The Ecological Vision : Reflections on the American Condition book cover
1st Edition

The Ecological Vision
Reflections on the American Condition

Edited By

Peter Drucker

ISBN 9780765807250
Published February 28, 2000 by Routledge
474 Pages

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Book Description

Periods of great social change reveal a tension between the need for continuity and the need for innovation. The twentieth century has witnessed both radical alteration and tenacious durability in social organization, politics, economics, and art. To comprehend these changes as history and as guideposts to the future, Peter F. Drucker has, over a lifetime, pursued a discipline that he terms social ecology. The writings brought together in The Ecological Vision define the discipline as a sustained inquiry into the man-made environment and an active effort at maintaining equilibrium between change and conservation.

The chapters in this volume range over a wide array of disciplines and subject matter. They are linked by a common concern with the interaction of the individual and society, and a common perspective that views economics, technology, politics, and art as dimensions of social experience and expressions of social value. Included here are profiles of such figures as Henry Ford, John C. Calhoun, Soren Kierkegaard, and Thomas Watson; analyses of the economics of Keynes and Schumpeter;and explorations of the social functions of business, management, information, and technology. Drucker's chapters on Japan examine the dynamics of cultural and economic change and afford striking comparisons with similar processes in the West.

In the concluding chapter, "Reflections of a Social Ecologist," Drucker traces the development of his discipline through such intellectual antecedents as Alexis de Tocqueville, Walter Bagehot, and Wilhelm von Humboldt. He illustrates the ecological vision, an active, practical, and moral approach to social questions. Peter Drucker summarizes a lifetime of work and exemplifies the communicative clarity that are requisites of all intellectual enterprises. His book will be of interest to economists, business people, foreign affairs specialists, and intellectual historians.

Table of Contents


Part 1: American Experiences

1. The American Genius is Political

2. Calhoun's Pluralism

3. Henry Ford: The Last Populist

4. IBM's Watson: Vision for Tomorrow

5. The Myth of American Uniformity

Part 2: Economics as a Social Dimension

6. The Economic Basis of American Politics

7. The Poverty of Economic Theory

8. The Delusion of Profits

9. Schumpeter and Keynes

10. Keynes: Economics as a Magical System

Part 3: The Social Function of Management

11. Management's Role

12. Management: The Problems of Success

13. Social Innovation: Management's New Dimension

Part 4: Business as a Social Institution

14. Can The Be "Business Ethics"

15. The New Productivity Challenge

16. The Emerging Theory of Manufacturing

17. The Hostile Takeover and its Discontents

Part 5: Work, Tools and Society

18. Work and Tools

19. Technology, Science and Culture

20. India and Apprpriate Technology

21. The First Technological Revolution

Part 6: The Information-Based Society

22. Information, Communications and Understanding

23. Information and the Riture of City

24. The Information-Based Organization

Part 7: Japan as Society and Civilization

25. A View of Japan Through Japanese Art

26. Japan: The Problems of Success

27. Behind Japan's Success

28. Misintepreting Japan and the Japanese

29. How Westernized are the Japanese?

Part 8: Why Society is not Enough

30. The Unfashionable Kierkegaard

Afterword: Reflections of a Social Ecologist

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