A society full of identical individuals

In the Harari text, the Industrial Revolution is associated with a major social change, the state and market replacing the family and community (pg. 355). This major change was due to the new technologies that emerged during the industrial revolution (pg. 358). New technology allowed for easier access and communication to people outside the extended family and community, this led to the quick breakdown of the family dynamic (pg.358). This led to the increase of the individual idea, that people could do and be who they want, and did not need anyone else, which furthered the support of this market and state and the dependence that people have on it, such as for education, medicine, etc (Pg. 360).

In my opinion, historians should act as educators to the growing public of the negative impact people are having on themselves and other species. While this is a commonly discussed theme, numbers and drastic figures are often left out of the discussion, an important part in seeing the bigger picture. While historians may not be able to do much to save us, they can show how their knowledge of the past gives them insight into the future, allowing them to make serious predictions of where we are headed. If more people understood the extent to which people have taken advantage of and ruined our world, I think change would be easier to make.

20 thoughts on “A society full of identical individuals”

  1. I agree with you completely that historians should take the role of educator, being that they are the most educated about these things. The growing public deserves to know who the experts are and why they are or are not concerned about things. It’s interesting that you mention numbers and figures because I hadn’t considered how often they can be left out, but you are absolutely correct. People need to see numbers to be able to fully grasp the weight of things.

  2. Your first paragraph is spot on! It is exactly what I said :). The state and market began to replace the family and in turn were able to create several generations of helpless individuals. In the book they mentioned the state and market offering schooling, insurance, housing, jobs and other services. In other words they have people the opportunity to become independent from their families. This shift is something that has become so woven into our society that we now encourage independence from our children. (Many are expected to either have a job or be going to college by the time they are 18.) This is so interesting to look at! The family dynamics throughout the United States have changed so much that parents who allow their children to live with them past eighteen are viewed as clingy and irresponsible. It certainly leaves a debate open about parenting techniques.

    I also agree with your points about Historians. You’re very insightful with your comments. Of course historians should share their views with us, they won’t be able to “save us” but they can offer a unique insight that comes from years of studying history.

    Thank you for sharing!

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