Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community
Once we bowled in leagues, usually after work—but no longer. This seemingly small phenomenon symbolizes a significant social change that Robert Putnam has identified in this brilliant volume, which The Economist hailed as “a prodigious achievement.”
Drawing on vast new data that reveal Americans’ changing behavior, Putnam shows how we have become increasingly disconnected from one another and how social structures—whether they be PTA, church, or political parties—have disintegrated. Until the publication of this groundbreaking work, no one had so deftly diagnosed the harm that these broken bonds have wreaked on our physical and civic health, nor had anyone exalted their fundamental power in creating a society that is happy, healthy, and safe.
Like defining works from the past, such as The Lonely Crowd and The Affluent Society, and like the works of C. Wright Mills and Betty Friedan, Putnam’s Bowling Alone has identified a central crisis at the heart of our society and suggests what we can do.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - bkinetic - LibraryThing
The data Putnam collected and analyzed represents a major achievement. Yet, after doing all that hard work he failed to go very far down some paths his data showed him. For example, more Americans are ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - gmmoney - LibraryThing
I loved this book! A fascinating analysis of the decline of civic and social participation in American society. Every community organizer should read this. Putnam's prose is very accessible and his ... Read full review