a damaging review of two Sorokin works

 

Ruth Benedict review of The Crisis of Our Age & Dynamics – New Republic 2-2-1942

 

Posted here is a review by Ruth Benedict of Sorokin’s The Crisis of Our Age and of his Social and Cultural Dynamics in The New Republic of February 2, 1942.

The review identifies and nails some of Sorokin’s fundamental weaknesses as a scholar. But, in my opinion (I would be inclined to say, that is), Sorokin does not fit neatly into any scholarly paradigm. He came out of a Russian tradition which was more mystical (is that the right word?) — certainly — than was or is seen in the social sciences; and he was never really understood or accepted by American intellectuals.

 

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Ruth Benedict (1887-1948) was an American anthropologist and folklorist. She taught at Columbia University, where she did graduate work under the anthropologist Franz Boas. Patterns of Culture was her best known work.

 

— posted by Roger W. Smith

      July 2021

Author: Roger W. Smith

Roger W. Smith is a writer and independent scholar based in New York City. His experience includes freelance writing and editing, business writing, book reviewing, and the teaching of writing and literature as an adjunct professor at St. John’s University. Mr. Smith's interests include personal essays and opinion pieces; American and world literature; culture, especially books and reading; classical music; current issues that involve social, moral, and philosophical views; and experiences of daily living from a ground level perspective. Sites on WordPress hosted by Mr. Smith include: (1) rogersgleanings.com (a personal site comprised of essays on a wide range of topics) ; (2) rogers-rhetoric.com (covering principles and practices of writing); (3) roger-w-smiths-dreiser.site (devoted to the author Theodore Dreiser); and (4) pitirimsorokin.com (devoted to sociologist and social philosopher Pitirim A. Sorokin).

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