Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein Flashcards Preview

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1

they all involve creating social capital: developing networks of relationships that weave individuals into groups and communities.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

2

social capital refers to social networks, norms of reciprocity, mutual assistance, and trustworthiness.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

3

crime rate in a neighborhood is lowered when neighbors know one another well,

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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social capital can be put to morally repugnant purposes as well as admirable ones,

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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Bonding social capital is a kind of sociological Super Glue, whereas bridging social capital provides a sociological WD-40.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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If you get sick, the people who bring you chicken soup are likely to represent your bonding social capital. On the other hand, a society that has only bonding social capital will look like Belfast or Bosnia—segregated into mutually hostile camps. So a pluralist democracy requires lots of bridging social capital, not just the bonding variety.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

7

bridging social capital is harder to create than bonding social capital—after

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

8

Community building sometimes has a warm and fuzzy feeling, a kind of “kumbaya” cuddliness about it.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

9

Even as the value of social capital has been more and more widely acknowledged, evidence has mounted of a diminution of social capital in the United States.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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the last third of the century witnessed a startling and dismaying reversal of that trend. Beginning, roughly speaking, in the late 1960s,

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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We do not yet see evidence of a general resurgence of social connection or involvement in the public life of the community.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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who has seen her neighborhood unravel and then knit itself together;

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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social-capital development.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

14

Better Together aims instead to illustrate some of the ways in which Americans in many diverse corners of our society are making progress on the perennial challenge of re-creating new forms of community,

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

15

The U.S. Army uses the term “ground truth” to describe the real experience of soldiers in the field—the moment-by-moment truth of being in combat,

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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One lesson is that creating robust social capital takes time and effort.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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it develops through extensive and time-consuming face-to-face conversation between two individuals or among small groups of people.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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we see no way that social capital can be created instantaneously or en masse.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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social capital is necessarily a local phenomenon because it is defined by connections among people who know one another.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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social capitalists.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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social capital is usually developed in pursuit of a particular goal or set of goals and not for its own sake.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

22

For many parents, it was their first real connection with the school, the first time anyone had bothered to ask their opinions. For the teachers, it was a first glimpse of their students’ lives outside school.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

23

“We make private pain public.” The house meeting was part of the process, a step toward making the pain public in a local group to build the energy and commitment needed to bring that pain—and the actions needed to relieve it—to a wider public stage where officials would have to recognize it and respond.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

24

Organizing is all about building relationships. It’s not about meetings. These are not counseling sessions. They are not an interview. It’s a conversation. You’re building a relationship here.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

25

And the only way to do this is to leave yourself open to be changed by the conversation.”4 Unlike activist organizations that develop a public agenda first and then try to attract people who support it,

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

26

Alinsky believed that reform could best be achieved when the citizens of poor and neglected communities organized and exerted power on their own behalf. He saw doing for others as less effective and as a kind of welfare colonialism.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

27

we are social beings, defined by our relationships with other people—with “family and kin, but also with less familiar people with whom we engage in the day-to-day business of living our lives in a complicated society.”

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

28

How do I get them to follow my agenda?” That’s not organizing. What I mean by organizing is getting you to recognize what’s in your best interest.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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Relationship-building is a way of looking at the world, not just a strategy.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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the core of its school-improvement efforts has been building relationships: between the school and the community; between students and teachers. Relationships are not just the engine of reform, they are one of the goals of reform.

Better Together: Restoring the American Community by Robert D. Putnam and Lewis Feldstein

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