauman provides an overview of some of the key features of contemporary urban areas. Firstly, that modern urban areas are increasingly gated – To illustrate this he offers a description of Heritage Park, a new […]

C.V. building – another individualised ‘solution’ to systemic contradictions

As part of our college tutorial programme I was recently required to show my students this ‘monster guide to writing a C.V.’ ; I’ve been reading way to much Bauman recently to not subject this to some Baumanesque analysis, and from this perspective, writing a C.V. appears as a strategy for ‘middling people’ to avoid […]

Summary of Liquid Modernity – Chapter Two – Individuality

  I’m presently enjoying re-reading Bauman’s major works – I thought offering up my summaries might be useful to some students. I will eventually further summarise/ comment/ critique, but in the meantime.. the raw summary of chapter two of Liquid Modernity….  Bauman begins by pointing out that Huxley’s and Orwell’s dystopias were very much products […]

My Life Analysed – The madness of my mortgage

I bought 25% of my lovely brand new, 2 bedroom flat in Surrey about 4 years ago now, and in that time I’ve saved £22000  ready to buy it outright. A recent valuation ‘valued’ the flat @ £190 000, so when I buy outright I will need to borrow about £120 000 to buy the […]