Postmodern World in sociology of Michel Maffesoli

Postmodern World in sociology of Michel Maffesoli

Šubrt I.

Dr. Sci. (Philos.), Assoc. Prof., Head of the Department of Historical Sociology, Faculty of Humanities, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic

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Šubrt I. Postmodern World in sociology of Michel Maffesoli. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2018. No 10. P. 25-32


This article is devoted to the contribution by French author Michel Maffesoli to contemporary debates about postmodernism. Maffesoli uses and combines different sources of inspiration – F. Nietzsche, G. LeBon, E. Durkheim, G. Tarde, M. Halbwachs, C. G. Jung, G. Bataille, E. Morin – to create, with their help, a highly original conception which enables an analysis of the contemporary world that can be characterized as postmodern. From this perspective he identifies a resurgence of certain archaisms that were previously relegated by the advent of modern society. These emerging postmodern phenomena include contemporary nomadism and tribalism, together with a related postmodern mythology. The concepts which the author tries to express in this new approach to social reality include specifically sociality, (emotional) community and connectedness (reliance). Maffesoli has identified new forms of sociality and a sense of community-belonging in entertainment, leisure, lifestyle, fashion, body art, new cults, daily rituals, ecology, music, sports, information- and communication networks. What puts these phenomena into action are roots which are sunk deep in layers of the collective memory, archetypes and the collective unconscious. The dynamic power of these processes is provided by psychological mechanisms of collective behavior, imitation and pressures stemming from the depths of the collective unconscious. The characteristic features of the new savagery to which Maffesoli draws attention include manifestations of hedonism, desire and passion.

sociology; postmodernism; nomadism; tribalism; solidarity; collective consciousness; collective unconscious


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