Simmel and the Issue of Autonomy in Modern Societies

Monday, 16 July 2018
Distributed Paper
Ilaria RICCIONI, Faculty of Education, Free University of Bozen,, Bozen, Italy

According to Georg Simmel historical change is basically a change of social forms, as well as the subject can be seen as a changing entity that define itself in the relationship. In this paper three main issues of Simmel still of great contemporaneity will be taken into consideration: The naissance of individuality in modern society in connection with the change of forms of relationships; the spatial issue as the order of an interconnected society to relational nets; the influence of money on the construction of social relationship. According to Simmel, differently from Marxian and Durkheimian analyses, modern society is a chance for individual to develop autonomy and reach for an own path to social and personal realization. In this paper these issues will be analyzed in order to highlight the high potential of sociological perspective still exerted by Simmel’s acute work on our contemporaneity.