Background Reading

In the end, Rybczynski has produced a thought-provoking critique. Yet he does not seem to succeed in discrediting the propositions that 1) many technologies contain within them cultural and political biases, and 2) there are other paths to the future than that of the Western industrial model. Questioning Development: Notes for Volunteers and Others Concerned with the Theory and Practice of Change,Available in the AT Library. INDEX CODE MF 01-12, booklet, 48 pages, by Glyn Roberts, 1981. A discussion of some philosophies of development currently in practice around the world; “ideas which may be useful to anyone who wonders about the changes he is helping to bring about.” The author suggests that “we shall clearly have to come to an agreement as to what we mean by development. Paradoxically, this is something which many ‘development’ personnel have never faced up to. Despite years in the Aid business, they have always been too busy getting on with the job to worry much about the overall picture.” People use the word “development” to describe many different types of activity, many of which do more harm than good to the people affected. “We are all agreed, no doubt, that Development means healthier, happier, fuller and more meaningful lives for everyone. Earlier this was simply rephrased as ‘Development = the more equal distribution of power among people.’ ” As a result of “looking at the development in terms of power, we may gain insight into the cause of poverty in our own countries. We may find that the differences traditionally noted between the ‘advanced’ and the ‘less developed’ nations are less important than the similarities.”

By | 2011-01-28T00:00:00+00:00 January 28th, 2011|Sourcebook|0 Comments