IT'S not quite true to say that social scientists are born and not made. But the eight individuals interviewed for this series have one thing in common: Their youthful experiences significantly shaped their choice of careers.
- Daniel Bell's upbringing in New York's Lower East Side and Joyce Ladner's education among Mississippi's rural poor impelled them into sociology.
- For economist Alice Rivlin, a driving force was family dinner-table talk about public policy; for anthropologist Eric Wolf, it was a rich menu of cultural differences in his own family.
- Demographer Samuel Preston did his first survey in 8th grade - a few years before political …