Dr. Samuel Cohn considers societal decline and the explosions of violence in a variety of historical and contemporary settings including the Byzantine Empire, the French Revolution, and the present-day Middle East. He is the author of “All Society Die: How To Keep Hope Alive.”
Dr. Samuel Cohn has an important message
Dr. Samuel Cohn wrote the following which we discussed.
By historical standards, the Euro-American world system – the world system in which we live – the system of nations based in Western Europe that extended to the United States and to the rest of the world – is about 650 years old. It dates from the late Middle Ages and the flowering of late medieval economic and cultural growth that preceded the Renaissance.
If no known society or world system /has lasted longer than 1000 years, and we are 650 years old, that means that the contemporary Euro-American system is middle-aged – approaching late middle age. Since not all societies go the full 1000 years, the Euro-American system might even be approaching old age.
We normally think of societal death in terms of ecological catastrophe. With nuclear weapons, there could be a nuclear catastrophe. Some conservatives like to think of societal death as stemming from moral decay and a collapse of traditional values.
Most societies do not die of any of those three causes. Of those three, ecological collapse is the most common. There are many known examples of societies that destroyed the ecosystem that they were dependent upon. The most common form of this is deforestation. Angkor Wat and Greenland died this way. Deforestation not only wipes out the supply of wood which may be critical as a source of fuel. It also has devastating effects on water flow and the viability of irrigation and grazing.
But most societies die in an environment where the ecosystem is doing okay. They die of something else. Something they were not paying attention to. All Societies Die is about how destructive forces become unleashed. The How To Keep Hope Alive part is how to protect what we have right now –-Those things we have right now that are essential for our collective well-being.
Who is Dr. Samuel Cohn
Samuel Cohn is a Professor of Sociology at Texas A&M University and the Founder and First President of the American Sociological Association Section on Development. He is the author of “All Society Die: How To Keep Hope Alive” Cohn has won three prizes from the American Sociological Association for his scholarly work about economic development, sociology, and gender equality. Cohn’s previous four books focus on macrosociology and 1d social change, and his research has encompassed Victorian Britain, late nineteenth-century France, contemporary Brazil, and the contemporary United States. For the last fifteen years, Cohn’s primary course at Texas A&M has focused on societal death.
- NEW! How to make America Utopia: Take away the economy from those who rigged it
- It's Worth It: How to Talk To Your Right-Wing Relatives, Friends, and Neighbors
- As I See It: Class Warfare: The Only Resort To Right Wing Doom
Please join our YouTube channel to get the numbers up to open up some more features and reach more folks. Gracias!