Security in the Caribbean Basin: The Challenge of Regional Cooperation

By Joseph S. Tulchin; Ralph H. Espach | Go to book overview

2
Changing Definitions of
“Social Problems” in the Caribbean
Anthony P. Maingot

Defining a Social Problem

One of the fundamental tasks facing the United States and its Caribbean Basin neighbors is to arrive at a consensus on how to combat the drug trade and organized crime. Before there can be a consensus on strategy and tactics, however, there has to be agreement at a higher conceptual level on a definition of the nature of the social problem, both in the United States and in the islands. It is this set of definitions that will form the basis for action. The purpose of this chapter is to help advance that process of definition as a prelude to action.

If it is a cliché that generals always fight the last war, it is equally true that civilian elites (including academics) tend to hold on to theories long after events have rendered them irrelevant. The result has been a cultural lag, an incongruency between theory and action The reasons are not hard to find. In Figure 2.1, we diagram the decisionmaking paths that any action geared toward dealing with a social problem has to take. These paths reveal the complex mix of objective and subjective factors, domestic and international pressures that must be confronted before any action is initiated on a social problem. 1 These antecedents can be grouped into broad categories of objective and subjective factors.

In terms of objective factors, it is widely agreed that any definition of a social problem has to include two aspects: First, that it be “a condition affecting a significant number of people in ways considered undesirable, ” and, second, that “it is felt [that] something can be done [about it] through collective action. ” 2 In other words, a social problem cannot exist separate from the consciousness and the intention to do something about it. This is where “collective consciousness” formation comes in. Among those affected there must be at least a few,

-25-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Security in the Caribbean Basin: The Challenge of Regional Cooperation
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 228

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.