Final Common Hour to Explore Topic of Fear

Frank Furedi, whose influential books “The Culture of Fear” and “Paranoid Parenting” investigate the interaction between risk consciousness and perceptions of fear in contemporary society, will present two talks exploring fear on Monday, April 16, at Wilson College as part of the Common Hour series of lectures. Both are free and open to the public.

The first talk, based on Furedi’s forthcoming book “The Rules of Fear in 21st-Century Society”, will be held at noon in Lenfest Learning Commons, located in Wilson’s John Stewart Memorial Library.

The way we fear and what we dread is mediated through social and cultural norms. This talk will examine the distinctive features of the culture of fear in the present time. It will explore the symbols and rituals through which modern fear is performed in everyday life, while attempting to answer the question of how fear works in the 21st century.

Furedi’s second lecture, “Socialization and the Culture of Fear,” will be held at 6:30 p.m. in Lenfest Learning Commons and be followed by a reception.  

How we fear is closely linked to ideas about morality and personhood. It is for this reason that the way we socialize young people is of great significance in understanding the culture of fear that prevails in the 21st century. The aim of this talk is to explore the effects of contemporary socialization on the way that society expresses its fears about the problems of everyday life.

Furedi is an emeritus professor of sociology at the University of Kent in Canterbury, England, and visiting professor at the Institute of Risk and Disaster Reduction, University College London. He has produced a series of agenda-setting books – more than 20 overall – that have been widely discussed in the media. Furedi regularly comments on radio and television, and in the past year has appeared on Newsnight, Sky and BBC News, The Today Programme, Moral Maze and a variety of other radio and television shows. Read more about Furedi at

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