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Issues » 2012/5 - Special English Issue 2012 »

Mirka Nečasová, Zdeňka Dohnalová, Renáta Rídlová

User of Social Services in Postmodern Times


At present, a time characterised by the transition from modern to postmodern society, social work finds itself in a situation full of changes and uncertainties. The postmodern era is distinguished from the modern one by e.g. radical plurality of world views and associated loss of confidence in the Grand Narratives, including the concept of a social welfare state, emphasis put on presence and individualised projects, deconstruction and reconstruction of meanings, divergence from the bipolar perception of the world and preference given to expertise, etc. Based on the changed concept of a human being who uses the services provided by social workers, and based on the related characteristics of modern and postmodern times, the authors of this paper point out the potential impacts and risks arising from this new situation, which they see predominantly in the danger of irresponsible handling of power on the part of the social worker as well as of the service user.


postmodernism, user of social services, social worker, power and responsibility

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