SOCIAL CHANGE

SOCIAL CHANGE

This section includes eight essays and short text fragments about the process, the necessity and the inevitability of major political, cultural, and social change.

Some of the longer pieces have a summary page with graphics.

Dis-integration, or the breaking up of mass culture into smaller units, is a hopeful global trend, especially when the end result is smaller human-scaled centers of social power (communities) dispersed throughout a larger society.

Social and cultural progress lags way behind advances in science and technology. Increasingly, our social systems are becoming empty shells that will eventually collapse once our belief in them evaporates.

"I believe the world can change in startling ways. Amazing things are possible."

How can the world change if the creation and dissemination of new ideas is controlled by those in power?

"Our wildest desires and dreams are real, and possess real power."

Revolution is not something that is created by political elites, but rather by ordinary people when they change the way they think and live.

"When enough people lose faith in an institution and begin to act as if it did not exist, that institution disappears."

This is a short piece about the conservative movement's futile attempts to turn back the tide of social change.

"No matter how much they pray, no matter how much they preach, no matter how much they legislate, cajole and coerce, the conservatives can not turn back the changes in social consciousness that the last few decades have wrought."

War, the population explosion and rampant consumerism: dangerous cultural trends leading us down the road to ruin.

"Our failure to adjust our cultural values to changing material conditions makes our long-term survival doubtful."

This piece includes commentaries on selected quotes from the William J. Bennett book The Index of Leading Cultural Indicators.

"Chaos reigns because we cling desperately to meaningless, obsolete beliefs that no longer address our present needs, yet we are still too confused and terrified to embrace a new vision."

This is an essay about poverty and neglect of the urban poor. I wrote it shortly after the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles, and it originally appeared in the June 1992 issue of a zine called Rotten Fruit.

"The Rodney King verdict was not the cause of the rebellion that followed—it was just the trigger. The cause was poverty. Poverty breeds despair, and despair leads to violence."

LINKS TO RELATED PAGES ON OTHER SITES

Understanding the World Today
This site explores how societies change over time by presenting reports on social, economic and political issues. It was created by a sociologist for The Global Social Change Research Project.

Database of Successful Strategies and Tactics
A searchable directory containing stories about struggles for social, political and economic change.

Echoing Green
This organization tries to create social change by investing in social entrepreneurs and helping them launch new organizations.

Suggest a Related Page


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