By C. A. O. van Nieuwenhuijze
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Additional info for Development Begins At Home. Problems and Prospects of the Sociology of Development
41 42 Development Begins at Home T h e biological analogue model serves the sociological system-evolutionism as an isomorphic structural correlate and thus determines its perspective in terms of problem-selection, language, form, and explanatory mechanisms, but it neither corresponds with the object of investigation in any significant way nor is heuristically feasible due to its rigidity and inflexibility. Sociological application of this model of organic evolution demonstrates both that the conception of the organic homeostasis provides a static and too narrow definition of the equilibrating mechanisms of social-structural change, and that the conception of the embryological process lacks the real historical character, the indeterminant nature of the future.
I propose to make room for a very sketchy review after the enumeration of the five characteristic problems of development has been completed. The fifth problem regarding the meaning of "development" is the inherent ambiguity of development work, in view of the intended betterment of the human condition. Every coin has two faces. One face of the coin named development is the intent to improve human well-being, both collective and individual. The other face is a drift towards dehumanization. This dark face represents three unrelated tendencies.
To make things worse these two dimensions, although equally real and important, seem at loggerheads conceptually. The society that, seen in and by itself (for example, in view of its sovereignty), could appear as a closed universe, turns out to be a more or less open system if considered in the perspective of One World interdependence. How, then, will man " c o m e to t e r m s " intellectually with, and "achieve a h o l d " , for purposes of action, on a subject-matter that is fundamentally beyond his measure and thus beyond his grasp?
Development Begins At Home. Problems and Prospects of the Sociology of Development by C. A. O. van Nieuwenhuijze