Edited By Tadeusz Buksinski
The problem signalled in the title of the book is a vital one, pertaining both to individuals and communities. Some societies have been struggling with it for hundreds of years, others – only for decades. It is found invariably in all socie- ties, though, and varied measures have been implemented to resolve it. The essence of the problem is how modernization can be achieved while preserving collective identity. Some deny that this is ever possible, since modern- ization – by its very definition – involves the replacement of the old (traditional, obsolete) with the new in the spheres of civilization (economy, technology, sci- ence) and in the culture. Others, however, point out that collective identity itself has been changing and modernizing throughout the centuries independently on modernization processes in the areas of civilization. In this development col- lective identity becomes more open and tolerant towards difference, and also more rational. Finally, there are scholars who claim that every original modern- ization process presupposes a specific identity substantially friendly to modern- ization. In a more extreme version the theory assumes that collective identities are a driving force for modernization. They harbour a modernization potential that provides a foundation for the initiation of processes aimed at modernizing the entire field of social life. The present book is a collection of papers that were presented during the academic conference held in Poznań on 13–15 September 2012. The publication has a very specific theme: it is a confrontation of insights and understandings contributed by theoreticians from...
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