In the past, social risks emerged due to lack of disaster prevention technology or of health hygiene. However, risks in today’s world generally emerges due to excessive advance of science and technology. Risks such as climate change are a danger that has been created by humans rather than by external factors. The planet Earth, which has been polluted by human civilization, is now threatening civilization itself. Since such danger emerged not because civilization failed but because it succeeded, humans cannot easily escape from it.
Science and technology is clear-cut yet uncertain, and resolves existing problems yet generates new ones. The more reasonable control and institutions are introduced to reduce uncertainties of science and technology, the more uncertain it becomes. This ‘uncertain danger’ does not have only negative aspect in escalating anxiety.
While inequality was impetus for social change in modern society, global anxiety is driving changes in contemporary society. Anxiety causes the entire society to unite by going beyond ideological differences or economic interests. ‘Emancipatory disintegration’ wherein people unite to find a new path forward erupts amid a dangerous situation. In other words, if we recognize danger, hidden truth is unearthed, and we change the outdated world through reflection. People come to find the best course of action while anticipating the worst situation.
“Our danger is not our enemy. The danger I am undergoing is the best blessing bestowed upon me,” writer Jeong Yeo-ul said. Truth of the world that permeates the gap of a wound trains us to heal it and to make us stronger. No one can escape from global danger. This truth will guide us to move towards a better world.