Een Lange Leegte

Over Maatschappelijk Onbehagen, Politieke Competentie
en het Plannen van een Toekomst


But suppose people are neither aware of any cherished values nor experience any threat? That is the experience of indifference, which, if it seems to involve all their values, becomes apathy. Suppose, finally, they are unaware of any cherished values, but still are very much aware of a threat? That is the experience of uneasiness, of anxiety, which, if it is total enough, becomes a deadly unspecified malaise.

Ours is a time of uneasiness and indifference - not yet formulated in such ways as to permit the work of reason and the play of sensibility. Instead of troubles - defined in terms of values and threats - there is often the misery of vague uneasiness; instead of explicit issues there is often merely the beat feeling that all is somehow not right. Neither the values threatened nor whatever threatens them has been stated; in short, they have not been carried to the point of decision.


C.Wright Mills (1959: 11)