Cooperation, Community, and Co-Ops in a Global Era (International and Cultural Psychology)

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9781461458241: Cooperation, Community, and Co-Ops in a Global Era (International and Cultural Psychology)
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Globalization pressures have made cooperation on a global scale both necessary and possible. But cooperation is not easy in a world dominated by individual, cultural, and national selfish interests. The opposition to cooperation means that cooperation is not natural, but must be instituted through an intellectual and social struggle against countervailing forces. This book discusses issues that are necessary to describe the nature of cooperation and how it can be promoted as a social and ethical ideal amidst a sea of competing interests. Dr. Ratner uses the framework of cooperativism, that is the system of social institutions, social philosophy, cultural psychology and politics that promotes cooperation, as a starting point. Elements of cooperativism are derived from a rigorous analysis of various sources, including the needs of tendencies of human culture and human psychology.

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Cooperation, Community, and Co-ops in a Global Era
Carl Ratner

Human history is largely the story of communities, punctuated by examples of cooperatives--in fact, our level of cooperative behavior is one of the attributes that makes us most human. In recent years, however, concepts such as rugged individualism and social Darwinism have competed against cooperative ideas for supremacy, and today's climate of global economic crisis has found these "me-first" concepts wanting.

Now, an important new book posits that current political solutions to acute world problems are inadequate, and that modern society needs to look to its communal roots for recovery--and perhaps survival. Cooperation, Community, and Co-ops in a Global Era argues for a societal paradigm shift and details how such a transformation might be accomplished. Taking the evolutionary long view, its author demonstrates how cooperative principles can make a social system not just more efficient and less wasteful of time and resources, but also more democratic, empowering, and fulfilling for everyone involved. In making this compelling case, he:  

  • Explains cooperation as a form of life that can resolve current crises and enhance human development.
  •   Shows how most of human history has been cooperative.
  •   Explains modern obstacles to cooperation that must be overcome.
  • Explicates a cooperative social philosophy: its psychology, social relations, property relations, governance.
  • Articulates a psychological theory of cooperation that includes comparative research with animals, evolutionary processes, biological issues, and cultural issues.
  • Explains how cooperative enterprises have practiced cooperation.
  •  Provides examples of co-op strengths and weaknesses  from on-site research into European and American co-ops.   
  • Articulates a revisionist history of the cooperative movement that includes relations with socialist theory and the labor movement.
  • Explains implications of cooperation for democracy and interpersonal relations such as love.

                                                                           

Social scientists, co-op members, policy makers, social philosophers, mediators, community builders, social reformers, and all those concerned with a viable solution to contemporary crises will find Cooperation, Community, and Co-ops In A Global Era stimulating and informative.


About the Author:

Dr. Ratner is a renowned cultural experience who has made original contributions to the field of cultural psychology. He has published 6 books in the field (three by Springer) along with numerous articles. He has travelled extensively internationally, having lived in China for two years, and 5 months in India at the prestigious Nehru University in New Delhi.

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