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Proceedings of the XXII World Congress of Philosophy

Volume 50, 2008

Social and Political Philosophy

Biao Cheng
Pages 1043-1056


Today, modern large-scale production has created a real life world for people. People's life is so greatly dominated by production that we can say people's life is the life being produced. The basic features of modern life are: First, modern lifestyle is a consumptionism-oriented lifestyle. Consumption has become the main content of modern life. As a result, it is very difficult to distinguish life from consumption. People have changed into consumers. Second, modern lifestyle is a lifestyle of the generalization of commodity logic. Commodity logic has pulled whole society onto the track of the commodity production. People's life is inevitably dominated by the commodity logic, resulting in the prevalence of materialism and money worship. Third, modern lifestyle is a highly homogenized lifestyle, eliminating the possible development of individual personality. The main problems of modern life are: First, lack of conscious reflection of life, People have been lost in a fake sense of happiness. People indulge in a fake sense of happiness created by consumption without any selfconsciousness. Second, lack of correct self-understanding, People have been lost in formal personality. The expressions of formal personality are lack of serious rational thinking. Third, lack of the concern about the transcendent dimension of life, People have been lost in the present dimension of life. People's life has been filled with all kinds of consumer goods and illusions that evoke. Therefore, no room has been left for transcendent issues, such as, the meaning of life.

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