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- BETTER TOGETHER – Robert D. Putnam
- Better Together: Restoring the American Community
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BETTER TOGETHER – Robert D. Putnam
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Please try again later. Kindle Edition Verified Purchase. Anyone who is concerned about the path our country is on should read this book. It proves that grass-roots leadership is alive and well in America today!!! One person found this helpful 2 people found this helpful. Putnam's work is always informative and inspirational.
Better Together: Restoring the American Community
Stories of good things which happen, but don't generally make the "news". This book was for a college class. Great price and service. One person found this helpful. Too long, too boring too much reminiscent Of scientology and "big box" churches. A few chapters are interesting, but they get repetitive. See all 17 reviews. Most recent customer reviews.
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Get fast, free shipping with Amazon Prime. Your recently viewed items and featured recommendations. View or edit your browsing history. Reading Better Together was both an inspiration for leadership and a grounding for community development activities. Read more reviews by the Orton Family Foundation in our Scenarios e-journal at http: Bowling Alone was much better. The foreward sums up the differences between the two. Sep 15, Janet rated it it was amazing. This book was a gift in more ways than one. While the examples of communities working together are a bit old news, the good news is that the reasons these communities are functioning so well.
In fact, the reasons are even more important today. It is true that most people do not act unless there is personal gain on the horizon. However, there are usually ca This book was a gift in more ways than one. However, there are usually catalysts that spark people to move forward to "do something!
People feel connected and begin to care more. This cuts down on isolation for the members of the community. Likewise, it is important to support public foundations that give to non-profits, for so much impetus can come from them. Do not ignore the arts!! Connect groups with each other as well. Connect older people with younger people. So much to glean here. Whether or not you are involved with your community or foundation, this deserves reading as a how-to book or a pep talk! Put down the phone, talk to your neighbors!
Sep 19, Michael Ryan rated it it was amazing.
I did not approach the book with high expectations. After reading the reviews on here I was prepared for it to be a hopeless sequel trading of the brand name of 'Bowling Alone. True, it has a narrative style rather than presenting hard data. But I found the stories really interesting and thought provoking.
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A number of them contained ideas that I think I can use around here in the future. And it confirmed to me that I was 'on the money' with many of my I did not approach the book with high expectations. And it confirmed to me that I was 'on the money' with many of my instincts and attitudes. You can read this book as a 'How To' manual for building community. As such it is one of those books that I should re-read every couple of years.
That makes it a pretty valuable book! Aug 04, Lynette Hague rated it really liked it.
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I thought the book started off slow, but then I found the case studies fascinating. Although the book was published in , I thought the points made about social capital were still valid. I googled several of the organizations and places mentioned to see how some of them were doing 15 years later. Dec 11, Eric Chappell rated it liked it Shelves: This is Robert Putnam's follow-up to his seminal research on the loss of American community, Bowling Alone.
Some reviews I read of Bowling Alone, while mostly positive, did offer the critique that Putnam failed to account for new kinds of community that have developed since the 60's, of which his study did not take into account. Though I think that criticism is largely unfair, Better Together does seek to demonstrate some of the new forms of community taking place in our schools, neighborhoods, This is Robert Putnam's follow-up to his seminal research on the loss of American community, Bowling Alone.
Though I think that criticism is largely unfair, Better Together does seek to demonstrate some of the new forms of community taking place in our schools, neighborhoods, religious institutions, and workplaces. Putnam's method here in Better Together is the exact opposite of Bowling Alone.
His former work was characterized by lots of sociological jargon, hard data, and objective analysis.
Better Together tells a story, or, more accurately, tells stories. I think this book's appeal varies on how interested you are in diverse kinds of community and the stories that gave rise to them. Every chapter other than the introduction and conclusion is a story about how a certain population or group of people or individuals found that social capital was necessary to reach their objectives.
This was true in labor unions, large companies, churches, neighborhoods, and cities. For myself, I found that some chapters were incredibly dull and others quite fascinating. For example, I learned that though libraries should be a dead and dying industry, they are actually on the rise, and in some cases, as in Chicago, contributing to community life in metropolitan areas.
Or, a chapter on the rise of Craigslist as a virtual community and how technology is hurting, helping, and shaping the way we think about community. As I think through particularly how the church is called to foster a place of relationships and community in the image of a Triune God, this was a interesting, though not incredible, conversation partner.
Here's some of my takeaways: Social capital refers to social networks, norms of reciprocity, mutual assistance, and trustworthiness. It involves or should involve both bonding and bridging social capital. Bonding is inward-looking; bridging is outward-looking. Social capital is not all sweetness, but has a certain tartness.
Build community by sharing stories. Social capital takes time and effort. Organizing is all about building relationships. Leave yourself open to be changed by the conversation. Relationship-buidling is a way of looking at the world, not just a strategy. Relationships are not just the engine of reform, they are one of the goals of reform.
People learn to lead by leading. Residents of Cabrini Green--I thought nobody cared, so I didn't care. When I saw someone caring, trying to make things better, I am trying to make things better. New libraries are "a place to be known and a place to get to know others. Same book, same time. Library became a "third place. Bridging is not about "kumbaya" cuddling, but coming together to argue or share. Community is not just about broccoli, but about chocolates too--interests and needs, but also fun and fellowship.
Building social capital is neither all-or-nothing nor once-for-all. It is incremental and cumulative. Jan 17, Scott rated it it was amazing. Many of you may have read Robert Putnam's "Bowling Alone," about his research on the gradual disintegration of broad social ties and networks in civil society in the United States.
This book, "Better Together," highlights group-scale problem and issue resolution through means that can be characterized as a "social capital strategy," i. Examples include safety meetings of UPS e Many of you may have read Robert Putnam's "Bowling Alone," about his research on the gradual disintegration of broad social ties and networks in civil society in the United States. Examples include safety meetings of UPS employees; the growth and vitality of a large Evangelical megachurch in Orange County, California; grass roots community building on Dudley Street in Roxbury, Mass.
I was interested by the case study presented regarding the Near North Branch library of the Chicago Public Library system. Even though the book was published in , there is much good information to glean and profit from in these stories. Very worthwhile to anyone who seeks to build better communities through better relationships that is, to my mind, a recommendation of this book to everyone!
Dec 27, Hannah rated it liked it Shelves: I thought this was a disappointing follow-up to Putnam's sensational " Bowling Alone. Unfortunately, I found myself dozing off while working my way through the scholarly prose, and I thought it was a little preachy. Nonetheless, I will say that more people should be thinking along these lines.
Jan 23, Caleb rated it it was ok. I had this on my shelf for two years. It is not in the same league as Putnam's Bowling Alone , a seminal sociology book, but some of the case studies are quite good. That said, I will admit to skimming sections when I felt like I had already that lesson elsewhere. Mar 01, Gretch Engelson rated it it was amazing.