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The Coming of Post-Industrial Society: A Venture in Social Forecasting


reviewed by Gerald Grant 1974

coverTitle: The Coming of Post-Industrial Society: A Venture in Social Forecasting
Author(s): Daniel Bell
Publisher: John Wiley, New York
ISBN: 0465097138, Pages: 507 pp., Year: 1973
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A central concern of social theorists for at least a century has been to explain what happened when families left the farm for the city. Most analysts have focused pri­marily on the values that have been lost as ties to the land, community, and kin were cut. Daniel Bell, in this hugely flaw­ed yet terribly important new work, asks what has been added. And what has come, what has been added is a scientific and technological elite. In the terrain of the post-industrial so­ciety, as Bell envisions it, knowledge is the key to nearly everything, and the uni­versity looms large as the central institu­tion of society. The university no longer simply reflects the values of society but is the arbiter of esteem and place. It symbo­lizes the centrality of theory and the shift from the manufacture of goods to the pro­duction of knowledge that characterize the postindustrial society. Theory becomes central because inno­vation no longer proceeds on the hit-and-miss basis of earlier "tinkerers" like Edi­son. Basic research... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 76 Number 1, 1974, p. 151-155
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 1372, Date Accessed: 5/29/2017 3:46:29 AM

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About the Author
  • Gerald Grant
    Syracuse University
    Gerald Grant is associate professor of sociology and education at Syracuse University and senior research fellow at the Educational Policy Research Center there.
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