an article by UTNE Reader editors
(our site's article review)
They say that “The majority of humans have lived tribally for about 495 of the last 500 generations, which encompasses the roughly 10,000 years of recorded history. Our ancestors lived in roving bands, small villages, and extended families, developing and refining the social graces necessary to keep their communities viable.” But many of us have lost our community sense and social connectedness out of alienation, apathy, time pressures, TV addiction, workaholism, or self-obsession, say the authors.
Ancient German tribesmen
They also say that “. . . Americans are spending less of their lives in family households than ever before. . . . [however,] Studies repeatedly confirm . . . that infants raised with both mother and grandparents develop far better emotionally and intellectually—as do the mothers themselves. . . . In the past few years, many academics have recognized that supportive families are crucial to improving the educational and occupational achievement of low-income youth.” And “the mobility that has characterized American life is coming to a close. As Americans begin to stay put [see Reading The Market With Faith Popcorn], we may have the best chance in more than a century to give participatory democracy another try.” Finally, “it seems to me that we haven’t paid as much attention lately as we might to the other aspects, to the human need for social connectedness in families, in communities, in neighborhoods. The systems this society sets up actually thwart people’s attempts to fill their very human desires for connection. We’ve got to start thinking seriously about making it easier for people to achieve these human aims.”
The systems this society sets up actually thwart people’s attempts to fill their very human desires for connection