A View of the Universe: Kenneth Boulding's Large Vision

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Abstract

Originally published in Contemporary Psychology: APA Review of Books, 1979, Vol 24(9), 675–677. Reviews the book, Ecodynamics: A New Theory of Societal Evolution by Kenneth E. Boulding (1978). Boulding cautions us in the book's opening sentence, “that this is a book about the universe.” The central vision, then, is of three evolutionary systems that, in overlapping sequence, account for the history of the universe. Physical evolution covers the development from elementary particles to molecules of the complexity of DNA. Biological evolution concerns the development from DNA to homo sapiens, and societal evolution that from homo sapiens to, and beyond, 20th-century society. Societal evolution, in Boulding's view, has rather little in common with the models of the sociobiologists. The book presents an important body of new theorizing on evolutionary mechanisms at the societal level. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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