[Solution]How Change Happens

How Change Happens also sheds light on why the relationships between such activists are often fraught. People bring their own worldviews to the question of…

How Change Happens also sheds light on why the relationships between such activists are often fraught. People bring their own worldviews to the question of change. Do we prefer conflict (‘speaking truth to power’) or cooperation (‘winning friends and influencing people’)? Do we see progress everywhere, and seek to accelerate its path, or do we see (in our darker, more honest moments) a quixotic struggle against power and injustice that is ultimately doomed to defeat? Do we believe lasting and legitimate change is primarily driven by the accumulation of power at grassroots/individual level, through organization and challenging norms and beliefs? Or by reforms at the levels of laws, policies, institutions, companies and elites? Or by identifying and supporting ‘enlightened’ leaders? Do we think the aim of development is to include poor people in the benefits of modernity (money economy, technology, mobility) or to defend other cultures and traditions and build an alternative to modernity? Do we want to make the current system function better, or do we seek something that tackles the deeper structures of power? The answer is ‘all of the above’—this book tries to show how these different approaches fit into the wider picture of change.
This book takes as its starting point Amartya Sen’s brilliant definition of development as the progressive expansion of the freedoms to be and to do.[1] It discusses political and social change, as well as some of development’s economic aspects. It focuses on intended change, even though a good deal of change is unintended or accidental (the invention of the washing machine made a……….
[1] A. Sen, Development as Freedom, (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999).

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