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The theory of generational change, a critical reassessment

by Scully, Sharon Opal

Abstract (Summary)
This thesis critically reassesses the scbolarly Iiterature on generational theory. illustrated through comparative. theoretical and empirical analyses. lt begins by reviewing Comte's insights, which have inspired two schools of thought, that of José Ortega y Gasset and Julian Marias, and that of Karl Mannheim. A series of mini case studies on U.S. electoral politics helps to illustrate the value of adding the Ortega-Marias approach, which has been underutilized by North American social scientists. We hold that a greater use of this approach to generational theory should produce fruifful additions to the scholarly literature. In addition, social demographer Richard Easterlin's postulated " Easterlin Effectnis also a useful potential addition to our conceptual toolkit that could help shed new explanatory light on generations. This thesis aims to deepen understanding of generational theory in the hope that it rnight help others find general pathways sufficiently intriguing to warrant some follow-up studies.
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Source Type:Master's Thesis

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Date of Publication:01/01/2000

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