Modernization: Latecomers and Survivors

Modernization: Latecomers and Survivors

Modernization: Latecomers and Survivors

Modernization: Latecomers and Survivors

Excerpt

There is not a single problem of moment in our world— either domestic or international—that is not involved with the process I refer to as modernization. I believe in strong statements, and this book contains a number of them. I hope they are sufficiently clear and baldly enough stated so that you can make up your mind about whether you agree or disagree with them. I have tried to avoid qualifications that might buy for them safety at the price of emptiness.

Personally, I do not care a great deal for modernization, although I am grossly habituated to her comforts. I have tried in this book to intrude my values as little as possible, but I do not wish to get involved in the tiresome argument about whether the statements I make are biased by my point of view. Of course they are. There is an explanation, in my motivation presumably, for every statement I make just as there is for every statement that anyone makes. Everyone has both general and particular biases—scientists (or pseudoscientists) are certainly no exception. Thus it may be that I write as I do because I am a fascist, a communist, a Jew, a racist, a sexist, a Galveston boy reared in comforting security, an elitist snob, or anything else you may wish to call me—I ask only that you keep in mind that whatever the explanation may be of why I write as I do, it does not follow that such an explanation either disproves or confirms what I have written.

I have a faith—that is the word for it—that it is possible to be scientific about human phenomena without any of the . . .

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