Summary Of Bowling Alone

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The civil society of The United States has changed a lot throughout the course history, especially after WWII. The Western democracies and mostly The US have been taken as a model, especially to the post-communists countries, that emphasize the importance of a strong civil engagement to the consolidation of democracy. However, as discussed by Robert D. Putnam the American social engagement/ social capital has drastically declined during the twentieth century. In ‘Bowling Alone: America’s Declining Social Capital’, Putnam discusses the link between democracy and civil society, emphasizes social connectedness and civic engagement. and over all the decline of civic engagement in America, during years following WWII. He argues that when social capital is high, such results are produced: “better schools, faster economic development, lower crime rate, and more effective government”(2) and a stronger democracy. Using data from a variety of sources, Putnam finds that the norms, social trust and networks of social connections that exist between people, which cooperate for common benefits, or ‘social capital’ as he says, have declined in areas such as participating in local/state/national elections, organizational membership, church-related groups, union membership, participation in PTA, the membership in volunteering for civil and Fraternity organizations, and so on. A decline during the last half of the twentieth century has also occurred in the connections with friends, family, and

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