Robert putnam bowling alone essay

A critical evaluation of Robert Putnam’s “Bowling Alone: America’s declining Social Capital”

See Putnam for a similar but more detailed argument. While he acknowledges that the significance of a few countertrends is difficult to assess without further study, Putnam concludes that crucial factors such as social trust are eroding rapidly in the United States. He offers some possible explanations for this erosion and concludes by outlining the work needed to consider these possibilities more fully.

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Google Scholar. Various things could have caused the decline: women entering the work force, racial integration, the internet, longer commutes, busier work schedules. Really, though, the evidence points to two main things that caused this decline: television and generational differences the baby boomers were less likely to volunteer, Gen X even moreso, and so on.

This is a shame, because people who are involved in civic life even something as small as playing cards or hosting dinner parties are more likely to vote, to volunteer, to have friends, to create safe neighborhoods, to make more money, etc, etc. This book might just finally get my ass in gear to do the volunteering I've been talking about.

Peter and Isabel Malkin Professor of Public Policy

View all 3 comments. Mar 06, Orrin Woodward rated it it was amazing.

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  • ‘Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community’ by Robert Putnam;

Robert Putnam's books was several books in one. The first section about the first 4 chapters drew me in with a synopsis of the decline of community in America. The second section, through chapter 15, nearly put me to sleep. Putnam's five keys for social capital was worth the entire book.

Social Capital

Here is my takeaways: Putnam list fiv Robert Putnam's books was several books in one. Here is my takeaways: Putnam list five specific areas where the trust and understanding inured by social capital helps translate aspirations into realities: 1. Social capital allows citizens to resolve collective problems more easily through improved teamwork.

Social capital greases the wheels that allow communities to advance smoothly through improved trust. Social capital helps widen the awareness of fellow citizens that their fates are intertwined through improved understanding. Social capital serves as conduits for the flow of helpful information and resources to accomplish community and individual goals. Social capital improves individual lives through psychological and biological processes. In fact, numerous studies suggest lives that are rich in social capital cope with trauma and illnesses significantly more effectively.

Simply put, America cannot remain free without a revival of Social Power through building social capital in voluntary communities. View 2 comments. Dec 31, Christy rated it it was amazing. The classic that triggered the movement to study and document the collapse of "social capital" - obligatory and reciprocal social relationships that build through more regular human interaction with neighbors as well as in groups like bowling leagues hence the metaphor in the title and civic groups.

By the end of the last decade, arguments for strategies and interventions that would augment "social capital" in both individual and communities were vogue in grant applications, showing how quickl The classic that triggered the movement to study and document the collapse of "social capital" - obligatory and reciprocal social relationships that build through more regular human interaction with neighbors as well as in groups like bowling leagues hence the metaphor in the title and civic groups.

By the end of the last decade, arguments for strategies and interventions that would augment "social capital" in both individual and communities were vogue in grant applications, showing how quickly Putnam's ideas became institutionalized. I've used an excerpt of this in my Intro. SOC class for a decade now and it's helpful for students to understand the context for the increasing alienation and dysfunction they feel in their own lives, especially when supplemented with the data that over a quarter of U.

There is also data from "gated communities", the phenomena separating the "haves" from the "have nots" around the world, that while residents naturally list security as a top attraction, "knowing your neighbors" was another top-listed reason, then many apparently drew a blank when later in the survey were asked to list neighbors they knew by first name. Only a small number listed even one. Of course, those Houstonites knew that their neighbors weren't brown or black skin, generally, so we know what is important about our neighbors in gated communities - they are wealthy and white!

Putnam is a good Liberal and no radical, but I can't help think that he didn't simply document what Marx predicted long ago, that capitalism would lead to alienation of self from others as well as from ourselves. View all 4 comments. This is one of those books that I suspect of being cited and argued against far more often than it's read. In my head, I had it classed vaguely as pop social science.

Turns out, I was very wrong. Bowling Alone may be the most academic book I've read since leaving college, and at times I felt like I was being beaten to the ground by statistical clubs coming at me from every direction. But despite the leaden density and occasional painful-in-retrospect predictions about our technological future, This is one of those books that I suspect of being cited and argued against far more often than it's read.

But despite the leaden density and occasional painful-in-retrospect predictions about our technological future, this is an important book, one that's challenged many of my assumptions and given me a new framework in which to consider everyday events. And no, I don't just like it because it, like me, is critical of cars, critical of televisions, and willing to blame the Baby Boomers for planting the seeds of so many of our current social ills.

But I admit those things don't hurt.

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Bowling Alone: America's Declining Social Capital by Robert D. Putnam. When Alexis de Tocqueville visited the United States in the s, it was the. An Interview with Robert Putnam. Many students of the new democracies that have emerged over the past decade and a half have emphasized the importance .

View 1 comment. Apr 30, Abby rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Anyone interested in sociology, politics, urbanism and social relationships. Shelves: favorites. I'm not sure I could give full justice to this book in a hastily written review, so I'm not going to try.

Bowling Alone Summary & Study Guide Description

But I admit those things don't hurt. Social capital is correlated with individual happiness and with community goods such as lower crime rates. Print Word PDF. He uses a concept called social capital, a representation of the strength of social ties between individuals and their networks; the more social capital a society has, the more cohesive it is and the better it functions as a human community in matters of health, safety, and problem solving. Robert Putnam's seminal treatise on social capital is jam-packed with statistics and information to back up his claims that social capital has been on a serious decline since the s, much to the detriment of American society. Volunteering may be formal through an organization such as United Way or informal house sitting for a neighbor. Constructive Conflict Initiative Join Us in calling for a dramatic expansion of efforts to limit the destructiveness of intractable conflict.

Robert Putnam's seminal treatise on social capital is jam-packed with statistics and information to back up his claims that social capital has been on a serious decline since the s, much to the detriment of American society. He delineates a difference between two types of social capital--bonding strong ties to a small inner circle of people, like family and bridging weak ties to a div I'm not sure I could give full justice to this book in a hastily written review, so I'm not going to try.

He delineates a difference between two types of social capital--bonding strong ties to a small inner circle of people, like family and bridging weak ties to a diverse and sprawling array of people --and the struggle to balance between the two, even while both are declining. He explains the history of social capital and the decline, the possible reasons contributing to the decline, reasons why the decline of social capital is bad for society and suggestions for things that can be done to slow the decline.

Everything he says is extensively researched and cited. Every time I thought I had come up with a counterargument or a detail he had missed, he addressed it a few pages or chapters later. The only problem with the book is that it was written in In the last section of the book, he challenges society to make a series of changes by , changes that sound somewhat impossible to achieve in so short a time. But, after just these eight years, it seems that much of what he prescribed is on its way to coming true, and I am very curious as to what he would have to say about it.

Unfortunately, I think his research has moved on to other topics diversity In any case, this is a very important book about the way members of our society interact or don't interact with each other and what that means.

Analysis on Robert Putnam’s “Bowling alone: America’s Declining Social Capital”

Nov 21, Michael rated it it was amazing. Turn off your television. Talk to your neighbors. Take a walk. Play a game with your family. Read a book.

  1. ‘Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American | Bartleby;
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  3. A Critical Evaluation of Robert Putnam's Bowling Alone : America's Declining Social Capital.
  4. Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community;
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Plug back in to your community. Close your social media accounts. It is that simple. It is that hard. Ultimately, Robert Putnam identifies the rise of television as the tipping point that triggered the decline of community. Cut the cord. May 13, Erika RS rated it it was amazing Shelves: owned , physical. Social capital is the grease that keeps society moving, but over the past 30 years it has decreased. Bowling Alone is the influential book that gathered the data behind this trend and put social capital on the radar of the nation.