Friday, November 6, 2009

Reading on Dictatorship and Democracy...

I have been picking up a book the last few weeks (which I would suggest doing in "one sitting", as it is more conducive to process fully), called, "Democracy and Dictatorship", by Zevedei Barbu. It is a fascinating book, but the part of it that refers to what I have been addressing today is on unifying and diversifying elements within democracy. These are elements of value.

On page 66-68, he refers to the diverse values of
1) Religion is a defining value in a democracy, which is characterized by a "feeling of supra-individual and transcendental order". Religious values via anthropological studies show that religious values bring cohesion in behavioral standards. These values create social norms.

2)Aesthetic values are based on the concept of form. These values do not bring cohesion, even in the relgious realm, because the individual must create his "own world" of meaning through experience.

3.) Scientific values are based on analytical analysis of what works. It is integrative only as long as it establishes relationship between facts, but disintegrates the answers to life with only questions.

4.)Political values are integrative, as they help to form group dynamic, so goals can be accomplished.

5.)Moral value is integrative as moral action is taken as long as there is a consciousness of being a part of a group or society.

6.)Economic value is disintegrative in modern societies, as the individual seeks ownership.

Since the Renaissance, there has been a tendency for these values to undermine religious value and a tendency for autonomy in each cardinal value. A balance among the integrative and disintegrative values are important for democracies.

I think that this is the "fix", public debate and discourse concerning these values within the context of historical development after the Renaissance.

No comments: