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INTRODUCTION This collection began as a proposal and a hope. Both were expressed in the formal call for papers, which invited ‘‘the submission of papers dedicated to theorizing the dynamics of specific social, cultural, political, and/or economic processes’’ whether at micro-, meso-, or macro-level of scale – or even better, across levels for processes that are not scale indifferent. Our hope was for papers that would accomplish one or more of a few tasks: � invent, develop, and/or demonstrate a theory (or theories) of a specific process (or interrelated processes), with sufficient clarity and scope to serve as an exemplar of such theorizing; � identify, illustrate by example, and analyze specific problems, including problems of conceptualization and measurement, associated with theorizing the dynamics of social, cultural, political, and/or economic processes; � connect theorizations across different disciplines of inquiry, including physical, chemical, and biological sciences insofar as the connections are shown to be relevant to and involve specific processes in social, cultural, political, and/or economic arenas (e.g., diffusion processes, hysteretic processes, aggregation processes). Sometimes ambitious hopes can stimulate interest, even guide the actual processes. We would like to think that contributions to this volume were so informed. It was obvious that we were not breaking new ground. Others have made similar calls many times before, with greater visibility and sustenance. One of us recalled an exuberant conversation with Aage Sørensen in the mid-1980s, for example, when it seemed that a rejuvenated program of sociological inquiry into the dynamics of processes of various kinds might be coming together, with research programs in group process and network dynamics among the vanguard, and books such as Tuma and Hannan’s Social Dynamics (1984) offering torchlight. It was clear, of course, that the program would be couched mainly, probably even entirely, in terms of standard analytic theory (there was still little conversation between it and either critical theory or, even less, theory built of dialectical as well as analytical logics), but such would be the necessary beginning of a rejuvenation. The impetus did not generalize as well as one would have liked, however. The editor of xi

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Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Dahms has repeatedly stressed in his works, including some that have appeared in past volumes of this series (Dahms, 2002, 2008), that greater concerted effort to install and nurture a systematic program of theory, most especially one of critical theory, that gives central emphasis to the dynamics of process is and will be vital to the future health of sociology in particular and of the social sciences in general. This volume was announced with that background in mind. The resulting contents offer a variety of responses to the call. At one time we were brash enough (or one of us was brash enough) to imagine that an outpouring of manuscripts would yield enough content for two volumes (27 and 28), not just one. Unfortunately, we must be content with a singleton, at least for now. This one volume contains strong, productive statements. A concern during the planning phase had been that manuscripts which only ‘‘talk about’’ process would far outnumber manuscripts that go beyond such talk and actually engage in one or more of the aims stated in the call for papers (repeated above). Happily, the concern proved to be exaggerated. The main exceptions, among the chapters that follow, are the propaedeutic chapter by Hazelrigg, ‘‘On Theorizing the Dynamics of Process,’’ large parts of which surely qualify as a ‘‘talk about’’ commentary, and Dahms’ ‘‘Affinities between the Project of Dynamic Theory and the Tradition of Critical Theory,’’ which, as the subtitle indicates, is a sketch. In Hazelrigg’s chapter, the trade-off is that the preparatory remarks attempt to be diagnostic and prognostic, utilizing to those ends a number of illustrative and demonstrative exercises. In the chapter by Dahms, which as a kind of commentary to the perspective and agenda put forth by Hazelrigg, thus adding one further dimension to the project of dynamic theory, the purpose is to suggest that the latter shares common ground with critical theory, especially with the Frankfurt School tradition. But while critical theorists have been cognizant of the fact that in modern society, a set of processes are at work that are incompatible with everyday life assumptions and mainstream perspectives in the social sciences, dynamic theorists must concern themselves with the specificity of each of the processes that together sustain modern society. Joseph Maslen, a young historian just getting his career underway at the University of Manchester, contributes an analysis and evaluation of a recent debate about ‘‘class’’ – ‘‘History and the ‘Processing’ of Class in Social Theory’’ – which has had primary locus in British academic audiences. Maslen’s chapter affords insight into a process of scholarship by which some conceptualizations of class have been resituated and revalued within debates of a politics of identity.

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‘‘Domination, Contention, and the Negotiation of Inequality: A Theoretical Proposal’’ is the latest product of a long-term project by Viviane BrachetMa´rquez to develop better theory of the relations among contentious politics, traditional state-making processes, and strongly reproductive structures of inequality and domination. She and a colleague, Javier Arteaga Pe´rez, are presently preparing Spanish and English-language editions of a monographic report of applications and elaborations of that theory to an extensive dataset covering much of Latin America. Paul Paolucci’s chapter, ‘‘The Labor–Value Relation and Its Transformations,’’ reports another contribution from his long-term project explicating neglected or misconstrued aspects of Karl Marx’s theoretical program, virtually all of which was inherently dynamic and processual. Paolucci utilizes recent events of financial crisis in illustration of much of his argument. This chapter extends work published in Paolucci’s book, Marx’s Scientific Dialectics (2007). In ‘‘Globalization In and Out, or ‘How Can There be a Constructivist Theory of Globalization?’’’ Jean-Se´bastien Guy develops and applies the distinctive theoretical apparatus of Niklas Luhmann to this, the latest round of self-conscious ‘‘globalization’’ of relations of production, distribution, exchange, and consumption, cultural as well as economic and political. Guy’s presentation builds on a recently published book (Guy, 2007). Among the chapters addressing ‘‘globalization’’ in one way or another, P J Rey and George Ritzer’s contribution, ‘‘Conceptualizing Globalization in Terms of Flows,’’ offers a quick overview of uses of a ‘‘flow’’ metaphor in prior literatures, in supplement to the first part of Ritzer’s basic text on Globalization (2009). Robert B. Smith uses insights gained from agent-based modeling of social actions and behaviors to develop and test via simulations a systematization of theories relevant to explanation of ‘‘Why Nazified Germans Killed Jewish People.’’ Agent-based generative modeling is a set of quasi-experimental techniques by which empirical data, theories, and systematically explicated assumptions and conditions are engaged interactively in very large numbers of simulation runs for any number of combinations and permutations of process parameters, using the computational power of high-speed computers. Smith’s chapter is both an instructive illustration of the use of these modeling procedures and a tested set of conclusions about the conditions under which one group of humans systematically slaughter another group of humans – events, needless to say, far too prevalent in the historical record, yet evidently not of a kind that has been ‘‘outgrown’’ via a process of species maturation.

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David Gartman’s ‘‘Economy and Field in the Rise of Postmodern Architecture’’ utilizes insights from Pierre Bourdieu, among others, as well as his own acute investigations of primary materials, to extend his project of inquiry into the relation of architecture to the economy and culture of Fordist and post-Fordist regimes of accumulation. This comes on the heels of his recent book, From Autos to Architecture (2009).

REFERENCES Dahms, H. F. (2002). Sociology in the age of globalization: Toward a dynamic sociological theory. In: Bringing capitalism back for critique by social theory, Current Perspectives in Social Theory (Vol. 21, pp. 287–320). Dahms, H. F. (2008). How social science is impossible without critical theory: The immersion of mainstream approaches in time and space. In: No social science without critical theory, Current Perspectives in Social Theory (Vol. 25, pp. 3–61). Gartman, D. (2009). From autos to architecture. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Architectural Press. Guy, J.-S. (2007). L’ide´e de mondialisation. Montre´al: Liber. Paolucci, P. (2007). Marx’s scientific dialectics. Leiden: Brill. Ritzer, G. (2009). Globalization. New York: Wiley-Blackwell. Tuma, N. B., & Hannan, M. T. (1984). Social dynamics. Orlando, FL: Academic.

Harry F. Dahms Lawrence Hazelrigg Editors

CURRENT PERSPECTIVES IN SOCIAL THEORY Series Editor: Harry F. Dahms Recent Volumes: Volume 1: Volume 2: Volume 3: Volume 4: Volume 5: Volume 6: Volume 7: Volume 8: Volume 9: Volume 10: Volume 11: Volume 12: Volume 13: Volume 14: Supplement 1: Volume Volume Volume Volume Volume Volume Volume

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CURRENT PERSPECTIVES IN SOCIAL THEORY VOLUME 27

THEORIZING THE DYNAMICS OF SOCIAL PROCESSES EDITED BY

HARRY F. DAHMS Department of Sociology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, USA

LAWRENCE HAZELRIGG Department of Sociology, Florida State University, Tallahassee, USA

United Kingdom – North America – Japan India – Malaysia – China

EDITOR Harry F. Dahms University of Tennessee (Sociology)

ASSOCIATE EDITORS Robert J. Antonio University of Kansas (Sociology)

Timothy Luke Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Political Science)

Lawrence Hazelrigg Florida State University (Sociology)

Raymond Morrow University of Alberta (Sociology)

Jennifer Lehmann Formerly University of Nebraska (Sociology and Women’s Studies)

EDITORIAL BOARD Ben Agger University of Texas – Arlington (Sociology and Anthropology)

Norman K. Denzin University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign (Sociology)

Stanley Aronowitz City University of New York – Graduate Center (Sociology)

Nancy Fraser New School for Social Research (Political Science)

Molefi Kete Asante Temple University (African-American Studies)

Martha Gimenez University of Colorado – Boulder (Sociology)

David Ashley University of Wyoming (Sociology)

Robert Goldman Lewis and Clark College (Sociology and Anthropology)

Ward Churchill Formerly University of Colorado (Ethnic Studies)

Mark Gottdiener State University of New York at Buffalo (Sociology) vii

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Douglas Kellner University of California – Los Angeles (Philosophy of Education)

EDITORIAL BOARD

Lawrence Scaff Wayne State University (Political Science)

Lauren Langman Loyola University (Sociology)

Steven Seidman State University of New York at Albany (Sociology)

John O’Neill York University (Sociology)

Frank Taylor Edinboro University of Pennsylvania (Sociology and Anthropology)

Paul Paolucci Eastern Kentucky University (Sociology)

Stephen Turner The University of South Florida (Philosophy)

Moishe Postone University of Chicago (History)

Christine Williams The University of Texas at Austin (Sociology)

LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS Viviane Brachet-Ma´rquez

Centro de Estudios Sociolo´gicos, El Colegio de Me´xico, Me´xico City, Me´xico

Harry F. Dahms

Department of Sociology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN, USA

David Gartman

Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work, University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL, USA

Jean-Se´bastien Guy

Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada

Lawrence Hazelrigg

Department of Sociology, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL, USA

Joseph Maslen

Faculty of Humanities, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK

Paul Paolucci

Department of Anthropology, Sociology and Social Work, Eastern Kentucky University, Richmond, KY, USA

P. J. Rey

Department of Sociology, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA

George Ritzer

Department of Sociology, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA

Robert B. Smith

Social Structural Research, Cambridge, MA, USA

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley BD16 1WA, UK First edition 2010 Copyright r 2010 Emerald Group Publishing Limited Reprints and permission service Contact: [email protected] No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, transmitted in any form or by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without either the prior written permission of the publisher or a licence permitting restricted copying issued in the UK by The Copyright Licensing Agency and in the USA by The Copyright Clearance Center. No responsibility is accepted for the accuracy of information contained in the text, illustrations or advertisements. The opinions expressed in these chapters are not necessarily those of the Editor or the publisher. British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library ISBN: 978-0-85724-223-5 ISSN: 0278-1204 (Series)

Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Howard House, Environmental Management System has been certified by ISOQAR to ISO 14001:2004 standards Awarded in recognition of Emerald’s production department’s adherence to quality systems and processes when preparing scholarly journals for print

ON THEORIZING THE DYNAMICS OF PROCESS: A PROPAEDEUTIC INTRODUCTION Lawrence Hazelrigg Richard Swedberg remarked recently, in his capacity as chairperson of the theory section of the American Sociological Association, on the difficulties of theorizing (Swedberg, 2009). It is indeed a difficult enterprise. That is, to theorize well is difficult. Spinning accounts that lack enough specificity to intersect with experiences in some sort of empirical analytics through which claims of the accounts can be assessed for their power in judgments about those experiences is altogether too easy, much easier than writing good poetry, say, even easier than composing a few chords of popular music.1 Those accounts and resulting assessments lend credence, unhappily, to Plato’s warnings about bewitchments of language. The aim, I assume Swedberg took for granted, is to theorize well, to end the effort with a product that is useful in the worlds of experience because it proposes testable effects in those worlds. The following remarks follow that same assumption. Empirics are vital not only for testing the worth of a theory, however; they are vital also for the process of building a theory in the first place. Empirics provide materials, to be sure, and that experience includes our understandings of previous offerings, theoretical and empirical. But empirics also provide benchmarks of guidance and regulation for processes of theorization itself. An example concerns the processes of simplification that are inevitable in any explanatory endeavors, most especially those Theorizing the Dynamics of Social Processes Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Volume 27, 3–79 Copyright r 2010 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited All rights of reproduction in any form reserved ISSN: 0278-1204/doi:10.1108/S0278-1204(2010)0000027005

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treating dynamics. Slobodkin (1992, p. 10; also p. 216) made an excellent point about this when he cautioned that while a goal of theory is to further understanding of a complex reality by applying appropriate simplifications, ‘‘if scientific analysis of difficult and complex subject matter must rely, in part, on simplification, and if no uniform, testable theory of how this simplification can be done exists, then might we not conclude with near certainty that many respectable-sounding intellectual schemes may be no more valid than astrology?’’ It is especially difficult to theorize process, primarily because human actors are trained to see and to think in largely cross-sectional terms. Certainly human beings experience change, think about those experiences, define differences and measure comparisons, conjecture causes and consequences. But these actions are conducted largely in terms of comparisons of ‘‘snapshot’’ identities – ‘‘how things are today, versus how they were before’’ – rather than in terms of the dynamics of process. While a comparison of cross-sections, even a comparison of three or four crosssections in sequence, does generate a sense of change, this sense is mainly a description of differences, not an understanding of the process(es) that resulted in the different experiences. To study process is to study the activity of some phenomenon, including its cause-and-effect relations. One could say that the focus of inquiry is partly on the mechanism through which a process occurs, unfolds, and/or evolves; but the word ‘‘mechanism’’ has for some people a bad reputation owing to old disputes between competing metaphors: whether social processes are like physical mechanics or like biological organics. This old rhubarb generated lots of heat, hardly any light, and deflected serious attention far too long from the actual study of process. In any case, whereas the study of change as simply the comparison of cross-sections arrayed in time can be (often is) conducted as an empiricaldescriptive enterprise, the study of process necessarily involves the use of theoretical models, which means that it is founded necessarily on specific substantive theories. The aim is to determine what kind of dynamic model best fits the process trajectory over many repetitions of the process. Once that determination has been made, variation across repetitions – that is, variation in the repeated trajectories around the point of attraction – is not of primary interest (or not unless/until the process as such changes). Such variation is not irrelevant; it could be clue to weaker regularities or vulnerabilities of the process. But primary interest lies with the location of the point of attraction within the mensural grid, why it has that location and not some other, how stable it is (or isn’t) under varying conditions (i.e., its sensitivity to various sorts of shock), and how this modeled process

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intersects with other modeled processes. This topic of models will be continued after some other considerations. This chapter has been written with intent of ‘‘preparatory instruction,’’ as the subtitle says, in a number of matters having to do with dynamics of process. It is elementary, incomplete, suggestive, largely nontechnical, and idiosyncratic. The main goal is to stimulate reconsiderations of some habits, some limitations, and some potentials in the conduct of inquiry both empirical and theoretical. More than a century ago, in a book dedicated to the twentieth century, ‘‘on the first day of which it was begun,’’ Lester F. Ward drew a distinction that turned on the notion of equilibrium as a point of stability or attraction within process, and from that distinction he cast a postulate: wherever ‘‘the statical condition is represented by structures, the dynamic condition consists in some change in the type of such structures’’ (1911, p. v, p. 221). The processes by which structures come to be, and are maintained, were of less interest to Ward’s formulation of a ‘‘dynamic sociology’’ than were the processes that jolt equilibrium enough to result in structural change. Ward’s preference is understandable, and I do not argue against it in the least – except to suggest that the processes of the one might well be, under certain conditions, the same as, or contain the seeds of, the processes the other, those that shock a settled state of affairs beyond reparative reproduction. In any case – and for the moment this is the more important point – perhaps we could have much better understandings of the processes that result in and maintain structures, and from there then better understand the conditions of their equilibrium, if we actually studied processes rather than cross-sectional differences.

1. ERGODIC VS. NONERGODIC PROCESSES One crucial but sometimes overlooked fact regarding the difference between observation in the cross-section and observation over time must be stated before proceeding further. Tempting though it is to draw conclusions about the dynamics of a process from cross-sectional observations taken as a snapshot of that process, it is a fallacious practice except under a very precise condition that is highly unlikely to obtain in processes of interest to the social scientist. That condition is known as ergodicity. All processes, whether social, cultural, physical, chemical, biological, astronomical, or otherwise described and labeled, can be divided fundamentally into two types, ergodic and nonergodic. Those that fit the former category have a peculiar property: observation in the cross-section at any

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given time and observation repeated over time will yield exactly the same information. More carefully put, this means that, by the ergodic theorem,2 the time-average value of a conforming process (the time-average value being determined by the process dynamics) equals the ensemble-average value, so that probability sampling performed instantly across a group of identical instances of the realization of the process will yield exactly the same information as sampling over time within any one of those instances of the realization of the process (see Peebles, 2000; Papoulis, 1991).3 This property is very handy to investigators of stochastic processes that conform to ergodicity. In order to see how, let’s consider an illustration. Begin with a simple process from the realm of Newtonian mechanics, the process of force generated as a mass under acceleration. My observations of an accelerating mass here today will be entirely consistent with your observations of an accelerating mass over there today, and both will be entirely consistent with your or my observations tomorrow of an accelerating mass. All of the observations will conform equally and precisely well (ignoring errors of measured observation, and assuming observations within the Newtonian realm) with the rule of force as a simple product of mass and its rate of acceleration. I can be confident that whether I sample appropriate Newtonian observations here or there, or a little bit today and more tomorrow, I can reliably draw exactly the same conclusions about causeand-effect relations of the dynamics of hugely or barely massive objects in motion. This is because of the tradition within which we regard Newtonian mechanics as strictly deterministic; that is, there is nothing stochastic (probabilistic) about the process of accelerating mass.4 Now let’s take a case from the realm of statistical mechanics – say, the transfer of heat through a simple gas (e.g., a diatomic gas: each molecule consists of two atoms).5 Our first task is to obtain a reasonably accurate picture of the specific heat of the gas (assume normal sea-level atmospheric pressure). A strictly deterministic approach is not possible, because of the large number of degrees of freedom. The dynamical system contains approximately 1023 degrees of freedom even when we ignore the subatomic dynamics and focus only on the macroscopic dynamics of the two-atom molecules. So we must use a statistical approach: repeat the measured observations several times and average the results. Note that we will be averaging over initial conditions (different regions of the volume of gas will have different properties when we commence observation), over time (the dynamical system of the gas is evolving), and over degrees of freedom at the subatomic level. In taking the average of the measured observations, we are relying on a property of stochastic processes known as ‘‘asymptotic

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mean stationarity.’’6 That is, we rely on the assumption that our sample averages will converge asymptotically to a single expected value with regard to the stationary mean. What condition must be met in order for that assumption to obtain? Ergodicity. With a stochastic process that is ergodic, we can safely assume convergence. If not ergodic, we cannot assume convergence. We cannot assume uniformity of the time path of the evolving stochastic process; we cannot assume that the time path is insensitive to initial conditions; we cannot assume that the actual realization of the stochastic process as captured in our measured observations is a reasonably close estimate of the mean of all possible realizations of that process. Are there any processes in the social, cultural, historical realm that exhibit ergodicity? None comes to mind. It would seem unlikely, given how easily the condition of ergodicity is violated in strictly physical stochastic processes. However, it appears that no one has ever undertaken an inventory of stochastic processes of social, cultural, historical phenomena in terms of their ergodic status.7 In fact, this fundamental property of processes has rarely gotten attention in social science, even though in principle it settles the question about the conditions under which crosssectional observations can be legitimately interpreted as indicative of causal relations. One of the few recent scholars to make note of that fact is Molenaar (e.g., 2004, 2005), in his quest to retrieve a strictly psychological individual from the clutches of social psychology. Molenaar’s rigorous approach to building strictly longitudinal records for individuals (by his conception) emphasizes the discrepancy of cross-sectional data.8 John Dewey did as well, when in 1896 he described what he called ‘‘the historical fallacy’’ (related to but distinguishable from ‘‘the psychological fallacy’’): ‘‘A set of considerations which hold good only because of a completed process, is read into the content of the process which conditions this completed result. A state of things characterizing an outcome is regarded as a true description of the events which led up to this outcome; when, as a matter of fact, if this outcome had already been in existence, there would have been no necessity for the process’’ (Dewey, 1896, p. 367). This well describes a common tendency in considerations of experiences in the crosssection, whether casual or disciplined. Causal inference may be unavoidable, as Kant taught, because we have only our experiences as effects by which to infer their causes. But that does not relieve us the need to understand processes in their own times, in their own dynamics, rather than only infer what ‘‘must have been happening’’ by their completed outcomes. The ergodic theorem makes clear that variations in the cross-section are a reliable gauge of variations in time only under very special conditions.

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2. GOOD MOTIVES, BAD HABITS As suggested above, a prevalent factor in the difficulty of theorizing dynamics of process is the heavy cross-sectional slant of everyday experiences. Observationally, we tend to relate through comparisons of being in a given place at a given time – comparisons of snapshots, from which we can experience difference and infer change. But experiencing difference and inferring change do not amount to observing the process(es) that produced what we have experienced and how that production might have changed, whether in outcome (product) or, more significantly, in process parameters. Of the various ways in which the cross-sectional bias manifests, one of the most basic is as an asymmetry of time–space relationality that characterizes everyday experience for most people: while it is generally recognized that one cannot walk through space without also walking through time, most of us tend to think we walk through time without also walking through space, at least during relatively short spans of time. The cross-sectional perspective seems to accord better with the assumption of an inertial or stable platform from which to observe, and it encourages the fiction (or forgetfulness of the fictioning) that the observational platform is absolute, not relative. Moreover, the cross-sectional bias in our experiences is often (probably usually) an aggregation of process effects – that is, an aggregation of effects of a given process and an aggregation of effects from two or more processes, which could be mostly reinforcing, mostly crosscutting, or mostly mutually independent. Sorting through complexities of aggregations in order to infer back to the generative processes is well-nigh impossible from observations that are only, or even mainly, cross-sectional. Yet, more often than not, that is what we attempt to do. In the social sciences the tendency of disciplinary activity has been not to counteract that bias from everyday experience but to strengthen and even extend it.9 This tendency increased during the twentieth century, especially the latter half, and one could argue that it reversed what had been the dominant perspective during the latter half of the nineteenth and early decades of the twentieth century. Saint Simon, Marx, Spencer, Ward, the Weber brothers, Durkheim, Pareto, Simmel, Adorno, Habermas, and many others focused on social, economic, political, and cultural processes of one kind or another in their works. Even when addressing differences in cross-section, their motivating questions were about dynamics, generally of a ‘‘How did this come about?’’ sort. A thing, a state of affairs, an event, a condition, and so forth, does not first exist and then undergo some process of change; process is integral to its being what it is. That orientation continued for many social scientists well into the mid-1900s. But the

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orientation evolved into another increasingly rapidly thereafter. The main impetus and attraction within that development consisted in the growing body of large-sample data sets which offered so many opportunities to analyze differences. Almost all of the data were cross-sectional, but that limitation was offset by the fact of large, nationally representative samples of relatively highquality data which in turn stimulated the development of techniques of analyzing large bodies of data. Major gains in inferential statistics followed, gains both technical-methodological and substantive, and research literatures blossomed as never before. Generations of scholars learned to manage larger data sets than any that had preceded – data sets that had fair claim to being reasonably representative demographically of entire societies at a given date – and to conduct careful analyses of data that were more systematic and of better quality control than most of what had preceded. These are hardly small accomplishments. However, the surfeit of cross-sectional survey data reinforced the bias in perspective. This consequence was indeliberate, no doubt. No one argued that ‘‘thinking in the cross-section’’ is all one needs, or even that it should have priority. But the outcome has been the same regardless. It was as if some director had designed a training program in crosssectional thinking, a program that reinforced already existing bias in favor of cross-sectional experience. Even when someone argued for longitudinal designs of observation, these were usually panel designs – that is, repeated cross-sections which allowed descriptions of aggregate differences. The very strong interest in maintaining large-population inferential capacity – accurate description of a large and heterogeneous population at each date of observation – dominated other interests, including any interest in refined, multiply repeated observations of the dynamics of specific processes in operation.10 Because of that large-sample orientation, wave designs (i.e., repeated observations of same subjects) were generally prohibitively expensive, and even when adopted there was much concern about the fact that the initial sample’s inferential capacity eroded over time.11 Trained bias in favor of cross-sectional thinking has been rampant, not only in techniques of data analysis but also, more generally, in skills of reasoning, hypothesis formation, and applications of logic. Three simple illustrations will here have to serve in place of the very large volume of evidence.

2.1. Illustration 1: Cohorts as a Conduit of Social Change This illustration revolves around the concept of ‘‘cohort’’ and its half century of slow developmental life. During most of that half century, the

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main attraction has consisted in the notion that the analysis of processes of change would be facilitated through an accounting scheme that first aggregates individual actors (whether they be persons, the most common unit, or firms or newspapers or some other agent or principal of action) into cohorts, typically birth cohorts, then calculates for one or more variables of interest the mean among component members of each of some number of contiguous cohorts, and compares these means relative to each other and relative to the variance among members of a given cohort. The argument is that factors of change can be partitioned between factors that operate through cohort differences in experience (and thus through cohort succession) and factors that operate residually through changes in individual units within a given cohort, relative to the cohort mean, as factors of individual life cycle or of historical events affecting the individual or of both. The chief instrument of the accounting scheme is thus a partition of variance into two parts: the between-cohort variance (difference of means) and within-cohort variance (dispersion around the cohort mean). While a substantial fraction of the resulting literature has been devoted to efforts seemingly designed to reprove the adage about squeezing blood from a stone (i.e., demonstrations on partitioning variances into three logically distinct aspects of the clock – age, period, and cohort), there have also been many applications of the accounting scheme in analyses concerned with theories of various processes, such as life-cycle theories about change in political attitudes, voting behavior, and the like. Despite the occasional caution against imagining that cohort effects are causal – ‘‘Temporal dimensions such as age, period, and cohort are generally not substantively interesting in themselves’’ (Rodgers, 1990, p. 436) – analyses based on cohorts are often conducted as if they were estimating causal effects, whether with cross-sectional or longitudinal data, indirectly if not directly. In view of cautions such as the one cited above (see also Heckman & Robb, 1985, p. 139; Hazelrigg, 1997), and more particularly in view of the fact that a cohort is defined as an aggregation of component units, with measurement conducted in terms of the aggregate means, it is well worth considering this question: under what conditions does cohort as such add information above and beyond the information presented by the component units? That is, is there in fact a ‘‘value added’’ component, and if so how is it constituted? More specifically in terms of any analysis of process, under what conditions does cohort as such add impetus to any process? This question has been raised before, though not often. Harrison White, for one, has observed that ‘‘[c]ohorts of individuals themselves become actors as they cohere enough around events, in both their own and others’

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perceptions, to be called generations’’ – a generation being a contingent identity that ‘‘depends upon opportunity and succession as well as interpretation’’ (White, 2002, p. 315; see also 1992b; Coleman, 1964, p. 88). What constitutes that contingent identity? Shouldn’t that be the focus of analysis, without which the results of any given application of cohort analysis will almost surely be swamped by unestimated measurement and/or category error? The use of cohorts is sometimes defended, as Rodgers (1990, p. 437) did in conjunction with age and period, ‘‘to the extent that they covary with (and thus serve as indicators of ) substantive variables.’’ But since there is seldom any effort to assess the extent to which any one or a set of cohorts does meet the criterion of an identity that ‘‘cohere(s) enough around events,’’ the bounds on which those indications of process depend are simply arbitrary (typically defined as uniform intervals of some number of years).12 It is also worth remembering that Norman Ryder addressed the question in his oft-cited 1965 essay. Although not the inventor of the concept, Ryder was the foremost developer and promoter of the cohort concept, and in this as in other technical realms development and promotion are at least as consequential as the initial innovation itself. He defined cohort as an aggregation of individuals who ‘‘experience the same event’’ (1965, p. 845) – for example, birth during some range of years, as in the case of birth cohort. Is ‘‘experiencing the same event’’ sufficient to count as added value? Perhaps it is, insofar as individual persons who were born within the same range of years tend to identify with one another. But again, the concept of interest, and the focus of measurement, should be the identification, not the mere fact of shared birth years. Ryder’s position about such matters seems rather ambiguous, perhaps ambivalent, and sometimes inconsistent. On the one hand, he criticized those theorists and analysts who ‘‘have used the succession of cohorts as the foundation for theories of sociocultural dynamics’’ (1965, p. 853), and he cautioned that cohort succession does not cause change but ‘‘permit(s)’’ it and can be treated as a window through which to study change (1965, p. 844). On the other hand, he also said that ‘‘cohorts are used to achieve structural transformations’’ (1965, p. 843). It is pertinent to conclude, as Nı´ Bhrolcha´in (1992, p. 603) did, that he regarded cohorts as ‘‘vehicles of causation,’’ with period effects reflecting ‘‘consequences of cohort behavior.’’ In what way, and to what extent, the aggregate is a ‘‘vehicle of causation’’ over and above the component units (e.g., individual persons) cannot be determined from Ryder’s various statements, however. Yet understanding Ryder’s motivation for promoting the cohort concept is relatively easy, given some of his statements. In describing the potentially

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mutually complementary perspectives of cross-sectional and longitudinal frameworks, for instance, Ryder (1965, p. 859) noted first the limitation of the latter – namely, that it ‘‘proliferates hypotheses but ordinarily lacks that broad evidential basis requisite to generalized verification’’ (i.e., sampling or statistical inference).13 He then pointed out the limitation of the cross-sectional view: its condensation of results in ‘‘simultaneity between corresponding events from different lives,’’ and this ‘‘over-valuation of the existing situation’’ is (here he quoted Dollard, 1935) ‘‘the sociological error par excellence.’’ Cross-sectional analysis ‘‘destroys individual sequences, and diverts attention from process. By implying that the past is irrelevant, cross-sectional analysis inhibits dynamic inquiry and fosters the illusion of immutable structure.’’ Ryder imagined that the cohort concept could provide a vehicle by which to overcome those inherent limits of ‘‘comparative cross-sectional research’’ (1965, p. 861). But the accounting scheme was designed for the cross-section and makes little sense within a dynamic perspective. Nı´ Bhrolcha´in (1992, p. 607) pointed out in her critique of the cohort approach to studying fertility that the limitations of cohort analysis, and of the cohort concept, have been masked by the fact that the research generally has not involved timevarying covariates. ‘‘Survey-based studies typically examine the relationship between family size or other features of the fertility history and characteristics that are relatively fixed attributes of individuals, such as education, social background, income, religion, urban-rural residence, and so on.’’ Indeed, her observation pertains to most studies of change that have used the cohort framework. The variance on the driver side of the equations is mainly (when not entirely) cross-sectional. Thus, the fact that the cohort perspective is static does not stand out, because the typical ‘‘explanatory factors,’’ though insensitive to shocks, are represented in cross-sectional variance as if in variance over time. Often an announced ‘‘cohort effect’’ is actually only an effect of context, though treated as if an endogenous effect. Being a member of an unusually small or unusually large cohort is perhaps the most common example. Context (or a set of conditioning variables) lacks motive force of its own. As White pointed out, if a cohort is as such to have motive force – to do anything – it must in some way become bound up in the identity of actors. This does not mean the postulation of anything like a ‘‘group mind’’ (to recall an older version of ‘‘emergence’’). An aggregation process that involves a particular endogeneity can be amply sufficient: the stronger an individual actor’s identification with the cohort, the more likely that actor’s behaviors will be modal or mean of the cohort. Indeed, the endogenous effect can even be internally reinforcing, which means that

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‘‘the propensity of an individual to behave in some way increases with the prevalence of that behavior in the reference group’’ or cohort (Manski, 1995, p. 128; emphasis added). Catching sight of such effects in crosssectional experience is extremely difficult.

2.2. Illustration 2: Scale Effects and Aggregation Reversals In the usual operations of some processes, and under certain conditions of operation in other processes, the process dynamics are sensitive to scale. That is, the process operates in one way at, say, micro-scale and in a different way at meso- or macro-scale. Collectives of units can be only congeries of units, which share properties (e.g., criteria of membership) and can have varying values on those properties; but some collectives are more than congeries of units, in that they have organizational properties distinctive from those of their units. The operational difference is probably most often only quantitative – a difference of degree in this or that parameter, for instance. There are some known instances in which the difference is qualitative, however (though an inventory of social processes in this regard, too, remains to be done). The clearest illustrations of qualitative shift occur in the realms of physics and chemistry. A textbook case is as follows: steadily apply heat to a substance that is relatively dense or compacted in molecular scale (‘‘microscale,’’ one might say), and its viscosity decreases. If initially a solid, as heat is added it melts into a liquid and flows. Pump still more heat into the nowliquid substance and it becomes still less dense or compacted in molecular scale; its viscosity decreases further. With enough added heat the substance phase-changes into gaseous state, a still less dense or compacted molecular scale (‘‘macro-scale’’). Now add still more heat. What happens? Viscosity increases. There has been a sign switch in the process with respect to this one outcome variable, viscosity. Are there social processes that exhibit not just quantitative but qualitative scale sensitivity? A few rough examples come to mind as candidate cases – for instance, ‘‘tipping point’’ or cascade effects in the spread of rumors – although it is not clear that any of these actually involves a sign change (or, if so, the conditions under which that could occur). In general, however, we know so little about the dynamics of most social processes that judgments about how rarely or commonly they evince scale sensitivities of a qualitative kind are blind guesses. Scale sensitivities are sometimes confused with another phenomenon, ‘‘aggregation reversal,’’ which can also manifest qualitative (as well as

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quantitative) differences even to the extent of sign shift. One illustration comes from voting studies in the United States: whereas individual voters with higher incomes more likely favor candidates of the Republican Party, states with higher median incomes (household or personal) tend to favor presidential candidates of the Democratic Party. This sign difference can be mistaken as evidence that the generative process is so scale-sensitive that it operates in one way at the micro-level and in a qualitatively (not just quantitatively) different way at a meso- or macro-level of scale, though in fact all that has happened is a compositional effect of aggregation. Again, observing and thinking cross-sectionally will not leave one prepared to discriminate the scale-dependent reversals of process outcomes that do genuinely occur. Glaeser and Sacerdote (2007) recently proposed a model of how (and when) sign switching happens simply as an aggregation effect in the crosssection, and it will be instructive to follow one of their applications of their model. They began with a cross-sectional observation very much like the one from voting studies: whereas adults are likelier to attend religious services at least once a month the greater the number of years of completed education, the average likelihood of attendance is lower among religious groupings (confessional groups and, among protestants, denominations) the higher the group’s mean years of education. Glaeser and Sacerdote base their model in two processes of utility optimization: just as formal education is a good that a person attempts to accumulate to some limit of cost effectiveness, so too attendance at religious services, where personal contacts and other sorts of social capital (as well as soterial benefits for those whose beliefs include such) can be accumulated also to some limit of cost effectiveness. With those two principal motive forces operating at the individual level, what then could produce the aggregation reversal of sign? Glaeser and Sacerdote argue that the reversal results from a ‘‘social multiplier’’ effect, which is another term for a reinforcing endogenous effect. Here the endogeneity occurs (by hypothesis) in propensity to hold to certain religious or supernatural beliefs, which the analysts index as belief in the Christian (or Judeo–Christian) Devil and belief that the Biblical text is literally ‘‘the word of God.’’ Persons who hold such beliefs are likely to gravitate to groups in which the same beliefs are dominant; as new members with such beliefs arrive, existing members are likelier to adopt and/or express such beliefs; and so on (i.e., a feedback loop or reinforcing endogeneity). Religious grouping sorts strongly on those beliefs, weakly on educational attainment (years of school), but relatively strongly on the correlation between those beliefs and educational attainment.14 Because the

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sign of that latter correlation (negative) is opposite to that of the direct relation between educational attainment and the likelihood of attendance at religious services, the aggregation reversal occurs. Glaeser and Sacerdote estimated their model with data from the 2004 General Social Survey and obtained results as just described. It is clear that Glaeser and Sacerdote were developing an argument of process: actors are motivated in terms of utility and beliefs (which are partly pre or extrautilitarian), they learn from signals, and they engage in decisions and executions in more or less rational fashion. So while the data they had to work with were cross-sectional, their argument was cast in dynamic terms. Let’s follow their argument a little more closely in trajectory, and see what difference the fact of cross-sectional data makes. The exogenous variable of their model, the ultimate motive force, is years of education. This is determinant of likelihood of attendance at religious services ( just as, Glaeser and Sacerdote point out, it is determinant of variation in a wide array of participatory rates), and it is determinant, though more weakly, of propensity to certain religious beliefs (those that emphasize supernaturalism). Years of education displays substantial variance in the cross-section. But over time it displays none. Its metric is simply the standard clock interval – which has no motive force, is not the cause of anything – and variation in it is precisely one unit change per unit of clock time (e.g., one year per year) until the given individual reaches completion. Until completion the variance for any individual is precisely zero; after completion the variable becomes a constant. Granted, the argument made by Glaeser and Sacerdote implicitly invokes some sort of substance of educational process, and ‘‘years of schooling’’ is merely a very poor substitute for that. But in fact the latter, not the former, constituted their measure; and in fact the former is very seldom measured in social science research. It is not clear that good measures of the substance of educational process exist. It is not clear even that good concepts, concepts that would support good measures, of the substance of educational process exist. It is clear that ‘‘years of schooling’’ has little worth for purposes of analysis or theorization of process.15 Leaving that matter to the side, there are other problems to be faced. The ‘‘social multiplier’’ effect that Glaeser and Sacerdote propose in ‘‘the social formation of belief ’’ was indexed in terms of two beliefs that do exhibit considerable variance in cross-section even when measured, as they were, in binary metric. But longitudinally the variance strongly tends to zero: each individual person either believes or does not, at any given time, and while shifting back and forth is possible and no doubt does occur, it is unlikely.

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In principle, one could argue that for any given individual there is an underlying ‘‘propensity to believe X’’ which varies over time. Such measure remains to be invented and calibrated, however.

2.3. Illustration 3: Selection and Sorting Processes The habit of thinking in cross-sectional terms encourages us to neglect the fact that we have, as Ryder (1965, p. 859) said, ‘‘destroy[ed] individual sequences.’’ We neglect the fact that states of affairs at any given time are the results of trajectories that can and usually do involve various sorting and selection processes. We just saw in the previous illustration an example of how sorting can result in a cross-sectional relationship that might be mistaken as evidence that the behavior of an aggregate (in a different context, e.g., a crowd) is contrary to the behavior of individual members. Indeed, social organization in general is a strong ‘‘sorting-and-selection engine.’’ The process is especially potent in voluntary associations such as religious congregations, but it characterizes many other organizations as well (e.g., work organizations). Here the focus will be mainly on selection. When observing a cross-section, one is averaging across initial conditions of observation on a variety of processes that have been underway for variable lengths of time. If the primary observational units are individual persons, for example, the initial conditions pertain to persons who have been ‘‘caught,’’ so to speak, at various points in the trajectories of relevant processes. Effects of this averaging across initial conditions can be taken into account when observation is repeated multiple times at appropriate intervals for the same persons. But with cross-sectional data we have only those initial-condition averages. We then face the usually impossible task of trying to determine each person’s ‘‘preobservation history’’ – that is, the relevant events recently engaged in, the effects recently absorbed, and so forth. Retrospective reports by the observed persons are sometimes better than nothing, but even then they mostly shift the task from guessing about completely censored information to guessing about censored boundaries of errors of measurement and classification. Sometimes this ‘‘left-censored’’ information is inescapable for conceptual and/or mensural reasons. Of the many examples of this condition, Manski (1995, p. 22) cites one of the classic instances encountered when trying ‘‘to learn how market wages vary with schooling, work experience, and demographic background’’ (i.e., conditioning variables such as gender, race, etc.). Even when there are no missing data in a survey data set that includes the relevant variables,

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there is a major problem of left-censoring due to the fact that residents who do not work do not have wages to report. This means that respondents have been filtered by a selection process that will affect any effort to estimate wage equations on the basis of those surveys. Whereas that problem due to selection will be repeated no matter how often observations are taken, other difficulties resulting from a selection process can be addressed directly, though not if one has only cross-sectional data. As a simple example, imagine that your cross-sectional data describe the following association: the older people are, the less likely they are to report being in financial hardship. Assume further that the age gradient in hardship reports holds even after variation in income has been taken into account. What should one make of that? One possibility is just that description, taken at face value but interpreted as a statement of ‘‘life course’’ change: as people age they become less likely to experience financial hardship. There are other possibilities, however, and cross-sectional data are not sufficient to discriminate between the prima facie interpretation and the alternatives. Indeed, having same-subject observations at two dates will also be inadequate; without at least three observational dates change could not be separated from random fluctuation (and having more than three dates would be better). To begin with, one should resist the temptation to interpret status variables such as income as exogenous to an experience of hardship. Rather, it would not be unusual to find that one or another status variable is actually endogenous to the hardship experience, the reason being that hardship is generally not a preferred state for most people, and the response often is to try to make some change. A person could try either or both of two responses: increase an appropriate status supply (e.g., income) or decrease the corresponding status demand (income needs). Furthermore, many persons are rather accomplished at adaptation in another way: change the boundary of ‘‘hardship.’’ In other words, it is an attitude, whether the person is cognizant of the maneuver or not, of adjusted expectations (in effect, a statement of ‘‘lowering my expectations so I won’t be so disappointed’’).16 Any of those (and other) psychosocial dynamics can play into a selection process, but the cross-sectional data will fail to detect it. Consider a person at time of observation t: who was that person at an earlier time, t�1? Perhaps she was someone who, recently retired, experienced hardship and went back to paid employment. Or perhaps the experience of hardship had been lessened, by time t, because she determined that she could reduce demand on income, or because she decided that ‘‘this is just the way it is when you get to my age, so why complain?’’ In any one of these scenarios

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she self-selected out of the queue of people who would have reported hardship at time t�1 and who will report it again at time t. To repeat Ryder’s point, cross-sections collapse differences in experience and its sequences. The person who would have said ‘‘yes’’ to a hardship question at t�1, had he been asked, could then have engaged in one (or more) of three courses of action by time t: successful effort to overcome hardship; failed effort to overcome hardship; no effort to overcome hardship. The first of those would have been reflected in the changed category membership at time t; but this would not be detectable in the cross-sectional data. (Nor would differences in how ‘‘success’’ was achieved – e.g., by added income, by reduced demand on income, or by adapted expectations about qualification of ‘‘hardship.’’) The second and third alternatives would be equivalently reflected in unchanged category membership at time t, and the difference between them would be undetected in the data. These illustrations of selection and sorting also point to the importance of knowing where one’s observations are located temporally in the trajectory of the process(es) being investigated. A more arresting illustration of the point comes from studies of the process of medical diagnosis. Assume the existence of a new diagnostic test for a disease that has a high rate of mortal outcome. Like tests in general, this one is fallible. It has known risks of false positives and false negatives: because the test is very sensitive, the risk of false positives is not trivial, while the risk of false negatives is very trivial. The problem of a false positive test result is that by definition we do not know that it is false, and any positive result should lead immediately to procedures first to confirm the diagnosis and then, when confirmed, to follow with corrective action. Let’s assume that the procedures are invasive, involving nonnegligible risk of serious trauma. So the cost of a false positive test result is high. Now assume that the five-year survival rate of people who were correctly diagnosed via the new test as having the disease and who then began therapy is 80 percent. The corresponding five-year survival rate of people who were correctly diagnosed via the older, less sensitive test is 15 percent. Further assume no difference in appropriate therapy between those two groups. Question: Shouldn’t the new test be used in all future cases, despite the fact that it has a higher rate of false positives and thus subjects some people to needless trauma? The correct answer is ‘‘not necessarily.’’ Given what we know, we have no basis for ruling out the possibility that no one who is diagnosed with the disease by the new test gets even one extra day of life. It is tempting to jump to the conclusion that an 80 percent rate of survival is so much better than a 15 percent rate. But we need to evaluate that difference in terms of where the respective sets of

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observations were located in the disease process of all people who have the disease, whether they have been observed (diagnosed) or not. The greater sensitivity of the new test means that people with the disease are probably diagnosed earlier in the disease trajectory than they would have been under the old (less sensitive) test. It is possible that because of that fact alone these people have a much higher rate of surviving five years from date of diagnosis.17

3. VARIABLES, MEASURES, AND MODELS A focus on dynamics of process does not mean a lack of interest in variables. The contrary view has been popular in some quarters, but it is altogether too convenient to treat any process as an opaque box wherein ‘‘things just happen.’’ Granted, some processes are more resistant than are others to inspection of internal operations. But an analytic orientation to process dynamics is even more crucial than it is when investigating differences in the cross-section. Recall Holland (1986, p. 959) pointing out that there can be ‘‘no causation without manipulation.’’ Part of the main point of that statement has sometimes been missed: only variables, not constants, are manipulable, and even if in practice one cannot perform the manipulation, the factor must be changeable, variable, in time, and the process of manipulation or change must be observable at an acceptable level of precision. As Holland (1986, p. 954) also said, inquiry into ‘‘effects of causes’’ takes priority over inquiry into ‘‘causes of effects.’’ Kant explained the reasoning well before J. S. Mill and better than David Hume: humans experience causes in ‘‘external reality’’ – that is, causes that we ourselves do not make – only through their effects; hence, causal inference. This phrase, ‘‘causal inference,’’ is of course another way of saying that we are generally most interested in learning about causes; we experience effects more or less directly, but causes are much more difficult to reach. In experimental design we manipulate a variable, the test factor, by hypothesis the cause of such and such effects; and depending on the outcome of the experiment we may conclude in evidence of causal import. But the hypothetical status can never be erased by any body of evidence, experimental or not, because the variable we have selected as test factor might be only an effect or a correlate of ‘‘the real cause.’’ As Holland (1986, p. 958) put it with regard to Granger causality, a test factor hypothesized as cause often has that status ‘‘only temporarily.’’ In any case, however, as Kant as well as Hume declared, the category of ‘‘cause’’ ultimately remains a theoretical, not an empirical category.18

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One of the consequences of the habit of thinking mainly in cross-sectional terms has been something of a disconnect between the ostensible preference for causal over correlational analysis and a reliance on variables that are convenient, standard categories in official records, and often vernacular in concept and measure, with a cross-sectionally biased consideration of their variance properties. Recall, for example, the three illustrations recited in the previous section. They commonly refer to a central question: for any given variable, how does its interunit (i.e., cross-sectional) variance compare with its intraunit (e.g., intraindividual) variance? That is, is the variance greater in the cross-section or over time? Presumably the cross-sectional variance is nonnegligible; otherwise, the variable would have not attracted much attention. But what about its variance over time for any given person (or other unit of observation)? Is it also nonnegligible? Perhaps it is surprising that this line of questioning is so seldom pursued, either as a feature of theorization or during the design of an empirical inquiry. As Nı´ Bhrolcha´in (1992) indicated, the central question should be asked more often. Several of the demographic variables that figure most commonly in research if not in theory have well-studied quanta of variance in the cross-section but very little or none temporally; yet they are invoked, implicitly or explicitly, as if somehow causal. Still other variables, though with appreciable variance in the cross-section, display so little variance temporally that either they can have little causal impact or they must be instances of Poincare´’s ‘‘sensitive dependence’’ causality.19

3.1. Variables and Measures Consider three of the most frequently invoked demographic variables in social analyses – gender, race, and ethnicity. Highly favored as factors of personal identity, each of the three receives much attention in everyday or vernacular experience, so it is not surprising that each figures so often in social analyses. Beyond that, the first property to notice is that each factor is variable only in the cross-section, or very nearly so. That is, excepting such phenomena as ‘‘passing behavior,’’ ‘‘ethnicity shopping,’’ ‘‘sex change’’ surgery, and the like, each is a static characteristic of an individual actor. Reference is of course to each of the three as a vernacular categorical construct. With regard to biophysiological characteristics that are nominally indexed, the underlying phenomena are indeed processual and complex. Substantial variance, temporal as well as cross-sectional, in multiple dimensions (e.g., in hormonal pumps, long-bone sizes, pelvic shapes, etc.,

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with regard to gender) is reduced into a very small number of categories, usually two of ‘‘gender’’ and three or four of ‘‘race.’’ These reductions of complex variances into highly simplified identities are historical processes that have been little studied, despite the fact that the reductions create profound pressures, tensions, and stresses for large numbers of persons (see Hazelrigg, 1995, pp. 248–290).20 The biophysiological characteristics are also indeed sociocultural constructs, and as such are historical. But, partly excepting certain ‘‘specialized technical’’ language games (biological science, etc.), they are subordinated to the vernacular social categories of binary gender, and trinary or quadrinary race, as well as a larger set of categories of ethnicity. We generally do not accord causal potency to factors that are constant, even if they do vary across units of analysis at any given time. Gender, race, and ethnicity are for the most part constants. In and of itself, each of the three does nothing beyond name a constant category membership. As already acknowledged, the categorizations command attention from analysts because of their importance in the production of social and thus personal identities. Gender, race, and ethnicity are perhaps the most basic, at least among the most basic, of factors by which human beings sort themselves into categories of population, and the sortings have generally been regarded (in vernacular or emic consciousness) as temporally static. The sorting process as such, in principle historical and during any given historical period potentially dynamic, might not be causal of anything else – just a sorting of people into inert categories. But it seems rather obscurant to focus on the vernacular categories of membership to the exclusion of the processes of categorization and the extensive variations that are masked therein. Sorting by the categories is a sorting into specific contexts and conditions of behaviors – ego actor’s and alter actor’s perceptions, expectations, intentions, performances, and so forth – such that the categories become contextualizing and conditioning, enabling and constraining, sets of filters and channels. Thus, whereas the categories themselves are mostly static within a person’s lifetime, and as such not causally potent, reactions to them by self and other can be and often are highly potent. Contexts and conditions are not motive forces; in that sense they, too, do not do anything. But motive forces can be contingent on contexts and/or conditions, and in that way the motive forces of ego actor and alter actor – their intentions, goal directions, and so forth – can be contingent on perceptions of personidentity and in particular the mostly static or inert category memberships of gender, race, ethnicity, and the like.

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It is important not to confuse condition or context as process – for instance, not to confuse gender as a conditioning factor with the process of gender socialization. As an illustration of the point, consider the evidence that gender appears to be a conditioning variable with respect to performance on tests of mathematical ability. Numerous snapshot studies have been cited as indicating that women are poorer than men in mathematical abilities (e.g., Grandy, 1999). If true, gender would be a conditioning factor for performance of such abilities at least in general, although there is probably some degree of selection effect in the disparity of scores on tests, since neither all men nor all women take any given exam. It is remarkable that some commentators have seen in the scores evidence of an ‘‘innate’’ or genetic difference. Difference by gender socialization is likelier, in which case it would be this factor, a difference in the process of gender socialization, that is conditioning; but attention usually rests on the outcome of that process in inert category memberships. Also remarkable is the fact that the cited evidence of ‘‘a gender difference,’’ is almost always cross-sectional, based on snapshots of results of cohorts of students taking one of the standardized tests (GRE, SAT, etc.). If one examines instead the learning curves of male and female students over relevant intervals of time, the conclusions are generally different. LoGerfo, Nichols, and Chaplin (2006) conducted a careful analysis of learning trajectories using two data sets, the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study and the National Educational Longitudinal Study of 1988, and demonstrated (1) that there probably was a gender disparity that increased over time – positive for boys in math, positive for girls in reading – but (2) that relative to the generally small increments of progress per interval of time, each of the disparities was initially also very small and barely increased.21 A tiny fraction of the 80-point gender difference typically seen cross-sectionally in GRE scores (which is partly compositional), the actual disparity in learning curves, even if reflecting gender-neutrality in conditions of learning, probably lacks enough potency to be conditioning of much else. But the mythic proportion manifested in gender socialization (‘‘girls aren’t good in math’’) persists in perceptions and their consequences, thus parading as a conditionality from gender category as such. Profound effects of very subtle signaling in schoolroom contexts of gender socialization have been demonstrated repeatedly in studies that actually focused on relevant processes, not simply cross-sectional snapshots (see, e.g., Beilock, Gunderson, Ramirez, & Levine, 2010; Mehan, 1979; Mehan & Griffin, 1980). As Mehan (1979, p. 5; emphases added) summarized one of his lessons, ‘‘What are lacking in most discussions of the influence of schools are descriptions of the actual

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processes of education. If we want to know whether [various hypothesized factors] actually influence the quality of education, then we must be able to show how they operate in pragmatic educational situations.’’22 Snapshots cannot do that. Routine inclusion of membership categories of gender, race, ethnicity, and the like, in cross-sectional studies gains little or no insight even into the extent to which such memberships are conditional to the actual operation of specific processes. It would be a mistake to suppose that only categorical variables such as gender, race, and ethnicity are prone to zero variance temporally. Recall the second of the three illustrations recited earlier – the one having to do with ‘‘aggregation reversal’’ – which featured the example of educational attainment: typically measured as ‘‘years of school,’’ which can easily be treated as an interval variable (one year ¼ one year), and even as a ratio variable (since a person cannot have fewer than zero years of school),23 educational attainment varies within the cross-section of a general population by a substantial amount. But within the life course of a given person it has no variance other than that of the clock, one tick for each tock. Generally speaking, analysts have been sensibly cautious about interpreting increments of years of school. Few if any would argue that the difference between years 6 and 7 of school equals the difference between years 14 and 15, or that 20 years of schooling has twice the gravity of 10 years; and there is often an explicit acknowledgment of limit to the assumption of equal intervals, as when an analyst adds one or more category variables such as ‘‘high school diploma’’ in recognition that the 12th year is more valuable in the margin than the 11th year. That said, however, actual practice is complicated by the fact that the analyst will often be making, indeed relying on, such claims implicitly, insofar as the algebra of the analysis implies comparisons among individuals in the cross-section that involve arithmetic functions beyond addition and subtraction. In fact, qualitative comparison in practice sometimes involves a facsimile at least of intervality, insofar as terms such as ‘‘more’’ and ‘‘less’’ are used in a way that assumes imagined quanta beyond mere rank order, when comparing individual cases. In order to appreciate better what is given up by the fact that ‘‘years of school’’ has no variance in time beyond the generic ‘‘duration clock’’ of process, consider the notion of a preference hierarchy (which pertains to the educational variable insofar as people agree that more is preferable to less). Notoriously, preference hierarchies allow only very limited comparison even in the cross-section, because in general they do not allow the claim of equal intervals, much less absolute zero. There are exceptions: insofar as one prefers more income to less, at the very least one can claim that an income of

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$100,000 is more than, thus preferable to, an income of $90,000. But when one person prefers $100,000 to $90,000 while another prefers $50,000 to $40,000, can we conclude that the two persons have equivalent preference hierarchies? The rub in that is the assumption that the added value of $10,000 on top of $90,000 is the same as the added value of $10,000 on top of $40,000. Probably most persons would reject that equivalence, expecting that proper equilibration should be in terms of proportional difference, and thus that the value of the $10,000 increment on a base of $40,000 is more than twice the value of $10,000 added to $90,000. (It is in such recognition of a ‘‘sliding scale’’ that income is often converted to logarithmic units.) In effect, that statement is invocation of an absolute zero of income (‘‘one cannot have an income less than nothing’’).24 Notice, by the way, that this entire preference hierarchy is based on another assumption: the fiction that the exchange value of $1 precisely equals any other dollar, is precisely one-tenth the exchange value of $10, and so forth. In temporal frame, this assumption is both violated – hence, the existence of a converter called the discount rate, which varies by individual and over time, usually inconsistently (see, e.g., Loewenstein & Elster, 1992) – and yet (often) obeyed. In general, comparing preference hierarchies of a given actor distributed in time faces complications and limitations even more severe than those faced by comparison across actors at any given time. It is not that any given person’s hierarchy is constant over time – to the contrary – but that measuring the variance in a way that is systematically comparable over time (as well as across individuals) remains a challenge. Simply as an output status, educational attainment, primarily a rankordered credential like the goods in a preference hierarchy (except that educational credentials are publicly standardized, cross-sectionally and to some extent over time), no doubt has subsequent impacts in a person’s trajectories through other status hierarchies. But the impacts are those of conditioning factors – gate cards, for instance, giving entrance to labor markets at specific occupational levels. Considerable variances are masked within credential categories, and those variances no doubt carry causal force. But they are seldom measured and seldom utilized in theories and models of ‘‘postschooling’’ processes. Other status variables bring similar problems when the perspective shifts from cross-sectional to temporal. Consider calendar age, whether of a person, a firm, or some other organizational unit. As typically conceived and measured, how could it function at either end of a causal process? Like years of schooling, it has no temporal variance beyond the ticking of a clock, and thus is not capable of doing anything other than marking

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duration. The sheer static status of ‘‘being age A’’ is as lacking in causal efficacy as the sheer static status of ‘‘being gender G’’ or ‘‘being race R.’’ Again like gender or race, age as such might be thought of as conditioning to some causal factor in a process, a condition that modifies, dampens or sharpens, the force of a driver. But unlike gender or race, which (with the exceptions noted above) will remain a constant indefinitely, the conditional aspect of ‘‘being age A’’ will last only as long as the temporal unit indexed as that age status, and in fact therefore it is always already present as unit of process duration. The supposed conditional status of ‘‘being age A years’’ (assuming duration marked in years) will remain a constant during the duration of a year, then will switch to a constant conditional status of ‘‘being age A þ 1 years,’’ and so forth, thus only indexing the year-unit durations of whatever process is under investigation. Looking at it another way, a causal variable is expressed in units of change, which is itself expressed in terms of temporal dimension such that both the change and the rate of change are measured consistently. One can measure change in age in terms of an interval of time, but numerator and denominator are the same, for change of age is, for example, one year per year. Thus, too, rate of change: one year per year. Both are always already expressed in the dynamics of a modeled process; and ‘‘one year per year,’’ whether change or rate of change, is a constant. Surely there are qualities (social, cultural, physical, etc.) that change beneath, one might say, the heading of ‘‘age.’’ Bodies become less robust with time, eventually decay; minds sooner or later stutter and unravel; attitudes and habits sometimes ossify; and so forth. The pace of any of that is highly variable and not well indexed by calendar age. If a theorist or analyst believes that some variable of physical being or mental being or attitudinal plasticity, or whatever, is an element of causal relation, whether as outcome or as determinant, why not get at that directly? Calendar age is a very crude substitute, even as description. Our habits of thinking in the cross-section have drawn a blind over that simple fact, as we forget that a variation of one year each year is constant over time. The example of attitudinal variables, mentioned just above, shows that not only discrete status categories and variables built of clock time display little or no variance within the life course of individual actors. Typically constructed with ordinal metric, attitudinal variables are in that way like a preference hierarchy.25 Imagine a standard Likert metric with five response categories as illustration. Maximum variance occurs when responses are distributed uniformly, 20 percent per category, if one ignores rank ordering, or when responses are divided evenly between extremes. Either of these

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patterns is plausible if improbable when comparing actors in cross-section. The likelihood of observing either pattern of variance in time for any given actor is probably even lower, although less is known about temporal variance for most attitudes (partly because of reactivity problems with the usual mensural techniques). Most persons hew toward the median. No doubt there are instances of a person switching from one extreme to the other, but this is probably an atypical pattern. A more gradual ‘‘evolution’’ of attitudinal position on one or another issue is probably a more common pattern of attitudinal change, while a seemingly erratic pattern of change might signal more than anything else an unreliability of measurement. So in general it seems likely that variance over time in a given person’s attitudinal position on a particular issue is less than, and almost surely no greater than, the corresponding cross-sectional variance, which is usually well short of maximum. This comparison matters for the following reason. Reviews of studies of the strength of relation between attitudes and corresponding behaviors, virtually all of them cross-sectional studies, have shown that attitudinal variation rarely accounts for more than eight or nine percent of the variation in corresponding behavior (see, e.g., McGuire, 1989).26 Further, for cross-sectional correlation some part of the eight or nine percentage points is probably due to a tendency to ex post facto rationalization – that is, to align attitude with behavior. Now, the ergodic theorem reminds us that cross-sectional evidence cannot be translated automatically into processual terms, and that surely pertains to attitudes. But if for any given attitude its temporal variance is no greater than its cross-sectional variance, either that small variance is rather highly potent of variation in subsequent behavioral outcomes or the attitude is not much of a behavior-process driver. That verdict, if correct, could be as much or more a statement about adequacy of conceptualization and measurement as about the underlying processes of attitudinal formation and behavioral consequences. So much of this is so simple, and so easy to recognize and to acknowledge. Where, then, are the alternatives? That question is particularly timely, poignantly so, in light of another simple fact: the basic message has been written before, and presumably more or less widely read before (e.g., Coleman, 1964; Duncan, 1984; Lieberson, 1985; Sørensen, 1998). Toulmin and Goodfield’s The Discovery of Time was a major publishing event for the social sciences, as for history and other disciplines of the academy; but that was in 1965. Now, nearly a half century on, where is the capacity for the use of so much information that seems so important to thinking in the crosssection, for purposes of theorizing and empirical inquiry of the dynamics of

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process? At least part of the answering fact is not obscure: an absence of measurement. Conjoined with the habit of thinking in the cross-section there has been another, the tendency to rely on vernacular measurement.27 That tendency has been reinforced by the state function that supports the construction of large cross-sectional data sets. Even aside from that, however, it is remarkable that the social sciences have generally not supported, as a matter of concerted professional action, programs of measurement. Without such programs, the social sciences have virtually no chance of gaining significant standing in, for instance, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which supports the development of measurement technologies both externally and through the programs of its several NIST laboratories (and in which, at present, social science has standing mainly only in applied economics, information systems, and law enforcement standards). Consider that in the realm of identity politics, for instance, wherein the category memberships of gender, race, and the like, have such great salience, there is surely a lot of intracategory variation that is relevant to efforts to, in the words of Beckett’s Estragon, ‘‘give the impression that we exist.’’ Surely these variations are temporal as well as cross-sectional. Indeed, inasmuch as the status categories tend to be reproductive of their own conditions of domination and subordination, it could not be otherwise; but that fact is buried in the cross-sectional moment (see, e.g., Zˇizˇek, 2000). The category memberships as such, being inert, do nothing in and of themselves, but they are fields of perception, expectation, intentionality, contestation, and so forth, that obviously involve some highly potent motive forces affecting ego actor’s and alter actor’s behavioral trajectories. Little of that is measured, even in the cross-section. For much of it, the measurement technology is lacking. Much the same pertains to other statuses by which we generally identify ourselves individually in networks of relations. Membership in the category ‘‘married,’’ for instance, has zero variance for the duration of membership, which can be a very long span of calendar time. Useful analytic techniques such as event history analysis have been invented to work with such distributions. Entrance to and exit from a specific status are the events; the time between events, a ‘‘waiting time’’ – waiting for something to happen. That approach misses the fact that a lot can be going on within a marriage, and likewise with the other categories of marital status, during those ‘‘waiting times.’’ Why focus only or even mainly on the unchanging category membership, neglecting all that might be occurring within it? No doubt the convenience of available data has something to do with it; ‘‘marital status’’

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is another of the near-ubiquitous questions on official forms. We lack measures, even useful conceptualizations, of some of the probable variations within each of the categories. Neglecting probable variation for the sake of a category label is of course one reliable response to the missing measurements: ‘‘if I can’t measure it, it doesn’t exist.’’ But more seriously, why the missing measurements? Aversion to numbers is only a small part of the answer. A larger part is the absence of professional-institutional support. When a discipline’s main journals make it clear that it prizes ‘‘positive results’’ above all else, where the young scholar who will be foolish enough to undertake the risky enterprise of inventing new measures of variables, and perhaps new variables as well? Even more to the point, where the young scholar who will do that, then perform all the necessary calibrations studies, and then, if perchance these new measures are of process variables, undertake the additional risk of conducting the required series of repeated observations over a sufficient period of time with enough density in time to detect process variations, and for a large enough selection of observational units to be able to respond to habitual worries about representational bias?

3.2. Modeling Process The basic action of modeling process consists in observation, theoretical and empirical, of the trajectory of a process in operation, from starting values to outcomes. Whether theoretical or empirical – and in practical terms it is always a conjunction, even a blending of the two – the mapping of a process trajectory must assume multiple repetitions, for it is the presence of a definable pattern of trajectories in the repetitions that one seeks. These patterns become a major focus of inquiry. One seeks to document the pattern of a dynamic through multiple repetitions of observation of the specified process.28 Although there are various complex means of pattern recognition for mapping process dynamics, a simple place to begin is with the shape of an outcome or effect variable as it is arrayed in time. Blossfeld (2009, Figure 5.1) has illustrated a variety of standard patterns, noting how little attention this variety has received. A couple of illustrations are presented in the next section of this chapter. In principle, a process model can be formulated in the terms of experimental design, which allows large numbers of repetitions. But for many processes of interest either we are limited by ethical considerations from using experimental design or we do not know how to conduct the experiment cost-effectively or logistically (or both). An alternative that is

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slowly gaining traction is known by a number of different names, such as agent-based generative modeling. These are simulation techniques, which in general have been used productively for some time (see, e.g., Schelling, 1978), but now they are greatly augmented by the power of computational algorithms as a tool of generation (see, e.g., Epstein, 2006, and Smith’s chapter in this volume). Computational power enables a theorist or investigator to examine a huge volume of repetitions – combinations and permutations of agent-differences, relations, conditions and constraints, framing assumptions, and so forth – all very quickly and with interactive feedback. Unlike data mining, the computational approach can be guided by or, when existing theory is sufficiently specific, determined by sets of theoretical expectations. Conversely, guided by empirical expectations from everyday experience and/or prior research, it can aid in the production of new theory of relatively complex process dynamics. Analytic simplifications are crucial, especially in the beginning; as understanding improves, simplifications can be gradually relaxed. Complex processes can be analyzed into component processes, for example, each of which can then be organized in a fitting and ethically acceptable experimental setting. But even when that is possible, the aggregation problem remains to be dealt with. How does one experimentally observe the reassembled components – that is, the original complex process as such – in order to determine whether the lessons learned from the component experiments scale up to the complex process? Scale indifference cannot be assumed and left at that. For an unfortunately large number of processes, we know so little that even our best guesses about scale effects tend to be undisciplined. This last limitation also affects the use of simulation techniques. Generative models are certainly capable of developing and testing theoretical expectations about aggregations from micro to meso to macro scales, as well as expectations concerning scale transforms in the opposite direction, but the work of developing those theoretical expectations mostly remains to be done. Another kind of model simplification, known as stationarity, is highly useful.29 Obviously when dealing with process dynamics, ‘‘time matters.’’ In fact, it can matter in different ways, and a theorist or analyst of process dynamics must be prepared to utilize the distinction as systematically as possible. First of all, any process is inherently temporal. But, secondly, the parameters of any process need not be temporal. One might say that a process need not have a history. Think of the famous ‘‘first law of motion’’ (aka ‘‘law of inertia’’) in Newton’s system of relations: a body at rest will remain at rest, a body in motion will remain in that state of motion,

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until/unless acted upon by an external force. The dynamic relations are clearly temporal; the parameters – that is, the ‘‘law’’ – is timeless, has no history (within the Newtonian system). Specified properties of the process do not change during or as a function of its operation – that is, as a function of time. Now, many of the processes of interest to social scientists do have histories. Because they are not timeless in operation, they are not stationary processes, and in general this means that they are complex processes, often highly complex, sometimes intractably complex. Imposing the simplification of stationarity is sometimes not just useful; it is necessary to any progress of understanding at all. Stationarity can exist, or be assumed, for all or only some of the parameters of a given process. When all are stationary, the process is described as ‘‘strongly stationary’’; otherwise, ‘‘weakly.’’ More precisely, stationarity can be said to exist in degrees, in accord with moments of measurement. The weakest is ‘‘mean stationarity’’: if the mean value of a specific process variable is unchanging across repetitions of the process, that parameter is said to be ‘‘mean stationary’’ (as in the illustration using a diatomic gas early in the chapter).30 Likewise, a process can be ‘‘autocovariance stationary’’ in a specific variable (unchanging covariance between present and past or future manifestations of a variable during a specified period); and so forth. Many of the processes of interest to social scientists, while historical, operate with parameters that have a rather slow historical clock. The process itself might be ‘‘fast’’ in its internal dynamics; but the process as such does not change much if at all within reasonably long spans of time. (Or so it seems. In fact, our fund of careful knowledge about many social processes is so sparse that there really is little in the way of an inventory of process histories.) Think of any process that involves learning, for instance, or development or fatigue or decay. For many such processes, it is reasonable to assume stationarity in one degree or another for some period of time. It should be easy to see that being able to assume stationarity of a dynamical system greatly facilitates study of that system. Indeed, with processes that are known to be generally nonstationary, an important first analytic step is to determine the conditions under which the process dynamics are stationary (i.e., ‘‘in equilibrium’’), so that one can estimate the stationary parameters as a benchmark against which to evaluate changes in parameters as the process dynamics evolve. As an illustration of the pertinent difference or relationship in a nonstationary process, consider this empirical example from the Seattle Longitudinal Study (SLS), concerning processes of growth and decay in

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learned skills of verbal and numeric ability. First of all, the evidence indicates that within adult lifetimes verbal ability, verbal memory, and ability in inductive reasoning decline only modestly as a person ages from young adulthood to the mid-1980s. Numeric ability declines substantially, however, among both men and women.31 Moreover, whereas the declines in verbal ability, verbal memory, and inductive reasoning do not begin until about age 60 or later, the decline in numeric ability begins at ages 35–40 (Schaie, 1996, pp. 107–131). So here we have evidence of some undoubtedly complex processes of decay of mental ability among specific persons observed repeatedly over a long period of time. Granted, the evidence is focused on outcome measures rather than interior dynamics, and based on that evidence alone we cannot directly determine whether the dynamics were or were not time sensitive during the long sequence of repeated observations. However, the analytic design of the SLS does offer indirect access to a basis for making analytic inferences about stationarity – namely, by comparing rates of decay for individuals of the same calendar age in different years (i.e., compare age-specific groups of individuals arrayed by birth years). These groups can be called birth cohorts, except that the groups are amalgams of inseparable effects of cohort membership and historical period. So instead of calling the resultant age-specific rate comparisons ‘‘cohort effects,’’ they will be called ‘‘group effects.’’ And what were the relevant findings? There were indeed some group trends. The trend was generally upward for verbal ability, for verbal memory, and for inductive reasoning; and these three trends were fairly steady across groups, beginning with the group of individuals who were born just after the turn of the twentieth century. The group trend for numeric ability, on the other hand, was upward for the early groups, then flattened for groups of individuals born circa 1945, but for those who were born circa 1959 or later the trend in numeric ability was substantially downward (see Schaie, 1996, pp. 137–143, especially Table 6.1 and Figure 6.1). Thus, here we have some evidence, admittedly imprecise and ambiguous as to focus, that at least some part of the relevant processes had not been stationary – that is, some dynamics had changed. Whether that part had more to do with processes of skill learning or with processes of skill decay we cannot say. But somewhere in the mix of processes something of the dynamics had changed, such that later groups of persons suffered greater decays of numerical ability, on average, during a specified span of aging, as compared with earlier groups. There is a large variety of standard models, many of them process models, and these are a convenient place to begin when beginning either theorization or empirical investigation of a particular process or set of processes.32

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That variety can be classified in different ways. For instance, models can be grouped according to the kind of memory that is performed in a specific process. The basic idea is simple, its applications extensive and sometimes profound. Think of the complete trajectory of a specific process, from its start to its conclusion; then it starts again; and so forth. Each of these completed trajectories can be defined as a temporal unit. Assume, for ease of illustration, that this temporal unit for a given process is of uniform length. Now let’s break into the on-going process at some point and start numbering the units – Time Unit 1, Time Unit 2, and so forth. How long is the process memory of what happened during Time Unit 1? Unless the process consists of strictly independent units (i.e., invented anew at each time unit), there is a chain of outcome effects. How long is it? What happens today, for instance, will influence the process outcome tomorrow, but what about the next day? And the day after that? That is to say, is all of the effect of the process during Time Unit 1 absorbed in the repetition of the process in Time Unit 2, or is there some information left over that affects the process in Time Unit 3? Put still another way, it is possible that any information generated by the process during Time Unit 1 that is not absorbed into the repetition during Time Unit 2 is lost. That sort of process can be described by a model that allows effects to ‘‘lag’’ only one time unit (e.g., a first degree finite-state Markov model, an autoregressive or ARIMA model with parameter q ¼ 1, and so on). Other processes might be better described by a model that allows a lag of two time units; still others, with long memory manifested as strong persistence of self-similarity of organization (see, e.g., Beran, 1994); and so on. Of the relatively small number of process phenomena in social science that have been systematically studied, it seems that a model with but one lag is usually adequate to the data. But how far can that be generalized? In linear models such as ARIMA and Markov, the autocorrelation function decays exponentially (i.e., a very fast rate of decay). Is that typical of social processes? A number of factors suggest that it is not.33 One such factor is that at least some social processes seem to be characterized by hysteresis, and hysteresis means that memory has been lengthened. An example is the relative strength of loss aversion: augment a person’s utility by an increment valued at G; then take away that increment, still valued at G; chances are very good that the resultant utility experienced by the erstwhile recipient will be lower than it was prior to the gain, even though arithmetically G ¼ G.34 Another example is the process of skill acquisition (as in the adage about teaching someone to fish rather than giving him a fish). But engaging in ad hoc exemplification is no substitute for a general inventory. Are longer ‘‘delayed effects’’ unusual in general?

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Self-similarity has become one of our new talismans, but how often does it actually apply, and under what conditions? No inventory has yet been made, because too few processes have been studied sufficiently. Processes are usually rich in serial dependencies, at least short-term dependencies. But sometimes the serial dependency is so long and so profound that the process appears to be ‘‘perfectly natural’’ to their human participants and observers alike. Think of the way a specific building – its physical structure – remembers how to be itself, day after day, to such an extent that its occupants and visitors do not give the fact any notice whatsoever.35 The memory that is inherent in the dynamics of a process – which includes the strength of a process’ regulative attractor (see below) – results in a degree of predictability of outcomes that can be, in at least some circumstances for some processes, a source of implicit comfort or, in other circumstances or for other processes, a source of frustration or worse. Process memory need not consist of strictly deterministic rules producing serial dependence in order to generate outcomes that are at least in part predictable. A classic example is the following two-rule set governing decisions after an initial action. The initial action: take one step in any direction. The first rule: decide where to step next, with each possibility equiprobable. The second rule: repeat the first rule continually. This generates a process known as ‘‘random walk’’: there is no memory in the trajectory in time, only in the decisional rules. This also describes a pattern of motion that was named for an early nineteenth-century botanist, Robert Brown (although the pattern had been observed at least a generation earlier). At century’s end one of Henri Poincare´’s students, Louis Bachelier, demonstrated some predictability to this Brownian motion – in particular, that distance from an initial point increases as the square root of elapsed time. Albert Einstein demonstrated the same property, apparently without awareness of Bachelier, a few years later. Virtually common knowledge today, and highly useful as a model of dynamics for many processes, this invention was astounding only a century ago and thought peculiar to certain physical systems only a little more than a generation ago. Today it is highly useful as a model of dynamics with application in many areas, including uses in computational models (e.g., cellular automata) and in financial economics (see, e.g., Ross, 2010, pp. 631–661).36 Random walk serves also as a contrast, a sort of null hypothesis, against which to evaluate other processes. Think, for example, of this simple process which most of us have enacted from time to time: I am motivated to achieve good G, but at this moment the cost of doing so seems too high. I make a contract with my future self: ‘‘I will do it tomorrow.’’ Tomorrow comes, and my future self

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repeats the evaluation and consequent bargain. A month from tomorrow, a year from tomorrow, another in the sequence of my future selves might well be engaged in the same repetition. There is memory in the repetitions of this process: the implicit rule is remembered, serial correlation of actual outcome is perfect, the trials are not independent (even though each future self probably prefers not to keep a tally of his predecessors’ failings).37 But the intended outcome, the whole point of each of those contracts, is never realized. This is not a random walk, yet in that failure of intended outcome it might as well have been a random walk. An example of what economists call ‘‘time inconsistent behavior’’ (see, e.g., O’Donoghue & Rabin, 1999), the inconsistency either does not present as such to the actor in question, or he can rationalize it away by changing the game, invoking another preference hierarchy. Another way in which process models can be classified is by the form of the time function. The simpler categories include (from more to less simple) fixed-point and equilibrium models, limit-cycle models, and torus models. The limit-cycle type of model (aka oscillation model) is exemplified in Fig. 1(a) and (b). Process dynamics are defined by parameters in two dimensions (given initial use in electronics, the parameters are often called ‘‘frequency’’ and ‘‘amplitude’’), plus a starting value.38 The limit-torus type of model extends the limit-cycle model into a third dimension, such that the periodic motion is not on the surface of a plane but within the volume of a three-dimensional space (Fig. 1c). Think of a doughnut – not the hole but the interior space of the doughnut proper. That is the shape of a torus – although for the sake of accuracy bear in mind that there are many versions of that shape (the form need not be circular in either plane; it could be, e.g., elliptical in either or both). The more tightly a process outcome is constrained, the smaller the outer circumference of the torus in either or both planes. Another type of model has been the focus of sometimes cultish attention in the social sciences in recent decades – namely, models of chaotic nonlinear process. While the cultish attention has involved far more ‘‘talk about’’ than actual applications of such models, they are indeed useful, even in conditions not involving sensitive dependence. One illustration is the famous Lorenz ‘‘butterfly’’ model (Fig. 1d). Another is the Lagrangian coherent structure of the borders of a moving crowd, borders that a person can surf between crowds (e.g., crowds in opposing motion, or two unidirectional crowds moving at different speeds), very much like surfing a wave off Malibu. Nonlinear models typically require very large numbers of observational repetitions (hundreds or more), and given current states of measurement and observation in social sciences present utilities are very

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Fig. 1.

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Graphic Representations of Some Dynamic Attractors.

limited. One example is a set of models of cascade effects in specific processes (sometimes typified by the avalanche created when one too many grains of sand has been added to a slope). On the assumption that one must learn to walk before running, energy would perhaps be better expended in developing theories, measures, and data series for processes that do not typically involve ‘‘exotic’’ qualities such as those found in nonlinear complexities. Models of time function can also be described in terms of their dynamic attractors. The coherent structure of a process’ dynamics can be conceptualized as a response to a distinctive attractor, in much the same way that water tends to a basin because of the attraction of gravity. Each of the different types of model is distinguished by its own class of attractors. For example, a fixed-point model has a fixed-point attractor, one representation of which is the mean (central tendency) of the outcome distributed in time. A limit-cycle model is regulated by an attractor that organizes variation of outcome in some sort of periodicity. A so-called chaotic model is regulated by a ‘‘strange’’ attractor – an exotic moniker than stuck, although by

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comparison to a fixed-point or a limit-cycle attractor it does have some unusual features (e.g., a fractional dimension).39 Among the unfortunate consequences of our habituated tendency to think mainly (sometimes solely) in terms of descriptive, cross-sectional variations, to the neglect of process, is our predilection to think of the mean (or other central tendency) as simply the efficient summary description of a distribution of values. It is that, of course. But if we think in terms of process, the question of note has to do with the process that generates the distribution of observed values to begin with: What is it about the generative process that constrains variation of outcome to gravitate toward the mean? Why do the process dynamics generate an outcome that tends toward this one particular value and not some other? Something in the calibration of the dynamics results in that point of attraction. What is that particular property of the process? Similar questions pertain to the attractors that characterize other types of model of process time functions. Because social processes are stochastic, a large number of repetitions of observation – at least 50, often 100 or more – will usually be required in order to obtain estimates of process parameters. A typical pattern of process outcomes for a fixed-point attractor, for example, will be approximated by a Rayleigh distribution.40 Lorenz’ butterfly (Fig. 1d) typifies the pattern for a particular three-parameter nonlinear model. And so forth. In some experimental designs and in most simulations large numbers of repetitions can be achieved in relatively short spans of time. But many repetitions of ‘‘real-time’’ observation out in the world, so to speak, cannot be made quickly enough to avoid reservations about stationarity.41 Thus, a standard starting point when modeling the time function of a process with a large number of ‘‘real-time real-world’’ observations is an analysis of trajectory outcomes, a decomposition into potential component parts. Usually one begins with a simple point-attractor model and asks whether the mean is stationary. If it is not, if it is in fact a ‘‘moving average,’’ the point attractor is defining a trend. One then extracts the trend.42 This is not a throwaway: that would be as wasteful as ignoring the question why a stable mean has the value it has. What is the shape of the trend, the shape of the moving average, its form and its rate of change? Is it simple linear? Quadratic? Hyperbolic? (Blossfeld’s, 2009, Figure 5.1, is again germane.) What accounts for the form and the rate of change? Are these endogenous to the process itself, or are they a function of some exogenous factor, some pressure on the process dynamics? Having extracted the trend, one then analyzes the remaining variation in the outcome variable. Can it be further decomposed? Is some part of the trend-residual variance approximated by, say, a limit-cycle

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model? If it is, then that portion of the trend-residual variance is extracted, with the same sorts of question in tow. What is the form of the limit-cycle? What is its periodicity? And so forth. Having extracted variance accountable by a limit-cycle model (if there is any), one then analyzes the now-remaining variation, looking for some distinctive pattern to it. Eventually, this decomposition will end with a residual variance that, large or small, displays no discernable pattern. One has extracted all of the useful information that was present in the observations of the process outcome. The extracted components are the composite model of the process time function. Answers to the questions about those components are integral to explanation of what drives the process. Illustrations of several of these procedures and properties will be offered in the next section.

4. DEMONSTRATING TIME FUNCTIONS Two very simple demonstrations of an analytic modeling of the time functions of process are presented in this section. Most available demonstrations are of physical processes, because of demands of data (repeated observations in time, etc.). These demonstrations are of social processes. Although not the kinds of processes usually of concern to social scientists, they at least involve recognizable behaviors performed by human beings, not the interactions of gases, temperature gradients in ocean tidal action, or strange dynamics of flowing liquids. Unlike models of cross-sectional relationships, with time-series data of the dynamics of a process an early task is to model the time function of the series. In simple illustration of that task, the following exercises demonstrate the estimation of time functions for each of two discrete time series. One of these series consists of the game-by-game performance of each of 30 major league baseball players during an entire regular season (162 games), as the player attempts to hit a pitched baseball at each opportunity. The other series consists of the performance of each of four comedic or dramatic shows during its entire lifetime on network television (typically hundreds of episodes), as the show attempts to win the weekly competition for audience. Neither process – hitting a baseball, competing for viewers – would count among most social scientists as profound, no doubt. The pair were selected from a small field of readily available candidates that (1) consist of a large number of repeated observations on (2) relatively simple process outcomes for (3) nonaggregated observational units that either are individual human

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actors (baseball players) or can be understood, with relatively little abstraction, as products (TV shows) of concerted actions of individual human actors. Most other candidate data sets have few repeated observations (e.g., two or three waves for a panel), involve more complicated process outcomes (e.g., GDP time series, individual labor supply rates), are aggregations (e.g., most economic time series), and/or do not involve, immediately or at all, human actors in any generally agreed way (e.g., CO2 concentrations stored in Antarctic ice stratigraphy). The chief purpose of these illustrations is not to reveal any profound insights but rather to demonstrate in a simple manner some of the analytics that, on one side, can be applied to empirical data of process outcomes and, on the other, can both stimulate theorizations of specific dynamics leading to process outcomes and assess theorizations of differences in dynamics among unit actors crosssectionally and in the composition of specific aggregations.

4.1. Demonstration 1: Batter Up! Few feats in modern sports are as difficult as hitting a baseball pitched by a major league pitcher. The ball is less than three inches in diameter. The pitcher stands on a mound elevated as much as 10 in. above the plane on which the batter stands, 60 ft 6 in. away. The pitcher hurls the small projectile toward a narrow space in front of the batter at speeds of 90 miles per hour or more, from a release point that is a few feet less than 60 ft 6 in. from the batter. As batter your goal is to hit that ball as precisely as you can with a shaped piece of solid wood that is at most 42 inches long (usually less, for the sake of bat speed), no more than 2.75 in. in diameter at its thickest part, and usually 32 to 44 ounces in weight (again, a matter of bat speed). You have less than one-half second reaction time. You must decide if the pitch is one that you can potentially hit (i.e., ‘‘in the strike zone’’), where the ball will be located at potential point of impact, how to posture your body and its extension into the bat in order to maximize the chance of impact and convey an impulse into the ball such that the ball will go more or less where you want it to go. This complex decision – which must occur in much less than the less-than-half-second arrival time, since you cannot bring your bat to the arrived ball instantaneously – must be conducted as a function of embodied skill, embodied knowledge. The time for thought is past; you must be prepared as you enter the batting zone with knowledge of the pitcher’s skills, your own relative strengths and weaknesses, the strategic and tactical considerations of the team-to-team contest at that moment, and

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so forth. The requisite social and psychokinetic skills must be highly integrated so that the few tenths of a second that a batter has to observe the incoming ball can be processed with very high efficiency. All in all, it is remarkable that batters can succeed even a third of the time, as the best ones do in major league play. The game-by-game performance of each of 30 major league players during the 2005 regular season has been compiled as a performance trajectory over the course of all games in which the player had at least one ‘‘at bat’’ (the minimum eligibility for getting a hit).43 As shown in Table A1, the number of games played with at least one ‘‘at bat’’ ranged from 74 for Player 1 to 161 (one short of the entire regular season) for Player 17. The season-long batting averages ranged from 0.225 to 0.328, with a mean value of 0.273 across the 30 players. Cross-sectional (i.e., interindividual) variation around that mean for the season as a whole was a miniscule 0.0005. The variance of primary interest here is not the cross-sectional variance, however, but each individual player’s game-to-game variance, and that was considerably larger. This variance (i.e., intraindividual variance) ranged from 0.039 to 0.243. It averaged 0.076 across the 30 players; but that is skewed by the performance of Player 29, who was unusually erratic. For most of the 30 players the intraindividual variance ranged from 0.05 to 0.07, still considerably larger than the interindividual variance. But this latter comparison is misleading, the reason having to do with a metrical fact. Batting average is a ratio of two cardinal variables, each of very limited range. A player rarely has more than five at bats in a game, usually no more than four, and rarely succeeds in compiling more than one or two hits per game. So game-by-game variance in the ratio tends to be rather chunky. By contrast, the interindividual variance was of season-long batting averages, which smooth the game-by-game distributions. It is also true, of course, that these performance data are the outcome of a long and rather stiff selection process. The 30 players were, like the other major league players in 2005, generally the very best of all baseball players in the United States that year – minor leagues, college, and so forth. They had survived very stiff competition in minor league play during preceding years (as well as college or high school play) to become major league professionals who managed, moreover, to remain ‘‘everyday’’ rather than reserve players on their respective teams for all or most of the entire season of 162 games. Because of that selection process, we would expect to have a group of players who, on season-long average performance, varied only slightly relative to each other, far less than any one of them varied game-bygame in his own performance trajectory. If we compared the 30 players in

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terms of their batting average for each’s 20th game or 50th game, and so on, the variance across players would more closely approximate the intraindividual variances. Having established that background and general framework, let’s turn now to those individual trajectories of ‘‘batting’’ performance.44 Two of the 30 trajectories are displayed in Fig. 2. Trajectories of the remaining 28 are not importantly distinguishable from these two. On the face of it, each graph in the figure seems to contain a lot of information. Our initial task is to identify the information components, so that they can then be analyzed in terms of causes and effects. Why the presence of a particular form of gameto-game variation (i.e., what caused it)? And what difference(s) does that information make to some other specified process (e.g., winning games, salary negotiations, etc.)? So let’s proceed by decomposing the informational content of each of these two graphs. This procedure consists in modeling the time function of the process outcome of batting performance. This modeling is undertaken relative to a null hypothesis of ‘‘zero usable information.’’ That is, it is possible that the variation displayed in either graph is mostly or even entirely useless ‘‘noise’’ (like static on a radio receiver).45 Noise is almost certainly present. Useful information (‘‘signal’’) is separated by abstracting the useless noise.46 A simple first step is to look for a monotonic point of equilibrium. A player’s season-long average is that, by assumption of monotonicity. In strictly empirical terms this assumption is never closely met; a batter’s average fluctuates from game to game by noticeable margin, especially in the early part of a season but also later, during periods described within the sport as a ‘‘hitting slump’’ or, alternatively, a ‘‘hot streak.’’ However, in modeling terms the assumption of a monotonic point of equilibrium is usually well met: the game-by-game fluctuations return to the point of equilibrium rather quickly, and that point of attraction is usually defined early in a player’s season. This was true of nearly all of the 30 players examined in this study. The graph of Player 8 exemplifies the pattern. Note the presence of plateaus in the graph (a reflection partly of the cardinal metric of the underlying variables): the most common of these are at gamespecific averages of 0.500 (21 instances), 0.250 (18 instances), and 0.333 (7 instances) – ignoring, of course, the single most common outcome, zero hits (40 instances). Now notice that these plateaus tend to run consistently through the season. There is some clustering – for instance, after game 60 this player had a run of games in which he was getting hits a third of the time or better (a ‘‘hot streak’’) – but the ‘‘streaks’’ and ‘‘slumps’’ were scattered throughout the season. Player 8 approximated his eventual season

On Theorizing the Dynamics of Process: A Propaedeutic Introduction

Fig. 2.

Game-by-Game Batting Average, Two MLB Players, 2006 Season.

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average (0.282) by game 6, and thereafter he fluctuated around that point attractor. A point of equilibrium – in other words, the mean outcome of a process – is, as mentioned earlier, one of the most common attractors in social processes. A task of both theorizing and empirical inquiry of the dynamics of process is explanation of the actual value taken by that attractor in any given process. What is it about the process of hitting the ball that results in a specific attractor value for one player (e.g., 0.282 for Player 8) and a different attractor value for another player (e.g., 0.292 for Player 28 or 0.328 for Player 17; see Table A1)? No doubt the varying psychokinetics of individual players figure into the answer, but there are other factors as well. In general, processes that include primarily negative feedback loops tend to settle into equilibrium basins (and thus are generally stable with high predictability of future trajectory, barring external shocks), whereas processes featuring primarily or dominantly positive feedback loops tend to generate complexities that can lead to ‘‘runaway’’ shifts of trajectory (e.g., cascades), self-reinforcing endogenous chains (‘‘multiplier effects’’), and so on. Less is known about these matters in the realm of social processes than in other realms, due to lack of study. Close on the heels of simple equilibrium is a highly important variant, the ‘‘dynamic equilibrium’’ (‘‘moving average’’), more commonly known as ‘‘trend.’’ A process that has trend in it is governed by a moving attractor. Moreover, the movement of the attractor can be rate constant, accelerating, or decelerating, and it can be a function of some part of the process itself.47 The graph of Player 28 evinces a trend. Inspect the plateaus in this graph; note that the higher plateaus tend to be in the later part of the season. Obviously, players and team managers value improvement along with consistency, especially improvement from an acceptable early level of performance. Player 28 fits the bill (the only one of the 30 players who clearly does; with one possible exception the others show no evidence of trend, positive or negative, rate constant or not). But the trend in performance by Player 28 is weak.48 Judging from the evidence of these 30 players, season-long improvement of performance is highly unusual (perhaps 3 percent of cases). No doubt the selection process cited earlier is main explanation of that absence. Having arrived as regular players in a major league team, these players have attained peak performance. In the nature of the situation, of course, any trend would be self-limiting; negative trend would probably lead to loss of regular position, while positive trend, unless very weak, would be self-exhausting. The simple equilibrium point proves to be a very strong attractor.

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So far, decomposition of the information in the graphs in Fig. 1 has featured only one component for both (a point equilibrium attractor), plus a weak trend component for Player 28. Can additional useful information be extracted by another model of process attractor? One possibility is a sigmoidal model (i.e., a limit-cycle attractor), which in principle could identify meaning in the empirical fluctuations around the equilibrium point (mean performance trajectory) of any given player. A first clue to that possible information is told by the record of autocorrelations in a player’s performance. As discussed (and exemplified) in the appendix, specific patterns of lagged autocorrelations are indicative of cycles of outcome. For these 30 players, however, the autocorrelations do not indicate that the fluctuations are or contain regular cycles, and spectral analyses of the times series confirm that finding. The plateaus discernable in the graphs in Fig. 1 are empirical evidence of players’ idioms (‘‘slumps and streaks’’), no doubt. But they do not occur with any regularity that can be modeled (i.e., beyond the obvious empirical description). In terms of the time function of the process, they are not discriminable from the ‘‘background’’ pattern of random fluctuations. In sum, it appears from various analyses of the times series for these 30 players during the 2005 season that a simple equilibrium model captures all of the useful information available in the series. The 30 players are not necessarily a close representation of all of the major league players that year; but their trajectories are probably a good approximation of most. It is possible that the 2005 season was aberrant in some way that affected batting averages, though that, too, is doubtful. As a quick check on the hypothesis, the record for Player 8 was expanded to a six-year period, 2002–2007, with each year treated as a distinct series. As it happens, Player 8’s performance during the 2005 regular season was below par: his mean batting average across the six seasons was 0.306. The season-specific equilibrium point was only slightly variable from year to year, however: the variance around the six-year mean was 0.001 (again, a reflection of the strong selection process at work: players who do not perform at an acceptably high level from year to year generally do not last long). There is no evidence of trend in the six-year record, and no evidence of cyclical regularities. Again, the best conclusion is that variations around the point of attraction were innocent fluctuations.49 Let’s pause for a moment, to consider an objection that many readers, no doubt, have been barely repressing: the simplification undertaken in this illustration of process modeling is extreme. It surely is. The process model depicted in the data analyses of the 30 players during one season, and the one player during six seasons, is very rudimentary. It is simply a model of

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the time function for a single outcome variable (batting average). There are many factors that influence a batter’s performance; they are ignored. But the simplification can be relaxed, preferably in stages. Moreover, the fact that ‘‘all that has been done’’ is to model the time function of an outcome variable is not an insignificant one. It has been accomplished based on a large number of observations densely arrayed in real time. Further, some modeling techniques (e.g., Cox’ proportional hazards time-series models, with or without time-dependent determinants) simply impose a standard, uniform time function. If one is interested in understanding a process’ dynamics, understanding its time function is a vital first step; and whatever the determinants of a process outcome, they generated the gross time function of that outcome, which is what is being modeled. So it is that gross time function – as in the case of the process of getting hits in a baseball game, the equilibrium time function described above – that one seeks to investigate. For example, what accounts for the fact that the equilibrium point for Player P takes the value it does? Why is it so resistant to trend (if it is)? What factors determine systematic variation in the equilibrium point (when there is any), and why does that variation not follow a regular pattern (if it does not) but is instead void of useable information (all noise, innocent noise, no signal)?50 And once such questions have gained respectable, defendable answers for the set of players, how do they compare across players, and what does that variation tell us about operation of the process? These questions are here undertaken in an explicitly empirical–analytic setting; but if constructing a theory of the process dynamics had primacy of focus, those same questions would be among the theorist’s motivational resources. One could rebuild the data file for these 30 players, so as to include in an expanded model any number of factors that are by hypothesis drivers of the process outcome (and/or of a different outcome, such as ‘‘on-base percentage,’’ ‘‘runs batted in,’’ and so forth). A good beginning, for example, would be to include relevant social characteristics – signals among players of a team during the course of a game, for example, or signals between pitcher and catcher with regard to each given batter. Obviously, the game is rich in ‘‘communicative actions.’’ The starting pitcher and catcher of a team will compare notes about each opposing player’s batting record and come to some general agreement about ‘‘how to pitch him’’; but then during the course of the game that general agreement is subject to renegotiations, depending on how the game has proceeded in advance of a specific player’s next appearance at bat, and the renegotiation can continue during the at bat. Here we have a good illustration of Kalman filtering in action

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(see, e.g., White, 1992a, pp. 346–349), which can be incorporated into one’s model of the process. Another display of Kalman filtering occurs as pitcher and catcher, but also manager (head coach) of the team at bat, considers the sequence of players coming to bat during a next inning: any given player’s performance at bat will usually be affected by pitcher-and-catcher assessment of the preceding player’s actual at-bat performance and the following batter’s probable performance ‘‘against this pitcher in this type of situation, given that he is in a [hot steak, slump, or at-average period].’’ At the very least, one would want to include relevant characteristics of the opposing pitcher at each at bat for a given batter. This is not the place to pursue such matters, but as quick illustration of the last addition let’s consider that during the six years examined for Player 8 he faced each of 34 different pitchers at least 30 times (i.e., a large enough number of match-ups to reveal stable patterns), and his six-year mean batting averages against the 34 pitchers ranged from a highly anemic 0.057 (based on 35 match-ups) to a very good 0.400 (also based on 35 match-ups).51

4.2. Demonstration 2: Televised Times In some process models the distance between the model actor and the realworld counterpart, whether it be an individual person, a firm, a nation-state governmental agency, or some other unit, is relatively narrow. There is abstraction, to be sure: without simplification, one would be faced with so much density of description that little room for understanding motive forces, relational contingencies, and other dynamics of the process of interest would be available. Even so, the degree of abstraction can be small enough, in some studies, that one can easily recognize, even name, the actor(s) represented in the model. The simple study just discussed is nearly an example of that: even though much of the process that ended in a given batter’s performance during any given game was neglected by abstraction, there was still an almost palpable connection between each anonymous Player in the model and the person whose name would be recognized by most followers of major league baseball. Let’s turn now to a study of a process from which more has been abstracted. Let’s follow the audience success of each of four TV series during its course of multiple years. Each series is identified by its actual name and its actual record of viewership. But the actors (in the generic sense), their decisions and behavioral choices, are anonymous in their voluminous quantities – they include the ‘‘screen actors’’ who appeared in

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the series, TV programming personnel such as producers and directors, and so forth, on one side, and potential audiences of viewers of series of vignettes, usually weekly, of televised ‘‘times within time,’’ on the other – and are abstracted from the study, leaving (as with the prior study) only a single outcome variable as focal point of the models: the given series’ biweekly rating, measured as Nielsen Media Research’s ‘‘Nielsen rating,’’ which is defined as the percentage of the total population of TV households that were tuned to a specific TV show.52 The four series are (with dates and total number of rated episodes): Bewitched (1964–1972; 184), Daniel Boone (1964–1970; 139), Family Affair (1966–1971; 116), and Family Ties (1982–1989; 156). Toward the end of this demonstration a few others, two of them named, will be introduced briefly in model extensions. The general framework for the simple study reported here could be described as ‘‘the life and death of comedic and dramatic series on network television’’ (during some specified historical period), since the life pulse of a TV series was usually told by the trajectory of its audience rating. As a point of departure, one would like to know what the pattern of that trajectory was for each specific series and whether a commonality of time function can be identified; what influenced the trajectory of a given series and whether those influences operated similarly across different series; and so forth. It should be obvious that this second choice of a rather trivial (as well as simple) illustration has been determined by availability of reasonably good measured observations of some part of a process over a long enough period of time to identify time functions that have some meaning for the reality being modeled. But it should be obvious, too, that far less trivial applications of the kinds of dynamic modeling very briefly demonstrated here (as in the prior study) could be made, had an adequate measurement program and a systematic observational program for social dynamics been in place.53 For present purposes, analytic procedures are mainly as before, but with somewhat more variety of outcome. For each of the TV shows we begin with the observed variation of the time series (depicted graphically in Fig. 3 for one of the shows) and apply a sequence of models of time function with the aim of decomposing the time-series variance.54 Bewitched was televised in 184 rated episodes, from September 1964 to July 1972. The graph of those episodes clearly displays trend, the trend coefficient (�0.09) implying a loss of about one point in ratings every 20 weeks, on average. Although hardly a rapid rate of decline, it summed eventually to a substantial erosion of popularity. Trend reduced the total variance of the Bewitched time series during its lifetime (35.8) by about twothirds, to 11.9 (see Fig. 3).

On Theorizing the Dynamics of Process: A Propaedeutic Introduction

Fig. 3.

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Observed Ratings and Trend-Residualized Ratings during Lifetime of TV Show, Bewitched.

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For the course of any single season the trend dynamic was overshadowed by cyclical variations, and the next step is to model these variations after trend has been extracted. A limit-cycle model of this portion of the time function proved to be the most efficient simplification. Spectral analysis of variation residual to trend demonstrated the existence of eight sigmoidal cycles in the series of episodes, plus two weaker, secondary cycles. The eight primary cycles conformed closely to one sigmoidal model, a strong cycle having a period of 23 biweeks, which was the length of a season. This cycle, which accounted for about one-third of the detrended variance in the time series of observations, reducing it to 7.9 (i.e., less than a quarter of the total variance of 35.8), is readily apparent in the bottom panel of Fig. 3 (see also Table A3). The first six of the eight have strong, fairly regular amplitude. In the last two cycles the amplitude weakens, and in the last cycle it nearly collapses, reflecting a seasonal trend within the overall trend. Of the secondary cycles only two passed an inference test for Type I error.55 The stronger accounted for about 12 percent of the residual variance; the weaker, about 7 percent. Each, however, is not an independent cycle but a harmonic of the primary cycle. The weaker of the two has a period of 11.5 (i.e., one-half of the primary cycle’s period), while the other has a period of 184 (the full time series), which is exactly eight multiples of the period of the primary cycle. Depending on how one decides to accredit harmonics in the process that ends in a Nielsen rating, the limit-cycle portion of the time function accounts for at least a third and as much as one-half of the variance remaining after extraction of the long-term trend. Daniel Boone, a series especially popular with boys and young men, had a mean rating during its run from 1964 to 1970 that was somewhat lower than the mean for Bewitched (17.5 vs. 20.4) but with a much smaller variance (16.5 vs. 35.8). There was also virtually no trend in its ratings: a trend coefficient of �0.02 is significantly different from zero ( po0.01), but it accounts for only 4 percent of the variance in the series. Because of this fact, the cyclical component of the time function shows very plainly in the graph of observed ratings. Again, the most efficient model of the cyclical component is a limit-cycle model (sigmoidal), and here there is only one significant cycle, with a period of 23 biweeks. The strength of the attractor is very regular: all of the six cycles follow the same pattern very closely. The third TV show, Family Affair, attracted a broad audience during its five-year lifetime. It was slightly more popular than Bewitched (mean rating of 21.3), with a relatively small variance (18.7) in ratings over its fiveyear lifetime. The graph of the gross time function (Fig. 4) suggests the presence of both trend and cyclical variation. The pattern is closer to that of

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Fig. 4.

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Observed Ratings during Lifetimes of TV Shows, Daniel Boone and Family Affair.

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Bewitched than to that of Daniel Boone, although there is a period (from circa Time ¼ 52 to circa Time ¼ 85) when the appearance of cycles is considerably dimmer. A linear trend model fits well (coefficient ¼ �0.07; po0.001) and accounts for a quarter of the observed variance. Subjecting the remaining three-quarters to spectral analysis demonstrates the presence of two main cycles. One has a period of 23 biweeks; it accounts for 36 percent of the residual variance. The second has a period of the entire series, and it, too, accounts for just over a third of the residual variance. This latter cycle is a harmonic, which can be seen in the fact that the precise period of the shorter cycle is 23.2 or exactly one-fifth of the full series (116 rated episodes). As before, a harmonic-induced cycle does not imply independent information, but in this case it is more than simply reinforcement of evidence that the main sigmoidal period was 23. A visual inspection of the observed series (Fig. 4) suggests that the trend component was curvilinear, and this harmonic function is reinforcing that. Indeed, switching to a quadratic specification of trend, each of the pair of coefficients (0.20 and �0.002) is significant, and trend now accounts for just over half of the observed variance. The harmonic disappears, and the one strong cycle, with a period of 23, accounts for 55 percent of the residual variance. Now the time function, consisting of two attractors, an equilibrium point that follows a curved trajectory and a limit-cycle that repeats at regular interval, has reduced variation in the time series by almost four-fifths, from 18.7 to slightly less than 4.0. It would be exaggeration to say that the information contained in the variable outcome of a process has been exhausted. But not by much. Let’s shift gears for a moment and recall where we are in more general substantive terms. The outcome variable being considered is a consequence of a complex process (or set of processes). Any analysis of a series of repeated observations is sensitive to some basic assumptions about the process that generated those observations, whatever the techniques used to conduct and study them. Aside from assumptions about neutrality of the observational act itself, there are assumptions about the underlying process(es) that generated the variations in the phenomenon being observed. The core set of these latter assumptions stipulate that the generative process has maintained its parameters over the course of the time series, so that each subsequent state is sensitive to the same driving or motivational force(s) in the same way. Stationarity of the series is not necessary; there are means of analyzing nonstationary series, though they are often difficult to use and can be severely limited by specific features of the nonstationarity. What if the underlying process has undergone a parametric change? Time (i.e., history) has reappeared as a variable external to the process, and marks

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the process with some sort of ‘‘historical period effect.’’ Perhaps there has been only a change of value taken by one or more of the parameters. Perhaps the functional form of the process has changed. Serial dependence might have increased or decreased in strength. Lag properties might have changed; that is, the length of memory inherent to the process might have increased or decreased. The functional form of a trend parameter might have switched from simple linear to a more complex linear form (e.g., quadratic, hyperbolic, etc.) or to a nonlinear form; or vice versa. Adherence to the stationarity assumption can be assessed in a number of ways, although as with so many tasks of judgment unambiguous benchmarks can be distressingly rare. In one procedure a time series of observations is cleared of trend (if any) and the residual series is divided into segments, which are then compared to see if the variance is about the same (a ‘‘homogeneity’’ assumption), to see if the lag structure of autocorrelations is uniform across the segments (an assumption of uniform memory in the process), and so forth. The three TV times series examined above were active during the same period of history, when both the production side and the audience or consumption side of network television programming were relatively stable. Tests of basic modeling assumptions confirmed that the time functions described above were not artifacts of assumption violations. The patterns discerned, one can be reasonably confident, are consequences of the complex of processes that issued in that one outcome, the time series of TV ratings. That conclusion prompts a question, however: would the patterns be much the same for a popular TV show from a later, apparently different historical period? As illustration of this extension of analytical strategy – bringing ‘‘historical time’’ into the picture, to see if a difference in ‘‘process time’’ can be detected – a fourth TV show was selected. Selection was guided by three factors: a situation comedy (like two of the shows already considered), one with high popularity and thus a long lifetime, and one with a beginning date in the 1980s, when the dominance of ‘‘the big three’’ networks was eroding (increasingly serious competition from satellite and cable television services, with offerings such as HBO and Turner’s WTBS slate of reruns and old movies). Beyond those factors, selection was happenstance. The choice was Family Ties, a very popular situation comedy with broad audience appeal that ran during 1982–1989. The mean rating was 18.6 (156 rated episodes). The variance was quite high, however, at 67.2, which suggests something interesting was occurring in that time series. For one thing, as can be seen in Fig. 5 (top graph), the show started slowly, then gradually built an audience that, at its peak, gained ratings in the mid-30s and higher. Beyond that, the

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Fig. 5.

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Lifetime Rating of TV Show, Family Ties: Observed (top), Fitted Trend (bottom left), and Residuals from Trend (bottom right).

overall pattern displayed in the observed series of ratings does not seem much different from those of the previously examined shows. The choice of Family Ties proved to be fortuitous in one respect, however. There was one parameter change in the series that probably reflected a substantive change in the generative process. No attempt will be made to follow that path of causal inference. But for illustrative purposes analysis will continue as before, in order to demonstrate the use of spectral techniques for locating the inflection point of a change of process outcome. Rather than begin with a simple linear trend model as first step in decomposing the time function, let’s follow the visual clue from the graphic presentation of the observed time series and use a curvilinear (quadratic)

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specification. The trend coefficients (0.30 and �0.002) are significant, and this model accounts for half of the variation in the observed series. Spectral analysis of the residual variation (which is substantial at 34.3) confirmed the presence of the sort of sigmoidal cycling that was detected in the previous time series. But the pattern is less straightforward. First of all, the primary cycle has a period equal to one-half the entire series, while the period of the secondary cycle is the entire series. Only a tertiary cycle has a period of 23 biweeks, comparable to the pattern seen in the other TV shows. In general, there is no principle that precludes the presence of both a trend, linear or curvilinear, and a single sigmoidal cycle over the full length of a long time series. But in this case there is reason to doubt it, as a visual inspection of the detrended times series (Fig. 5, bottom right) indicates. This graph appears to be a splice of two different patterns, almost as if two different shows had been observed. In fact, it is closer to reality to say that the graph portrays two different audience responses to the same show. During the first half of the series there are definite sigmoidal cycles, just as we saw in the time series of the shows already examined. During the second half of the show’s lifetime, however, there was apparently only one cycle. Spectral analysis confirmed that speculation, and it added one further point: a distinct inflection occurred during the interval from Time ¼ 78 to Time ¼ 79. Turning to a narrative history of the Family Ties show, one can quickly identify the event: the show was slotted right after one of the most popular of all situation comedies, The Cosby Show, until August 1987, when it was shifted to a Sunday night slot. In retrospect, with that piece of history in mind, the event stands out in a detailed graph (more detailed than in Fig. 5) of the observed time series. Bifurcating the time series into separate series and estimating the time function of each resulted in additional confirmation. Trend in the first half again followed a moving equilibrium point (quadratic), and residual variation followed mainly two cycles each of a 23-biweek period, plus a weaker cycle in the early weeks of the show. Between trend and sigmoidal cycles, the estimated time function accounts for about 90 percent of the variation in ratings. For the second half the trend is downward; this model accounts for 43 percent of the observed variance. One main sigmoidal cycle, with a period of 39 (half the half-series), accounts for 40 percent of the remaining variance, and a secondary cycle, with period the full length of the half series, accounts for another 17 percent; between these two models of the time function, 94 percent of the observed variation in ratings during the second half of the show’s lifetime has been accounted for.56

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While it is clear that the schedule change from 8:30 Thursday evenings to 8:30 Sunday evenings was associated with a rather sharp and continued change in the attraction of viewers to Family Ties, it is not clear that the loss of a strong ‘‘lead in’’ was decisive. Perhaps a difference in composition of the TV audience those two evenings of the week resulted in the loss. As noted before, ‘‘rating’’ was one outcome of a complex of processes that otherwise remain unobserved here. As for The Cosby Show, it was indeed highly popular, and its ratings exhibited greater consistency from week to week. But that did not translate into much support for Family Ties, at least judging by the size of the interseries correlation (0.55). The last paragraphs have been useful in illustrating, first, the relational character of ‘‘rating’’ as a process outcome and, second, a few of the tools that can be applied both in theorizing and in empirically investigating that relationality. As one further step in that illustration, let’s return to Family Affair and examine the time function of its rating series in conjunction with those of its competitors on the two other networks. In other words, let’s explicitly theorize the operation of synchronized process outcomes (albeit in the same highly simplified manner). During the five years of its production, Family Affair faced competition from a total of seven shows on ABC and NBC. That total is indicative of two other facts: Family Affair was the horse to beat; and the other networks were having some difficulty in finding shows that could dislodge it from its ratings dominance. It would be possible to examine three series synchronized exactly, dateby-date, during the years 1966–1971, though the series is truncated to 111 observation dates rather than the full 116 dates comprising the Family Affair series, because of a missing-data problem at the end. In order to expedite this illustration, however, the ABC and NBC series of ratings are summed, resulting in a simpler design of two synchronized series (hereafter designated FA and Opp, as in Opposition). Bear in mind that ‘‘rating’’ is not a zerosum measure, since it allowed for a five-way choice: watch ABC, watch CBS, watch NBC, watch another channel (e.g., satellite, educational TV), or turn off the TV and do something else. This means for present purposes that the interseries rating correlation could in fact be positive. On the face of it, that is indeed what the simple interseries correlation says: compared date-bydate, the FA rating and the Opp rating correlated at 0.27. However, this is probably confounded at least to some extent by serial dependence, which as was seen in the earlier examination of the FA times series was not uniform across the show’s lifetime and need not have been uniform in the Opp series. It is entirely possible that the trend components followed one pattern of interseries correlation, while the cyclical components followed another.57

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As noted earlier, the trend in FA was parabolic and moderately strong, accounting for just over half the variation in the observed series. The shape of the curve was an inverted U. There is trend in Opp, though it is not as strong (probably due to some damping as a result of combining the ABC and NBC data). It, too, is parabolic but in upright U-shape. The interseries correlation of trends is �0.74 when same dates are compared. It is only slightly smaller in magnitude when the series are compared with a lag of one date; slightly smaller still when compared with a lag of two dates. However, the interseries correlation changes markedly toward the end of the 111 observations. Something happened. The memory implied by trend was robustly correlated until the latter part of the synchronized series, when one or the other of the component series (or perhaps both) changed in some relevant parameter. Let’s examine the comparative evidence of limit-cycle attractors in the two series. Earlier we saw the operation of a limit-cycle attractor in the FA series; it accounted for more than half of the variation that remained after trend had been extracted. Much the same pattern holds for the Opp series, although here the dominant cycle of 23 biweeks is not quite as dominant, and there is a secondary cycle (harmonic, at doubled frequency), and cycling resumes toward the end of the Opp series. Comparing the two series after trend has been extracted from each reveals a distinctive pattern: when compared at same date, the interseries correlation is 0.57; when compared with one series lagged behind the other by one date, the interseries correlation is nearly the same. However, toward the end of the two series, there is again a divergence, and it is clearly due to one or more events that affects the Opp series. Turning to histories of the TV shows involved in the Opp time series, identification of the rating ‘‘shock’’ quickly comes to light. NBC introduced a new competitor, The Flip Wilson Show, in September 1970. With that in mind, we have a better understanding of the fact not only that the trend component in Family Affair was curvilinear but also that its tail was so rapidly descending. During its last season Family Affair suffered a decline from ratings in the low twenties (already diminished from earlier highs which had it the fifth top-rated show) to ratings less than half that by season’s end.

4.3. Some Lessons Added and Summarized The preceding studies involve much simplification, clearly too much had the intent been more than illustration. Before leaving it at that, however, one should pause to consider the line between ‘‘simple’’ and ‘‘complex’’ – not

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only that such a line is surely drawable somewhere but also, more importantly, that wherever it is drawn it can betray understanding of the (seemingly) simple. One problem that must be faced when using process models is known as ‘‘initialization,’’ which manifests in a variety of ways. For instance, initialization problems are typically faced when running a simulation model as an experiment, whether for purposes of testing or developing a theory, proposing a policy of action, or calibrating the model for further development. What initial values should be assigned to the variables and relations of the model? In other words, what are the appropriate starting points? Viewed from the other side, initialization problems are encountered also when developing and/or applying a model to a specific process. Observation rarely begins with the birth of a process. Rather, an observer comes to a given process that is already underway, already has a history, most if not all of which is censored (i.e., ‘‘left-censored’’). It is convenient, for example, to assume that each of the foregoing demonstrations began at the birth of the respective process, but one could easily argue that the birth in each case was of a particular instance – the start of the 2005 baseball season, the premiere of another TV show of recognizable type – of a process that had been manifested in many other prior instances. If one cannot begin at the beginning, then where in the sequence(s) of relationships and valuations should one initiate construction of the series of repeated observations? It might not matter. But assuming the question into silence is generally not a safe choice. Consider as illustration an aspect of the simpler of the two studies presented above. One of the suggested expansions of the data set concerned the sequence of batters: in a given at-bat situation the selection of pitches that Player P11 is likely to see will depend in part on the at-bat result of the preceding batter, Player P10, and in part on the pitcher’s (and catcher’s) perception/memory of the next fellow due to bat, Player P12 (as well as other factors). But if that is a general expectation, and it is, then one should expect that the pitch selection sent to P10 was partly determined by pitcher’s (and catcher’s) perception/ memory of P11 (as well as the result of the at bat by P10’s predecessor, if there was one).58 If observation begins with an at bat by P11, should there be an adjustment because of an endogenous selection effect? As was noted earlier, left-censored endogenous selection can affect what one observes. The fact that it is in principle possible to avoid a specific left-censored observation in a repeated-observations design, whereas with cross-sectional data the blind can never be lifted, surely does not excuse inattention. But where is the stop sign? How many blinds on ‘‘the past’’ must be lifted when observing a process in operation? In practice, of course, the data set is

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always only finite, and avoiding even a specific left-censored observation means that a reliable observer had to have been in the right place at the right time with the right tools (theory, measurement, etc.). As mentioned earlier, a vital point of departure when theorizing and analyzing the dynamics of processes is the gross time function; and that is as well the place to begin when designing a model of the dynamics of a given process – specifying the time function. Is there a trend? If trend, what functional form does it take? What insights into the process can be gained from the trajectory of values of the moving equilibrium? (For instance, are there indications of a step function? If inflections, how many and why at those points in the moving equilibrium?) Beyond trend (if any), what other components of the time function can be identified? Does one or another form of a limit-cycle model fit some portion of the temporal variation once trend (if any) has been removed? What accounts for the value(s) of that or those attractors? Are the cycles regular enough in pattern to be stackable? And so forth for other candidate models. Finally, once plausible models of the time function have been applied and accepted or rejected, what of the remaining temporal variation (if there is any)? Is it strictly innocent noise? All of that amounts to constructing an analytic history internal to the process under scrutiny. Some portion of it, of course, will probably prove to be in fact not a matter of strictly endogenous operations but rather responses to drivers, motivations, and other factors that operate ‘‘outside’’ the process as analytically defined. Even so, however, it is important to have a good grasp of this internal history, the gross time function, before adding complexity to the model. Consider again the time function identified above for the TV shows. The internal history of each of three of the four, the exception being Daniel Boone, had two main components: one was trend, the other sigmoidal cycling; and the cycles tended to be stackable in pattern. The stacking is in fact clearest or cleanest in the one series that lacked trend, Daniel Boone, so let’s use it as exemplar. Imagine cutting each of its six cycles at the trough; now overlay the six, each centered by its point of attraction. The similarity is striking. But for the fact that the cycle is open (i.e., a sine wave, it never completes the oval), plus the fact that the number of repetitions is far smaller, the graphic result would be similar to the one portrayed in Fig. 1d. The latter is famous (in part) for having depicted the problem of decidability in a certain nonlinearity of process (i.e., will the next cycle trace the left wing or the right wing of the butterfly?), whereas the stacked cycles of each TV series are linear. But the sheer fact of pattern repetition is basically the same.

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Once decomposition of the time function has been achieved, one can then pursue determinants of the components more systematically, as well as intersections and interactions of the given process with other processes. As with the illustrative look at modeling time functions of baseball players’ performances at bat, so, too, with the study of televised performances, only surfaces were skimmed. One could rebuild the times series of individual TV shows, adding not only ratings of lead-in shows as well as of individual competitors, but also measured observations of characteristics that by hypothesis should have been driving the creation of audience appeal, on the production side, and audience reaction, on the consumption side. One could construct the multiple time series also with an eye to particular historical period effects, as the brief peak at a TV show from the 1980s illustrated. For any analyst who contemplates such an understanding, however, another reality quickly intrudes. The investment of time and intellectual energy in theorizing the detailed operations of a process (or, more likely, a more or less complex set of processes), in devising measures when they are not readily available (and they seldom are), and then in building the requisite observational sequences is very large, and the risk of limited pay-off from the investment is almost never a negligible consideration, especially when publication outlets generally prefer ‘‘positive’’ over ‘‘negative findings,’’ even if the latter come with new theorizations, new measures, perhaps developments of analytic–technical applications, and a data set consisting of repeated observations that might later be enriched in productive ways. Contrast that balance sheet with the easy availability of large quantities of cross-sectional data which might be mined yet again in some novel fashion. The professional reward structure signals very clearly. Likewise, funding agencies, most of which are geared to supporting the production of up-todate descriptions of current populations in the cross-section, primarily for various state purposes.

5. THEORIZING DYNAMICS OF PROCESS The kind of theory that has been assumed and to some extent invoked in preceding sections has been one that relies primarily on an analytic logic. That is a good place to begin. But it is insufficient. One must also engage theorizations that are built of a dialectical logic. This is not a matter of turntaking or fair play. This is a matter of understanding realities that human beings make. Perhaps if human beings were gods, a simple Cartesian

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analytic logic would suffice – unless we were of the same sort who lived on Mount Olympus, in which case even a dialectical logic might fall short. Processes of interest to the social sciences are usually complex, which fact (recalling Slobodkin’s point) makes the right kinds of simplification highly important to our efforts of understanding. The complexity can derive from the number of variables involved or from the kinds and ranges of values the variables take, but probably more often it is a function of the relations among them, some of which are in some instances nonlinear, adding to the complexity (even to the point of remaining intractable, at least for the present). Let’s focus on the relations. One of the ways in which the relations can differ was briefly addressed earlier: functional form, and in particular the form of the time function. Although not to the exclusion of that, let’s focus here on another way in which the relations can differ, this by the distinction between analytical and dialectical relations. Some processes involve primarily, maybe even exclusively, the former; others, the latter. Now, ‘‘dialectic’’ is one of those words that get bandied about like a talisman. In fact, just as there is not one kind of analytic (e.g., Cartesian analytic differs from Zadeh’s analytic), there is not a single kind of dialectic; there are several, ranging from Plato’s and then Aristotle’s, to Kant’s, Hegel’s, Marx’, and Adorno’s, among others. Depending on which are compared, they share few or several features. None of them banishes analytics; none is antithetical to empirical inquiry, including the use of models, variables, measurement, and the like (although these tend to be more complex when dialectical a` la Hegel or Marx or Adorno).59 Theorizing the dynamics of complex processes that are composed entirely of analytic relations is difficult. In fact, we now do little of that, beyond what our early predecessors bequeathed us. Theorizing the dynamics of complex processes that are composed even partly of dialectical relations is more difficult. In either case, if a theory of the dynamics of a process is to be of any use whatsoever, it must specify not merely that ‘‘such and such happens’’ but how it happens. Call it the operative mechanism or whatever term one finds comfortable, it is the conceptualization of that ‘‘how’’ that forms the central content of any meaningful theory of dynamics. A novelist can succeed, if clever enough, by invoking a deus ex machina (or, if one is offended by the word machina, try deus ex disciplina [system] or deus ex corporis compages [organism], to the same effect). Theorists have sometimes tried the same magical hand waves – Turner (1994) has written insightfully of a number of such instances – but theoretical offerings are supposed to have aftereffects different from those of a novel (not to say that one cannot learn from a good novelist). If the temptation to use magic has been

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evidently strong in analytical theory, imagine how much stronger it might be for a theorist who is trying to work out the dialectical relations of a process dynamic. One can utilize dialectic relation in various applications as descriptive insight into social formations extant at a given time. In that vein one can recognize, as Marx did in his Economic Manuscripts of 1857–1958 (aka ‘‘the Grundrisse’’; see Marx, 1986), that every production is a consumption and every consumption is a production; every credit is a debit and every debit a credit; and so forth. These and many other relativities have long standing as features of economic relations, as Marx (1986, p. 28) acknowledged of his own day: ‘‘the economists concede this,’’ in the manner of ‘‘Spinoza’s proposition: determinatio est negatio.’’ Today one of the newer notable recognitions is that the production of information is, in rough proportion, the consumption of attention (inducing a scarcity of the latter).60 As useful as those applications are, however, they are only instances of ‘‘a dialectical reconciliation of concepts.’’ Of far greater import is dialectical insight in the ‘‘comprehending of actually existing relations’’ (Marx, 1986, p. 27; emphasis added). In other words, a dialectic of relation is certainly a useful tool for describing conceptual relativities and thus for describing relativities of position in states of affairs. But it is not solely either a conceptual or a spatial relation. Dialectical relations are inherent in actually existing processes. So, for instance, the actual process of production ‘‘is directly also consumption,’’ and the actual process of ‘‘consumption is directly also production.’’ While each ‘‘is immediately its opposite,’’ there is also ‘‘a mediating movement’’ inherent in the process of each: thus, production ‘‘mediates consumption,’’ and ‘‘consumption mediates production’’ (Marx, 1986, p. 28). Marx is here quite deliberately and explicitly using the language of Hegel’s dialectic, though now reworked from its formulation in an idealist theory of reality to his own theory (which was not the materialist theory of Feuerbach or any other predecessor but his own mediation of idealist by materialist, and materialist by idealist, moments). In its immediacy the productive act, the producing subject, appears to be self-contained, sufficient, and the start of it all. But this illusory moment (which recalls Kant’s dialectic as a ‘‘logic of appearance’’ that catches sight of errors of Reason – most especially, the transcendental illusion) is unfolded in the process of the productive act into its own negation, as it is mediated in and by the act of consumption. The consequence is the concreteness of a reality-in-process. Production mediates consumption, for which it provides the material; consumption without production would have no object. But consumption also mediates production,

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by providing for the products the subject for whom they are products. The product only attains its final FINISH in consumption. A railway on which no one travels, which is therefore not used up, not consumed, is only a railway potentially, not in reality. Without production there is no consumption, but without consumption there is no production either, since in that case production would be useless. (Marx, 1986, pp. 28–29)61

There remains a noticeable paucity of theoretical efforts that focus on the processes by which social structure is able ‘‘to maintain and reconstitute itself, as it relies on the proliferation of continuously deepening contradictions and paradoxes’’ (Dahms, 2008, p. 17). It is interesting, for example, that recently we have been experiencing another episode of reconstitution following crisis, and yet there appears to have been no concerted effort of social scientists to engage ‘‘on the spot,’’ so to speak, in systematic study of those reconstitutive processes. Observations ‘‘in real time’’ during these so-called natural laboratories cannot be adequately replaced by ex post recall. Sadly, as Dahms (2008, 17) concluded, ‘‘The kind of knowledge of our social world and the forces shaping it that would be a necessary precondition for taking steps in the direction of actually solving problems y appears to remain astonishingly rudimentary.’’ To call attention to the importance of a dialectic of relations is not to say that one should never theorize in terms of analytic relations. To the contrary. But to theorize only in such terms is to leave much of human reality in an everyday land of contradictions (as well as inconsistencies, paradoxes, and conundrums), the analyst in perplexity. As Dumm (2008, p. 50) has said of modes of being in the modern era, we individually surf the borderlines of our crowds, as if with keen discernment of their coherent structures, yet never escape our own individual embeddedness in habituations of everyday crowded life, all the while parceling our experiences into separate modes even though ‘‘addressing each separately is not really possible, try as we may.’’62 Inherent contradictions remain untouched because the standard logics of analytic relations obey tenets such as bivalence (semantics) and ‘‘the law of the excluded middle’’ (syntactics). Granted, these are properties of a propositional logic and thus are treated as representations of actually existing relations, rather than as the actually existing relations (even though these are of human provenance). But it is the latter, the actually existing relations, that present contradictions; and if, when treated as analytic relations wherein for any and every proposition the statement ‘‘P and not-P’’ is disallowed, they do not dissolve as errors of representation, what is one to do? It is true, of course, that much of what human beings do drifts off into oblivion, leaving no lasting effect beyond the dried effort of a doing.

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To the extent that there are effects, they are usually proximate, short-term, neither radiating nor ramifying. Some of what humans do leaves profound lasting effects, proximate and perhaps distant, short- or long-term, sometimes in reverberating chains. And some of what humans do has effects, profound or not, that the actors themselves do not know – effects that were not intended, not expected, and not cognized as ‘‘effects of what I have done’’ by the given actor or even by any observer in the given actor’s locale, and perhaps not by any observer for some time to come. It is the category defined in this immediately prior sentence that commands attention. If sociology as a discipline has a raison d’eˆtre, it is to respond adequately to that command – to theorize the relations of such processes and to investigate their phenomenal expressions. This does not mean that sociology may not also attend to, say, rational action, or more generally to behaviors and actions in which motives and anticipations and cognitions play effective parts at least to some degree. Economics has no more exclusive jurisdiction over such matters than does, say, psychology in its different way; and neither of those, nor any other of the social sciences, is lacking claim on behaviors and actions that escape the bounds of conscious behavior, action, motivation, and the like. But if sociology has a prime bailiwick, it surely does include, even is centered on, that escape artistry. As the first generators of sociology understood, and tried to practice, dynamic theorizing and inquiry are requisite to capturing that artistry. Thinking in the cross-section can barely even catch sight of it. The chief venue of the artistry has been described by various phrases during the past half century and more – among them, ‘‘the problem of scope,’’ ‘‘the problem of scale,’’ ‘‘the problem of aggregation’’ (see, e.g., Wagner, 1964; Georgescu-Roegen, 1971; Hannan, 1971; Hazelrigg, 1991). If one is still capable of astonishment, the fact that so little progress has been made in that venue, whatever the preferred name, might be enough to astonish. It seems we know little more about the relations that work out in that venue than did predecessors such as Simmel, Durkheim, Max Weber, and Marx. Sometimes it seems we might actually know less, judging by invitations to treat the venue as a land of magic where things just happen, exotic emergences occur, and so forth. In fact, it is a land not of magic but of contradictions and inconsistencies. Here, ego actor tends to exaggerate the importance of attitudinal and volitional factors, relative to conditioning and contextual factors, in the outcomes of own behaviors and actions, but tends to switch those polarities when accounting for the outcomes of alter actor’s behaviors and actions. Yet often the former set of outcomes is no less likely to be inconsistent with, even contradictory of, actor intentions and

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motivations and goals. Sometimes the contradiction or inconsistency plays out at the same level of scale (micro), but sometimes it ramifies from the micro (intention) to the meso- or macro-scale. Careless use of an analytic logic foreshortens the apprehension of process. To some extent the tendency is inherent in analysis, of course, because the intent is to parcel and store in discrete (or Descartes’ ‘‘clear and distinct’’) categories. Thinking in terms of a dialectical logic resists that tendency. Consider again the matter of ‘‘personal identity,’’ treated earlier. Dialectic persistently reminds us that this never merely ‘‘has’’ a history; it is a history. Perhaps Baudrillard (1993, p. 160) was correct when he said that ‘‘[w]e tend to forget that our reality, including the tragic events of the past, has been swallowed up by the media. That means that it is too late to verify events and understand them historically, for what characterizes our era and our fin de sie`cle is precisely the disappearance of the instruments of this intelligibility. It was necessary to understand history when there was still history.’’63 Even if history as ‘‘wet’’ memory has been entirely commodified and plasticized, however, there is still that wealth of history as (one might say) ‘‘dry’’ memory taking place behind the back of consciousness in contradictions and inconsistencies (but also in the merely unnoticed – neither contradictory nor inconsistent but only, perhaps not yet, uncognized), working its effects through our continuing actions and behaviors, however naı¨ ve or innocent these might be. Identity, whether ‘‘gender’’ or ‘‘race’’ or some other, is not a static category but rather a process that consists in (as does any process) the ‘‘what has been’’ and the ‘‘what could yet become,’’ informed in any presence of ‘‘sameness.’’ This makes even starker the cross-sectional habit of thinking ‘‘gender,’’ for instance, as a relatively fixed presence of the now.64 The ego actor who plays negotiating games with his future selves, about an acceptable discount rate for this or that behavior, all the while remembering some part of the record compiled by his prior selves, is nearer the mark – even as any (or each) momentarily present self imagines being the prime director of the whole course. Finally, to end with a very homely illustration of the insistence of a dialectic logic to attend to the ‘‘open ends’’ of process, some recent commentaries on the collapse of the housing market in the United States and the ensuing financial panic often assert that housing prices sent the wrong signal, leading to market collapse. As one of the specialists used by The Economist sought to explain in late 2009, whereas an ‘‘increase in house prices ought to discourage new homebuyers,’’ actual practice contradicted that expectation, as ‘‘higher prices are a spur to buyers who hope to benefit from further rises. For would-be home-owners, the signal is that it is time to

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buy; for banks, that it is time to lend. Those who suspect a bubble face the same dilemma as textbook prisoners: it makes sense to act sensibly only if others do so too. Since that cannot be relied upon, it is safer to go with the herd. The result of such individually rational behavior is a housing and credit boom, followed inevitably by a nasty bust.’’65 But it is mistaken to conclude that ‘‘the wrong signal’’ was sent. A price is a transaction as well as an interpretation, and as in both of those senses the completion of the action is in reception, which in turn becomes condition and impulse to a next pricing. That is, a signal consists not just in the sending; whether it is received and how it is read are also constitutive of what the signal is. To look only at the sending is to miss the larger part of the information transfer.66 The problem with the expectation formulated in the quotation above is that it treats ‘‘house prices’’ as an isolated snapshot, not as a trajectory that unites seller-and-buyer. The signal that was completed said ‘‘buy now, even though prices have increased, because housing prices will continue to increase.’’ For quite some time that was exactly what happened, as the inconsistency and eventually contradiction were lost from view. The behavior appears ‘‘individually rational,’’ and the players locked into some version of a prisoner’s dilemma, only so long as one does not apprehend the dynamics of the process in such a manner that includes not only where it has been but also the possible and the impossible, the probable and the improbable, of where it might go. An analytic logic can allow for that inclusion. A dialectic logic insists on it. An analytic logic tends to regard the inclusion as sets of external properties of the process. A dialectic logic insists that they are integral to the internal relations, the dynamics, of the process.

NOTES 1. An example is a recently declared ‘‘constructal law’’ according to which ‘‘for a flow system to persist in time, its configuration must morph such that it provides easier access to its streams’’ (see Bejan & Merkx, 2007). 2. This property, sometimes called ‘‘the ergodic theorem’’ even though it remains unproven mathematically, is not the same as stationarity (see below). 3. Perhaps the first to formalize this property was Maxwell (see, e.g., Maxwell, 1867; also Gray, 1987). 4. Granted, this is strictly in principle. In practice, outcomes of strict Newtonian principles are still often treated as stochastic outcomes, simply because all of the relevant forces at work in the given process cannot be measured with enough precision simultaneously. An example is plotting the trajectory of a ballistic missile,

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which in principle should have a precisely defined point of impact but in practice will have a circle of probability-gauged points of impact. 5. Normal atmospheric oxygen is diatomic (i.e., O2), as is normal atmospheric nitrogen (N2), hydrogen (H2), and carbon monoxide (CO). 6. This will be a topic later in the chapter. 7. On a personal note, and in the interest of credit where credit is due: during the 1960s I was party to an informal conversation among Jack Gibbs, Joe Lopreato, and Lou Schneider, about the conditions under which correlation in the cross-section could be generalized to correlation over time. At one point, Gibbs said, ‘‘What if the answer is none? There might well be no conditions, in matters of interest to the social sciences, where that generalization can be legitimately made.’’ It appears that our knowledge about this has advanced little during the last 45 years. 8. The fact that his observations are of variables such as blood pressure and serum cortisol levels is not a function of ergodicity or its absence but of his definition of ‘‘individual.’’ Because measurement of all the traditional variables of ‘‘personality,’’ attitudes, behavioral dispositions, and the like, is inherently social, such variables would entail necessarily, from the standpoint of his conception of ‘‘individual,’’ a contamination (see Whitehead, 1929, p. 329; also pp. 212–213). One could argue that any measurement, ‘‘even’’ those of physiological variables such as blood pressure, are inherently social; but at least, from Molenaar’s point of view, they involve as little of the contaminant as is possible. For related contrasting views see Segal (2000) and Hurlburt and Schwitzgebel (2007). 9. Granted, this is one of the dimensions on which the social sciences differ among themselves. Some areas of economics have been more hospitable to dynamic modeling, an emphasis on process theory, and so forth, than have most areas of sociology. 10. In recent decades a surge of what might be called the ‘‘identity politics’’ of scholarship in the social sciences has added an interesting reinforcement of that interest. Aspects of this will be treated below. 11. One of the wave-panel studies was used effectively to demonstrate the bias of cross-sectional estimates of life-cycle changes in household wealth (Jianakoplos, Menchik, & Levine, 1989). Actually, the demonstration had been made by Shorrocks (1975) years earlier, using only logic and simulations. But his study showed that there would be two countervailing biases (wealth differences in mortality result in overrepresentation of the wealthy among the elderly in a cross-section – i.e., an upward bias – while different patterns of age-wealth correlations due to differences in lifetime resources would induce a downward bias in cross-sectional estimates), and it is difficult to assess the likely net effect of two countervailing stochastic tendencies. The empirical comparison confirmed Shorrocks’ argument: estimates of change in household wealth using cross-sectional data are faulty. 12. Others have noted this. For example, Isaac, Cutright, Jackson, and Kelly (1982, p. 186), addressing the question of the distinctiveness of cohorts, acknowledged forthrightly that ‘‘precise expectations for cohorts do not generally exist.’’ Likewise, van den Broek (1999) reported in his analysis that there was little evidence that cohorts could be discerned as specific identities. 13. Ryder was referring specifically to the labor-intensive observational techniques of life-history interviews and related approaches typified by the work of several

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early twentieth-century social scientists such as William Thomas, Florian Znaniecki, and John Dollard. Large-scale multiwave-panel surveys were beyond the reach of most budgets in 1965. These, too, of course, have some limits of sampling inference. 14. In other words, nearly all of the marginal association between education and belief occurred across, rather than within, the religious groupings. 15. This example will be continued below. 16. This insight, now sometimes bundled within ‘‘adaptation theory,’’ is at least as old as Aristotle and was given a well-known formulation explicitly in terms of process by Marx (e.g., 1849, p. 216). 17. This hypothetical illustration is informed by some actual test situations. For instance, CT scanning is very sensitive to lung tissues that are cancerous or precancerous; it has a high false positive rate; and some medical researchers have cautioned that it is not necessarily a better test than the older, less sensitive tests (see, e.g., Woloshin, Schwartz, & Welch, 2005). 18. There is a curious disproportion, one cannot but notice, between the volume of disputation over ‘‘cause’’ which can induce fatigue (‘‘causation and its discontents,’’ as named by Smith, 2009, p. 233) and the volume of empirical work that follows a design allowing some reasonable opportunity to detect evidence of causal relations, an opportunity that is scarce in cross-sectional designs. 19. Although known at least since James Clerk Maxwell’s work in the 1850s and 1860s, Poincare´’s formulation in Science et me´thode (1908, p. 68) is most remembered: ‘‘it may happen that small differences in the initial conditions produce very great ones in the final phenomena. A small error in the former will produce an enormous error in the latter.’’ This has become a popular citation because of its explanation of the force of certain nonlinear processes, and it is often used as support for the claim that nonlinear processes end in unpredictability, stated in Poincare´’s very next sentence: ‘‘Prediction becomes impossible, and we have the fortuitous phenomenon.’’ About that he was wrong. In any case, it is not at all clear that there is much application to phenomena studied by the social sciences, at least not in present states of knowledge. One should also remember another of Poincare´’s remarks in the same discussion: a very small cause can have a very large consequence even without sensitive dependence, given enough passage of time. Aggregations from the micro to the macro can and do occasionally have that outcome. 20. See Lanchester’s (2009) commentary on the horrid treatment imposed on a young South African, Caster Semanya, all in the cause of boundary maintenance for sport. 21. The disparity held for ‘‘whites only’’ as well as for the general population. Note also that the study ignores relevant gender socialization that occurred prior to formal schooling (e.g., by parents, from media, etc.). 22. Mehan tended to depreciate ‘‘quantification’’ in principle because of failures of particular ‘‘quantification schemes’’; but that is another matter. 23. By contrast, a variable such as personal or household wealth does not have an absolute zero, inasmuch as wealth is defined as the difference between assets and liabilities. 24. To say that the one increment is more than twice the value of the other increment (i.e., 25%W11.1%) is to have assumed an absolute zero – that one cannot have less than zero income. (As economists say, income is a flow variable, not a stock

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variable: an incoming flow, which is balanced more or less by an outflow, expenditures; neither can be less than zero, though of course the balance can be.) The question of the zero point of a metric – is it relative or is it absolute? – can be a source of error or confusion. Mistaking one for the other leads to problems. Consider prices. Surely here, one might think, we have an instance of an absolute zero point. After all, why would any seller assign a negative price to a good or service, so that the customer would be paid to complete the sale? Giving away free goods (i.e., a price of zero) is one thing; a person whose business involves selling something to customers and who pays the customer for buying the good or service is quite another. How could such a business survive? In fact, however, negative pricing is far from rare. Imagine a business firm that sells widgets at $1 each. Trade is good, but one day the sales manager proposes to do better and posts a sign advertising the widgets at a unit price $1 for sales up to nine widgets, but at a unit price of 80 cents for sales of 10 or more widgets. This sort of ‘‘volume discount’’ is not unusual, and depending on customer sensitivity to volume demand it can reap added profit to the firm. Note the following, however. If a customer plans initially to buy nine widgets but then notices the sign and buys ten widgets, he or she bought the tenth widget at a price of negative $1. The cost of nine would have been $9, the cost of ten was only $8; so to the buyer that tenth widget was even better than a free good. 25. Ordinal metrics are internally relative, which undermines comparison in time. Assume that Student S is second in rank in Year Y but then first in rank in Y þ 1. S’s rank changed, but we cannot say that S’s underlying performance in the attribute by which students are being ranked has changed. S could actually have been performing at the same level, at a better level, or at a worse level in Year Y þ 1. 26. Some psychologists have responded to the weak relationship with a model that inserts ‘‘behavioral intention’’ (see, e.g., Fishbein & Ajzen, 2009; Eagley & Chaiken, 1993; Hale, Householder, & Greene, 2003). This does result in an increase of correlation under some circumstances, though one wonders if a conceptual circularity has been introduced. 27. Poincare´ (1908, p. 8) is also remembered for having said of the one social science that once had been declared ‘‘queen of the sciences,’’ it is ‘‘the science that has the most methods and the least results.’’ 28. Observations of process (i.e., in time) are no less a sampling than are observations of cross-sections (i.e., in space). Each observed trajectory of a given process is an empirical realization out of the population of possible realizations of that process. Process sampling in space as well as in time is certainly possible. But as point of departure, it is probably better (at least in terms of cost factors) to focus initially on building a large number of repeated observations of the trajectory of a specified process at some well-defined place that at least initially does not appear to be unusual as a sampling within spatial coordinates of that kind of specified process. Techniques for modeling a process require multiple repetitions of observation; indeed, with some techniques (e.g., spectral models) a minimum of 50–100 repetitions need to be accumulated in order to have reasonable confidence in model outcomes. Since repetitions generally cannot be conducted simultaneously of a specified process in one precise set of spatial coordinates, there will be an inherent indeterminacy with regard to the difference between stability of conditions of the specified process and normal stochastic variation of the process trajectory in repetition.

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29. Stationarity is not the same as ergodicity. Whereas an ergodic process is necessarily stationary, a stationary process is not necessarily ergodic. Being able to assume stationarity is not the same as being able to assume ergodicity. The temptation is to ignore the difference and to assume that observing a specific stationary process over a long enough interval of time is equivalent to observing multiple independent realizations of the same process. This temptation is understandable when there seems no possibility of actually achieving independent realizations of exactly the same process. It is an enormous leap, however, probably very far from being justifiable. 30. To expand the point, and to reemphasize a caution about the relationship of stationarity to ergodicity: a stationary process variable x(t) has a mean m ¼ E [x(t)], which does not change withR time (t). One can estimate this mean by calculating T a time average: m^ T ¼ ð1=2ÞT �T xðtÞdt. Now, if m^ T converges in squared mean to l as T -N, the process in x(t) is said to be ‘‘mean-ergodic.’’ (Likewise, for the other statistical moments.) One can thus see the importance of stationarity to ergodicity and therefore to the assumption that observing a process over a long enough interval of time is equivalent to observing independent realizations of the same process. Stationarity is necessary to ergodicity, but it is not sufficient. 31. The test of numeric ability was a very simple one (nothing as complicated as determining a compound interest rate or comparing the returns on alternative investments with different yield rates, for instance). At each date of observation sample members were presented 60 ‘‘solved’’ addition problems and were asked to identify, within six minutes, which of the sums were correct and which were incorrect. 32. A nice introductory treatment of a large selection of models, many of them process models and others adaptable as process models, is now available in Easley and Kleinberg (2010). Compare to entries in earlier treatments such as Bartholomew (1967), Tuma and Hannan (1984), Maki and Thompson (1973), and Mesterton-Gibbons (1995). 33. In a process that is strictly first-order Markov any information contained in the process outcome yesterday (speaking figuratively) that is not captured by the process today is lost. Much depends, of course, on the length of the temporal lag. But assuming reasonable lag length, how likely is that memory function in social processes? 34. Another manifestation is the tendency of a person to pay more to keep an item in possession than to buy the same item not already possessed. See some of the essays in Loewenstein and Elster (1992). 35. Indeed, the everyday tendency is to think of a physical building as static, when in fact it is a complex process of stressors, tensors, and resistances maintained in reasonably secure equilibrium. 36. An excellent, brief popular account is given by Bernstein (2008, pp. 12–15, 159–160); see also the memoirs of another physicist who migrated to Wall Street, Derman (2004), and a study of an outcome, Dunbar (2000). 37. That is, there is a tendency for each future self to treat the process as memoryless – as if an inability to remember how many failures have preceded each future trial. Note, too, that there can be foresight in the process as well: e.g., I can anticipate that a future self will probably behave no differently, and from that I might change current behavior (‘‘now or never’’) or merely sigh at ‘‘the inevitable.’’

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38. Starting values are present for relevant variables (and usually not equal to zero) because one seldom begins observation of a process at T ¼ 0, the moment of its birth. 39. A fractional dimension (or fractal) is what one resorts to when a straight line never adequately approximates the curve, no matter how much one reduces scale. Think of Edward Abbott’s flatland, but with a would-be third dimension that futilely tries to rise up to orthogonality (i.e., to be independent of, therefore not expressible as a function of, therefore not reducible to, either or both of the two dimensions of flatland). It only ever gets part way up – thus, different degrees of fractionality (one-tenth, one-third, etc., of a full dimension). Flatland’s congenital ED condition, one might say. 40. Think of the patterns of hits on a target after target practice: depending on skill level, the hits cluster more or less tightly around the bull’s eye, and more or less symmetrically. At any given skill level, the larger the number of trials the more evident that clustering and the gradient of variation become. 41. It is not that nonstationary processes are impossible to model as such, though some remain beyond the pale. But the ability to assume stationarity at least long enough to develop a baseline against which then to estimate parameter change (i.e., the history of the given process) is enormously helpful and sometimes necessary. 42. This restores the assumption of mean stationarity but not necessarily that of autocovariance stationarity. 43. See the appendix for some technical details and analytic results. 44. There are other measures of batting performance, of course, not considered here: ‘‘on base percentage’’ (which includes ‘‘walks’’ and ‘‘hit by pitch’’), ‘‘runs batted in,’’ and so forth. 45. Another reminder: none of the processes manifested in this or the subsequent study (including here the mechanics of ball and bat under conditions of the conservation of momentum) is strictly deterministic; outcomes are stochastic. That does not mean the variation is necessarily empty of useful information. Each of these (and subsequent) graphs is a display of the trajectory of a random variable; whether the variation is or contains useful information is to be decided by other criteria. 46. Noise is conventionally divided into two types (unfortunately usually given the designations ‘‘white’’ and ‘‘black,’’ usages otherwise avoided here): the former type is regarded as ‘‘innocent’’ in the sense that it does not contain or offer any useful discriminations, whereas the latter type is or contains complicating biases that are informative for some purposes but for the purpose at hand are mainly ‘‘complicating.’’ The type difference, including the latter diistinction, is important but will be mostly neglected here. 47. Processes that include hysteresis are an example; another is a process that includes its own regulating feedback (e.g., a ‘‘martingaled process’’). Note, by the way, that a process that includes a trend component may still be stationary in part; that is, the parameters of the process, including the trend parameters, are stable, even though it is not mean stationary. 48. Fitting a model with linear trend accounts for about 2 percent of the variance in this player’s game-by-game performance (the trend parameter, a tiny 0.001, is significant by one-tailed t-test at p ¼ 0.05). Fitting a simple equilibrium model

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(i.e., without trend) accounts for at least two-thirds of the variance, by Chebyshev’s rule; so the trend component is really inconsequential. 49. Bear in mind that ‘‘best’’ is relative to some framework. The conclusion has a coda (here treated as a technical note, though it is far from being ‘‘merely technical’’): some other model (e.g., a geometric Brownian motion model; see Ross, 2010, pp. 631–642) might detect additional information. 50. The large component of ‘‘noise,’’ ‘‘random fluctuation,’’ etc., should not be discarded from view, however. It is a major part, perhaps the major part, of what keeps the game interesting – as with so much of human being. 51. The mean of these 34 six-year mean batting averages by Player 8 was 0.284, which is significantly lower than his six-year mean (0.306) across all pitchers he faced during those seasons. (Indeed, the 0.284 is very close to his season-long average, 0.282, for the worst of his six seasons, 2005.) This difference is indicative of the fact that not only does the baseball pitcher generally have advantage over the batter (i.e., even the best batters fail to get a hit about two-thirds of the time); that advantage tends to increase as a pitcher acquires more experience with any given batter. Some pitchers have better learning curves than others. But, remember, these 34 pitchers were around long enough to have faced Player 8 at least 30 times. 52. Nielsen reports a second measure, ‘‘share,’’ which differs from ‘‘rating’’ in that the denominator is defined as all households with a TV that was turned on during the given time slot. The ‘‘rating’’ measure is used here because it reflects the fact that other activities were competing against television viewing. 53. I am not arguing that none has existed; there have been a few (see, e.g., Hannan & Carroll, 1992; Hannan, Po´los, & Carroll, 2007); but they are sustained typically with little or no support from professional disciplinary (to say nothing of cross or interdisciplinary) organizations. 54. As in the previous study, some additional results are presented in the appendix. Fitted trend models for the four series are reported in Table A2. 55. This inference test is Fisher’s g statistic. 56. The secondary cycle was picking up a tendency to curvilinearity of trend in this second half of the series; but a quadratic specification of trend did not significantly improve fit, and even after that specification of trend the same sort of secondary cycle, though weaker, was present. 57. Bear in mind also that the synchronization has been by calendar date, appropriate to this illustration, with the possibility of adjusting the comparison by lags of various lengths. Synchronization of series can be by other criteria, however, depending on the theorized relationship. In some cases, for example, it might be appropriate to synchronize by elapsed time from birth or elapsed time from some other significant event. Recent developments in analytic modeling include the ability to analyze relations between nonstationary series (see Johansen, 1995). 58. The last conditional is recognition of the constraint imposed by the inning structure of the game (inning initiation with ‘‘first batter’’ and inning conclusion after ‘‘third out’’), which introduces further complication. 59. Hegel built on Kant’s dialectical logic, which was presented by Kant as a ‘‘logic of Schein’’ or ‘‘appearance’’ and a means to catch obstacles to and errors of Reason (i.e., Reason moving beyond its limit) resulting in illusions, most importantly the transcendental illusion that occurs when the subjective necessity of a certain

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connection of our conceptions is regarded as an objective necessity of the determination of things themselves. 60. Herbert Simon made this point many years ago: ‘‘What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients. Hence, a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention, and a need to allocate that attention efficiently among the overabundance of information sources that might consume it’’ (Simon, 1971, p. 40). 61. In the same vein, Marx underscores the implication of distribution and exchange as moments both of production and of consumption, each mediating the other – all of which is inherent in the subject–object dialectic of the labor process, of making. 62. The unnamed presence of Marx’ phenomenology in Dumm’s meditation is remarkable (especially, pp. 50–53), although shortened by another hypostatization of ‘‘human nature.’’ 63. His point was, I take it, that the media reproduce what one might call ‘‘events of the just-past past’’ into an ‘‘eternal present of events,’’ thereby removing the actual events from the fertile process that is history as a ‘‘wet’’ memory. They enter a sort of Disney World reality, wherein the media keep them in a suspended animation by draining them of any potential of history. The instruments of intelligibility that was history now lack that material. Movie makers are an example of the historian’s successor. The historical events of the Okie refugees of the Great Dust Bowl migrating to and surviving in California’s Central Valley during the Great Depression have been pushed into oblivion by John Ford’s filmic version of John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath. The book alone could not accomplish that feat, because the number of readers was too small. But Ford’s movie is still viewed each year by many times more than the number of people who have read, or reread, Steinbeck’s book the same year. The memory of the viewing, remarkably near to a uniformity and endlessly repeatable, has pushed aside memories of the events of a history that could not compete. 64. Similarly, a dialectical logic guards against a simplistic understanding of ‘‘starting values’’ in a model – for example, the assumption that one breaks into the always on-goingness of process with something like a ‘‘fresh start,’’ a commencement that either had no determinative predecessor (as in popular imaginations of ‘‘invention’’) or had a ready-made existence that awaits collection into a specific category (as in popular imaginations of ‘‘discovery’’) – either of which is admittedly easier than dialectically abstracting the break in terms of the relations that form the boundedness of identity-and-difference at that juncture. 65. This instance of the verdict was in a review of a book, How Markets Fail (see The Economist, November 14, 2009, p. 102). 66. The very fact that something called ‘‘reception theory’’ was developed as a distinctive body of work is indication of the one-sided manner in which signaling had been conceived.

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Whitehead, A. N. (1929). Process and reality. (Corrected edition by David Ray Griffin and Donald Sherburne). New York: Free Press [1978]. Woloshin, S., Schwartz, L., & Welch, H. G. (2005). Warned, but worse off. New York Times, 22 August, p. A13. Zˇizˇek, S. (2000). The Ticklish subject. London: Verso.

APPENDIX This brief appendix presents some technical details in supplement to the textual presentation of two demonstration exercises. Bear in mind that the analytic techniques and results presented here and in the text are only a smattering of what can be accomplished in investigation of processes, if one has an adequate set of data of repeated observations.

Batting Averages The data for this first demonstration are drawn from the records maintained online by retrosheet.org, which are based mainly on the play-by-play records of the Major League Baseball teams. These records are of high quality, compiled from real-time observations. An interesting feature is that measurement takes place within, as part of, the game – e.g., an umpire measuring the trajectory of a pitched ball relative to the imaginary box that defines his strike zone (one issue has been whether there is racial bias in umpires’ calls; see, e.g., Parsons, Sulaeman, Yates, & Hamermesh, 2007; similarly, Price & Wolfers, 2007, regarding referees of professional basketball games). Season-long batting averages for the thirty players referred to in the text are reported in Table A1, along with variances, as a baseline for the discussion in the text. Main analytic results are reported in the text.

TV Ratings The data, consisting of regular Nielsen audience ratings for each of the TV series, are from published archives (see Hughes, 2003 for details). Nielsen initially conducted their observations weekly, then switched to biweekly. All ratings used in this second demonstration are at biweekly intervals. An early diagnostic test for a series of repeated observations estimates the degree and pattern of serial dependence (i.e., memory) in the observed

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Table A1.

Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player Player

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30

Season-Long Batting Average by Player for 30 Players: Distribution Statistics. Mean

SD

Variance

Base N

0.230 0.291 0.265 0.285 0.279 0.282 0.266 0.282 0.265 0.247 0.286 0.267 0.293 0.234 0.250 0.274 0.328 0.259 0.284 0.265 0.278 0.285 0.271 0.261 0.289 0.225 0.291 0.292 0.315 0.263

0.259 0.321 0.252 0.358 0.244 0.248 0.224 0.270 0.297 0.263 0.234 0.253 0.265 0.342 0.263 0.311 0.258 0.274 0.294 0.236 0.240 0.238 0.266 0.254 0.222 0.196 0.264 0.212 0.493 0.240

0.067 0.104 0.064 0.128 0.060 0.062 0.050 0.073 0.088 0.069 0.055 0.064 0.070 0.117 0.069 0.096 0.066 0.075 0.086 0.055 0.057 0.056 0.071 0.065 0.049 0.039 0.070 0.045 0.243 0.058

74 93 102 96 153 151 159 107 109 137 156 140 134 98 111 136 161 131 98 159 147 119 134 125 121 128 150 152 127 152

process – as manifested, for instance, in an outcome variable. This can be done by estimating the autocorrelation of the time function, which allows one to specify different degrees of lag (where L is number of lagged intervals). When L ¼ 1, the autocorrelation will be between each successive observed value and the immediately prior (or subsequent; direction does not matter) observed value, for n�L observations (where n is the total number of observations). When L ¼ 2, the autocorrelation will be between each successive observation and the observation just before the immediately prior observed value, for n�L observations. And so forth. The higher the

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Fig. A1.

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Autocorrelations of Observed Ratings and Residuals from Trend in Ratings of Bewitched.

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autocorrelation, the greater the degree of memory or dependence of subsequent values on prior values of the outcome variable. Suitable inference tests are available to compare observed autocorrelations against an assumption of independence (i.e., zero autocorrelation). The pattern of lags for inferentially significant autocorrelations describes the pattern of memory in the process as manifested by the outcome. For instance, an oscillating pattern suggests the operation of a limit-cycle process attractor. Note that the use of the autocorrelation as a diagnostic is sensitive to the density of observations in time: an absence of significant autocorrelations might mean only that the observation schedule was not dense enough to capture the action of dependency, for example; the absence of significant autocorrelations for LW1 might mean that a delayed effect occurred between observation dates and decayed quickly; and so forth. Autocorrelations for the baseball data did not show indication of any trend or oscillation or other systematic pattern of variation. More specific tests confirmed that, as reported in the text, with the exception of a weak trend in the game-by-game batting average of one player. Autocorrelation results for the TV series were quite different. As illustration, Fig. A1 depicts the pattern of autocorrelation at each of 16 lags for, first, the observed ratings and, second, the residuals from trend in ratings, during the lifetime of one TV series, Bewitched. These graphs are suggestive of, first, trend in Table A2.

Fitted Trend Model Statistics for Four TV Time Series. R2

D–W

b

bSE

t

po

Bewitched Daniel Boone

0.67 0.04

0.51 0.33

�0.09 �0.02

0.005 0.008

19.1 2.6

0.001 0.001

Family affair Linear Quadratic

0.25 0.53

0.37 0.58

�0.07 0.20 �0.002

0.010 0.033 0.000

6.3 6.0 8.2

0.001 0.001 0.001

Family ties Linear Quadratic

0.22 0.51

0.17 0.27

First part

0.62

0.33

Second part

0.43

0.83

�0.08 0.30 �0.002 0.63 �0.005 �0.14

0.013 0.042 0.000 0.096 0.001 0.019

6.5 7.2 9.5 6.6 4.1 7.6

0.001 0.001 0.001 0.001 0.001 0.001

Name

Note: D–W, Durbin–Watson statistic; b, trend coefficient; bSE, standard error of trend coefficient estimate; t, t-statistic inference test.

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Table A3. Time

Spectral Analysis of Residualized Ratings of Bewitched.

Residual

Frequency

Period

Intensity

%SS

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

4.634 3.626 2.918 2.710 1.002 0.894 2.685 1.077 3.769 4.161 1.153 5.745 3.937 4.029 3.220 1.012 0.104 �0.304 �3.212 �4.620

0.0000 0.0054 0.0109 0.0163 0.0217 0.0272 0.0326 0.0380 0.0435 0.0489 0.0544 0.0598 0.0652 0.0707 0.0761 0.0815 0.0870 0.0924 0.0978 0.1033

– 184.00 92.00 61.33 46.00 36.80 30.67 26.29 23.00 20.44 18.40 16.73 15.33 14.15 13.14 12.27 11.50 10.82 10.22 9.68

0.000 250.429 116.602 9.456 12.774 88.586 54.183 119.356 720.635 32.398 16.277 8.929 9.428 26.211 18.008 45.181 147.986 30.597 6.854 6.304

0.00 0.12 0.05 0.00 0.01 0.04 0.02 0.05 0.33� 0.01 0.01 0.00 0.00 0.01 0.01 0.02 0.07� 0.01 0.00 0.00

88 89 90 91 92

0.919 �5.689 �4.297 �7.805 �5.613

0.4783 0.4837 0.4891 0.4946 0.5000

2.09 2.07 2.04 2.02 2.00

3.707 0.695 18.838 17.804 0.571

0.00 0.00 0.01 0.01 0.00

Note: The set of results is interrupted after Time 20 and resumed at Time 88, in order to conserve space (none of the intervening results was significant at po0.05). %SS, percent of trend-residualized total sum of squares accounted for by the given cycle (those marked by asterisk pass Fisher’s g inference test at po0.05).

ratings and second, a limit-cycle dynamic after trend has been removed. (Similar results obtained for other TV shows.) Evidence of trend is confirmed and elaborated by analysis using various trend models (see, e.g., Harvey, 1989), with results for Bewitched (along with three other TV shows) reported in Table A2. Evidence of a limit-cycle attractor in the trendresidualized ratings for Bewitched is confirmed and elaborated using spectral analysis (see, e.g., Warner, 1998), as reported in Table A3. Corresponding results obtained for the other TV series.

AFFINITIES BETWEEN THE PROJECT OF DYNAMIC THEORY AND THE TRADITION OF CRITICAL THEORY: A SKETCH Harry F. Dahms From the inception of sociology as a social science, initially in Europe as personified by Auguste Comte (1798–1857) in France, who coined the term, and thereafter by Herbert Spencer (1820–1903) in England, and especially and much more explicitly by Lester F. Ward (1841–1913) in the United States, the promise of the new discipline related directly to assessing the importance and nature of change in modern society. Early European sociologists, including especially the later, canonical ‘‘fathers’’ of the discipline as a rigorous social science – Emile Durkheim (1858–1917) and Max Weber (1864–1920) – tended to be concerned with the implications resulting from what they recognized more or less clearly as the perpetuity of change in modern society, for the possibility of order and stability in society. By contrast, Ward, who was regarded as the ‘‘father of American sociology’’ until the early decades of the twentieth century, contended that the distinguishing feature of sociology as the new social science related directly to the acknowledgment of the growing importance of process over order in modern societies generally, and in American society, in particular (Rafferty, 2003). In a sense, from the outset, positively or negatively, the vanishing point of sociology was the elaboration of a theory that started out from the Theorizing the Dynamics of Social Processes Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Volume 27, 81–97 Copyright r 2010 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited All rights of reproduction in any form reserved ISSN: 0278-1204/doi:10.1108/S0278-1204(2010)0000027006

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fact that modern society is different from all other known forms of social organization in that change is not ancillary to its possibility and constitutional logic, but at the very heart of it. In this sense, from its very beginning, sociology involves the development of a dynamic theory of modern society. Illustrations for how change is central to the kind of social order that is characteristic of modern societies abound. For instance, the democratic political process would be impossible without persistent reiterations of the purpose of electoral politics as well as the structure of institutions relating directly to the struggle for betterment – qualitative improvements in the living standard of citizens, in their ability to realize life chances, or in the effectiveness of public policies as means to realize and attain explicitly stated and presumably shared goals. Put differently, dissatisfaction with the status quo not only is the driving force behind political struggles and purposive forms of collective action; in addition, dissatisfaction with the status quo is what sustains political culture, shapes and preserves political institutions, and sustains political processes in their specificity, as reified social constructions (Berger & Luckmann, 1966), regardless of whether or not in fact they are conducive to improvements, and especially to qualitative improvements, in actually existing societies. Incidentally, strategies individual and collective actors pursue to navigate the discrepancy between experiences of dissatisfaction and wants, on the one hand, and change on the other, provide an excellent example for the kind of dynamic processes that the possibility of continued social stability on which modern society is contingent. This kind of change poses the potential for improvements in and of social life, and at the same time grounds processes that may undercut the possibility to future improvements – processes that are inversely related to the latter. The logic of those processes may be in gross violation of the everyday assumptions inhabitants of modern societies make about the functioning and stability of their societies, and the contradictory roles that institutions and organizations play in adhering to shared norms and values, while propagating public policy goals that may or may not be supported by large factions of the population (Lefebvre, 1991; Gardiner, 2000; Manders, 2003). The absence of an explicitly formulated dynamic theory has been a major impediment to resolving key problems in sociology, and to spelling out the charge of sociologists to contribute to engendering a greater correspondence between claims made about modern society – by both its members and by official representatives of politics, business, and culture – and social reality, however elusive that goal may be at this point in time, and for the foreseeable future. Indeed, the supposition that making strides toward more

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accurate and well-grounded sociological representations of social reality may not be possible without theoretical frameworks that reflect to a greater degree the workings of modern societies, is one of the guiding motifs of this chapter. To be sure, it is highly likely that those frameworks will be less compatible with prevailing, and socially condoned and reinforced ideological patterns. Presumably, greater correspondence between the analytical and theoretical tools employed, and the social processes studied, will also increase the value of sociological research (and its results) to real-life individual and collective actors confronting myriad contingent challenges – and engender greater compatibility across diverse approaches in sociology, and between the social sciences, more generally. An explicitly formulated and clearly delineated dynamic theory of modern society holds great promise, both with regard to resolving disciplinary quandaries and preoccupations that have been consuming a large amount of intellectual labor – time and energy – without having produced much evidence that related investments have been well spent. Such a dynamic theory also should facilitate research whose relevance not only will be readily apparent but presumably also less easily resisted and ignored by the proverbial ‘‘powers that be.’’ For instance, the persistent confusion about the value of micro and macro perspectives, the distinction between structure and agency, and the tension between systems and action-oriented approaches, respectively, could be more easily resolved within the context of expressly dynamic frameworks, as the binary distinctions would be revealed to be exactly what they are – moments of processes whose persistence may account to a large degree for the stability of modern societies. After all, the latter resemble force fields that are being maintained (or that maintain themselves) through a nexus of complex, contradictory, and contingent feedback loops which to describe as ‘‘multidimensional’’ underplays the exceedingly intricate and mutually reinforcing and stabilizing processes and their interplay with types of orders – structures, systems, organizations, and institutions – each of which adhere to the kinds of patterns that are endemic to societies as a whole, as ‘‘totalities’’ (Alexander, Giesen, M+unch, & Smelser, 1987; Hazelrigg, 1991; Dahms, 2005). Yet, the task of discerning and identifying the precise patterns that are at play and at work in this set of social order, social organizations, and social processes is not just breathtakingly overwhelming; it is also a task (in fact, a vast set of tasks) that cannot be framed through any one approach, any one theory, however sophisticated and compatible with complexity they may be, but instead, by the discipline of sociology as a whole, with the majority of sociologists willingly and eagerly adhering to the kind of

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disciplinary practices, and exercising the kind of self-discipline, without which a challenge of this type and magnitude it is impossible to consider, not to mention confront – and meet. It is in this light, and perhaps in this light alone, that the most important contribution of Talcott Parsons must be seen. His project for a general theory of society as the basis for a unified discipline of sociology that is open to a multiplicity of approaches, to a plurality of theoretical frames, and to a diversity of guiding questions and concerns has not become less important, but far more so. Multiplicity, plurality, and diversity of sociological perspectives without simultaneous efforts at unity depending on the Zeitgeist may be politically correct and ideologically desirable, pleasing, and comforting. However, sociologically speaking, the Zeitgeist is more relevant as an incarnation of the vicissitudes of cultural changes reflected in disciplinary practices, and an indication of its whimsy. For an understanding of social science that claims to be oriented toward facilitating the kinds of knowledge and to making contributions to the study of societal life that are supposed to further qualitative social changes and transformations in ways that are consistent with and conducive to advancing shared values, and their compatibility with existing societal conditions, the above instances of politically and ideologically accepted fragmentation are part and parcel of the problem, not paths toward its solution. In fact, the very idea that any of the social sciences should foster the ability of organizations and institutions to conceive of actual solutions is in contradiction with predynamic disciplinary practices. Likewise, the persistent confusion about modernity, modernization, and the postmodern presents a set of closely related analytical and theoretical challenges that cannot be disentangled as long as the mode of thinking and designing research remains tied to a large degree to unacknowledged, implicitly static notions of social research, and the link between social science and social change. If sociologists, for instance, make assumptions about the relative importance of studying order as opposed to process that nevertheless are tied directly to an overarching focus on order and assumptions about the adequacy of order-focused categories regarding the study of modern society, related ideations and abstractions will prevent recognition that there may be a gulf between the means and tools employed to study process, and the distinct challenges posed by efforts to study process. In this case, the study of process turns out to be a function of the study of order – engendering a fundamental inability on the part of social scientists, including sociologists, to study processes in a manner that is consistent with their nature.

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As a result, there is a high degree of confusion about the responsibility of individual sociologists and social scientists, and of sociology and the social sciences as a whole, with regard to modern society as the focal point and the context of research endeavors, for the simple reason that the analytical strategies chosen and theoretical programs preferred appear to be inversely related to the study of a defining feature of modern societies. The absence of a working definition of ‘‘modern’’ in sociology – either in the sense of modern society, of ‘‘modernity,’’ or regarding the differences and similarities between modernity and modernization – is indicative both of a lack of commitment to circumscribing the discipline’s subject matter and of an unwillingness to make the effort to attain a common understanding as far as the identity of the discipline and its mission, purpose, responsibility, and promise are concerned. Ironically, most contributions to theoretical sociology are implicitly inspired by a desire to illuminate the kind and the role of dynamic processes in modern society, compared with traditional societies, and by attempts to engender an understanding of the central role of dynamic approaches to the study of modern society. Few contributions neglect entirely the challenge presented by the dynamic nature of modern society, in particular, and of all human societies, in general. Yet, why are most approaches in theoretical sociology only implicitly concerned with the role of dynamic processes in modern society, and not explicitly so? Why have sociologists, and especially theoretical sociologists, refrained from investigating explicitly the nature of the dynamic processes that are at the core of modern societies? Two possible reasons immediately come to mind: that most sociologists have not dedicated sufficient attention to their discipline’s location in the field of tensions between science and ideology, and that sociologists refuse to recognize the analytical power of dialectical approaches to the study of core sociological concerns.

DYNAMIC THEORIZING BETWEEN SCIENCE AND IDEOLOGY First, dynamic theorizing requires a degree of recognition, and a willingness to confront ‘‘reality’’ that it would not occur to most social scientists is either possible or necessary, for each of the social sciences to take steps toward actualizing the purposes that are posed by their subject matter, respectively. This problem is most evident in economics as a mainstream

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discipline. Its proponents are less concerned with doing justice to the nature of economic processes, and especially the gravity they exert in modern societies, on politics, culture, and society. Rather, mainstream economists are preoccupied with refining frameworks and tools that bear the stamp of legitimacy and respectability, within the confines of their discipline. The question of whether or not those frameworks and tools relate directly to processes in modern societies is not only part of their professional concerns. Instead, it is largely immaterial, since reaffirming the boundaries and analytical imperatives of economics as an established and increasingly powerful discipline is a precondition of membership in an exclusive club whose importance and legitimacy is widely recognized, and rarely closely examined. In this sense, economics is an example and illustration par excellence for the day-to-day operations and practices of science verging on ideology (in the sense of moral, intellectual, or political frameworks whose basic assumptions and relationship to legitimating claims must not be identified, and especially not questioned), and of always being in danger of turning into an ideology. The growing centrality of rational-choice approaches in political science, especially in the United States, is another example of a social science discipline being less concerned with doing justice to the specific nature of its subject matter (not to mention its dynamic characteristics) than with predetermining ways of viewing the latter, so as to reinforce, enhance, and amplify the legitimacy of disciplinary practices that are presumed to be key to the recognition of political science within academia and in society as a ‘‘true’’ (social) science. From within the perimeter of political science as a social science, questions related to delineating its mission that reach beyond the ‘‘theoretical consensus’’ based in the rational-choice paradigm by definition place them outside of legitimate scientific discourse, even and especially if they will lead to a higher degree of correspondence between the tools and theories employed, and the nature of political processes in the world today, most importantly where their problematic features are difficult or impossible to deny. Another dimension of science as ideology is that the matters that may be most central to ensuring the practical relevance of a social science discipline may also be the most neglected, or their consideration the most resisted. For instance, consistent effort to facilitate movement toward the political process relying to a greater degree on modes of participation that are consistent with the kinds of democratic principles politicians keep referring to and conjuring up – along with consideration of the kind of educational priorities that would have to inform such movement – ironically is not among the responsibilities that

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mainstream political scientists would be concerned with, except at the most superficial level, and in ways that are confined to electoral politics and behavior. Sociologists, too, tend to be preoccupied with problems that tend to be endemic to the discipline, reflect prevailing ideology (in fact, a set of ideologies and combinations thereof), are indicative of an insufficiently clarified assessment of and relationship to the constitutional necessities and inner logic of modern societies (especially where both are counterintuitive and in tension with everyday’s life assumptions), and are based on hypothetical scenarios. An example for the latter is the prevalence of constructing research questions as follows: How would we analyze specific features of social life if we were justified in assuming that progress continues, that the possibility (nay, likelihood) of qualitative change and transformations persists, or that democracy is a dominant feature in modern societies? Just as it is not a component of disciplinary practices in economics and political science to reaffirm continuously that social scientists ask questions and pursue answers that are both relevant and urgent, so, too, is it not part of the ongoing activity of sociologists – as members of the discipline – to ensure that the most important problems in modern society provide guidance for endeavors in social research and social theorizing. If sociologists were to recognize the importance of making reflexivity regarding the mission and responsibility of sociology an integral component of the discipline, and to address them directly and explicitly, the resulting practices should engender questions, insights, and approaches that might be conducive to triggering the kinds of leaps in enlightenment and critical reflexivity that are essential to lasting increases in the overall rationality of human affairs. To be sure, an important qualification is called for, regarding all three examples. Despite the overwhelming force exerted by mainstream approaches whose spectrum of recognized theoretical and methodological approaches is narrow, even disciplines such as economics and political science are not in fact monolithic. Rather, they allow for and tolerate dissident approaches that fulfill a multiplicity of roles that cannot and should not be reduced to any one function or to a small set of functions. The purpose of the above illustrations, however, was not to suggest that the renderings provide adequate or sufficient representations and characterizations of the three disciplines but instead to caution against three common assumptions: first, that the preoccupations of social scientists are bound, or even likely, to relate directly to what their discipline is best equipped to tackle and resolve; second, that the work of social scientists is conducive to illuminating the issues that matter

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most in actually existing societies; and third, that because representatives of a particular discipline appear to be concerned with issues of change and dynamic processes, their approach to translating their concern into disciplinary practice is also necessarily the most effective.

DIALECTICAL THEORIZING The second reason why sociologists continue to refrain from making explicit the discipline’s promise to theorize the nature of dynamic social processes in modern society pertains to the fact that there has been a long history of questioning or rejecting the respectability and compatibility with rigorous social science practice and standards of one particular, and particularly promising, kind of related effort: dialectical theory. Dialectical theories as they are grounded in the writings of Hegel, and especially of Marx, constitute the most explicit efforts to date to engender the kind of thought processes that foster appreciation of the dynamic nature of modern society. Such thought processes – mental executions related to specific challenges that are ‘‘dictated,’’ as it were, by the subject matter rather than by interpretive frames prejudged to deserve primacy over the subject matter – must be viewed as a precondition for conceiving the possibility that one or several specific dynamics are at work whose discernment requires focused efforts of one or several different kinds. Dialectical approaches provide a model for how an orientation toward dynamic approaches, if their importance were to be recognized explicitly, should increase the likelihood that disciplinary practices will become more compatible with greater acceptance and appreciation of the kind of critical reflexivity that decreases the ease with which individual sociologists restrict themselves to concerns that are being condoned in terms of professionalism, but whose futility often is in plain view. Dialectical theorizing is about developing fully the implications resulting from the centrality of contradictions to human affairs generally, and to modern society particularly. If applied to concrete societal conditions, and pursued explicitly and according to its inner logic, dialectical theorizing is bound to conflict with existing and persistent political and economic forms of power, as the latter rely to a large extent on the more or less expansive inability and unwillingness of members of society to look through the veil of illusions for which different and often conflicting and mutually exclusive forms of ideology provide the scaffolding. Dialectical theorizing is closer to positing that contradictions are the core of modern societies, and that

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concrete forms of life in politics, culture, economics, and society to a large extent are functions of the contradictions that protect and sustain modern societies as actually existing societies, in their specificity. Furthermore, dialectical theorizing neither can be understood on its own terms nor it is compatible with ‘‘common sense’’ assumptions and perspectives, because it is oriented toward disentangling the web of discrepancies between claims, expectations, hopes, framing devices, belief systems, manipulative practices, distortions, and purported explanations of human existence in modern societies, along with barriers to qualitative social change, the actualizing of principles that are supposed to orient human action, both at the individual and at the collective level. For instance, what is regarded as either reasonable or rational, or both, within established interpretive contexts that support, solidify, and protect the integrity of what generally is referred to as ‘‘everyday life’’ is that which dialectical theorists endeavor to illuminate – as a necessary precondition for engendering greater appreciation for the dynamic structure of the world of which we – each of us – are basic components and for sensitivity to the multifarious patterns that sustain concrete forms of social life. Yet, while dialectical approaches are necessary, and a superb starting point for confronting and theorizing the modern world, they are not sufficient – for the modern world as it has been both unfolding and unraveling since the last quarter of the twentieth century and no longer can be interpreted with the kind of confidence that appeared justified until the 1970s. Until that time, most social scientists viewed development in modern societies as adhering to a transhistorical process of civilizational ‘‘evolution’’ – as humanity working out and overcoming its problems and deficiencies, and thus, as lending itself to being interpreted in terms of continuous efforts to attain ever higher levels of persistent progress and qualitative achievements – human ‘‘perfectibility.’’ Social scientists tended to see progress and achievements applying especially to the ability of humanity to conduct its affairs on Earth in a manner that is increasingly consistent with shared values inspired by notions of justice and inequality, and with economic and ecological long-term sustainability. In the present context, such views of human civilization being synonymous with progress and achievement no longer appear to be justified – at least not without reliance on related contributions provided by more or less radical perspectives on human history. Viewed within this larger context, the task of sociology would be to tackle the study of societal reality more effectively – a reality that, paradoxically, does not ‘‘want’’ to be tackled (which is not surprising, since few conditions

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willingly acknowledge, reveal, or betray their defining features), but that actively resists being tackled, by actors at all levels of social organization posing, and relying on, impediments to the principles governing reality becoming accessible and visible. At its core, the social world, along with most of its members and forms of organizations, does not ‘‘want’’ to achieve the kind of enlightenment, including especially self-enlightenment, that would lead to expectations of both qualitative and lasting improvements of self and of social forms – in traditional as well as modern societies. Instead, many forms of social life continue to be characterized by a strong impetus to avoid improvements, to stay exactly as they are, and to continue to survive in their present condition – while continuously growing in size, without rhyme or reason, even if adherence to this pattern in the end will undercut the continuity of growth, threaten the forms’ very existence, and necessitate more or less profound changes in their inner constitution, respectively. The most conspicuous example of such forms of social life is likely to be the social structure that is characteristic of modern societies itself.

MODERN SOCIETY AS CAPITALIST SOCIETY The following questions illustrate the kinds of concerns that guide an analytical interest in dynamics: What makes processes dynamic? What does it take to grasp dynamic processes? Why is it so difficult to grasp dynamic processes? What does it take to understand the nature of dynamic processes in general and the nature of specific dynamic processes? What is the role of dynamic processes in social life and reality? And, finally, what is the role of dynamic processes to sociology and social theory? Trying to answer – or rather, address – any of these questions in the abstract, independently of specific concerns, contexts, and configurations, rightfully would appear to be overwhelmingly daunting. Yet, ironically, in modern society, there is a set of categories that instantaneously provide the above questions with very concrete content. This is even truer if we keep in mind that the single most important incentive for working toward the development of dynamic frameworks may be the reduction of the ubiquitous discrepancies between categories employed for purposes of social research and social theorizing, and the categories that would be required for the attainment of success. The most conspicuous example of such a discrepancy between categories employed and categories required may be

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the centrality of economic processes to forms of societal life in modern society. Keeping in mind that to theorize dynamically is contingent on refraining from subscribing to dominant ideology, from indulging in common sense, and from accommodating in spirit existing conditions, the role of the economy in modern societies presents a most unique set of challenges. De facto, modern societies are capitalist societies – societies in which the pursuit of economic value takes precedence over all other values. Yet many sociologists prefer to ignore the fact that this is the case. Instead, many sociologists analyze forms of social life and social processes as if they could be understood, as it were, on their own terms, as expressive not of anything outside of them, as revealing their underlying logic with the passing of time. Along such lines, forms and incarnations of collective action, political and economic organization, family structure, or democratic participation have been approached as if they could be analyzed on their own terms, as revealing progressively the underlying truth of their nature, without the need to examine whether and to what degree what appears as their nature, in fact may be the more or less mediated product, expression, or reflection of dynamic processes in other areas of social life. As scores of sociologists and political economists concerned with illuminating the centrality of economic processes to modern social life have demonstrated over and over again, in modern societies as capitalist societies, those processes either tend to be economic in nature or strongly influenced by economic processes of which modulating forms of economic organization, shifts in labor relations, scales of production, and scopes of trade are variable expressions. Acknowledging the gravity exerted by economic processes thus would not appear to be a matter of choice or preference, but forced on all and everything by their underlying logic, including the diversity of social research approaches. The history of the last century provides ample evidence of the accelerating movement toward modulating all forms of social life to economic wavelengths. The apparent fact – frequently cited by sociologists who reject the notion that modern societies are capitalist societies above all – that not all decisions and assessments of worth occur in terms of economic value, and that there continue to be differences in quantity and kind across diverse societies, however, could also be expressive of the kinds of dynamics that must be heeded in some societies, but not in others. Examples for the latter would be that in some societies, the rampant economism that is being regarded as normal might be positively destructive in others societies, thus revealing a need for forms of mediation between economy, the state, and society that is necessary in some contexts, and

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revealing, for instance, that resistance to corporate capitalism may not have to be futile. Suppose, for the sake of the argument, that conceiving of modern society as capitalist is more appropriate than not. Would this suggest, then, that the task of sociologists would entail responsibility to comprehend the nature of economic process in modern society? Assuming that economists had met their disciplinary responsibility and illuminated effectively the inner logic of the economic system, and concurrent economic processes, there would be no need for sociologists to strive to attain a thorough understanding of the economic process in capitalism and modern society, along with various sublogics of more specific processes. However, if the earlier supposition is correct that economists are even less likely than sociologists to consider the possibility that their discipline is oriented toward studying dynamic processes with the tools and on the basis of static analysis as it is oriented toward the study of order, then representations of economic process in economics would have to be regarded as inherently flawed, thus imposing the need on sociologists to concern themselves with the intricacies of the larger economic process, as it impacts forms of social life, along with more specific economic processes, and their impact. Moreover, sociologists also would have to be concerned with the possibility that the larger process, along with the more specific processes, are not constant, but instead, prone to the kind of continuous reconfiguration that is typical of the process Schumpeter referred to as ‘‘creative destruction.’’ As mentioned earlier, modern society runs in a manner that does not want to be understood, and which to understand requires a major effort, both quantitatively and quantitatively. It is here that the tradition of critical theory is especially relevant and useful, as it is concerned directly with analytical challenges related to the fact that efforts to grasp the nature of modern society that are consistent to varying degrees with diverse kinds of ideology modern society condones and relies on are doomed from the outset.

DYNAMIC THEORY AND CRITICAL THEORY Given the reliance on dialectics among the members of the first generation of the critical theorists of the Frankfurt School, it would be both justified and effective to rewrite the history of the writings of such theorists as Max Horkheimer, Herbert Marcuse, and especially Theodor W. Adorno, as centered around concerns that are well-understood as part of a sustained effort to theorize modern societies and their contradictory nature as a set of

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conflicting dynamic processes. Especially, the critical theorists’ disenchantment with the proletariat as the ‘‘subject of history’’ during the 1930s and 1940s, in light of German National Socialism, Soviet Stalinism, and the spread of the culture industry in the United States, was conducive to reconfiguring dialectics not as a framework for demonstrating the growing capacity of human civilization to move beyond itself but as the venue of choice for identifying and tackling the deepening tendencies toward the most profound achievements of humanity being and becoming increasingly perverted. The early critical theorists largely abandoned the commitment to socialism and radical democracy that had inspired Marx and many of his followers. This reluctance culminated in the project to which Adorno dedicated his life’s efforts, ‘‘negative dialectics.’’ Limitations in approaches and disciplinary practices that refrain from confronting explicitly the dynamic nature of modern society, and implications for sociological analysis and especially for standards of theorizing, have been the theme par excellence of critical theory as an interdisciplinary program whose early circle around Horkheimer was concerned with expanding on the links between philosophy, psychology, economics, culture, politics, and concrete forms of social life – as an explicitly stated, theoretically oriented social research project oriented toward grasping the brittle and resistant character of modern society in the twentieth century. For purposes of illustration, and to conclude this sketch, I will refer to perhaps the most relevant set of theoretical moves the critical theory of the Frankfurt School represents. To work toward the most sophisticated theoretically informed understanding of change in capitalism, critical theory began as the program of tracking the costs society must pay on a continual basis, to sustain the possibility of wealth expansion. If Adam Smith and David Ricardo, along with classical and neoclassical economic theorists, were inspired by the idea that it is possible to identify systematically and to formulate rigorously what kinds of social and political conditions will have to be maintained in order for market economies to be able to function and to grow, then the history of sociology began as efforts to delineate a framework and set of analytical tools that make it possible to assess the price individuals and collective actors, mediated through organizations and institutions, in modern societies must pay to continue the path outlined in Smith’s Wealth of Nations (1952 [1776]). While Marx was far from seeing himself as oriented toward sociology, his inclusion among the classics of the discipline must be understood as the acknowledgment that he laid out explicitly in the program that become central to sociology, in however mediated ways: that sociology is about ongoing efforts to assess what

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members of modern societies have to pay to participate in a social system whose overarching imperatives are directed at increasing prosperity by facilitating the ever more effective pursuit of profits – by individuals (or, according to the U.S. legal system, by corporations treated as individuals). While this program was easily discerned in both Durkheim and Weber, without an agenda directed at radical social transformation, among the early critical theorists, it was the driving force. The resulting set of theoretical moves pertains to the changing focal point of critique. Since the critical theorists did not aspire to being economically sophisticated (Dahms, 2000), and since, in their view, there is no direct link between attaining a sophisticated understanding and appreciation of what might be thought of as the evolving inner logic of market economies, their concern was directed at the effects of that logic in politics, culture, and society. The foundation for the latter had been provided by the early Marx’s critique of alienation (1964 [1843–1844]), and his later critique of commodity fetishism (1967 [1867]), reflecting, in a sense, the growing integration of markets, the increasing scale of organizations, and the ever more clearly discerned impact on society, at the time especially in England. This critique was reformulated by Georg Luka´cs in the early twentieth century, with Central Europe providing the ‘‘empirical’’ reference frame, in terms of reification (1971 [1923]) as the focal point of the manifestations of bureaucratic capitalism in society. In the context of the World War II, while living in the United States, Horkheimer and Adorno reconstructed and radicalized the earlier critiques of alienation, commodity fetishism, and reification, as a critique of instrumental reason (2002 [1944]), demonstrating how during the civilizing process, thought itself became a function of the (economic) struggle for survival. Adorno’s references to identity thinking starting in the late 1950s constitutes the pinnacle of this line of critiques, to date, as his theory is, without doubt, an ultimate achievement in terms of reflecting rigorously on the tensions and contradictions between individual and society, norms and facts, and ideas and reality. Habermas’s subsequent effort to continue the lines of critical-theoretical critiques – his critique of functionalist reason (1983, 1987 [1981]) – and especially Honneth’s critique of recognition relations (1995 [1992]), in certain regards represents the most recent incarnations of the focal point of critique, while also reflecting a different historical context, different theoretical agendas, and a different attitude toward the place of social science in relation to the larger sociohistorical context, with definite implications for assessments of everyday life (or, to use Habermas’s preferred concept – in allusion to the Husserl–Schu¨tz–Luckmann tradition, ‘‘life world’’).

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This succession of critique illustrates the need for dynamic theorizing in societies with more or less integrated market economies – in capitalism – in a compelling way. Modern society represents a reference frame in which theoretical efforts to circumscribe its nature are burdened by the fact that the imperatives of order and the constitutional logic relating to stability continuously adjust to a material foundation that produces instability, crises, shifts in the basis of making a living and related lifestyles, and ever greater tension between representations of reality that are meant to meaningfully illuminate the contexts in which individual and collective actors strive to make choices and decisions. This reference frame, or force field, however, cannot be illuminated or explained on the basis of tools and concepts that were developed with reference to a social world that was assumed to have been significantly simpler and straightforward – despite obvious and daunting complexities and related analytical challenges – than the social world of the twentieth century, and even more so, the twenty-first century.

WHAT’S NEXT? Tackling effectively the dynamic nature of modern society is especially important in context of globalization. There is an imminent need to step away from, and thematize critically, common sense assumptions and established views of the nature of the relationship between institutions and ‘‘value spheres’’ (to use Weber’s concept), especially the relationship between economy and society. In this effort, it is essential that we reassess the thrust and contributions of theories that were developed during the last two centuries, and their value for dynamic theorizing. One necessary first step will be the reassessment of Adorno’s negative dialectics (1973 [1966]), viewed in connection to concrete conditions today, and burdens they impose on efforts both theoretical and analytical, to illuminate the workings of the world today. Another necessary step will be to examine how it came to be that Lester Ward, who explicitly outlined the program of dynamic sociology (1883), became a nonentity among professional sociologists, during the twentieth century. One final word is necessary about the capacity of dynamic theorizing to resolve dilemmas, tensions, and flaws with regard to grasping process and its importance in and to modern society. Academic discourse in the social sciences generally, and in sociology especially, encourages the employment of argumentative devices that suggest that new approaches have the power to solve myriad problems that have burdened the ability of this or that

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discipline from the start, or for many years. On the one hand, it is easy to fall into the trap of ascribing far too great a potential to a new paradigm to resolve persistent deficits and problems. On the other hand, unless we are satisfied with the contributions the existing approaches basic to a discipline make to social life, it is difficult, for the sake of illustrating the kind of promise a novel approach either entails or is intended to entail, not to overstate its power to elucidate, illuminate, and enhance the efforts adherents of the discipline make, or claim to make. It is more likely than not that the patterns, practices, imperatives (professional and otherwise), and kinds of mind-set that derailed or impaired earlier efforts to making explicit and actualizing the promise of a particular discipline are likely to derail or prevent the program of dynamic theorizing as well, however sincere the related efforts, and however determined its proponents. Still, if the shift from implicitly static endeavors to grasp the role and nature of change and process in modern societies to an explicitly dynamic program for social research is justified, the possibility, in principle, of a greater degree of success must not be precluded.

REFERENCES Adorno, Th. W. (1973 [1966]). Negative dialectics. (E. B. Ashton, Trans.). New York: Seabury Press. Alexander, J. C., Giesen, B., M+unch, R., & Smelser, N. J. (1987). The micro-macro link. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. Berger, P. L., & Luckmann, Th. (1966). The social construction of reality. Garden City, NY: Doubleday. Dahms, H. F. (2000). The early Frankfurt school critique of capitalism: Critical theory between Pollock’s ‘state capitalism’ and the critique of instrumental reason. In: P. Koslowski (Ed.), The theory of capitalism in the German economic tradition (pp. 309–361). Berlin: Springer. Dahms, H. F. (2005). Globalization or hyper-alienation? Critiques of traditional Marxism as arguments for basic income. Social Theory as Politics in Knowledge (Current Perspectives in Social Theory), 23, 205–276. Gardiner, M. E. (2000). Critiques of everyday life. New York: Routledge. Habermas, J. (1983, 1987 [1981]). The theory of communicative action (T. McCarthy, Trans.). Boston: Beacon Press. Hazelrigg, L. E. (1991). The problem of micro-macro linkages: Rethinking questions of the individual, social structure, and autonomy of action. Current Perspectives in Social Theory, 11, 229–254. Honneth, A. (1995 [1992]). The struggle for recognition: The moral grammar of social conflicts. (J. Anderson, Trans.). Cambridge, MA: Polity Press.

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Horkheimer, M., & Adorno, Th. W. (2002 [1944]). In: G. S. Noerr (Ed.), Dialectic of enlightenment: Philosophical fragments (E. Jephcott, Trans.). Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Lefebvre, H. (1991). Critique of everyday life. (J. Moore, & G. Elliott, Trans.). London, NY: Verso. Luka´cs, G. (1971 [1923]). History and class consciousness: Studies in Marxist dialectics. (R. Livingstone, Trans.). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Manders, D. W. (2003). The hegemony of common sense: Wisdom and mystification in everyday life. New York: Peter Lang. Marx, K. (1964 [1843–1844]). Economic and philosophic manuscripts of 1844. Edited with an Introduction by Dirk J. Struik. (M. Milligan, Trans.). New York: International Publishers. Marx, K. (1967 [1867]). Capital: A critique of political economy. Edited by Frederick Engels. New York: International Publishers. Rafferty, E. C. (2003). Apostle of human progress: Lester Frank Ward and American political thought, 1841–1913. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. Smith, A. (1952 [1776]). An inquiry into the nature and causes of the wealth of nations. Chicago: Encyclopedia Britannica. Ward, L. F. (1883). Dynamic sociology, or applied social science, as based upon statical sociology and the less complex sciences. New York: D. Appleton and Company.

HISTORY AND THE ‘‘PROCESSING’’ OF CLASS IN SOCIAL THEORY Joseph Maslen INTRODUCTION Despite the theoretical shortcomings of recent historical work on social processes, the historical discipline has a role to play in the theorization of social dynamics. As the work of the late sociologist Charles Tilly (2008, p. 9) has emphasized, the larger-scale theoretical type of social-process analysis may benefit from a more small-scale historical awareness of ‘‘the influence of particular times and places.’’ In Tilly’s view, the sociological accounts of social processes that lack the sense of temporal transitions which characterizes historical analysis will ‘‘rarely identify the component mechanisms, much less their combinations and sequences.’’ By contrast, a historical approach to the ‘‘big structures, large processes, huge comparisons’’ (see Tilly, 1984) of social processes may put forward an analytical program that ‘‘couples a search for mechanisms of very general scope with arguments that [y] lend themselves to ‘local theory,’ in which the explanatory mechanisms and processes operate quite broadly but combine locally as a function of initial conditions and adjacent processes to produce distinctive trajectories and outcomes.’’ These local elements of history may aggregate together into a more general pattern of theory: ‘‘Mechanisms compound into processes: combinations and sequences of mechanisms that produce some specified outcome at a larger scale than any single

Theorizing the Dynamics of Social Processes Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Volume 27, 101–121 Copyright r 2010 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited All rights of reproduction in any form reserved ISSN: 0278-1204/doi:10.1108/S0278-1204(2010)0000027007

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mechanism.’’ The temporal dimension of a historical analysis has a capacity to theorize social processes by telling a story of beginnings that carry forward into points of culmination. In particular, a historical theorization of the dynamics of social class may interrelate microprocesses with an overall process. Such an approach has the capacity to look not only at the actual dynamics of social inequality but also at the relationship between the large- and small-scale processes of social thought about those dynamics. The story of social thought over time may be viewed less as the passive reception of the changing realities of social forms than as the active formulation of responses that successively project a series of new images of society. Attention may be concentrated not directly on the events of recent decades in their chronological details or through their scholarly politics, but rather on the underlying relationship between historical moments and theoretical innovations. This historical–theoretical approach offers a promising trajectory for analysis about the way in which conceptual development comes about through intellectual transactions. Though its cue comes from recent histories which might be seen to offer little in the way of theoretical advancement, a historical analysis may be employed to locate moments that provide inspiration for the retheorization of social concepts. Such an approach moves beyond an insular historical world in which scholars have merely debated with other scholars and, by way of a genealogical theory of processes, treats its dynamics as integral elements of the more expansive theoretical world of conceptualization that produces insights in social thought. Unhelpfully, the analysis of social class in the historical discipline has recently become fixated on a misguided opposition between the connection of past with present and the disaggregation of each from the other. The work of the socialist historians Geoff Eley and Keith Nield, whose thinking has returned to the field throughout their careers and most recently in The Future of Class in History: What’s Left of the Social? (2007), takes the first of the two positions. Their introductory paragraph formulates their agenda as a negotiation between the past and the present: ‘‘We want to offer means, if not of synthesis, then of productive and continuing conversation.’’ Explicitly quoting their main antagonist, the feminist historian Joan W. Scott (2000), their introduction emphasizes the compatibility of the more novel approaches with those of their earlier work: ‘‘We know, of course, that ‘the questions we have to ask now are necessarily different from those we asked in the 1970s.’ [y] But there is still room, we think, for constructive interchange – fruitful traffic, as we shall call it – with social history’s earlier, more structuralist register of analysis’’ (Eley & Nield, 2007, pp. 12–13).

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In this context, post-structuralism denotes the manner in which the interventions of methodologically radical historians such as Scott have questioned the place of class in historical analysis. The Future of Class in History arrived as an extended version of a 1993 conference paper that, in 2000, became part of a new ‘‘Scholarly Controversy’’ in the journal International Labor and Working-Class History. That earlier article, ‘‘Farewell to the Working Class?’’ (Eley & Nield, 2000), elicited a reply in the same issue from Scott, ‘‘The ‘Class’ We Have Lost’’ (2000), in which she criticized Eley and Nield’s position despite sharing their reservations about any departure from the ‘‘collective imagery’’ of ‘‘politics and agency.’’ Her response took aim at Eley and Nield’s (2000, p. 3) corollary, which followed the socialist social philosopher Andre´ Gorz’s end-of-work thesis in Farewell to the Working Class (1980), that historical approaches to class should return to ‘‘the mass or the ordinary majority of workers.’’ In Scott’s (2000, p. 73) view, Eley and Nield’s intellectual project involved a misconceived attachment to a worn-out heritage: ‘‘It’s as if the political mission of historians on the Left has become the preservation of the worlds (of social history, working class movements, and class analysis) we have lost.’’ Instead, Scott’s commentary invoked the political theorist-turned-social historian Peter Laslett’s distinction between industrial and preindustrial society in The World We Have Lost (1965). According to her counter-thesis, Eley and Nield’s campaign to bring the past back together with the present has overlooked the recent transition to a transindustrial society beyond the bygone eras from which the older theories once emerged. Admittedly, the historical emphasis on the discontinuity between past and present does have an explicit theoretical drive. Scott’s approach seeks an entirely new paradigm. Instead of asking, ‘‘What possible meanings remain for class as an operative political category capable of moving masses of people into agency? and, How might class still be approached as a structural attribute of societies and an essential means of grasping inequalities of distribution?’’, her inquiry asks: ‘‘What are the operative political categories capable of moving masses of people into agency? and, What terms might be used to represent inequalities of distribution?’’ In her view, class should be decentered: ‘‘These questions don’t exclude class, but they don’t require it either’’ (Scott, 2000, p. 72). Behind this imperative sits the sense that classbased interpretations, having spread from a particular location in the global north and west in the postwar world, may not speak to the contemporary globalized world in which the social mapping that took shape in the old world order has begun to decline in relevance. Scott’s work arises from a postcolonial school of thought that has sought to move beyond the colonial

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past, and extends its spirit of iconoclasm to the conceptual imperialism that the work of other postcolonial historians has left largely intact. However, the historical theorization of social class calls for a more complex understanding of the transitions between different paradigms of social thought over time. This purpose tallies with the political theorist Chantal Mouffe’s description of the methods of the Italian political philosopher Antonio Gramsci (1891–1937), who wrote under imprisonment by the fascist regime of the 1930s: ‘‘The objective of ideological struggle is not to reject the system and all its elements but to rearticulate it, to break it down to its basic elements and then to sift through past conceptions to see which ones, with some changes of content, can serve to express the new situation’’ (Mouffe, 1981, p. 230). The process of breaking down class without dispensing with the concept will involve a historical analysis of the discontinuities that recreated class by rupturing the concept in various ways. As the analysis of the sociologist and cultural theorist Stuart Hall (1981a, p. 19) has emphasized, concepts change in fruitful ways when points of tension lead to openings for epistemological change: ‘‘What is important are the significant breaks – where old lines of thought are disrupted, older constellations displaced, and elements, old and new, are regrouped around a different set of premises and themes.’’ In Hall’s view, the momentary processes of theoretical change have a historical origin which should be noted: ‘‘Such shifts in perspective reflect, not only the results of an internal intellectual labor, but the manner in which real historical developments and transformations are appropriated in thought, and provide Thought, not with its guarantee of ‘correctness’ but with its fundamental orientations, its conditions of existence.’’ Noting the relationship between historical moments and theoretical innovations shows the possibilities of social thought that may be hidden by an exclusive focus on the times in which we now live: ‘‘It is because of this complex articulation between thinking and historical reality, reflected in the social categories of thought, and the continuous dialectic between ‘knowledge’ and ‘power,’ that the breaks are worth recording.’’ Hall’s last point comes back to the idea of finding ‘‘past conceptions’’ which ‘‘can serve to express the new situation’’: a historical theorization that coordinates the past productively with the present while addressing the changed situation of the contemporary world. This historical–theoretical mode of analysis follows the prescription to historicize social class, but meanwhile challenges the premise that the present should always eclipse the past in the theorization of social dynamics. Going back to an earlier cross-disciplinary flux, which came to pass in the late twentieth century, shows that the concept of class took forms that arose

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productively through tensions and connections in, between, and across the disciplines of history, literature, cultural studies, and sociology. By the turn of the 1980s, amid the left’s fears about the emergence of the New Right, dominant accounts of popular culture seemed to be attacking the future of class as a force for social change. Earlier, in the modernizing 1960s and 1970s, historical analysis had produced a cultural definition of class as a dynamic of events through which the world could be reconstructed. Looking beyond the later objections, that earlier mode of analysis did, after all, possess a potential for an alternative conception of class with a radical relevance for the present: a conception that focuses less on the social conflict among the hierarchical spectrum of occupational blocs within society than on the discursive struggle to confer and assume social positions along that spectrum. The revivification of class began to move along those alternate lines in a marginal strand of sociological cultural studies from the middle of the 1970s. A point of conflict with the dominant line of debate had led to a more expansive agenda for the theorization of social dynamics, as the concept of class took a different type of form that engaged with people’s endeavors to construct meaningful life histories in relation to their socioeconomic locations. Through a particular approach to the notion of respectability – the sense of social worth that figures centrally in the processes of social ordering in the industrialized and postindustrial social worlds of today – this redefinition of class gets to the heart of their impenetrable sense of social order.

PART ONE: FORMATION Class came to be redefined as a social dynamic through the process of intellectual innovation that shaped cultural studies as an academic discipline. From the mid-1960s onwards, cultural studies grew at a specific location – the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies (CCCS) at the University of Birmingham – which adopted the social process of class struggle as one of its focal points as a justification for, and a reflection of, its intellectual process of disciplinary resistance. At the CCCS, class would come to function in conjunction with culture as a field of contestation. In the ‘‘mythologized’’ account of the origins of the Birmingham School (see Jones, 1994, p. 396), the Centre took its cue from two influential works of literary criticism which had explored the history of literary cultures in the late 1950s: Richard Hoggart’s The Uses of Literacy: Aspects of Working-Class Life, with Special Reference to Publications and

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Entertainments (1957) and Raymond Williams’ Culture and Society, 1780– 1950 (1958). These works appeared in consecutive years, though not as part of a coordinated maneuver. The two writers knew each other only through correspondence and publications, and Williams’ study, which emerged outside the CCCS, shared neither Hoggart’s investment in the concept of cultural studies nor his emphasis on a discrete culture of working-class life. Rather, the shared element of their agenda arose in response to a conservative concept of a cultural vanguard (even though, in that conservative strain of thought, that vanguard did not have to belong to a particular class) that could act as a bulwark against the degradation of mass civilization; a disciplinary agenda under the sway of which both men had trained as literary critics. In their employment as tutors of literature in the university adult education program of the Workers’ Educational Association (WEA), their working practices oriented their attention toward the creative capacities of workers as a mass. Their sense of looking back on childhoods in industrialized locations (Williams in the agricultural and railway town of Abergavenny in the Welsh borders and Hoggart in the city of Leeds in the textile-producing West Riding region of Yorkshire), along with their status as scholarship boys at Cambridge and Leeds respectively, made their writing sensitive to social snobberies and sympathetic to the collective agency of the larger body of men. Hoggart, who founded the CCCS in 1964, provoked Williams by criticizing the corrosive impact of mass publications on working-class life since the Great War. Though Williams disputed the extent to which such popular texts had aligned the social dynamics of one culture, working-class life, with those of another, capitalist economics, he agreed with Hoggart’s claim that a postwar disposition carried the power to unsettle the older set of attitudes that had preceded ‘‘the assault of the mass Press as it is known today, of the wireless and television, of the ubiquitous cheap cinemas, and so on’’ (Hoggart, 1957, p. 23). Culture and Society (1958, p. 319), following T. S. Eliot’s Notes Towards the Definition of Culture (1948), suggested that the inevitable process of cultural expansion by the ‘‘new rising class’’ had to be understood historically. In Williams’ longue dure´e account of cultural development, the emergent conjuncture had made the definition of culture a social question with a historical possibility. Culture had become a dynamic field of social contestation as a process of class struggle over its definitional meaning had intensified. Out of the radical theorization of the dynamics of social class that drove cultural studies as a new discipline, a process of conceptual reformulation emerged on the fringes of the established discipline of history. The dynamic of culture as a process of struggle provided the basis for the conception of

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class in E. P. Thompson’s The Making of the English Working Class (1963). In its famous preface, class takes place ‘‘as something which in fact happens (and can be shown to have happened) in human relationships.’’ These events necessarily involve a process of social movement: ‘‘If we stop history at a given point, then there are no classes but simply a multitude of individuals with a multitude of experiences.’’ During the passage of time, individuals run together in moments of conflict. Their class exists as a reflex across boundaries ‘‘when some men, as a result of common experiences (inherited or shared), feel and articulate the identity of their interests as between themselves, and as against other men whose interests are different from (and usually opposed to) theirs’’ (Thompson, 1963, pp. 9–11). In the 1960s, this cultural definition of class as a process took shape against the sociology of social stratification studies which theorized classes as static entities with definite patterns of practices that arose from their social location (see Kaye, 1984, p. 232). Arguments that rejected the slipperiness of contingency, such as (later, in the 1970s) the dominant paradigm of the French Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser, appeared to betray a distance from the catastrophes of ‘‘deaths, crises of subsistence, trench warfare, unemployment, inflation, genocide’’ (Thompson, 1978, p. 201). People had not lived statically within their position as a class. Their class consciousness had happened, or not, at specific moments in their lives. In a later interview, Thompson (1924–1993) explained that the Making had arisen in response to ‘‘abbreviated economistic notations of Marxism’’ in which class took place as an industrialized massification: In this tradition the very simplified notion of the creation of the working class was that of a determined process: steam power plus the factory system equals the working class. Some kind of raw material, like peasants ‘‘flocking to factories,’’ was then processed into so many yards of class-conscious proletarians. I was polemicizing against this notion in order to show the existing plebeian consciousness refracted by new experiences in social being, which experiences were handled in cultural ways by the people, thus giving rise to a transformed consciousness. (1976, p. 7)

Looking back from the mid-1970s, Thompson indicates that class as a social process exists paradoxically at times when the static, separate entities that constituted working-class life as a discrete culture have dissolved. In the Making, in Thompson’s recollection, class had stood as a term that represented the productive break from the old dynamics of social experience. The making of the English working class between 1790 and 1832 had emerged out of a process of social disjunction as the scrambling of culture had broken up the settled way of life. Thompson’s explanation spoke retrospectively to the cultural circumstances in the ‘‘moments of modernity’’

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from the late 1950s through to the mid-1960s within which cultural studies emerged as a field of study (see Conekin, Mort, & Waters, 1999). To a greater or lesser extent, the different nations of the old world order had reemerged in the postwar world with their old social processes rearticulated into new dynamics. Through the activities of the younger postwar generation, an array of new elements – such as, intellectually, cultural studies – filled the cultural gaps that the conflict had forged in the social system. The new generation’s retheorization of the dynamics of social class on the fringes of the historical discipline developed further through a process of institutional rebellion against the disciplinary establishment. Thompson’s definition of class as a process of social disruption provided an inspiration for the definition of class in the people’s history movement. The movement developed at Ruskin College, Oxford, which, in one of the cities at the heart of the intellectual establishment in England, independently offered higher education to adults without formal qualifications. Raphael Samuel (1934–1996), a tutor who had attended the Communist Party Historians’ Group as a schoolboy, sought to enable Ruskin students to pursue research about the untidy lives of working-class people through an encounter with the messiness of original sources. The project, History Workshop, encouraged participation in rough discussion workshops with guest speakers, and, as the 1970s progressed and people’s history moved toward the mainstream of the discipline, formal contributions to the History Workshop Pamphlets, the History Workshop Journal, and the Routledge and Kegan Paul History Workshop Series of books. History Workshop had emerged ‘‘in the shadow of respected seniors’’ such as Thompson, a teacher of WEA classes at the University of Leeds, who spoke at one of the early workshops (Samuel, 1981a, p. 414). History Workshop had organized the workshops as a regular series of gatherings, and People’s History and Socialist Theory appeared in the History Workshop Series in 1981 as a compendium of the thirteenth workshop of December 1979. By the turn of the 1980s, History Workshop had become proudly international in its engagement with class in social history (Samuel, 1981b, p. xii). One contribution to the volume came from the French philosopher-historian Jacques Rancie`re (b. 1940), whose insight into the intellectual context of French history writing reaffirmed the cultural definition of class as an unstable dynamic of events. His auxiliary note at the end of his reflections explains that, in nineteenth-century France, ‘‘the social’’ had originally referred to the day-to-day process of class struggle between labor and capital in industrialized society, and ‘‘social history’’ to the ‘‘social movement’’ among historians to understand

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that struggle as the ‘‘social question.’’ His piece concludes by criticizing postwar French social history, which had developed through the innovation of Fernand Braudel’s The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II (1966 [1972 and 1973]; first published 1949), for sidestepping this social question by stopping history to focus on its ‘‘deep conditions’’ of placidity rather than the momentary flux of everyday life, and on ‘‘a permanency and a regulation’’ rather than the contingencies of ‘‘the intentions and the will of the people, and especially of the will of the masses’’ (Rancie`re, 1981, p. 272). In Rancie`re’s view, class had to be seen to exist as the dynamic force through which the world could be further destabilized. The history of class cultures, with its revolutionary subject matter, its source in the archives rather than the landscape, and its focus on the chaos of the people on the ground, had arrived in the 1960s against the grain of the postwar longing for a lost world of quiet continuities. Now, by the turn of the 1980s and through the work of History Workshop, the power of its emphasis on dynamism had reached a peak.

PART TWO: REVERSION Yet, at that point, a process of conservative retheorization across a range of disciplines seemed to be downgrading the dynamic significance of social class. At the turn of the 1980s, among radical scholars, defensive lines against this abatement of the emphasis on flux had already begun to emerge. The work of the Cambridge historian Peter Burke (b. 1937) stands as evidence of a broader fear among his fellow progressive historians that a reactionary cultural turnover had come to obliterate the concept of class as an unsettling process. His Popular Culture in Early Modern Europe had appeared in 1978, and his essay in People’s History and Socialist Theory, ‘‘The ‘Discovery’ of Popular Culture,’’ announces the arrival of a foreign concept which has crossed the border from cultural studies to take the place of class in social history. Burke’s essay, which ostensibly surveys the emergence of the idea of popular culture in the late eighteenth century, reads symptomatically as a contemporary commentary on a smothering of popular disorder, as if the postwar sensibility of peacefulness has revived in a new counterreaction against the disturbing effect of people’s history. Appearing in the ‘‘Cultural Studies’’ section of the book rather than the historical sections, the piece tacitly comments on the rediscovery of popular culture at the time of writing. In this light, its analysis emphasizes the apolitical terrain – cultural studies with the politics left out – on which

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popular culture has surfaced. Burke’s opening paragraphs ascribe the interest in popular culture in the late eighteenth century to ‘‘intellectuals’’ who defined the common people as ‘‘natural, simple, instinctive, irrational, and rooted in the local soil’’ (Burke, 1981, p. 216). Burke’s more elaborate treatment of this point in Popular Culture in Early Modern Europe had implied that, for contemporary cultural studies, a distance from the people obscured a sense of their dynamic potential as a class. His chapter ‘‘The Discovery of the People’’ concludes by suggesting that prevalent studies of popular culture either group ‘‘everyone in a particular country’’ together or, more usually, focus on the inconsequential play of the ‘‘uneducated’’ who have little velocity as a force for social change (Burke, 1978, p. 21). Implicitly, his commentary identifies a dangerous tendency among historians to view the history of popular culture as a cyclical rather than jagged process; as a play of traditions rather than innovations. His concerns ally with Popular Culture: Past and Present, which appeared in 1982 as the Open University’s Set Book for the new interdisciplinary OU course on popular culture. Bernard Waites, Tony Bennett, and Graham Martin, the editors and convenors (and, respectively, a historian, a sociologist, and a literary scholar), had focused deliberately on the late-modern period to bring the dynamics of class back into the center of the account. Their editorship sought to set apart ‘‘the new urban popular culture’’ from ‘‘the demotic culture of a largely rural world,’’ arguing that a new popular culture emerged when ‘‘cultural relationships were fundamentally transformed with the working out of capitalist industrialization during the second and third quarters of the nineteenth century’’ (Waites, Bennett, & Martin, 1982, p. 15). From this point of view, in the context of the left’s fears about the emergence of the New Right, dominant accounts of popular culture seemed to be attacking the future of class as a dynamic force for social change. In and around the left-wing enclaves of the by-now more firmly established discipline of cultural studies, faith in the dynamic significance of social class had begun to stagnate. The definition of culture had come to embody the left’s pessimism about class as a social movement. Culture in this definition, which related to the account of the culture industry in Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer’s Dialectic of Enlightenment (1947 [2002]; first published 1944), referred to an all-enveloping structure of meaning-making that escaped the creative agency of the people. Williams’ return to the theme in Culture (1981, p. 13) provided a definition of culture ‘‘as the signifying system through which necessarily (through any other means) a social order is communicated, reproduced, expanded and explored.’’ Culture featured as a set of articulations that replayed the social

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order in one manner or another. Williams’ list of social processes – communication, reproduction, expansion, exploration – omitted an explicit reference to the possible reversal of the social order in a historical process of social change. The formula tallied with a critical position that recognized the power of the people’s culture in reasserting the existing social order over the people themselves. Burke’s companion piece in the ‘‘Cultural Studies’’ section of People’s History and Socialist Theory, Stuart Hall’s ‘‘Notes on Deconstructing ‘the Popular,’’’ pointed to the limits of the self-fashioning of the working class. In this view, which had come to characterize the Birmingham School, studies in the history and theory of working-class culture should be aware that ‘‘[t]he cultural industries do have the power constantly to rework and reshape what they represent; and, by repetition and selection, to impose and implant such definitions of ourselves as fit more easily the descriptions of the dominant or preferred culture’’ (Hall, 1981b, pp. 232–233). Such a view stemmed from a reading of Gramsci’s concept of hegemony, in which the balance of power between classes creates norms that stabilize that balance (Hall, 1980, p. 35). Culture, ‘‘the common sense or way of life of a particular class, group or social category’’ that built up within that people as a ‘‘complex of ideologies,’’ would always be able to corral the social movement. The effects of a political address could ‘‘only be understood in relation to attitudes and beliefs that are already lived’’ (Johnson, 1979, p. 234). The historical analysis of Patrick Joyce and Gareth Stedman Jones would come to suggest that, far from popular culture breaking the rules of elite culture, the cultural production of the people flowed as part of the wider cultural current in which more powerful forces held the ultimate sway. In Joyce’s social history of the manufacturing industry in Lancashire and the West Riding in the second half of the nineteenth century, the social movement of the working class coalesced with the dominant culture of deference. Whenever hierarchical tensions took the people in the direction of conflict, ‘‘the domination of the large employers’’ could direct their force into the existing channels of pastoral care (Joyce, 1980, p. 163). In this view, the play of symbolic power dictated the bounds of political possibility as the dominant culture penetrated the affective life of the people. Stedman Jones’ analysis of the social movement of Chartism, which appeared in part in 1982 and in full a year later, argued that only a language of class with the potential to ‘‘embed itself in the assumptions of masses of people’’ could recreate a class-conscious working class (Stedman Jones, 1983, p. 96). Stedman Jones’ work took shape as a fundamental challenge to Thompson’s conception of class as a disorganized process. The critic had to be the dynamic force in bringing the working class back into

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being, through the deconstruction of the dominant modes of signification that held class back as a force for radical change. The loss of faith in the dynamics of social class had its roots in the current of skepticism about any realities, positive as well as negative, which had come to animate literary criticism. This redefinition of critical practice registered in the 1980s as part of a crisis of purpose in English studies. The unsettling process of cultural contestation that Williams had invoked in Culture and Society had now become central to the discipline of English literature. Peter Widdowson’s edited collection Re-Reading English, which appeared in the London publisher Methuen’s ‘‘New Accents’’ series in 1982, attacked the concept of the literary canon as ‘‘a given Literature of inherent value’’ that excluded other texts (1982, p. 4). Another book in the series, Catherine Belsey’s Critical Practice, laid out the possibility that literary criticism could critique this construction of culture from beyond ‘‘the position from which the text is most ‘obviously’ intelligible’’ through a practice of rereading (1980, p. 55). In this view, the straightforward approach could be replaced with a constantly moving matrix of pathways that continually refused the commitment to a single standpoint. Robert Young’s introduction to his anthology Untying the Text proposed ‘‘a selfreflexive discourse, which constantly divides itself against itself and transgresses its own systems,’’ and which ‘‘avoids becoming fixed, avoids becoming an established method’’ (1981, p. 7). In other words, its objects would continually change, taking no settled shape. Re-Reading English took this approach to class, with Michael Green’s analysis of the CCCS collapsing class and the people by pointing to the question of ‘‘who or indeed what the ‘popular classes’ in the 1980s might be’’ (1982, p. 89). Peter Brooker’s chapter, ‘‘Post-structuralism, Reading and the Crisis in English,’’ posited the absence of a cultural domain of working-class life by questioning whether English studies could ever ‘‘remove itself by a process of critical reappropriation from within bourgeois ideology.’’ Its philosophical and political position as an independent body would have credibility, perhaps, only through the ‘‘cryptic recipe’’ of the intellectual’s disengagement – insofar as ‘‘it is the political function of the intellectual to know it is possible to constitute a new regime, detaching the power of truth from present hegemonic forms.’’ The intellectual’s anomalous vision could no longer refer reliably to any outside force. The philosophy of Jacques Derrida had affirmed such an attitude, ‘‘offering no guarantees of progressive acceleration and transformation.’’ Instead, Derrida’s ‘‘manoeuvre of displacement, expressed in the series of terms ‘difference,’ ‘trace,’ ‘dissemination,’ etc., appears as a rhetorical evasion of the ‘presence’ which would ground not

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only his own, but all discourse in a reference and object outside itself ’’ (Brooker, 1982, pp. 66–68). In this light, social history would appear to dissolve as the plane on which the social movement of class in history could be carried. Meanwhile, the skeptical approach to realities in literary criticism provoked frustration on the left with its opaque theorization of social processes. The Sociology of Literature movement at the University of Essex viewed the post-structuralist line of thought as a profound challenge to social theory. Its proceedings volume for its 1982 conference, the sixth after its inception in 1976, ‘‘set out to assess the developments in literary theory over the years since the initial conference, with special attention to their political implications’’ (Barker, Hulme, Iversen, & Loxley, 1983, n.p.). Ian H. Birchall’s chapter, ‘‘In Defence of Reductionism,’’ encapsulated the group’s resistance to ‘‘a ‘pessimism of the intelligence’ which offers no strategy for struggle.’’ His contribution stood explicitly for ‘‘a ‘politics of theory’ too often concealed by theoretical discourse itself ’’ (1983, pp. 112, 108). Post-structuralism seemed obdurate in its tendency to depoliticize social theory by clouding social processes in text.

PART THREE: REDIRECTION In the margins of the debates, however, the sociological cultural studies of feminist thought had built another politics of social theory through the concept of class as a social process. This line of approach, which continues in works such as Valerie Walkerdine, Helen Lucey and June Melody’s Growing Up Girl: Psychosocial Explorations of Gender and Class (2001), originated in tensions at the CCCS toward the middle of the 1970s. In October 1974, the Women’s Studies Group had formed as a reaction to the ‘‘masculine domination’’ of the Centre’s research culture (Women’s Studies Group, 1978, p. 11). Whereas the Centre’s predominantly male working groups had focused on working-class men and boys, the Group’s collaborative volume, Women Take Issue: Aspects of Women’s Subordination (1978), turned its attention to women and girls. In particular, Angela McRobbie’s ‘‘Working Class Girls and the Culture of Femininity’’ looked at the contrast not only between working-class boys and working-class girls but also between working-class girls and their middle-class peers. A split between two different languages of gender had constructed the culture of working-class girls, unlike that of middle-class girls, as a private dynamic of ‘‘exclusion, secrecy, and resentment.’’ Their youth, unlike that of

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middle-class girls, segued into their adulthood through the vocabulary of respectability. Whereas middle-class girls could lose their inhibitions in youth without compromising their femininity, working-class girls could lose their ‘‘reputation’’ because of sexual experience outside marriage and be ‘‘branded and later denounced as a ‘whore’ or a ‘tart.’’’ Their lifetimes lacked the breathing space for ‘‘[a] few years spent at college or university where thoughts of marriage are at least temporarily suspended and where sexual experience outside marriage is quite permissible’’ (McRobbie, 1978, p. 107). The microdynamics of social expectation arose out of, and fed back into, the macrodynamic of social hierarchy, as the education system structured the inequalities of access to social resources. These thought processes of feminist theorization brought the macrodynamic of class back to the forefront of social theory through the microdynamics of gender. Twenty years later, Beverley Skeggs’ Formations of Class and Gender, a study of working class women in the North West of England, took respectability as its theme ‘‘to reinstate class in feminist (and) cultural theory’’ (1997, p. 2). Skeggs’ schema echoed Rancie`re’s emphasis on histoire e´ve´nementielle or ‘‘event history.’’ In her view, analyzing working-class respectability through social dynamics meant relating the macroanalysis of sociology with the microanalysis of history. As an underprivileged group, the working-class women in her research had a more intense involvement in the day-to-day dynamics of social position than their social superiors: ‘‘This daily struggle for value was central to their ability to operate in the world and their sense of subjectivity and self-worth’’ (Skeggs, 2004, p. 2). Instead of the macrodynamic of possession over the longue dure´e, the women who felt this sense of struggle lived through the unstable processes of acquisition, maintenance, and loss: ‘‘Respectability is usually the concern of those who are not seen to have it. [y] It would not be something to desire, to prove and to achieve, if it had not been seen to be a property of ‘others,’ those who were valued and legitimated’’ (Skeggs, 1997, p. 1). The historical studies of working-class women, which had appeared in the 1980s and 1990s, had already used the theme of respectability to place the macrodynamic of class in the microdynamics of women’s history. Elizabeth Roberts’ study of working-class women in the same region, Women and Families: An Oral History, 1940–1970, focused on the molecular disintegration of working-class women’s culture in the years after the war. With the fragmentation of their communities, reputable working-class women had severed their social ties with their disreputable peers: ‘‘The respectable feared too close an involvement with neighbors who could in any way be regarded as ‘rough’ or ’common,’ in case this association

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tarnished their own respectability’’ (Roberts, 1995, p. 213). Roberts’ prequel, A Woman’s Place: An Oral History of Working-Class Women, 1850–1940, had gone back to the previous generation to situate this macrodynamic of respectability in the ‘‘working-class culture’’ of girls during their childhoods: ‘‘a complete design for living, and a set of rules to be learned about ‘proper’ behaviour’’ (1984, p. 10). Melanie Tebbutt’s work on the same region, as part of the same informal peer-review network, showed that respectability took shape in the microdynamics of workingclass women’s talk. Their gossip had continually redefined respectability as ‘‘a formative part in the shaping of social values’’ (Tebbutt, 1995, p. 1). Their microdynamics of perception had arisen directly from the microdynamics of respectability in action. Working-class women ‘‘had to request credit from local retailers’’ in the ‘‘female domain’’ which could determine a working-class family’s reputation – credit: ‘‘Position [y] was, after all, judged not only by what one possessed but also by what one pawned’’ (Tebbutt, 1983, p. 47). In Tebbutt’s terms, as well as Roberts’, respectability in working-class culture lay behind the microdynamics of gender as the macrodynamic of class. The all-encompassing nature of class as a macrodynamic suggests a more extensive, yet more intricate, theorization of a range of microdynamics. In Skeggs’ present-centered analysis, its outline stands in the shadow of the full range of social microprocesses: ‘‘Respectability [y] informs how we speak, who we speak to, how we classify others, what we study and how we know who we are (or are not)’’ (Skeggs, 1997, p. 1). The focus turns to the hidden intersections that shape the worldviews of social groups; for example, the ‘‘reciprocal influences’’ of home life and educational praxis in mothers’ involvement in their children’s primary schooling (Reay, 1998, p. 20). The many aspects of inequality may relate not simply through the macrodynamic of possession and deprivation but also qualitatively through microdynamics as, ‘‘(beyond the factor of wealth), even the less obvious signifiers of class such as accent, clothes, housing, style, qualifications or body language have set parameters around our opportunities’’ (Zmroczek & Mahony, 1999, p. 4). In this definition, the micrological structure of qualitatively different inequalities forms a barely visible force field (or simply the ‘‘field’’ in the sociological terminology of Pierre Bourdieu) at the macro level. Its microprocesses feed back into the macrodynamic of class as a multiplicity of small loops. If the macrodynamic of class has arisen out of the hidden microdynamics of respectability at its intersection with gender, then those small-scale processes could play a more general role in the macrodynamic of social hierarchy: ‘‘Respectability contains judgements

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of class, race, gender and sexuality and different groups have differential access to the mechanisms for generating, resisting and displaying respectability’’ (Skeggs, 1997, p. 2). In respectability’s field of small-scale prejudices and inequalities, the social boundaries that take shape in the minor pressures of social expectation in the lives of disadvantaged groups may combine to reinforce the major dynamics of social hierarchy. By reinforcing each other, these cultural circuits generate the more or less impenetrable lockage of social order that characterizes the industrialized and postindustrial societies of today. This feminist theorization of social dynamics that reads gender through the class cultures of lifestyle has suggested a broader way of conceptualizing the processes of social class. Its emphasis on the power of working-class women’s gossip, their informal retelling of other people’s lives over the back wall or at the front door, has viewed the social processes of the working class critically (more than in the socialist thought on the working class) without being dismissive (which the post-structuralist thought on popular culture had threatened to be). Such a focus on the routine patterns of social interaction shows that social hierarchies may lack the organic potential for dynamic change, but they do have the capacity to mobilize. This approach avoids the pessimism of post-structuralist literary studies by turning the weight of post-structuralism against post-structuralism itself. Attention turns from the sociological macrodynamic of class to the microdynamics of its attitudes and, through historical analysis, those inclinations come to lack the status of essential realities. The macroprocess of social order, and life, breaks down into microprocesses through the interplay between patterns of behavior and social circumstances; or, in Bourdieu’s terms, the dynamic interaction between habitus and field which people commonly see in everyday life simply as ‘‘an ‘encounter’ or event, that is as an encounter with an external, objective phenomena’’ that decides and explains their identities (Adkins, 2004, p. 206). People, and societies, carry ingrained patterns from the past. Just as the temporal transition to adulthood cannot erase childhood, so no revolutionary break can discharge the old order. However, the very point that the present tends to repeat the past acknowledges that the patterns that appear to be natural have their roots in the inculcation of routines. In feminism, the focus on the deeply rooted inequalities of gender has led to a search for the politics in the private sides of life. The analysis of the class background of adults shines a light on their upbringings as children, as ‘‘class experience is deeply rooted, retained and carried through life rather than left behind (or below). In this sense it is more like a foot which carries us forward than a footprint which marks a past presence’’

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(Mahony & Zmroczek, 1997, p. 4). The design which shapes lives unfolds not only across all of the different disciplines of life at the moments of self-formation, but also across time as a master narrative all the way along the life course; not only in real time in the actual living of life but also retrospectively in the dynamics of a story that runs over time from beginning to end.

CONCLUSION This historical theorization of the texts and contexts of social class has journeyed through the social dynamics of temporal transitions in particular times and places. Foundational acts of theorization have taken their place as a dynamic element at the beginnings of historical stories. These particular theoretical acts have exerted a dynamic influence that has derived from their small-scale nature in being local, personal, and marginal. The processes of theorization have occurred with an intense focus: being local and marginal, in acts of opposition; and being personal, in breakthrough acts in the emergence of particular theorists of class. At its margins, the theory of class has had a readiness to engage in the process of adaptation. Component mechanisms have compounded into the large-scale outcome of theoretical change. Ideas have circulated through networks of close communication in order to service demand that has developed in small marketplaces of social theory. The small-scale dynamics of interaction between social, cultural, and political processes and historical milieux have combined to produce the large-scale dynamics of theorization. Arguments for, and within, the radical margins of social theory have arisen out of a sense of political urgency. This desire to seize the moment has grown precisely out of the historical awareness of the importance of particular moments in time which has motivated this analysis. In the postwar years in particular, when a power vacuum made the theoretical establishment vulnerable to critique, historically determinant periods had a theoretical resonance. The resumption of world peace after the hiatus of war heralded a global process of change in social theory; global not only because the war took place as a rupture of continuity across far-flung parts of the world but also because the event ultimately reformulated the world order by reorienting the relative size and importance of major and minor forces. The microdynamics of later events, which this analysis has not attempted to cover, stand in the shadows of this analysis as initial conditions behind the later macro changes in modes of theorization. The moment of cultural studies coincided with the Suez

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Crisis of 1959, which symbolized the loss of global political authority by the old imperial powers; and the moment of feminist sociological cultural studies followed the oil crisis of 1973, which fundamentally undermined the economic foundations of the Western way of life. The paradigm shifts that make up the large-scale dynamics of theoretical heritage begin with the small-scale dynamics of innovation in the analyst’s craft. Establishments lose credibility; searching analysis arrives; and insights come to the fore in the acts of theorization that ensue. The historical discipline can play a role in the theorization of social class by explaining the processes of transition between its particular theorizations. Within sociology, the rejection of the historical analysis of class leaves out the dynamic by which the microprocesses of social interaction may interact with the overall process of social change over time. Within history, the fixation on the differentiation between modes of class analysis in the past and present has obscured the possibility of productive rearticulations. The history of social thought about class may inform its future theorization by offering alternatives that have arisen from the difficult transitions between different paradigms over time. The more complex understanding of these transitions sees the limitations of certain views of class while recognizing the germination of useful ideas. This approach challenges the present-day ways of theorizing class not by constructing a tradition of progress but by pinpointing the moments of fracture. The process of intellectual innovation that has produced new points of departure in the analysis of class has led to productive insights. Conceptual reformulation on the margins of social thought about class has generated space for discussion. Through the successive waves of institutional rebellion against the place of class in the established academic disciplines, currents of inspiration have emerged. The conservative retheorization of class, which seemed to be downgrading its dynamic significance at the turn of the 1980s, corresponded with a moment of skepticism. The stagnation of faith in cultural studies took shape as a sure consequence of the perceived breakup of the working-class as a social movement. Its skepticism about any realities of class, positive as well as negative, left room for opposition by laying out an orthodoxy in which no social pattern could correspond with any another. By contrast, the radical theorization of gender, which arrived through the sociological cultural studies of feminist thought, showed the patterns of convergence that have shaped the class cultures of lifestyle. The social dynamics of gender, which turned to class through this trajectory, took as their object of study the actual workings of social expectation on a microscale. Through their historical readings of gender, class comes to be seen less as an intractable

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social order than as an assemblage of social pressures – in Tilly’s terms (2008, p. 10), the ‘‘repertoires of contention’’ in ‘‘people’s forms of [y] claim-making’’ – which may be picked apart, turned inside out, and reformulated in the future.

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DOMINATION, CONTENTION, AND THE NEGOTIATION OF INEQUALITY: A THEORETICAL PROPOSAL Viviane Brachet-Ma´rquez ABSTRACT I propose a theoretical framework that specifies dynamic principles involving the generalized and ubiquitous everyday interaction of society and state actors alternately in upholding and undermining the rules that spell the unequal distribution of power and resources. The framework proposed brings together a historically specific micro-process – contention – with a general macro-principle of permanence and change in the distributive rules – the creation, renegotiation, and occasional destruction of a generally durable yet continuously contested ‘‘pact of domination.’’ Inequality represents simultaneously a central organizing principle of social life and a recurring source of conflict over rights and rules, the latter being the practical rules that govern interaction in specific cases of contention, giving governing agencies the necessary flexibility to act casuistically, giving in here, and throwing its weight there, with new formal rules sometimes following that process, or old ones falling in disuse.

Theorizing the Dynamics of Social Processes Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Volume 27, 123–161 Copyright r 2010 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited All rights of reproduction in any form reserved ISSN: 0278-1204/doi:10.1108/S0278-1204(2010)0000027008

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In this scheme, the state is a historically created organizational and coercive agent embodying and enforcing the currently valid pact, mostly through legal/coercive, but also ideological power over its territory of jurisdiction. State forms are specific to each historically constructed pact of domination, so that there is no such thing as a state in general, but a series of historically constructed states, each with its rules of ‘‘who should get what’’ and peculiar ways of maintaining inequality between dominant and dominated.

Why do people comply unquestioningly, most of the time, with rules that define an unequal distribution of access to power and resources? Inequality is omnipresent and justified in a variety of institutional arenas, from kinship to religion to work environments, so that we are literally trained and retrained every day of our lives, to accept that we will take our places, and take for granted the places of others, in the hierarchy of power and wealth. In doing so, we are also trained to reproduce inequality, enforcing its rules on kin and subalterns, while bowing to the authority of our hierarchical superiors. Yet we do not always comply. We often bicker, temporize, protest, and drag our feet, and sometimes we simulate compliance while quietly sabotaging rules and inventing alternative ones tacitly shared by select groups. We also get into disputes over who owns what or should get what. In such cases, higher authorities are often called in to help settle the dispute: in premodern times, the priests and local lords; today, the police and the courts. And here again, in the process of settling the dispute, inequality may be either reinforced or weakened in the particular instance. In the perspective presented here, inequality is the result of a complex set of interactions taking place between agents1 over time – in other words, a process.2 Inequality is embedded in macro-historical processes, as different regions and nations have acquired, through their history, widely different levels of inequality, and institutional systems maintaining it.3 But it is also present in everyday micro-processes whereby individuals, groups, and collectivities either confirm or question one or another aspect of inequality through their transactions and, in doing so, alternately validate or transgress some rule spelling inequality. These rules are not invariably clearly spelt out, and the authorities enforcing them are not always equipped to impose them. They evolve over time in societies that are never static: people move up and down hierarchy ladders, acquire rather than inherit wealth and status, higher authorities often mediate disputes rather than impose order from above, and courts and cases vary in their interpretation of the law.

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To understand theoretically how inequality is instituted, reproduced, and transformed, we must therefore be able to grasp how these everyday dynamic processes shape their respective societies’ historical trajectories. To express the workings of these dynamic processes, I propose a theoretical framework that brings together contention, a concept designating interactive conflictive micro-/meso-processes, with a general transhistorical process4 of the renegotiation and occasional destruction of a broad set of rules over ‘‘who should get what’’ or pact of domination. In this framework, states5 are continuously engaged in engineering and enforcing rules that spell inequality, but these attempts are also continuously being resisted and renegotiated through contention by societal actors (elite as well as subaltern). In short, inequality is seen as representing simultaneously a central organizing principle of social life and a perennial source of change within society. In order to bring together these two conceptions of conflictive interaction, I draw from two distinct intellectual traditions with no connecting doors between them, and no specific interest in the problem of inequality. One views inequality as generated from above as states conquer territories and dominate their population, whereas the other focuses on everyday conflictive interactive nexi through which people confront each other in the pursuit of what they perceive as their interests. I will briefly review both so as to make clear what aspects will be incorporated in the model proposed.

1. STATE MAKING6 AS CREATING AND ENFORCING INEQUALITY FROM ABOVE Although the 1960s saw the birth of crucial pioneering work in the historical study of state making (Hintze, 1975; Hobsbawm, 1962; Moore, 1967), enduring interest in the subject would take roots from the 1970s on, with such landmarks as Perry Anderson’s Lineages of the Absolutist State (1974a), Tilly’s Formation of National States in Western Europe (1975), and Michael Mann’s (1986, 1993) monumental study of the historical birth and shaping of particular civilizations, empires, and nation-states.7 These works, which emphasized such activities as war making, taxation, policing, control of food supply, and the formation of bureaucratic cadres, ‘‘which were difficult, costly, and often unwanted by large parts of the population’’ (Tilly, 1975, p. 6), opened the way for the systematic study of the history of state building in Europe. In many of these studies, Western states were seen to

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have emerged from the history of territorial conquests and losses between militarized elites (Hintze, 1975; Finer, 1975; Downing, 1992; Tilly, 1990, 1993; Tallett, 1992; Porter, 1994). The argument supporting the military conception of state making centered on the impact of war making on the rationalization of state coercive, fiscal, and organizational capacities (Finer, 1975). Enduring domination over a conquered territory by a victorious elite was therefore seen as inseparable from the creation of an extractive/ administrative apparatus – the state – dedicated to securing and enhancing the power of the conqueror become sovereign, along with that of his close followers, or ‘‘polity members’’ (Tilly, 2000). In other words, to reap the fruits of conquest, inequality had to be created and enforced via extracting resources from the local population. As Tilly later put it, ‘‘some conquerors managed to exert stable control over the populations in substantial territories, and to gain routine access to part of the goods and services produced in the territory; they became rulers’’ (1990, pp. 14–15). States also harnessed preconquest inequalities to their own ends by coopting the local elite, or simply destroy it, as did Spanish and Portuguese conquerors. The thrust of state making (also called state formation) studies that flourished from the 1980s onwards was in tracing the growth of states’ apparatuses and power over their territories in different periods and locations. In antiquity, conquest was said to have generated fiscal revenues by producing enough crops to maintain conquering armies through the slave labor acquired with conquest, so that ‘‘battle fields provided the manpower for cornfields, and vice-versa’’ (Anderson, 1974b, p. 28).8 In medieval Europe, rulers initially extracted surplus resources from agricultural laborers on their own (initially appropriated) land, as did their vassals who would cofinance the costs of war. In Spanish America, extracting tribute from the indigenous population was the first step to consolidating conquest. Even where state building was based more on trading than direct extraction, that is, more capital than coercion intensive (Tilly, 1990), armies had to be raised and trade routes protected, so that fiscal capacity fed into military power and military power into fiscal expansion of the state. In our contemporary world, Hitler’s attempt to conquer Europe or Russia’s success in keeping her colonial conquests until the end of the short twentieth century are unthinkable without formidable coercive/extractive capacities supplemented, at given junctures, by slave labor.9 More than a mere conceptual definition of states, coercive and extractive control over a given territory was therefore found to be a requirement for the stabilization of any kind of domination, hence the creation of specialized bodies – states – to ensure a continuous flow of resources and military manpower via forced

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cooperation. Administration, in this context, refers to the more or less effective ways in which these basic resources are collected and managed. Following this general line of enquiry, studies of the formation of European states offer a rich pageant displaying the ways in which these requirements were fulfilled in early states,10 with important variations in the degree to which they were achieved, and in the role of representative assemblies in limiting royal power of taxation (and hence war-making propensity). On the other side of the debate, however, it has been pointed out that not all states were born through war (Mann, 1986, 1988), and that Europe was engaged in wars for very long periods without new states being produced (Centeno, 2002, p. 104). England also figured as a prime counterexample to the war-making/state-making thesis by remaining uninvolved in European wars from the end of the Hundred Years war to 168811 (Brewer, 1988). So, the military view was mostly based on Spain and France, typical cases of early involvement in European wars, although also of entrenched inefficient administrative practices that drove them to fiscal bankruptcy at the close of the eighteenth century, crowned by revolution for France and by the loss of her empire in the early 1800s for Spain. Moreover, comparing the war record of European states with that of Latin American states was said to indicate that the first has been a unique unreplicated phenomenon (Centeno, 1997, p. 1569).12 Interest in Latin American state formation13 is less developed than studies of European states for a number of reasons, mostly the enduring preponderance in scholarship on this region of the ‘‘development’’ paradigm that dominated academia until dependence replaced it, following the publication in 1966 of Cardoso and Faletto’s path-breaking study.14 Yet, as attention shifted to class structure and to transnational relations of exploitation between core and periphery, the state remained in the shadow of class processes. With O’Donnell, however, the state made a forceful comeback as the political component of domination in a territorially delimited society, and as an organizational–institutional complex endowed with administrative and coercive capacities (1984, p. 200). The importance of this conception lies in its being grounded in the principle of inequality ‘‘arising out of the differential control of given resources, according to which it is usually possible to obtain that the dominated adjust or control their behavior to fit the express, tacit or presumed will of the dominant’’ (1984, pp. 200–201). The same dual conception of the state is expressed synthetically by Oscar Oszlak who defines state formation as ‘‘implying simultaneously the formation of a political instance articulating domination in society and

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the materialization of this instance in a set of interdependent institutions allowing for the exercise of domination. The state is, in this way, social relation and institutional apparatus’’ (1997, p. 16). Here, state making is not only the acquisition and exercise by states of specific capacities over a territory but also a relational historical process between state and society that shapes the conditions of domination. The main contribution to the study of state making in Latin America (mainly by historians) consists, however, not in verifying the degree to which states achieved domination over their territories during given periods but in showing that peasants do engage in national political struggles, although their participation is often subsequently submerged, and their demands left unmet.15 Following the ‘‘liberal revolution’’ of the 1850s in Mexico in which peasants in Morelos, Guerrero, and Puebla allied with the liberals against the French/conservative coalition, the Mexican state is said to have incorporated some demands from below as part of its popular agenda, in contrast with the Peruvian state that has repeatedly repressed popular demands and participation in national struggles (Mallon, 1995, p. 311), although that might be debatable, judging from the despoiling effect of Mexico’s liberal laws (1857–1910) on peasant access to land. At stake was not merely to establish that peasants were in fact involved in specifically national political struggles (as opposed to the local defense of land and community), but to demonstrate that the cross-class alliances formed between disaffected elites and peasants (often in addition to other lower class groups) shaped the trajectory and marked the turning points of state making in the nineteenth century (Guardino, 1996) and beyond (Mallon, 1995; Knight, 1986). Mallon (1995), for example, asserts that Mexico’s peasants were participating in a ‘‘democratic revolution,’’ whereas Zeitlin (1984) adduces that Chilean peasants who joined in the elite uprising of the 1850s were taking part in a bourgeois revolution that failed. Yet it is equally possible that these peasant soldiers were primarily defending their communities,16 and that rebelling elites were more inspired by the prospect of consolidating their regional power and local autonomy than by such lofty goals as democracy and equal citizenship (Sinkin, 1979; Bazant, 1985). In any case, victorious liberals in Mexico did little (beyond official discourse and the never implemented 1857 Constitution) to incorporate their lower class allies into a set of democratic rules of domination, adopting instead a specific brand of authoritarian liberalism soon to be followed by a 32-year dictatorship. What followed in the Chilean case from the 1850s’ rebellions was the transformation of a narrowly conservative autocratic system into a parliamentary oligarchic one, which soon incorporated the

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previously rebellious elites (Loveman & Lira, 1999) but left out their lower class allies. Focusing our attention on regional interelite and popular struggles that marked state making in Latin America also destroys the myth of a united capitalist class and the instrumentalist view of the capitalist state as exclusively protecting capitalist interests. To consolidate state power under their hegemony, the victors in coups d’e´tats turned to repress mainly members of their own class: stopping the losers from plotting to unseat their government (or inviting a foreign power to do so), ensuring that taxes were not hoarded in provincial/state treasuries, and that no local armies were raised in preparation for a coup. To keep the passive cooperation of the masses, they also had to limit the exactions imposed by elites on the populations under their jurisdiction, not unlike premodern state elites in Europe had done centuries earlier. In a way, European and Latin American studies of state making can be considered complementary in their views of the relation between state and society. The first have concentrated on the conditions for the acquisition by incipient state apparatuses of administrative, fiscal, and coercive capacities while leaving on the margins what kinds of power configurations, principles of domination over society, and social inequalities were thereby created. The second, by contrast, have emphasized that states act as agents articulating and enforcing the principles of domination that structure society, yet have shown relatively little interest (excepting Centeno, 2002) in the processes whereby state capacities grow and wane. At the same time, both camps have tended to make evolutionist assumptions, either by defining the acquisition of key capacities as the process toward fully developed statehood, implicitly understood as the finishing line, or by insisting on a historical endpoint in the capitalist bourgeois state (Oszlak, 1997; Torres Rivas, 2006). Therefore, both views predefine the direction in which states in formation will progress, implicitly pronouncing the end of history (or assuming an entirely different postformation process) when relatively stable state institutions have been established. From the perspective taken in this chapter, both traditions have also failed to emphasize the processes whereby states are engaged through their institutional apparatuses in reinforcing the power and economic hegemony of dominant (classes, large corporations, elite corps, etc.) over dominated groups in society, thereby enforcing these relations of inequality. Although the Latin American scholars cited above opened the door for this conceptualization, they fell short of defining the arenas within which these interactions between states and society could be observed and researched.

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Likewise, students of early European states have treated selected state decisions (to make war, raise taxes, etc.) as evidence of a process of state formation taking place, but detached from the give-and-take between state and society that generated, modified, or nullified these decisions. In such accounts, we rarely know how various elites reacted to specific state actions, and even less how ordinary people dealt with them. Although relatively recent work on ‘‘everyday state making’’ has aimed at filling this gap (Scott, 1985, 1990; Knight, 1994; Gilbert & Nugent, 1994), it has usually presented the dominated as intent on blunting state actions through resistance and quiet sabotaging rather than conflictively engaged in opposing them. In sum, what is needed in order to turn the study of state making into a lens making visible, the dynamics of inequality is the definition of a process whereby state and society actors engage each other, either peacefully in the sense of taking for granted the ways in which power and resources are distributed, or conflictively when states or nonstate actors trigger violent collective responses when attempting to increase the level of exactions that shape inequalities in society.

2. MAKING AND CONTESTING THE RULES FROM BELOW: CONTENTION The first step to an interactive theory of the dynamics of inequality is to define a process taking place in empirically observable arenas. We are therefore not talking about ‘‘self-propelled’’ phenomena (Tilly, 1995) inferred from interrelations between variables (as in urbanization, secularization, or differentiation), but about real people pursuing objectives and, in doing so, coming in contact with state agents endowed with variably legitimate legal and coercive power. A crucial contribution in that direction is the model for the process of contentious politics proposed by Charles Tilly and his group of colleagues (hereafter, Tilly & col. mainly McAdam, Tarrow, & Tilly, 2001; Tilly & Tarrow, 2007; Tilly, 1995, 2001, 2008a, 2008b; Aminzade et al., 2001).17 Contention signifies confrontation between collectives18 over disputed rights or property in which the state is involved. Interest focuses not on ordinary contention that designates ‘‘making claims that bear on someone else’s interests’’ (Tilly & Tarrow, 2007, p. 4) but on political contention (hereafter, contention or contentious politics) defined as ‘‘episodic, public, collective interaction among makers of claim and their objects when (a) at least one

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government is a claimant, an object of claim, or a party to the claim, and (b) the claims would, if realized, affect the interests of at least one of the claimants’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 5). This definition excludes conflict taking place privately, or public conflict to which the state is not party. It also excludes conflictive interaction in which one party submits to the other’s power, as in public flogging or other forms of inflicting punishment when its object does not (or more likely cannot) resist, and is therefore in no position to dispute who is entitled to what. Furthermore, it excludes spontaneous conflictive encounters in which violence may be used, but no particular claims are issued, as in verbal assaults, fist fights, riots, or bar broils. Finally, although the definition does not specify it, it is clear from the examples cited as illustration that the state includes legislative and judicial functions. A further distinction is drawn between contained and transgressive political contention, where the first refers to contention in which ‘‘all parties to the conflict were previously established as constituted political actors’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 7) and the second to contention in which ‘‘at least some parties to the conflict are newly self-identified political actors, and/or at least some parties employ innovative collective action’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 8).19 The authors’ interest (as well as mine in this chapter) favors the transgressive side of political contention, although they note that the two forms most frequently grow out of each other and interact, so that the distinction between institutionalized and uninstitutionalized politics is said to be an artificial one. In transgressive contention, however, we are unlikely to find contention over bankruptcy or breach of contract, but wage disputes may occasionally go beyond institutionalized channels of collective bargaining. The point of proposing such a broad definition is to bring under the same conceptual and processual umbrella diverse forms of political contention, such as strikes, public demonstrations of protest, social movements, rebellions, and revolutions, previously studied with widely separate theoretical instruments. The whole theoretical thrust of the model proposed is to show that once divided up into their respective dynamic ‘‘mechanisms,’’ or ‘‘recurrent causes which in different circumstances and sequences compound into highly variable but nonetheless explicable effects’’ (Tilly, 1995, p. 1610), the most diverse forms of contention will be comparable, as they will share a number of mechanisms that will ‘‘produce essentially the same effects in a wide range of circumstances’’ (Tilly, 2001, p. 20). Commonalities in mechanisms will demonstrate that very different kinds of contentious interactions represent, in fact, the same broad phenomenon.20 Among the mechanisms most cited are those of competition, negotiation, mobilization, repression, and radicalization.

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Leaving aside, for the moment, whether contentious politics of all kinds and shapes display various combinations of the same mechanisms, which, in the end, is an empirical question,21 I would like to draw attention to a number of aspects of the contention model that are problematic from the point of view of a theory of inequality: the reasons for which people will contend; the relationship of contendants’ claims to the established order and the role of the state; the nature of mechanisms in relation to agency; and the problem of going from micro- to macro-forms of contention. 2.1. Why People Get Involved in Contentious Interactions On the basis of the definition of contention above, only ‘‘interests’’ appear to be at stake in the decisions to participate in claim making (‘‘the claim, if realized, would affect the interests of one of the claimants’’). Yet in the same work, ‘‘historically accumulated culture’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 22) is also singled out as an important element in contention, and so is identity, repeatedly mentioned as subject to shifting in the course of the process of contention. Both concepts speak to the more emotional aspects of contention, yet are neither part of its definition nor mentioned as ‘‘mechanisms’’ moving participants in one direction or another. Grievance, on the other hand, appears only once, but not in the sense normally understood. What of the long nursed grievances of eighteenth-century French peasants in the face of resurgent feudal rights (Anderson, 1974a)? Or should we think of La Grande Peur22 as some irrational behavioral manifestation irrelevant to protest against the French Ancien Re´gime and unrelated to the demands for equality inscribed in the Cahiers de Dole´ances? Or how should Mexican peasants of the liberal era (1854–1910) have felt when their land was declared public and sold to haciendas, or simply confiscated by the latter? Interests are neutral with respect to feelings of ‘‘right’’ and ‘‘wrong,’’ whereas grievances express sentiments of injustice (Moore, 1978). If, contrary to Tilly & col., we postulate that grievance is a possible and, indeed, frequent ingredient of contention, its essence is contestation over who holds the legitimate claim in a dispute and should therefore, by right, win over the other. 2.2. Based on What Norms and on Whose Authority Are Contentious Claims Settled The qualification of claims as legitimate or illegitimate implies the existence of rules and norms that are known to the contestants, so that the dispute is

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really about what principles (law or custom) should prevail in deciding whose claim will be recognized as ‘‘right.’’ But who will be the judge of which of the claimants is ‘‘right,’’ and who will apply the sentence? According to Tilly & col.’s definition, the state appears as ‘‘a claimant, an object of claim, or a party to the claim’’; in other words, as a contestant of the same kind and on the same level as any other, with interests and claims of its own.23 This definition fails to acknowledge the role of the state as rule enforcer, so that its presence in a dispute necessarily involves its power to pronounce legitimate this rather than that claim, and enforce a settlement in favor of the winner of the best claim. In addition, some claims will be directed against actions perpetrated by the state, considered illegitimate by some of the contendants, also with reference to a set of rules, in which case what is being disputed is the state’s use or misuse of the established rules. In apparent contradiction with the definition of contention cited above, the relationship between contendants’ claims and the established order is clearly indicated on Fig. 2.1 in McAdam et al. (2001, p. 45) that opposes challengers or opponents to the regime to polity members, its defenders. The interactive sequence depicted in the figure is said to involve at least one set of state actors and one insurgent (sic) group. There is, therefore, unresolved ambivalence in the conception of contentious politics Tilly & col. propose.

2.3. Mechanisms or Strategic Decisions? What moves the process of contention? Although in their case analyses, McAdam et al. (2001, pp. 41–50) show reflexive actors engaged in strategic interaction and using resources innovatively, these same actors are nevertheless assumed to repeatedly reenact a limited set of strategies abstracted as mechanisms, or ‘‘class(es) of events that alter relations among specified sets of elements in identical or closely similar ways over a variety of situations’’ (p. 24). The notion of mechanism in Tilly & col. rests, therefore, on contradictory assumptions: either contendants are conscious strategic actors, and therefore constantly invent new ways of pursuing their objectives, or they are habitus-bound reproducers of cultural patterns (Bourdieu, 1977), in which case it is ingrained cultural habits rather than actors that move contentious interaction. In one case, we have infinitely variable resources prompting variable strategies and hence far too many mechanisms, whereas in the other, we have a both predictable and limited repertoire of responses repeating themselves, yet providing no key to the interactive dynamics of contention. Granted that contenders on the ground will, most usually,

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combine known with new strategies and repertoires, it remains that the innovative character of transgressive contention – a central concern in Tilly & col. – is insufficiently specified theoretically, even though such specifications have been proposed on both sides of the debate. On the habitus side, Wacquant (1989, p. 45), unlike Bourdieu (1977), concedes that actors may consciously carry out strategic cost and benefit calculations, but insists that such calculations are all determined by habitus. Sewell (1992), on the other hand, spells out four conditions enabling people engaged in interaction to ‘‘invent’’: the multiplicity of structures, transposability of schemas, unpredictability of resource accumulation, and resource polysemia. The debate on agency in relation to the generation of ‘‘new’’ or ‘‘old’’ contentious ‘‘mechanisms’’ becomes even more complex when we bring in inequality, as we must then specify what real choices contendants have in view of their unequal access to power and resources, and to what extent innovative contention can change such parameters. Participants in contention will, in principle, be both enabled and limited in their choices of strategic decisions and repertoires by the rules of access to power and unequal distribution of resources. But transgressive contention is precisely the attempt to overstep authorized (or at least tolerated) ways in which people exercise power and to find resources and schemas to win their cause, so that the very same process of contention, if successful in restructuring some portion of political reality, may effect changes in the value of conventional resources (e.g., the value of being a man rather than a woman, or an aristocrat rather than a commoner). 2.4. From Micro- to Macro-Contention In addition to providing explanatory devices, the notion of recurring mechanisms by Tilly & col. provides a bridge from micro- to macroprocesses, by stipulating that small and large contentious processes can be analyzed with these same instruments. As Tilly states: regularities in political life are very broad, indeed, trans-historical, but do not operate in the form of recurrent structures and processes at a large scale. They consist of recurrent causes which in different circumstances and sequences compound into highly variable but nonetheless explicable effects. Students of revolution have imagined they were dealing with phenomena like ocean tides, whose regularities they could deduce from sufficient knowledge of celestial motion, when they were actually confronting phenomena like great floods, equally coherent occurrences from a causal perspective, but enormously variable in structure, sequence and consequences as a function of terrain, previous precipitation, built environment, and human response’’. (1995, p. 1610)

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To dispense with large processes, or the problem of specifying how small contentious processes become large ones, Tilly & col. divide streams of contentious politics into event segments to each of which a mechanism is attached. They then treat these constructed segments as ‘‘processes,’’ so that the only difference between micro- and macro-contention will be in the number of such segments, with large numbers of them being said to constitute episodes. For example, the July 1789 facet of the French Revolution is said to be an episode consisting of ‘‘some combination of mobilization, identity shift and polarization, three very general but distinct processes and mechanisms in contentious politics’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 28). Mechanisms, on the contrary, are considered causal insofar as they repeatedly ‘‘alter relations among specified sets of elements in identical or closely similar ways’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 24). Yet, taking mobilization as one such mechanism, can we really say that the mobilization of the Parisian populace in July 1789 implies the same transformations as, for example, that of farmers blocking roads with tractors in protest over low agricultural prices (a typically French contemporary contentious event)? In one case, the authority of the state is being directly attacked, whereas in the other, discontent is voiced and change is demanded, publicly and transgressively, but with no intent to challenge the regime. Although national conflagrations such as the French Revolution can be described by concatenations of different abstract elements representing groups of events (such as mobilization), such descriptions will do little to bring out the dynamics of institutional transformation, which is what students of revolution have been trying to do. Granting that contentious politics must stay grounded in the collective mobilization of real people interacting in real time and places, it does not follow that such processes should exclusively be understood from the collectively defined perspective of the people engaged in that process. We should be able to make a distinction between such group dynamics and the place occupied by particular episodes of these small-scale processes in largescale processes of transformation of the relations between state and society. To go back to the events of July 1789, a micro-interpretation of the deeds would tell us what threats were perceived by the contendants (the regiments encircling the city), the objectives they were pursuing (finding weapons to defend the city), why they went to the Bastille (to find gun powder to load their weapons), and also probably why they were angry (they felt betrayed by the King’s failure to hold his promises). But July 1789 must also be looked at from the perspective of how it links up with various other contentious nodes openly challenging the bankrupt French state, such as the

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Third Estate declaring itself National Assembly and abolishing feudal rights on its own self-proclaimed authority. The French Revolution, in that view, is not a sum of small segments describing what contendants did or how they felt as a result, but a loosely coordinated set of contentious networks organizing attacks on the established order and proclaiming new rules and principles of authority: the end of feudalism, of royal absolutism, and of privileges. In Sewell’s words, we are looking at a set of ‘‘events’’ that ‘‘touch off a chain of occurrences that durably transform previous structures and practices’’ (2005a, p. 227). If, by the latter we understand primarily the rules of domination and inequality that characterize a society at a particular moment, we can make a claim that contention is the process through which durable ruptures in structures are created, and that we should therefore analyze them from the macro-perspective of a process of institutional change. By reducing explanations of large processes24 to an enumeration of a combination of mechanisms extracted from small ones, Tilly & col. offer a peculiar solution to the problem of aggregation that deserves further examination. But first we must make some distinctions that will clarify the discussion. The problem of aggregation from small to large is twofold: first, we must ask under what conditions a small contentious episode may either link up with, or blossom into, a large national contentious complex: that is, a problem of shifting levels of analysis. Second, we must ask if we are trying to go from a single unit act, such as who started the American Revolution, to sequences of typified events, such as mechanisms, and or to a generic entity, such as contention or revolution. The latter is a problem of shifting levels of abstraction25. Table 1 shows the different combinations of the distinct levels along these two dimensions. From Table 1, we can see what option Tilly & col. have adopted to solve the problem of aggregation. They avoid the common sin of explaining a generic entity, for example, revolution, by summing up a set actions situated on the unit or small societal acts levels of analysis, and of inferring from there to the large societal level. Instead, they first assert that revolution as a generic phenomenon is a misnomer, and choose instead ‘‘contention’’ to refer generically to either the small or the large societal analytical levels (cells 6 and 9 of Table 1).26 They then break up the process of contention – and this is where aggregation takes place – into sequential segments of agentdriven occurrences abstracted as ‘‘mechanisms’’ that operate on a level of abstraction intermediate between single acts and generic entities (cells 5 and 8 of Table 1). At this point, however, they implicitly merge the two highest levels of abstraction by treating mechanism as a generic term in its own right

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Table 1.

Levels of Analysis and Abstraction in Tilly & col. Levels of Abstraction

Levels of analysis

Individual Small societal

Large societal

Single unit action sets

Sequences of typified events

Generic entities

1 X

2 X

3 X

4 Strike in Lenin shipyard, Gda´nsk 1980a

5 Social appropriation, certification, and diffusion mechanisms

6 Contention

7 Formation of cross-class coalition of contenders to regime in Nicaragua 1970sb

8 Infringement of elite interests, suddenly imposed grievances,c and decertification mechanisms

9 Contention

a

Case analyzed in Tilly and Tarrow (2007, pp. 115–118). Case analyzed in McAdam et al. (2001, pp. 196–207). c Defined as ‘‘singular events that dramatize and heighten the political salience of particular issues’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 202), in this case the Managua earthquake of 1974 dramatizing the ills of the Somoza dictatorship. b

(instead of merely a list of typified events), on the strength of the hypothesis that empirical narratives, once analyzed, will invariably yield a limited list of variously combined mechanisms.27 Finally, mechanisms are said to ‘‘explain causally’’ the historical sequences under study. What can we say about aggregation between levels of analysis in Tilly & col.? Despite their insistence that many local unit struggles (such as the Gda´nsk strike among shipyard workers analyzed in Tilly & Tarrow, 2007) often blossom into large societal ones (in this case, the Polish solidarity movement), they provide no theoretical rule stating how the shift should take place. There is no encounter between single dissident groups, no linking institution (although the Catholic Church loomed large in that particular contention), and no strategic deliberations by smaller with higher leaders or coalitions of smaller groups with the incipient national movement: a large national movement just coalesced. On Table 2, I have removed the assumption that the last two highest levels of abstraction can be merged, so that contention remains in the intermediate level of abstraction corresponding to a list of mechanisms extracted by the

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Table 2.

Levels of Analysis and Levels of Abstraction in the Model Proposeda. Levels of Abstraction

Levels of analysis

Individual

Small societal

Large societal

a

Single unit action sets

Sequences of typified events

Generic entities

1 Zapata occupies land with armed men

2 Violation of norms via land confiscation in multiple cases

3 Dispersed contention

4 Anenecuilco and other villages attempt in vain to reclaim their land

5 Negotiation, invasion, and repression mechanisms

6 Localized rebellious contention

7 Zapata group joins Madero’s struggle against Dı´ az regime

8 Phases a, b, c of Mexico’s revolutionary process: alliances, alliance breakups, negotiations, and reneging on commitments mechanisms

9 Revolutionary contention

Case analyzed in Brachet-Ma´rquez and Arteaga Pe´rez (2010).

analyst. Additionally, I have distinguished between different generic types of contention, so that the latter term becomes a family of generic concepts rather than a single generic one. In Table 2, aggregation takes place on both scales. Along the scale of abstraction, cells 1, 4, and 7 are single instances of occurrences (or cases) which are, in turn, typified via mechanisms in cells 2, 5, and 8 respectively. The latter, in turn, are each identified as members of a generic class of events, respectively, called dispersed, localized rebellious, and revolutionary contention.28 The logical link between the first and last level of abstraction is, therefore, instantiation, as it also is in the cases in Table 1. Aggregation from small to large units of analysis in Table 2 is achieved by linking the individual, small societal, and large societal through strategic agency. Agency here means that the collectives that confront each other in contention deliberate, enter coalitions, seek alliances, negotiate with the opponents or the state, renege on their promises, etc. This means that we must view the growth from small to large not as something that

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spontaneously or mysteriously happens, but as a result of intra- and intergroup deliberative processes in which internal hierarchies and leadership play important roles: the ‘‘small’’ history of the Mexican Revolution started in various parts of the country, particularly in the village of Anenecuilco, whose land had been stolen by a neighboring hacienda and whose members collectively decided to occupy it by force. Subsequently, they allied with other villages through a political club, and collectively decided to offer their services to a much ‘‘larger’’ contentious process led by Francisco Madero who had declared his decision to start an armed rebellion against Dictator Porfirio Dı´ az,29 on the strength of an article in the Plan de San Luis Potosi electoral platform stipulating that illegally appropriated land should be returned to its rightful owners. Between the two contentious sets of events, there is no necessary link, except a very risky collective decision to use force (probably very much influenced by Zapata, the de facto chief of the village coalition), one that could very well not have been taken, leaving as the only option for Anenecuilco villagers to be peons on their own sequestered land, as had happened in countless other villages (Womack, 1969). The links between cells 2, 5, and 8 follow the same rule: step one is represented by the individual facts that land has been confiscated by hacienda owners in various parts of the state of Morelos, Guerrero, and Puebla; in step two are the mechanisms of contentious politics used to fight back despite the threat of repression; and step three categorizes the previous steps as rebellious contention. On this last level, there is progression in the intensity and spread of the generic phenomenon of contention from scattered to localized and to revolutionary contention, which summarizes in more abstract generic terms the upward shift in unit of analysis that has taken place in cells 1-4-7 and 2-5-8, respectively. In sum, in both tables, the concatenation of mechanisms of contention is the general process taking place at intermediate levels of abstraction on any of the three analytical levels identified. The main difference between the two tables lies in the rule of aggregation from small to large units of analysis, and the qualification of contention (respectively, as dispersed, localized and revolutionary) at the highest abstraction level in Table 2. Of course, identifying agency as the condition making possible the passage from small to large in contention processes leads us to open a new Pandora’s box, as it leaves unanswered the question of what impels contendants to act this rather than that way in any given situation, leaving contingency as the last resort solution. But agency, at least, points us in the right direction: internal deliberation, internal dissentions, and frequent splits within the contending collectives, debates, and changes in the group discourses elaborated in defense of the claims,

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changes in membership, and/or leadership, etc. It also conforms to the postulate, implicit in both the contention and state making perspectives presented, that things happen because actors make strategic choices, whatever their interpretation of the situation, as when French peasants burn castles rather than join the Parisian contentious crowds, or when Morelos villagers erroneously believe that Madero will return their land once elected. Based on the critical considerations and suggested changes presented in sections 1 and 2 of the chapter, we can now turn to the task of building a theoretical bridge between state making and contention, two initially incommensurate perspectives, and theorize the process by which the relations between state and society can be seen to generate and reproduce inequality.

3. STATE MAKING AND CONTENTION AS COMPONENTS OF AN INTERACTIVE VIEW OF INEQUALITY: THE ‘‘PACT OF DOMINATION’’ APPROACH State making, although it takes place over centuries, represents a discontinuous process with unforeseen stops, regressions, and many transformations taking place by fits and starts. To encompass this wide variety of movements therefore requires a longue dure´e time framework. Contention, on the contrary, erupts at particular moments and develops in the courte dure´e. To make compatible these two time frameworks, I will recast the interactions between state and society that state making represents as the historical structuring of complex and differentiated sets of rules, or pacts of domination designating ‘‘who should get what’’ in the exercise of power and the apportionment of economic surplus (Table 3). Contention, on the other hand, will be defined as the dynamic process driving the change taking place 3 in the pact of domination take place. The notion of ‘‘pact and domination’’ juxtaposes compliance to known rules (pact) and the possible use of coercion (domination), both jointly present in historical arrangements, to express the idea that a given distribution of power and resources will be complied with, often over very long periods, although never becoming fully or permanently hegemonic. The notion of pact also implies that given levels of inequality are accepted and taken for granted as ‘‘normal.’’

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Table 3.

141

The Dynamics of State and Society Pact of Domination: ‘‘Who Is Entitled to What’’.

Rules of Access to Power

Rules of Access to Wealth

Who may engage in contestation (assembly, deliberation, association, demonstration) and consultations (plebiscite, suffrage, and holding office) Who is exempt from public justice Who may rule Who may be represented To whom is the ruler accountable

Who may own sources of wealth, (land, mines, rights to trade, etc) Who pays taxes and how much Who may engage in what economic activities How should work be remunerated

State Mediation of the pact of domination Regulates or represses contestation Allows or prohibits consultation Judges and punishes according to privilege/law Appoints and fires governmental officers Has monopoly over the means of coercion Taxes according to privileges or law Distributes monopolies, franchises, and offices Assigns, protects, or confiscates property Makes or proposes laws

Given that distributive arrangements are never final, any currently undisputed level of inequality therefore represents, in a longue dure´e perspective, a momentary pause or stalemate between the parties fighting for a bigger share of power, privileges, and economic surplus, during which contention is low, and mostly restricted to resistance. In keeping with a view of state making as the alternation between the creation, reproduction, and destruction of pacts of domination, the authority exercised by states is conceived as both legitimate and contested at all times, so that hegemony in the sense of an endpoint is never finally achieved. Yet, state rule does stabilize for variably long periods in the sense of being taken for granted by the majority, although never in any final manner. In addition to dominating their population through the threat of coercion, states must therefore also acquire skills at building legitimating discourses that make domination more palatable and inequality less visible.30 An interactive view of state making also directs us to see the incorporation into official ideologies not only of rules favoring the wealthy

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and the powerful, but also of deeply ingrained popular cultural transcripts (including discrimination toward minority groups), of demands from below for improvements in social and economic conditions, and of the legitimacy of protests against the abuses of specific officials or elites. The most extreme example is the populist state31 that dignifies the ‘‘people’’ by professing to rule in its name and do its biddings while ruling in a paternalistic and authoritarian fashion, especially when backed by military power (as fascist Italy or peronist Argentina) or by a powerful one-party state (as Mexico for most of the twentieth century). Yet there is no doubt that the populist state, in order to stay in power, must meet some demands from below (some real, others more symbolic), so that some important transactions between top and bottom will take place.32 Nationalism,33 invented during the American and French Revolutions and perfected in the twentieth century through two world wars, is, however, the quintessential example of the engineering from above of a political culture, based on the promise of emancipation from contested conditions of domination. Nationalism may rally the people against the external enemy threatening the community of ‘‘free citizens,’’ or mobilize against the colonizer with the promise of forming an independent nation. As with populism, the nationalist discourse must deliver on some of its promises, so that nationalisms, will, willy-nilly, breed nations (Gellner, 1983; Hobsbawm, 1992). Yet, it is to be understood as a continuously contested and negotiated discourse, the outcome of transactions between dominant and dominated. Given that states are only variably successful at establishing a legitimating discourse while controlling their subject populations, the history of territories under their jurisdiction can be seen as a succession of variably long periods during which compliance is generally assured, followed by episodes of intensifying contention in response to the state’s attempts to gain more power, increase fiscal exactions, or tolerate more despotic/exploitative exactions on subaltern groups by its elites, in other words, redefine the pact of domination in ways that negatively affect the share of power and surplus to which the population at large, or selected elites, feel they are entitled. Some conceptual clarifications are in order, lest the notion of pact as it is used here, may be misunderstood. Pact is to be taken heuristically rather than literally, in the sense that everything looks as if there were an agreement between members of a society not to fight over the disposition of power and resources, and accept (enthusiastically or grudgingly) a stabilized form of domination and distribution as ‘‘normal’’ and even, for some, ‘‘legitimate.’’ The notion of pact, as understood here, has little to do with ‘‘contract,’’ in which subordinate people would be seen as ‘‘agreeing’’ to

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explicitly, defined rules. Far from constituting undisputed and shared knowledge (as a contract would), pacts of domination are continuously subject to strategic redefinitions and manipulations by state or societal actors of opposed interests. The discrepancy between the public transcript of domination and that culturally elaborated by various groups will alternately foment hegemony, accumulate private rage, or provoke collectively voiced feelings of injustice (Moore, 1978). Neither should we think of a pact of domination as a unique set of clear rules neatly dividing society between the dominant and the dominated, or applying uniformly to all within each of these social categories, but as a multiplicity of smaller overlapping sets of rules, so that there is not one single mode of power and exploitation but a large collection of crisscrossing legal and normative principles connecting the dominated to the dominant through rights and obligations: workers to capitalist employers, sharecroppers to landowners, domestic servants to household heads, women to their fathers or husbands, etc. Finally, it is important to note that although democratic pacts of domination generally put an end to radical forms of contention and hence sudden political change, the same general mechanisms of contention over rules operate in them, although they take on more gradual institutionalized forms. Democracies are therefore distinguished not only by the list of attributes that identify them as such, but by the historically specific interrelations and mutual expectations they establish between state and society, by their distinct political cultures, their widely shared standards of legitimate rules of the game, and so on. We may therefore speak of qualitatively different families of democracy, as for example corporatist, liberal, and social democracy, none of which is, in principle, more democratic than the others, but each characterized by its style of interaction between state and society, role of the state, and redistributive schemes. Additionally, far from having abolished inequality in the distribution of power and resources, democracies, especially emergent ones, publicize equalizing discourses while often preserving stark economic differences.34 Rather than exceptions to the general contentious dynamics of permanence and change, democracies can therefore be regarded as a family of pacts of domination with basic similarities but also important internal differences. A hypothetical succession of pacts of domination (PD) is shown in Fig. 1, beginning at T2 through T3 with violent conquest, followed by military occupation, coercive ‘‘pacification,’’ and a division of the spoils among the victors, followed by the coercive institution of rules stabilizing the distribution of power and resources. Thereafter follows the institutionalization of these

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144 T4

Apprenticeship

T1

T7

T2

T5

PD1

PD2

T3

T6

T1 T2 T3 T4 T5 T6 T7 Etc.

PD0 institutionalized = established order Challenge and state response = critical juncture PD1 imposed = new order established coercively PD1 institutionalized = return to order Challenge and state response = critical juncture PD2 imposed = new order established coercively PD2 institutionalized = return to order

Fig. 1.

PD3

From One Pact of Domination (PD) to the Next.

rules during PD1, which gradually becomes natural and taken for granted throughout T4, with mostly everyday forms of resistance and nonviolent contention. But at T5, the system returns, under changed historical circumstances, to a situation of increased contentious politics between new (or old) sets of contendents, opening a new cycle of confrontations and negotiations over the distribution of power and resources (T5–T6), which creates a new set of rules of domination under PD2, in turn followed by their institutionalization throughout T7. History is not frozen at this point, so that we must represent the continuation of these recurring cycles of power reconfigurations as a future PD3. In this general model, state forms are specific to each historically constructed pact of domination, and therefore will rise and fall with them. The state exists as an instance of domination of a particular kind as well as a set of agencies enforcing it (Oszlak, 1978, 1997; O’Donnell, 1984). Therefore, there is no such thing, empirically, as a general state form, not even a general ‘‘capitalist’’ or a ‘‘socialist’’ state form, but instead a large collection of historically constructed states, each with its rules of ‘‘who should get what’’ and peculiar ways of maintaining order through a combination of the carrot and the stick. The military state in Argentina, for example, literally collapsed under defeat in the Malvinas War with Great Britain35, and this very breakdown made possible the resurgence, in 1983, of democratic rule. The set of state institutions that were then created anew, far from being final, subsequently went through a crisis of elite contention

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triggering galloping inflation that spelt the collapse of the economy and most state functions in the late 1980s, followed by the restabilization of a restricted democracy (O’Donnell, 1994; Alonso, 1998). States are therefore never finally structured but will take on different power configurations, giving birth to new or transformed pacts of domination. From this general perspective, the history of the relationship between state and society is that of a succession of temporary (although often very long) ‘‘pacts’’ marked, at turning points, by tightly concatenated clusters of structure-changing contentious episodes when these pacts are renegotiated either nonviolently (as in central Europe in the 1990s) or through some form of social upheaval.36 To effect such structural changes in pacts of domination, there is no need to rely on extraordinary or unusual macro-processes. I propose to base the dynamics in pacts of domination on contentious politics, regarded as an everyday omnipresent process of interaction within society and between state and society, which normally only reproduces the rules of domination, but periodically transforms them. In this perspective, the historical trajectory of societies can be seen as periodically punctuated by moments of more frequent and intense forms of contentious politics likely to bring about ruptures (some large, others barely visible) in established structures (Sewell, 2005a). Whereas contentious episodes are, in normal circumstances, no more than manifestations of local discontent attached to limited demands that can be accommodated within the status quo, they acquire, at such critical junctures, the capacity to bring about pact changing events by multiplying and variously combining their forces. The Cuban revolution, for example, was an event that marked the history of Latin America as a critical juncture triggering in other countries demands from below for less unequal resource distribution in the form of contentious politics that ranged from peaceful (yet severely repressed) student protest to extended guerilla warfare. The event also stood as a landmark for conservative forces all over Latin America that gave their full support to the cold war in the form of ‘‘dirty war’’ practices that ran the whole gamut of mass imprisonment, torture, ‘‘disappearances,’’ and genocide in the case of Guatemala (Vela, 2009). Critical junctures, however, are rarely predictable and often not always clearly visible (except retrospectively), as, for example, the 1974 Managua earthquake that showed to all, including elites, how Nicaragua’s dictator Somoza chose not to distribute international aid to a devastated population. But even an apparently subdued population, violently purged of opponents for almost two decades, such as Chile’s under Pinochet, could suddenly join in contentious street demonstrations of protest in the late

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1980s, openly expressing its disaffection from the 16-year-old supposedly institutionalized (and even ‘‘constitutionalized’’) dictatorship.37 Revolutions are rare events, and successful revolutions even rarer, but more than other forms of contention, they are the process by which pacts of domination are swept away and replaced. But most of the time, when we think of contention as potentially event-creating interaction between state and society, we are not referring to a single all encompassing process, but either to regionalized or to sector-specific contentious movements that challenge only partially the established order (e.g., a strike, an emancipatory religious movement, or an independent party in an authoritarian regime), or to a myriad of mostly unconnected small or intermediate processes of contention, all different in timing, kind, and intensity. Such minor tremors are usually absorbed by the system with only casuistic solutions applied,38 or institutionally nested (in factories, small towns, and large complex organizations), so that the rules being contested and transformed bring changes that are relatively insulated between one sector and another. African-Americans, for example, may have achieved lower degrees of inequality in comparison to white Americans with respect to education and jobs, while remaining largely segregated socially and residentially. Women have obtained increased access to education since World War II, but they are still paid less for the same job levels and must still face many forms of culturally entrenched inequality in their homes. Bringing contention to bear on institutional change also poses the problem of aggregation with contention understood now as part and parcel of the process of interaction between state and society. To understand how units of contention go from small to large remains an empirical question, as indicated earlier. But given that we have opted for the creation of events (understood as structural ruptures) through agency, we are under obligation to show how contentious episodes become connected to each other to form larger contentious networks, or fail to connect either as a result of strategic decisions by the collectives engaged in the contentious struggles or by divide and rule manipulations by the state.39 Tilly & col.’s methodology of analyzing contentious episodes is particularly helpful in this respect, as it forces us to go step by step through each contentious process and register when it connects with or disconnects from other such processes. But in order to do this kind of analysis, we must also turn our lens to the processes internal to contention collectives insofar as these lead us to understand their capacity for gaining popular appeal and obtaining powerful allies, and hence to spread territorially and provoke class coalitions, something that is absent in but not incompatible with Tilly & col.’s perspective.

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The problem of aggregation also leads us to ask what difference any single or group of contentious nodes represents for potential changes in the pact of domination. This is probably where the most intractable problem of aggregation lies. We could try to hypothesize that the more local the context in which a contentious episode emerges, the less likely it is of expressing demands and grievances directly relevant to shifts in the pact of domination, and vice versa that contentious episodes of national scope would be more likely to have constructed a discourse addressing the validity or legitimacy of central aspects of the pact of domination. But I suspect we would find many counterexamples of initially insignificant local contentious episodes growing in appeal and impact due to their very radicalism, whereas some widely diffused national ones may remain ‘‘light’’ on challenging the pact of domination.40 Yet it stands to reason that although aggregation along the unit of analysis dimension is not logically related to impact on rules, small localized contentious events are less likely than large publicly visible ones to have much impact on any portion of the pact of domination, unless contendants can form alliances with other contending groups and either jointly negotiate changes with the state, or challenge the latter in direct confrontation. But in any case, the passage from the group dynamics of contention to the societal dynamics of inequality is a big leap for which there is no ready solution except to say that whether the ‘‘resolutions’’ applied by state agents to any particular contentious episode (be they concessions or repression) have any impact outside of and beyond the initial cases of contention is still an open question that requires further scrutiny. Finally, when trying to establish a bridge between contention and changes in the pact of domination, we are under obligation to establish the link between inequality and the nature of the claims expressed in contentious processes, which will almost invariably be indirect. Clearly, not all forms of contention are about inequality, but many will be, and we will usually be able to interpret whether the demands voiced are translatable as demands for more (or less) political equality o for better (or worse) economic equality.41 The translation is, of course, easier in revolutionary processes in which mobilizing discourses usually promise more social justice and equality between citizens. In smaller contentious events, the disputes may more frequently be about one group claiming rights, property, or electoral victory over the other, but the outcome will still be about giving more or fewer resources and power to one subaltern group in relation to a dominant one. In synthesis, the proposed model sees the social ordering of inequality in the distribution of power and resources simultaneously through the making and transformation of a pact of domination, a transhistorical macro-lens

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that is conceptually identified across historical periods but assumes different empirical forms and parameters,42 and through the micro-lens of real-time and place-bound processes of contention over a variety of issues defined by each contentious episode. The basic process to be studied is therefore contention: its dynamics, the creativity of its participants, its visible immediate outcomes, and its hypothetical long-term repercussions. At the same time, however, contention is envisioned as the dynamic principle that makes domination both sustainable and contestable, so that the making and unmaking of rules of domination through contention is held to be a central organizing principle of social life: through contention, the rules of unequal distribution of power and material resources are being alternately reproduced and challenged, and tacitly or actively sanctioned by state agents. But although, as Sewell put it, ‘‘‘Structures’ are constructed by human action, and ‘societies’ y are continually shaped and reshaped by the creativity and stubbornness of their human creators’’ (2005b, p. 110), the latter rarely envisage or control the long-term consequences of their contentious actions. The effects of the events of July 1789, for example, went far beyond anything its participants had anticipated or struggled for: the king pulled back the troops that had encircled Paris, called back Necker, the popular Swiss finance minister, and could do nothing against the National Assembly becoming the de facto political authority, soon to become de jure as well. Yet, as Sewell (1992) also insists, social reality is fractured, and the structural opportunities for effecting change through these micro-processes are inherently open-ended, discontinuous, and contingent (2005b, p. 110). Finally, and most importantly, there are crucial structuring processes other than contention – primarily market and transnational relations – that compete with and often transform the processes I have delineated. Some types of state actions, for example, cannot be achieved via coercion, as the warring sovereigns of premodern Europe discovered early on, leading them to coax rather than coerce capital into financing their military adventures. Today’s states also make considerable concessions to capital, in open or covert violation of the rules that apply to ordinary citizens, and are prone to dictate regressive social or fiscal distributive policies in response to pressures from creditor countries. The pressures and policy influence that powerful foreign powers can exert on small polities, on the other hand, are common knowledge in our contemporary globalized world. But geopolitics is no newcomer, so that we can assert that state power has always been limited, to a variable extent, by external power configurations, especially in the capitalist periphery. The fact that such processes have not been included in the model

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proposed in this chapter is no indication that they are being discounted, only that they are considered as pertaining to processes exogenous to it.

4. CONCLUSION Summing up the argument presented, the chapter has examined two general models of interaction between state and society, with a view to selectively appropriating them in the construction of a theory of the reproduction and transformation of inequality. The theoretical framework proposed defines dynamic principles involving the generalized and ubiquitous everyday interaction of society and state actors alternately in upholding and undermining the rules that spell the unequal distribution of power and resources in society. The framework proposed brings together a historically specific micro-process – contentious politics – with a general yet historically embedded macro-principle of permanence and change in distributive rules – the pact of domination. Together, they configure the process of the creation, renegotiation, and occasional destruction of generally durable yet continuously contested rules and norms underlying the unequal apportionment of power and resources. In this scheme, inequality has been shown to represent simultaneously a central organizing principle of social life and a recurring source of contention over rights and rules in which the state plays the vital role of enforcing current rules and sanctioning deviations, but also of creating unifying ideologies (e.g., citizenship, nationalism), making case by case concessions, or responding to pressures by modifying said rules. This view is informed by the dual conception of the state as a political instance of domination and organizational–institutional complex endowed with administrative, coercive, and ideological capacities. In this general framework, state forms are historically constructed entities shaping and shaped by the pacts of domination to which they are respectively attached, each with its rules of ‘‘who should get what’’ and peculiar ways of maintaining inequality between dominant and dominated. We can now attempt to provide a theoretically informed answer to the question that initiated this chapter, namely, why people unquestioningly comply, most of the time, with rules that define an unequal distribution of access to power and resources. We could represent the answer to this question as a continuum going from ideological hegemony at one extreme to coercion at the other, with contention in the middle taking up most of the space but ranging from mere resistance to defiance. These possible contentious and noncontentious responses to state making are represented

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in Fig. 2. When they participate in contentious politics, people start from a basic capacity for creative agency, pursuing objectives that relate to immediate situational pressures that they interpret within the confines of their local collectively elaborated frames of reference. It is therefore irrelevant to ask whether such and such a contending group was being ‘‘patriotic’’ as opposed to narrowly egoistic in its aims when it launched an episode of contention: Parisian crowds were moved to attack the Bastille in July 1789 by what they perceived as an emergency situation requiring immediate action, while a small group of Mexican peasants unwittingly started a revolution when occupying forcefully their illegally confiscated fields, and then only for the express purpose of sowing the corn they needed for survival.43 In combination with other contentious processes, both of these contentious episodes were instrumental in profoundly changing the rules of unequal distribution of power and resources in their respective societies. In the macro-analytical perspective of the dynamics of change in a pact of domination, what counts is how individual contentious incidents multiply and combine their forces, often (but not invariably) constructing in the process a unifying discourse, such as ‘‘the nation in danger’’ (in 1792 France) or the Agrarian reform (in 1910–1920 Mexico). In the theoretical scheme proposed, I have defined three interrelated analytical levels – people’s cognitive capacity for creative agency, group level contention, and the societal transformation of the pact of domination (Fig. 3). The processes taking place at each level have been integrated in the following ways: first, creative agency is linked to the capacity to oppose reflexively (instead of reproducing practically) the rules of who should get what via transgressive contention; second, contention is said to be the process through which people express their discontent and voice their specific demands for more access to power and a greater share in wealth; and third, changes in the pact of domination are seen as contingently produced through the process of contention, which itself depends on creative agency. These analytical levels do not refer to the aggregation from small to large or from concrete to abstract discussed earlier; the first level represents a postulate on which the second is dependent; the second, in turn, represents the observable process that we, social scientists, must examine, analyzing it first on its own level of the processes that propel people to act out their recriminations and their grievances or seek their interests; and the third level represents the perspective of long range changes in the rules of inequality or pact of domination, independently of actors’ intentions or comprehension of such processes. The model proposed is grounded in a real observable and researchable process, based on the postulate of creative agency, but this process is

Institutionalized or tolerated: march, charivari, carnival

Fig. 2.

Extra-institutional & repressed if detected: pilfering, sabotaging, banditism

H Resistance

Extra-institutional tolerated or outlawed: social movements, mobilizing for rebellion

State Making via Compliance vs. Contention.

Institutionalized or tolerated: pamphlets, clubs, parties, elections

G Thick hegemony

F Thin hegemony

Violent: riot, guerilla warfare, uprising

J Defiance

Non-violent: petitions, demonstrations, heresies

E Compliance

D Contention

I Contestation

C Conditions of coercion & extraction found acceptable

B Conditions of coercion & extraction resentedas unfair

A State Making

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152 Level I

AGENCY (postulate) Reproductive Agency

Creative Agency Level II

COLLECTIVE RESPONSE (social process) Compliance

Contention Level III

PACT OF DOMINATION (interpretative scheme) Long Waves of Changes in Society

Fig. 3.

Permanence within Waves of Changes

Postulate, Process, and Interpretive Scheme.

interpreted from the perspective of the social ordering of inequality as featured in the concept of pact of domination. As stipulated by Tilly & col., limited collective conflicts are amenable to study with the same theoretical categories and analytical levels as wider social conflagrations, but only if we agree to link small to large contention networks via agency and distinguish the micro-dynamics of contention from their macro-implications for changes in the pact of domination. Tilly & col.’s stipulation that no macro-processes should be invoked to explain macro-contention has also been incorporated in the proposed model, for indeed, the pact of domination is no solid entity to be moved through collective human agency, but an interpretive device that focuses the researcher’s lens on the changing division of power and modes of extraction of the economic surplus, and relates these patterns to the process of contention regarded as the dynamic principle that shapes the social ordering of inequality in society. The notion of pact of domination therefore serves to represent analytically the temporarily crystallized yet ever changing outcome of the continuous process of interaction between state and society that alternately spells compliance and contention over who gets what, and in doing so reproduces and transforms the structure of inequality.

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NOTES 1. I am using Giddens’ definition: ‘‘To be an agent is to be able to deploy y a range of causal powers, including that of influencing those deployed by others y Action depends upon the capability of the individual to make a difference to a preexisting state of affairs or course of events’’ (1984, p. 14). 2. Processes will be defined here as time-ordered sequences of occurrences following a causal plot (Abbott, 1992; Sewell, 2005b; Somers, 1994), and events as concatenations of occurrences that ‘‘significantly transform structure’’ (Sewell, 2005a, p. 100). 3. On contemporary interregional differences in levels of inequality and a discussion of historical processes underlying these differences, see Mann and Riley (2007). 4. By transhistorical, I mean a process that is conceptually identified across historical periods but assumes different empirical forms, parameters, and duration in different locations and historical periods. 5. For reasons that will become clear below, the state is defined here as the political instance of domination and organizational–institutional complex endowed with administrative and coercive capacities over its territory of jurisdiction (O’Donnell, 1984; Oszlak, 1997). 6. In what follows, I would not be assuming that the state is the power supreme independent of class or elite power, simply that the state is a necessary instrument of domination in any but the most simple societies, regardless of who are the polity members, or whether they govern directly or are merely the beneficiaries of the rules enforced by state agencies. 7. Although not encompassing a whole society, we should also mention E. P. Thompson’s immensely fruitful contributions from his studies of English culture, in its historical and class variations (1975, 1991, 2001). 8. Mann’s (1986) study of ancient civilizations suggests, however, that the logistics of state conquest and surplus extraction in the ancient world were a great deal more complex than this lapidary formula would suggest, as the capacity of states to control territory was greatly constrained by the limited range within which troops and supplies could be transported. In addition to conquest, therefore, diplomacy and alliances with conquered elites were used, not without risks of backfiring. 9. According to Mann (2005), up to one-third of Nazi Germany’s war preparing labor force was, at some point, made up of camp prisoner labor, and many dye-inthe-wool Nazis were opposed to the final solution on the grounds that it took away workers necessary to the war effort. The Japanese use of Asian slave labor during World War II is also well known, as is Stalin’s use of Gulag prisoners as slave labor, mainly through Solzhenitsyn’s work. 10. For studies of state making in Europe, see Aminzade (1993), Anderson (1974a), Brewer (1988), Downing (1992), Ertman (1997), Gorski (2003), Mann (1986, 1988, 1993), and Tilly (1975, 1978, 1986, 1990, 1997a, 1997b, 2005a, 2005b). 11. In response to Louis XIVth’s expansionary drive to conquer the countries adjoining France’s borders. (‘‘les frontie´res naturelles’’, as he claimed). 12. This rebuttal leads Centeno (1997, p. 1569) to propose three prerequisites for wars to strengthen the state that were generally absent in early Latin American state

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making: the state’s ability to draw financial resources and political support from its own population, sufficient administrative skills prior to war preparations to face the ensuing explosion of revenues and expenditures, and undisputed hegemony over a territory. One might add, also, the ingrained corruption practices inherited from 400 years of resisting Spanish control over people and resources (which West European countries also suffered from, but perhaps not with the same intensity, especially England). 13. For studies of structuring state power from above in Latin America, see Chiaramonte (1997), Dunkerley (2002), Gootenberg (1989), Lo´pez-Alves (2000), O’Donnell (1976, 1980, 1984), Oszlak (1978, 1981, 1997), Peloso and Tennenbaum (1996), Torres Rivas (1979, 2006), Walker (1999), and Williams (1994). 14. Dependencia y desarrollo en Ame´rica Latina (Cardoso & Faletto, 1966) would appear in its English revised version in 1979, more than 10 years after its publication in Spanish had spawned a rich homegrown literature on dependence, which nevertheless neglected the subject of state making. 15. See, for example, Stern (1987), Katz (1988), Nugent (1988), Mallon (1983, 1994, 1995), Meyer (1973, 1974), Gilbert and Nugent (1994), Knight (1986, 1994), Guardino (1996), Manrique (1981), Warman (1976), Tutino (1986, 1987), and Reina (1980). 16. For example, Mexico’s nineteenth century civic militias pertaining to the National Guard recruited peasant soldiers who were often called upon to defend against French invaders the very same villages where their families lived. 17. In what follows, I will exclude from the discussion Tilly’s Durable Inequality (1998), which represents inequality as generated within organizations through their incorporation of ascriptive cultural definitions of unequal pairs (men/women, white/ nonwhite, etc.). 18. Collectives refer to organized groupings such as villages, agrarian communities (as, e.g., ejidos in Mexico), firms, unions, professional associations, political clubs, etc. But the term does not include state agencies. 19. Action is considered innovative ‘‘if it incorporates claims, selects objects of claims, includes collective self-representation, and/or adopts means that are either unprecedented or forbidden within the regime in question’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 8). We should note that these provisos would include terrorist attacks (as in car or airplane bombs), along with erstwhile sit-ins as innovative forms of collective action. 20. Ohlin Wright has referred to this form of theorizing as ‘‘combinatorial structuralism’’ whereby a menu of elementary forms is provided (in this case mechanisms) and ‘‘more complex structural configurations, then, are analyzed as specific forms of combination of these elementary forms’’(2000, p. 460). 21. The model developed by Tilly & col. is debated point by point in BrachetMa´rquez and Arteaga Pe´rez (2010). 22. La Grande Peur (or the Great Fear), a peasant movement that developed in May–July of 1789, was triggered by rumors that bandits had been recruited by aristocrats to destroy crops and hoard grain in order to sell it at the highest price (something that had been done periodically during the Ancien Re´gime). The fear of these bandits spread rapidly throughout the countryside, causing peasants to attack and burn castles. 23. A few pages on, the authors mention that government may operate as mediator, target, or claimant (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 5), but there is no mention of government acting as arbiter or rule enforcer.

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24. In what follows, I will not qualify processes as ‘‘large’’ or ‘‘small’’ or ‘‘intermediate’’ rather than ‘‘micro’’ or ‘‘macro’’ because the present discussion is not about generalizing from the individual to the whole society, but from small aggregated interactive processes to extended ones over a national territory. 25. I owe this distinction to Alford and Friedland (1985, p. 20). 26. Even though one of the subtitles reads ‘‘Mechanisms in Revolutionary Contention’’ (McAdam et al., 2001, p. 198), implying that there are different kinds of contention. 27. We studied six cases of contention in Brachet-Ma´rquez and Arteaga Pe´rez (2010) and found an extremely wide spread of mechanisms with very few (such as negotiation, coalition, or repression) repeating themselves, even though the cases of contention under study were limited to three villages situated in Morelos within a time period from 1909 to 2009. One of these villages, Anenecuilco, is Emiliano Zapata’s native village, where the first contention leading to the Mexican Revolution took place, according to our analysis. 28. The reason why contention is qualified in cells 3, 6, and 9 will be explained in Section 3. 29. At that point, there is still no ‘‘revolution’’ as Madero’s intent is simply to oust the dictator so as to reestablish the 1857 Constitution that has stipulates a no reelection rule. After his assassination in 1913, the group of opponents to the new dictatorship will call themselves ‘‘constitutionalists’’ for the same reason. It will be the small contention born in Anenecuilco that will eventually inject revolutionary elements which the other allied contendants will be unable to exclude, despite all their efforts. 30. Scott’s (1990) distinction between ‘‘thick’’ and ‘‘thin’’ hegemony may be usefully mentioned here, insofar as not questioning state authority does not necessarily imply identifying with its symbols and shibboleths, but merely complying without much enthusiasm. 31. For a discussion of populism in Latin America, see Ianni (1968), Conniff (1999), Moscoso Perea (1990), and Quintero Lo´pez (2004). 32. This has been argued, for example, in a revisionist version of peronism in Argentina, first interpreted as a straight dictatorship, and later viewed as receptive to labor demands (Portantiero & Mura´is, 1969). 33. I am not including in this definition stateless nationalism, as in Basque, Breton, or Que´becquois nationalisms. 34. On the recent rise of inequality in developed countries, see Alderson, Beckfield, and Nielsen (2005) and Moller, Alderson, and Nielsen (2009). 35. It is important to note, however, that such defeat was not the cause of the generalized disaffection by conservative elites and opponents to the regime alike; what precipitated the fall of the generals was the fact that they publicly declared military victory while sending young men (and boys) to their certain death, and collecting extra moneys from the civil population in order to support a war that had already been lost. 36. In the special case of democratic pacts of domination, change is no longer achieved by challenging the PD in toto, but through the electoral process and the use of rules (e.g., parliamentary rules) stipulating legitimate ways of effecting change. Nevertheless, contention as the collective expression of demands, as is well known, is never absent from democratic social formations.

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37. General Pinochet had a constitution ‘‘approved’’ in 1980 in which he was to act as life senator. 38. That is, solutions that solve the case, but do not have any repercussions outside of it. 39. For example, Zapata’s failure to join forces with Villa in the Aguascalientes Convention when together they had the military upper hand on Carranza, and the latter still did not have the support of the United States. 40. The Mexican revolution exemplifies this situation. It is said to have started in 1909, at the national level, with Francisco I. Madero’s declaration to become a presidential candidate. But his mobilizing discourse almost exclusively consisted in reviving the no reelection constitutional rule that had been disregarded for 30 years, along with the rest of the 1857 constitution. We may say, in this case, that Madero was aiming at breaking a (de facto) rule of access to power, but nothing much else, and that he was appealing, mostly to disaffected elites who would not have dreamed of starting a social revolution. After his escape from jail and declared intent to unseat Dı´ az, Madero accepted an offer of military help by a small insignificant political group (the Melchor Ocampo club), led by a young peasant called Emiliano Zapata. That insignificant group which pursued a program that directly attacked the economic status quo (to give the land back to their rightful peasant owners) offered its help on the strength of article 3 in Madero’s Plan of San Luis that stipulated that illegally taken land should be restituted. The article was there, but not the intent, as the future would show. Soon enough, conflict would break out between the allies following Madero’s ascent to power and his subsequent attempts to stamp down on nascent zapatismo. 41. By demands for worse equality, I am referring to elite (and international creditor) demands for policies that increment the degree of inequality. One example thereof are the neoliberal restructuring and stabilization policies and regressive social reforms carried out throughout the 1990s in Latin America and other peripheral societies, which concentrated wealth in fewer hands and incremented the level of poverty and unemployment in these regions. Naturally, such demands are disguised as demands for ‘‘better’’ economic, and even ‘‘better’’ social conditions, so that my qualification of them as ‘‘worse’’ in terms of equality is interpretive, based on a large accumulation of evidence of their consequences. 42. The term transhistorical as it is used here does not imply ‘‘outside of history,’’ but a benchmark to compare different historical periods. In that sense, ‘‘state making’’ surely does differ in early seventeenth-century Prussia as compared to early eighteenth-century France or early ninneteenth-century Mexico or, to take a more extreme comparison, fifth century-BCE Athens. But we can recognize in each case a general model of ‘‘state making’’ that encompasses all of those historically specific formations. So, the relation of general to particular in the notion of state making does not lose its thoroughly historical standing for being analytic, as it provides only a general framework with which to examine historical periods. 43. The contentious episode in Mexico summarily represented on Table 2 took place in 1909, when the Hacienda del Hospital whose owners had sequestered fields belonging to the village of Anenecuilco refused to let the latter sow in time for the spring crop, and the state government refused to intervene. Emiliano Zapata, still an unknown young village chief, proceeded to occupy said fields with 80 armed men to

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protect village people while they did their work. The state government subsequently abstained from responding to hacienda demands for their expulsion.

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THE LABOR–VALUE RELATION AND ITS TRANSFORMATIONS: REVISITING MARX’S VALUE THEORY Paul Paolucci INTRODUCTION In theorizing the dynamics of social processes, dialectical thinking informs Marx’s historical materialist inquiries and both – dialectics and historical materialist principles – inform his political–economic analysis. In conceptualizing empirical observations during this work, Marx (1973b, p. 101) assumes that the ‘‘concrete is concrete because it is the concentration of many determinations, hence unity of the diverse’’ and that ‘‘With the varying degree of development of productive power, social conditions and the laws governing them vary too’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 28). This methodological tack strives for the flexibility needed for analyzing patterns in long-term social development (the structure of history) as well as the logic of specific systems in their totality and flux (the history of structures). In recognizing these principles in a study of Marx’s value theory, clarifying a unit of analysis is vital. Engels (1941, p. 44) tells us Marx saw the world ‘‘as a complex y of processes y coming into being and passing away.’’ As for labor’s role in this complex, Marx (1988a, p. 70) says to focus

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on those things with which it has a ‘‘necessary relationship.’’ Indeed, as a dialectical thinker, he depicts his political-economic work as a ‘‘view of social relationships y scientifically expounded’’ (Marx, 1983b, p. 354), tasked to ‘‘analyze y different forms of development’’ and ‘‘trace y their inner connexion’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 28). Does Marx trace labor and value as a necessary relation developing through innerconnected historical processes? If so, what does this theory look like? What does this tell us about traditional views of his theory and our world today? Reviewing several interpretive guides is necessary before addressing such questions.

AN INTERPRETIVE FRAMEWORK Ollman (2003, pp. 86–99) finds at least seven levels of generality in Marx’s analyses: (7) what humans share with nature (mass, speed, etc.), (6) human as animals (need for food, reproduction, etc.), (5) humans as humans (our species being and general forms of social organization), (4) class history (slavery, Asiatic despotism, feudalism, and capitalism), (3) capitalism in general, (2) its recent history, and (1) unique individuals and events. Dialectical reason informs all of these levels, historical materialism mainly levels five to two, and political economy levels three and two. In isolating necessary relations during these inquiries, Marx uses controlled comparison, often altering his ‘‘vantage points’’ (Ollman, 2003, pp. 99–111). In this process, Marx (1971a, p. 192) shifts analytical starting points from levels of generality and/or around a phenomenon’s dimensions to ‘‘counter-pose them individually in order to present their relationship.’’ Marx’s vantage points here include a historical analysis of capitalism’s origins, a structural analysis of it as a specific system, and a synthesis of historical and structural analysis to capture its motion (Paolucci, 2009, pp. 111–118). In this work, Marx studies ‘‘how the past developed into the present by adopting the vantage point of the present to view the conditions that gave rise to it’’ (Ollman, 2003, p. 115) while also analyzing how capitalism’s contradictions project its forward trajectory and eventual demise.1 Such an approach ‘‘must make use of terms different from those y who look upon [capitalism] as imperishable and final’’ (Engels, 1992, p. 16). First, while he often ‘‘expressed the same thought in different words’’ (Engels, 1971, p. 3), Marx’s (1992, p. 65) concern for applicability and generalization requires concepts and data be ‘‘commensurable,’’ or ‘‘qualitatively equal.’’ Second, the meanings he attaches to concepts often change with his vantage point. Thus, third, to reflect changes between or within levels of generality, Marx’s

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concepts may retain some prior meaning while acquiring new qualities, perhaps losing others.2 Because he developed such methods over time but left several analyses unpublished, we must sample across his works and correspondence. This framework suggests that (1) a sample limited to one vantage point and/or only to Marx’s texts (or, worse, just one) is too narrow and susceptible to one-sided readings, (2) we must attend to when Marx adds to/ subtracts from the meaning he assigns to labor and value with his shifts in vantage point, and (3) if we find Marx tracing labor and value as a necessary relation across levels of generality, we must investigate the implications of this, as it is contrary to widely held assumptions in Marxist scholarship.

LABOR–VALUE RELATIONS ACROSS HISTORICAL SYSTEMS In the Grundrisse, Marx (1973b, p. 105) argues that labor is an ‘‘ancient relation valid in all forms of society’’ and ‘‘for all epochs,’’ but ‘‘achieves practical truth as an abstraction only as a category of the most modern society’’ and ‘‘possesses [its] full validity only for and within these relations.’’ If labor crosses all societies, what is its capitalist-specificity as reality and concept? On this question, Marx (1973b, p. 107) says that ‘‘Capital,’’ as its ‘‘all-dominating economic power y must form the starting-point as well as the finishing point’’ in an analysis of ‘‘bourgeois society.’’ Research here must examine ‘‘the general, abstract determinants y in more or less all forms of society,’’ ‘‘the inner structure of bourgeois society,’’ and ‘‘their interrelation’’ (Marx, 1973b, p. 108). The immediate issue is thus: Does Marx see labor–value relations in all forms of society, isolate their unique features in bourgeois society, and trace their interrelations and transformations between prior modes of production and within a society capitalist production dominates? The Labor–Value Relation in ‘‘All Forms of Society’’ In his 1844 Manuscripts, Marx (1988a, p. 72) holds that the ‘‘worker can create nothing without nature, without the sensuous external world.’’ In comparison to other sentient beings, ‘‘Conscious life-activity directly distinguishes man from animal life-activity’’ (Marx, 1988a, p. 76). Accepting Hegel’s view of ‘‘the self-genesis of man as a process y the outcome of

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man’s own labor’’ (Marx, 1988a, p. 149), Marx (1988a, p. 76) says that ‘‘labor, life-activity, productive life itself y is the life of the species. It is lifeengendering life.’’ At the individual level, labor involves the ‘‘relation of the worker to the product y to the sensuous external world,’’ and ‘‘to the act of production y [that is,] to his own activity,’’ which includes ‘‘physical and mental energy’’ and ‘‘personal life’’ (Marx, 1988a, p. 75). This expansive view rejects the idea that ‘‘labor occurs only in the form of wage-earning activity’’ (Marx, 1988a, p. 27).3 Socially, the ‘‘first historical act is y the production of the means to satisfy y needs, the production of material life itself’’ (Marx & Engels, 1976, p. 42). The ‘‘elementary factors’’ of this ‘‘labor-process’’ include, ‘‘1, the personal activity of man, i.e., work itself, 2, the subject of that work, and 3, its instruments’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 174).4 Labor’s product? ‘‘[L]abor creates value, but is not itself value. It becomes value only y when embodied in the form of some object’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 57). Marx (1992, p. 72) terms this the ‘‘general value-form, which represents all products’’ of ‘‘human labor generally,’’ i.e., the labor–value relation is a necessary one in all societies. To the general value-form, Marx (1992, p. 176) first assigns the character of ‘‘use-value, Nature’s material adapted by a change of form to the wants of man.’’ Use-values acquire exchange-value in the social relations within and between systems.5 As general value-forms, use- and exchange-values cross all societies, so does ‘‘surplus-labor in general’’ as a prerequisite for maintaining any system.6 If labor’s product is value, and surplus-labor is necessary in any society, and if ‘‘the compulsion to perform surplus-labor y the capitalist mode of production shares with earlier modes of production’’ (Marx, 1969, p. 390), then does it necessarily follow that surplus-labor’s product is surplusvalue, no matter what system is under consideration? When Marx’s letter introduces Engels to the concept in 1862, surplusvalue refers to the expansion of capital through the exploitation of wagelabor.7 Capital’s first use refers to ‘‘More money y withdrawn from circulation at the finish than was thrown into it at the start’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 149). However, after his letter to Engels and before finishing Capital, Volume I, Marx’s (1971a, pp. 634, 792) draft for Volume III offers a broader view, one of ‘‘surplus-value in general’’: the general conditions for the existence of surplus-value y in general y are: the direct producers must work beyond the time necessary for reproducing their own labor-power, for their own reproduction. They must produce surplus-labor in general. y [T]he natural conditions y of surplus-value in general, are plainly clear. The direct producer must 1) possess enough labor-power and 2) the natural conditions of his labor, above all the soil cultivated by him, must be productive enough to give him the possibility of retaining

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some surplus-labor over and above that required for the satisfaction of his indispensable needs.8

Here, surplus-labor in general produces surplus-value in general at the social level in general. Marx uses this starting-point – one where surplusvalue is not yet a product of exploitation – to trace labor–value relations from class societies to capitalism in general in order to get at capitalistspecific forms of surplus-value. The Labor–Value Relation from Class Systems to Capitalism In Theories of Surplus-Value, Part III, Marx (1971b, p. 254) accepts the view that ‘‘reduces all surplus-value to surplus-labor,’’ a trait class systems share with societies in general. However, in Capital, Volume III, we learn that in class systems, ‘‘Surplus-labor in general y [i]n the capitalist as well as in the slave system, etc. y assumes an antagonistic form and is supplemented by complete idleness of a stratum of society’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 819).9 For example, in the case of ‘‘labor rent,’’ where the y ydirect producer y works y upon the estate of the feudal lord without any compensation y rent and surplus-value are identical. y [T]his identity of surplus-value with unpaid labor y consists directly in the appropriation of this surplus expenditure of labor-power by the landlord. y Here y surplus-value and rent are not only identical but y surplus-value has the tangible form of surplus-labor. (Marx, 1971a, pp. 790, 792)

With nonproducers appropriating the surplus-value of uncompensated labor, class systems also suffer ‘‘estrangement y alienation’’ (Marx, 1988a, p. 71). As the ‘‘essential difference’’ between class systems ‘‘lies y in the mode in which y surplus-labor is y extracted’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 209), each system’s appropriation mode has corresponding surplus-value forms, with capitalism having ‘‘special forms – rent, interest of money and industrial profit’’ (Marx, 1971b, p. 254). In analyzing capitalism’s emergence from feudalism, Marx (1992, pp. 667, 669) begins ‘‘by supposing a primitive accumulation y preceding capitalist accumulation y not the result of the capitalist mode of production, but its starting-point.’’ Here, various transformations account for the ‘‘separation of the laborers from all property in the means by which they can realize their labor,’’ including ‘‘conquest, enslavement, robbery, murder’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 668). Capitalism’s technological preconditions include the compass, the printing press, the clock, gunpowder, and the mill (Marx, 1936a), whereas ‘‘The discovery of America [and] the rounding of the Cape’’ (Marx & Engels, 1978, p. 474) represent important historical events. Capitalism’s

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transformations – ‘‘of arable land into sheepwalks,’’ of people ‘‘into mercenaries,’’ of feudal and clan property ‘‘into modern private property,’’ of ‘‘means of nourishment y into material elements of variable capital,’’ and ‘‘of the individualized and scattered means of production into socially concentrated ones’’ (Marx, 1992, pp. 588, 672, 674, 685, 697, 714) – swept away ‘‘the vanished social formations out of which whose ruins and elements it built itself up, whose partly still unconquered remnants are carried along within it’’ (Marx, 1973b, p. 105), ‘‘more or less in chronological order y [in] Spain, Portugal, Holland, France, and England’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 703). Once achieved, the laborer fell ‘‘under the dominion of his product, capital’’ (Marx, 1988a, p. 71).

Labor–Value Relations and ‘‘The Inner Structure of Bourgeois Society’’ Marx uses (at least) three distinct but interconnected tacks in structural analysis: (1) his models interiorize activity at the individual level, in society in general, and in capitalism’s formal sector simultaneously; (2) he isolates capitalism’s structural relations on their own terms; and (3) he synthesizes historical–structural models where its interrelations produce changes internal to capitalism and in modern society as a whole. Marx’s Structural Analysis of Capitalism with Individual/Social Labor Interiorized Marx (1987b, p. 407) explained to Engels that one of Capital’s ‘‘best points’’ and ‘‘fundamental to all understanding of the facts’’ is its stress on ‘‘the twofold character of labor, according to whether it is expressed in use-value or exchange-value’’ (emphases in the original) – i.e., producing general valueforms at any level versus commodities in market situations. Marx (1992, p. 476) tells us Capital’s initial analysis thus starts ‘‘by treating [the laborprocess] y apart from its historical forms, as a process between man and Nature,’’ where, in terms of use-values, if ‘‘we put out of sight y the concrete forms of that labor y all are reduced to one and the same sort of labor, human labor in the abstract’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 46). As ‘‘productive labor’’ from this ‘‘standpoint y is by no means directly applicable to y capitalist y production’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 176, note 2), controlled comparison distinguishes the ‘‘direct social functions’’ between ‘‘different kinds of labor’’ – peasant families producing use-values in his example – and labor in ‘‘a society based on the production of commodities’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 82). This form of interiorizing – i.e., abstract models of juxtaposed

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systems – uses a matrix of relations as a vantage point to put capitalism’s unique features into relief. In a second form of interiorizing, rather than as separate abstract spheres, Marx’s model includes labor at private and social levels (e.g., physical and mental energy, personal activity, and domestic production) alongside wage– commodity relations.10 He argues that ‘‘commodities, as values, are realized human labor, and therefore commensurable.’’ Across societies, money as a ‘‘universal measure of value’’ places products on a register that makes them ‘‘qualitatively equal’’ and, in capitalism, ‘‘quantitatively comparable.’’ As commodity ‘‘values can be measured by’’ labor and this ‘‘converted into the common measure of their values, i.e., into money’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 97), Marx needs a concept that commensurably and simultaneously encompasses both individual/social labor and value production in the capitalist sector. Here, ‘‘undifferentiated human labor’’ innerconnects these as ‘‘the social resume´ of the world of commodities’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 72). So when Marx (1992, p. 164) says, ‘‘By labor-power or capacity for labor is to be understood the aggregate of those mental and physical capabilities existing in a human being, which he exercises whenever he produces a use-value of any description,’’ he again interiorizes multiple forms of labor in a single concept from which he can extract capitalism’s unique forms. Marx’s concern is thus the relationship between capitalist production and life at the private/social level, where the former is dependent on transforming the latter into an image of itself, a reading that is crucial for interpreting his overall value theory, as we will later see.11 Marx’s Structural Analysis of Capitalism on Its Own Terms Assuming that ‘‘The first exchange between capital and labor is a formal process, in which capital figures as money and labor-power as commodity’’ (Marx, 1969, p. 397; emphases in the original), Marx (1992, pp. 145, 317) isolates the ‘‘circulation of commodities y [as] the starting-point of capital’’ and the ‘‘simultaneous employment of a large number of wage-laborers, in one and the same process y [as] the starting-point of capitalist production.’’ Given that ‘‘value can only manifest itself in y the value-relation of one commodity to another’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 57), capital grafts labor-power onto the quantitative register of capitalist-forms of exchange (wages and prices) and surplus-value (profit, interest, and rent). This reality allows Marx (1971a, p. 175) to abstract capitalism’s labor–value relations in a ‘‘pure form.’’ Here, formulae for capitalism’s pure structure – e.g., both the general formula for capital (M–C–Mu, M’–C–Mv y N) and rate of profit (s/c þ v) – assume ‘‘the means of production have been transformed into capital’’

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already (Marx, 1971a, p. 188). Such models help Marx analyze ratios of money invested to labor costs and profitability (thus exploitation and surplus-value) and explain aspects of capitalist and working class activity that result.

Labor–Value Relations in a Historical–Structural Synthesis: ‘‘Their Innerconnection’’ Marx (1973a, p. 105) writes that ‘‘Capital as self-expanding value y is a movement, a circuit-describing process going through various stages y [which] can be understood only as motion.’’ To capture this motion, Marx looks backward to see how labor–value relations in prior systems extend into capitalist society and forward to uncover their development internal to capitalism.12 If, as Capital, Volume I argues, in addition to socially average necessary labor-time, ‘‘the labor contained in the means of production’’ determines commodity values (Marx, 1992, p. 299), then, according to Volume III, a historical conception of capitalism’s ‘‘germ of y profit’’ includes ‘‘the appropriation of y surplus expenditure of labor-power by the [feudal] landlord’’ (Marx, 1971a, pp. 790, 792). Capital’s initial development thus entails ‘‘the result of previous labor’’ such as ‘‘workshops, canals, roads, and so forth y labor of past ages.’’ These ‘‘use-values, products of previous labor’’ now used ‘‘as means of production’’ merge into capitalism’s valuerelations as infrastructure, and as such, the ‘‘same use-value is both the product of a previous process, and a means of production in a later process’’ (Marx, 1992, pp. 176–177). Internal to capitalism, socially necessary labor-time ‘‘changes with every variation in the productiveness of labor y [and other] various circumstances’’ – e.g., average worker skill, science’s application, production’s social organization, and dispersion and capacity of productive means (Marx, 1992, p. 47). As production techniques advance, ‘‘the old division of labor, becomes dissolved’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 434) and, ‘‘After y a certain number of years, the capital value [the capitalist] y possesses is equal to the sum total of the surplus-value appropriated y and the total value y consumed is equal to that of his original capital. y Not a single atom of the value of his old capital continues to exist’’ (Marx, 1992, pp. 534–535). Changes in the rate of profit (s/c þ v) thus produce ‘‘the ebb and flow of the industrial cycle’’ as well as a ‘‘qualitative change in mechanical industry’’ that ‘‘continually discharges hands from the factory, or shuts its doors

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against the fresh stream of recruits, while the purely quantitative extension of the factories absorbs not only the men thrown out of work, but also fresh contingents’’ (Marx, 1992, pp. 427–428). Such changes shape ‘‘the distribution of the total social capital among y individual spheres, and since this distribution is continually changing, it becomes another constant cause of change in the general rate of profit’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 169). Here, his pure structural model assumed, Marx examines how the relations it depicts historically developed and how its present relations shape its movements and connections with private/social activity. Marx (1969, p. 393) thus describes a certain ‘‘bourgeois narrow-mindedness’’ as one that ‘‘confuse[s] the question of what is productive labor from the standpoint of capital with y productive labor in general’’ (emphasis in the original). Rejecting any conflation of capitalist activity with activity of humans in general, Marx (1969, p. 413) refers to productive labor only in relation to ‘‘productive capital, i.e., capital employed in the direct process of production.’’ Having examined labor–value relations in historical systems and with private/social labor interiorized into a model of society capitalist relations dominate, Marx’s pure structural analysis abstracts these apart from one another, sifting out capitalism’s unique features, which, in turn, assists in studying the innerconnections between all of these realties through synthesizing these models together.13

HOW DOES THIS FRAMEWORK HELP US INTERPRET MARX’S VALUE THEORY? This framework allows for several conclusions. First, although Marx’s pure structural models receive much attention in value theory debates, such models are only a partial sample of his approach. Marx’s pure models abstract transformations of value-forms at prior class and social/private levels into capitalist value-forms out of view. This allows him to set his pure structural models in motion in their synthesis with historical dynamics, which informs us about what these economic relations do to individual life and bourgeois society as a whole. This is the scope of Marx’s value theory we must grasp. Second, interiorizing (productive) labor in the formal sector and private/ social labor side-by-side is altogether different from conflating and equating the two. When Marx (1969, p. 393) says, ‘‘Only labor which is directly transformed into capital is productive y [that is,] labor which produces

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surplus-value or serves capital as agency for the creation of surplus-value’’ (emphases in the original), this does not mean that other forms of labor are not ‘‘productive’’ in the colloquial sense. Rather, such terminological distinctions help him specify the capitalist relations he wants to isolate and to stress that when ‘‘the productive power of social labor and its special forms y appear as productive powers and forms of capital y we have y the perversion of the relationship y called fetishism’’ (Marx, 1969, p. 389; emphasis in the original).14 So, Marx’s pure structural models do not express the only conditions where, for him, ‘‘labor’’ attains meaning but rather here ‘‘labor’’ is a surrogate for ‘‘productive labor’’ as the ‘‘formal subsumption of labor under capital’’ (Marx, 1969, pp. 389–390).15 We thus misread Marx if we assume his use of ‘‘labor’’ always refers to formal commodity production only. A third issue, extending from the first two, is that the features variables carry with them into Marx’s pure models are always incomplete. On the one hand, the labor-power capitalists purchase is not all the labor in the social system as a whole, which includes available labor-power capitalists do not need as well as private/social labor, i.e., both the social resume´ of the world of commodities and the production of use-values of any form. On the other hand, whatever else Marx intends for his pure structural equations, the ongoing transformations they fail to capture limit what they can reveal. When Marx (1992, p. 307) says ‘‘the laws of the production of value are only fully realized y when y a capitalist y employs a number of workmen together, whose labor y is at once stamped as average social labor,’’ this means that necessary labor-time’s full capitalist expression y yrequires a fully developed production of commodities before y all the different kinds of private labor, which are carried on independently of each other, and yet as spontaneously developed branches of the social division of labor, are continually being reduced to the quantitative proportions in which society requires them. And why? Because, in the midst of all the accidental and ever fluctuating exchange relations between the products, the labor-time socially necessary for their production forcibly asserts itself like an over-riding law of Nature. (Marx, 1992, pp. 79–80)

Therefore, if in Marx’s pure structural models the only relations abstracted in are already on capital’s monetary register in the formal production process, then, to the extent capitalism’s parts are in a process of transformation into these relations but not yet fully realized across all of society as a whole, such models are necessarily partial. Fourth, this framework provides insight to the analytical utility of socially necessary labor-time. On the one side, the labor–value relation as a necessary relation in all historical systems has both qualitative and

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quantitative dimensions. On the other side, capital’s development increasingly crystallizes labor–value relations where the value of products ‘‘obtains fixity only by reason of their acting and re-acting upon each other as quantities of value’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 79).16 Use-values for capital include products of paid and unpaid labor from within bourgeois society as well as from different systems. ‘‘The general value-form’’ applies to labor at private/social and historical levels (past and present nonwage labors) but these labors are not commensurable with formal commodity production (a quantitative labor–value relation) to a full extent.17 At the same time, the general value-form applies to commodities as well. Because of capital’s dynamics, necessary labor-time rises, falls, and changes in quality and across laboring groups. Some of this time is qualitative and private/social, some is quantitative and private/social, while other quantitative labor-time occurs in the formal sector. As socially necessary labor-time applies to all these areas (collectively, ‘‘undifferentiated labor’’), it allows Marx to innerconnect the value transformations in which both labor in general and wage-labor participate, thus revealing the fuller range of the origins of capitalist surplus-value. Finally, recognizing Marx’s structural vantage points helps us interpret Capital. Volume I establishes labor as the source of the general value-form and analyzes its transformation into capitalist value-forms. Volume III focuses on ‘‘the transformation of surplus-value into its different forms and separate component parts’’ (Marx, 1936c, p. 241). From Volume I to Volume III, Marx is therefore interested in a triple transformation: feudal labor–value relations into capitalist-forms, general value-forms into wages, prices, and profits, and these transformed into capital. As an attempt to trace these transformations, Marx’s analyses innerconnect with one another, meaning we cannot approach Capital’s volumes as presenting dual, disconnected models.18

REVISITING APPROACHES TO MARX’S VALUE THEORY When a debate is long unresolved, it is perhaps because a ‘‘question y badly formulated y cannot be answered correctly’’ (Marx, 1985b, p. 27). Hunt and Glick (1990, p. 361) similarly argue that a resolution to the ‘‘transformation problem’’ in Marx’s value theory will ‘‘concern the social and economic implications of the competing assumptions which are adopted.’’

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In light of the above framework, below I discuss some common assumptions about Marx’s value theory and why we must know it differently.

Assumption: Labor Produces Value in Capitalist Society Only Knafo (2007, p. 80) says that ‘‘Marxist scholars now generally agree that value is not a natural product of labor, labor that would be congealed in a commodity, but that it only emerges with capitalism as socially necessary labor-time.’’ This and associated assumptions misread Marx, I think.19 Above, Marx, in his expansive conception, analyzes labor–value relations, including private/social labor, as necessary in all societies in general, which includes class and capitalist systems. Assuming value only emerges with capitalist socially necessary labor-time misleads us if the purpose of Marx’s pure structural models is to synthesize them with models of capital’s origin and ongoing usurpation of social/individual life in its thirst for surplus-value extraction. A sample not incorporating these innerconnections is too limited for showing us what Marx places inside labor and value depending on his level of generality as well as the form of analysis he employs. The idea that ‘‘Marxian theory should be understood not as a universally applicable theory but as a critical theory specific to capitalist society’’ (Postone, 1993, p. 5) is partially correct. Marx does have a special value theory for capitalism that does not apply to all systems.20 However, what we might call his ‘‘general theory’’ informs this special theory in several ways. First, for Marx, individual and collective labor in general that satisfies basic needs plus a surplus is a necessary condition in all systems. Second, by extension, surplus-value in general is a product of surplus-labor in general. Third, class systems are based on appropriating surplus-value through a nonlaboring class controlling the terms and products of surplus-labor (with its associated alienating conditions). Fourth, capitalism’s development (past, present, and future) is contingent on using prior forms of surplusvalue as well as transforming private/social labor into labor–value relations with use-value for capital accumulation. This reality, i.e., capital’s motion, is the locale of Marx’s special value theory for capitalism. What assumptions guide interpretations of this special theory? Hunt and Glick (1990, p. 356) tell us that, ‘‘To Marx, the value of a commodity consisted of the labor embodied in the means of production that were used up in the production of a commodity (dead labor) and the labor expended in the current production period (living labor).’’ The issue for Marx here became how to calculate the prices of production based on the values of

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living and dead labor inputs. Hunt and Glick (1990, p. 358) summarize the famous ‘‘transformation problem’’ stemming from his proposed solution: ‘‘Marx had transformed the output prices while the input prices remained in values. This was an inadequate solution, it was argued, since capitalists buy inputs at prices and not values.’’ These terms of debate are pitched at the level of pure structural analysis alone. How has this limited sample shaped interpretations of Marx’s transformation procedure? The earliest and most influential criticisms in these regards stem from a line of readings (e.g., Bo¨hm-Bawerk, Bortkiewicz, Samuelson, and associated traditions) that rely on a model where the state of the system is in perpetual price equilibrium. However, temporal single system interpretations (TSSI) (e.g., Kliman, 2007) show how such approaches measure input values on the same scale as output prices, a system of no growth (criticisms referred to as ‘‘simultaneism’’ and ‘‘physicalism’’). TSSI theorists argue that value inputs must diverge from price outputs because the system’s value relations change in between, i.e., as we saw Marx state earlier, the ‘‘same use-value is both the product of a previous process, and a means of production in a later process.’’ Traditional criticisms of Marx’s value theory based on the so-called transformation problem thus rely on assumptions not only absent from his work but contrary to them.21 That having been said, though TSSI approaches refute claims that Marx’s transformation procedure is inconsistent and urge a more dynamic conception of his theory, unless one combines his pure structural models with his other moments of analysis, then any such approach does not incorporate the full scope of Marx’s value theory.22 Returning to labor-time as a measure of value, in the formal productive sector, Marx (1987c, p. 514) assumes that ‘‘if the commodity has the double character of use-value and exchange-value, then the labor represented in the commodity must also have a double character.’’ So, when Marx (1992, p. 301) says that the ‘‘real value of a commodity is y not measured by the labor-time that the article in each individual case costs the producer, but by the labor-time socially necessary for its production,’’ this labor has a double character, too. In traditional readings, living labor is the cost of wages and dead labor is the cost of the material means of production. Marx (1988a, p. 71) also assumes ‘‘Labor produces not only commodities; it produces itself and the worker as a commodity.’’ Although value theorists regularly recognize the worker’s self-reproduction as part of the labor in the means of production, less acknowledged is how necessary labor-time’s double character also includes activities that produce neither commodities directly for sale nor ‘‘productive labor in general’’ we do as individuals per se. These

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labor–value relations existed in capitalism’s social spaces in Marx’s time and still exist in ours. And, each side of this double-relation – private/social labor versus labor in the formal sector – produces value.23 Marx’s concern is how capital, driven by its thirst for surplus-value, extracts from all other value-forms, not only wage-labor, prices, profit, and interest but also private/social labor–value relations. This concern innerconnects Capital’s volumes, in contradistinction to critics such as Samuelson (1971, p. 400) who see these volumes as ‘‘comparing and contrasting the mutuallyexclusive alternatives of ‘values’ and ‘prices’’’ and offering ‘‘alternate and discordant systems.’’ Given its focus for value theory debates, does Capital, Volume III (Chapter IX) acknowledge these considerations? I believe so, but only in a few easy-to-overlook passages. Marx (1971a, p. 165) writes that ‘‘The costprice of a commodity refers only to the quantity of paid labor contained in it, while its value refers to all the paid and unpaid labor contained in it. The price of production refers to the sum of the paid labor plus a certain quantity of unpaid labor determined for any particular sphere of production by conditions over which it has no control.’’ It is tempting to assume this unpaid labor exists only in the formal wage sector (no doubt, much of it does). But Marx (1971a, p. 168) also says that ‘‘the capitalist y does not see the total labor put into the commodity, but only that portion of the total labor for which he has paid in the shape of means of production, be they living or not, so that his profit appears to him as something outside the immanent value of the commodity.’’ For Marx, here, something more is inserted into commodity production on top of the (living and dead) labor in the formal sector. Recall Volume III’s starting-point is general value-forms already transformed into capitalist exchange-values and surplus-value.24 A few lines after the quoted passage above, Marx (1971a, p. 168) writes that ‘‘this intrinsic connection is here revealed for this first time’’ and that ‘‘Book IV’’ will show how ‘‘up to the present time political economy y either forcibly abstracted itself from the distinctions between surplus-value and profit y or else abandoned this value determination.’’ Earlier, we saw in Theories of Surplus-Value (Book IV above) and the volumes of Capital that surplusvalue in general exists in all societies and includes private labor-forms outside formal wage production (two principles value theorists often reject, see note 19). We also saw Marx claim that capital continually reduces ‘‘branches of the social division of labor’’ to ‘‘quantitative proportions.’’ If socially average labor-time is in the process of transformation from ‘‘private’’ and ‘‘independent’’ relations to capitalist-quantitative ones, then

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portions of labor-time outside wage-labor/commodity relations are continually being changed into them. Here we find the importance of recognizing how Marx interconnects his analyses. Pure structural models alone (on which many debates focus) abstract noncapitalist relations out of view. When he synthesizes pure structural models with the private/social level as well as with processes involved in capital’s internal development, his notion of value expands and becomes more fluid. This explains Marx’s (1973a, p. 377) criticism of Adam Smith’s ‘‘error’’ of failing to ‘‘distinguish the two-fold nature of labor itself: of labor which creates value by expending labor-power, and of labor as concrete, useful work, which creates articles of use (use-values).’’ From this vantage point, we see that the assumption that ‘‘Price corresponds to value’’ (Hunt & Glick, 1990, p. 357) only abstracts the value-price relation within a pure structural model.25 However, claims such as ‘‘the price determination of the commodities must deviate from their values’’ (Marx, 1988b, p. 23), which contradict assumptions of Marx’s pure structural models, make sense if neither formal value inputs nor output prices equal the total value relations existing in bourgeois society. As a result, an adequate grasp of Marx’s value theory must encompass a broader set of relations and the transformations in which they participate than structural equations alone can capture. Perhaps here it is appropriate to clarify Marx’s various conceptualizations of labor–value relations. A woman works five days a week for an automobile company (a). On the weekend, she catches three fish before sunrise (b), eats one (c), trades one for some hooks and line (d), and sells one to a local store (e), using the money to buy milk (f ). At home, she cleans her house (g) and later engages in a hobby, say painting (h). In the afternoon, she helps her church members build an outdoor amphitheater for their own use (i) as well as to rent out to professional performers ( j). At the end of the day, she watches television (k) while making a salad containing lettuce from the store (l) and a tomato from her garden (m). The next day, she sleeps late, does nothing until noon (n), and late in the day cooks a meal for friends (o) while watching sports on television (p). What labor–value relations does this example express? (a) Wage-labor (or, productive labor in the formal sector) (b) Private labor (c) Self-reproduction (as potential labor-power for sale and as individual being) (d) Exchange of use-values at the individual level (one form of barter)

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(e) Market exchange of commodities using a standard measure of value (money) (f ) Consumption from money earned through private labor (g) Labor maintaining both means of self-reproduction and capital’s value (h) Private labor, producing intrinsic value (as well as potential exchangevalue) (i) Social labor, producing social wealth (or, consumption-fund) (j) Social wealth’s potential as exchange-value on the market (potential capital) (k) No labor performed in leisure (but leisure is exposed to commercialization) (l) Subsistence secured through wages from the formal sector (m) Subsistence from private labor (potential exchange-value unrealized) (n) Leisure (no labor, but reproductive of labor-power and individuality) (o) Social activity (no productive labor, but needed for maintaining individuals) (p) Collective leisure (targeted as consumers but no production of commodities). This example depicts productive activity inside and outside of formal labor markets. Some labor outside the formal labor market is private and some is used for self-reproduction (as labor-power but also as an individual, regardless of status of laborer). Some products of labor – i.e., value – are used for exchanges (both barter and commodity exchange). Other labor not in the formal sector is socially accomplished and productive of values that have uses outside of market relations or remain available for inserting into them. Some private labor does not produce value directly but maintains value already in existence (e.g., upkeep on a house maintains capital’s value given a bank’s ownership of the mortgage). In all cases, no conversion of private and social labor into exchange-values would be possible if they did not express value relations in any way at all. Finally, some private/social activity produces no value but consumes it and/or functions to maintain social relationships, on which all human activity is dependent. This is why synthesizing historical and structural analyses is crucial for Marx’s value theory. In this broader view, labor – the satisfaction of needs – includes ‘‘eating and drinking, housing, clothing and various other things’’ (Marx & Engels, 1976, pp. 41–42). As the general value-form ‘‘represents all products of labor,’’ these forms of labor require not conflation with capitalist productive labor but rather specification and their innerconnections traced. Combined, socially necessary labor-time in the formal sector

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plus private/social labor compose the social resume´ of the world of commodities. The relation capital has with individual labor across this labor–value relation is through the average amount the average capitalist pays the average worker to produce commodities of standard quality in an average amount of time. In capitalism, this ‘‘element which creates exchange-values, abstract labor’’ (Marx, 1969, p. 400) is a class relation that innerconnects private activity at the social level, commodity prices, profit rates, and capital accumulation. As capitalists must navigate these interrelations efficiently to realize and expand surplus-value, time is the baseline barometer on the formal quantitative side as well as on the (quantitative–qualitative) private/social side.26 From this vantage point, the segments of capitalist society’s labor–value relation include quantitative necessary labor-time’s relation to wages, prices, and profits, historical means of production absorbed into capitalist production, and private/social labor. Interested in how capital transforms historical, private, and social labor–value relations into capitalist value relations, Marx’s value theory for capitalism interiorizes the former in a conception of the latter. Thus, if ‘‘the average profit actually is only accidentally determined by the unpaid labor absorbed in the sphere of the individual capitalist’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 172), then mathematics cannot capture all the dimensions of capitalist surplus-value’s formation. This is the dialectical tension between (1) laws internal to a system and its historical development and (2) how general laws at the social level shape it.27 Analyses of Marx’s value theory focusing on the first to the exclusion of the second thus work from a limited sample, producing one-sided readings.

Assumption: Socially Necessary Labor-Time Is the Starting-Point for Calculating Commodity Values, Including Money, Prices of Production, and Profits There is a reason to question if moving from necessary labor-time to wages and profit captures Marx’s starting-point.28 Kincaid (2008, p. 190) is emblematic of the approach: ‘‘Some kind of transposition from labor-time - money is a necessary process in capitalism.’’ We saw earlier that capital is the beginning and end point of Marx’s analysis. Marx (1992, p. 152) also says capital is ‘‘self-expanding value’’ and that ‘‘The simple transformation of money into the material factors of the process of production, into means of production, transforms the latter into a title and a right to the labor and surplus-labor of others’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 294). From this vantage point, we

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might ask if his starting-point is less, how does socially necessary labor-time account for price and thus profit? But more, how does capital’s motion shape necessary labor-time and how does this account for other labor–value relations, including the price of production? Marx explained to Engels ‘‘how little the determination of value counts for ‘directly’ in bourgeois society. Actually, no form of society can prevent the labor time at the disposal of society from regulating production in one way or another.’’ In capitalism, ‘‘this regulation is not effected through the direct and conscious control of society over its labor time y but through the movement of commodity prices’’ (Marx, 1987c, p. 515). At the intersection of most capitalist relations, profits and capital accumulation require commodity exchange. Marx (1971a, p. 168) concludes in Volume III of Capital that once labor is bought at wages, ‘‘The transformation of values into prices of production serves to obscure the basis for determining value itself.’’ As a result, in Volume I, he warns that ‘‘The determination of the magnitude of value by labor-time is therefore a secret, hidden under the apparent fluctuations in the relative values of commodities’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 80). Because of price fluctuations and the need for profit extraction, capital shapes labor in formal commodity production and extends into private lives and social institutions before the transformation of necessary labor-time into prices of production. The initial actor is capital transforming the conditions of labor, not labor-time having an equivalent in wages. The mediating factor is commodity prices. And the ultimate regulator is necessary labor-time in the (re)production of labor-power in relation to prices and the ratio between time available for wage-labor, self-reproduction, and social life. Thus, if Marx is right that ‘‘the laws of the production of value are only fully realized when capitalist labor is at once stamped as average social labor’’ and socially necessary labor-time’s full expression ‘‘requires a fully developed production of commodities and all the different kinds of private labor reduced to quantitative proportions,’’ then, until all forms of labor become wage-labor and thus all values are exchanged at prices, a gap of incommensurability between the register of all forms of socially average necessary labor-time, value inputs, and price outputs in the formal sector will persist. And even with a narrowing of this gap, its distance will wax and wane as output prices retransform into new value inputs over capital’s cycles. According to Marx (1969, p. 392), ‘‘Capitalist production first develops on a large scale – tearing [social combinations and their corresponding means of labor] away from the individual independent laborer y [and] develops them as powers dominating the individual laborer and extraneous to him.’’ With capital’s maturation, systemic ‘‘oscillations’’ emerge where

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the ‘‘movement of alternating expansion and contraction y take on the form of periodicity’’ (Marx, 1992, pp. 502, 593). It is also ‘‘a law, based on the very nature of manufacture, that the minimum amount of capital, which is bound to be in the hands of each capitalist, must keep increasing; in other words, that the transformation into capital of the social means of production and subsistence must keep extending’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 340). For the working class, with capital’s growth, ‘‘social forms of their own labor y confront them as forms of capital itself y [and] their labor-power itself becomes so modified by these forms that it is powerless as an independent force, that is to say, outside this capitalist relationship, and that its independent capacity to produce is destroyed’’ (Marx, 1969, p. 391). Marx (1992, p. 224) thus warned that because of its thirst for surplus-value, ‘‘Capital is dead labor, that, vampire-like, only lives by sucking living labor, and lives the more, the more labor it sucks.’’ More than a metaphor, this claim that capital transforms more social values into abstract capitalist values – sucking social relations, living labor, and nature – is a research directive.

THE LABOR–VALUE RELATION AND CAPITALIST PRACTICE Although the partial nature of structural equations stems from them being severed from the whole range of the labor–value relation, if one examines Marx’s historical and social models outside of the relationships structural equations depict, their role in his theory is obscured and so lessened is our ability to explain changes within capitalism. If we start with pure structural models and look backward – to both capitalism’s historical origins as well as its recent past – and forward – its evolution, expansion, extension into social relations, and the transformation of labor–value relations there – we can then put the components and relations that comprise Marx’s overall value theory to better use. Marx’s (1969, p. 397) special value theory reduces to ‘‘the real transformation of labor into y surplus-value for capital.’’ Capitalism depends on ‘‘transforming [money and commodities, both embodiments of labor] into capital’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 668). For capital as exploited labor to be true, there must be an organic connection between capital’s formation and growth and profit, prices, production, wages, and labor. Given that no widely accepted explanation yet exists for how the transformation from labor to value to

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price works precisely, what does this mean for research? Rather than exploring a series of mathematical models (not in itself a misdirection), here I take Marx’s (1987a, p. 391) observation that ‘‘bourgeois gentlemen comprehend the source and nature of their profit in practice’’ as a directive for study. Processes of commodification and proletarianization as well as the most recent financial crisis offer insight.

The Labor–Value Relation, Commodification, and Proletarianization As with general social relations and class systems, capitalism involves available labor-time, to what sort of labor this time is allotted, the amount of things made and how, their exchange, and the uses to which surplus is put. As it is a unique system, the focus of Marx’s value theory is the relationship between capitalist production and social life as a whole. By shifting vantage points from models with private/social labor interiorized to pure structural models, Marx can better examine how capital’s motion transforms the former into labor–value relations useful for its ends. For example, because of competition and/or when profits in an industry or the market as a whole decline, increasing the profit rate is necessary. When current cost-effective dead and/or living labors reach their limit, capitalists must secure newer sources. Processes of commodification temporarily help capitalism overcome profitability crises by creating new use-values for capital in transforming other labor–value relations into exchangevalues, including nonwage-labor into wage-labor, i.e., proletarianization (Wallerstein, 1999, pp. 22–23).29 Commodification and proletarianization extend capitalist production and exchange across the world-system and come from efforts at class and state levels as well as ‘‘natural’’ responses to market conditions (and some are a combination). What Harvey (2003, p. 139) calls ‘‘accumulation by dispossession,’’ for example, refers to how capital accumulation ‘‘in the face of stagnant effective demand’’ continues by opening up new, often peripheral, regions for both trade and ‘‘access to cheaper inputs’’ such as ‘‘labor-power, raw materials, low-cost land, and the like.’’30 Within the system’s core regions, a young capitalism ‘‘converted the physician, the lawyer, the priest, the poet, the man of science, into its paid wage-laborers’’ (Marx & Engels, 1978, p. 476). Today, a laborer’s self-reproduction requires more and more purchases once secured through private labor, e.g., heat, water, food, clothing, and even childcare. Declining purchasing power

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transforms households into dual earner incomes. Advertisers target children and the aged push back retirement plans. Through patents on genes, copyrights on ideas, and privatization of prisons and natural resources, capital’s state proxies transform social relations, public assets, and nature into exchange-values. Advertising inundates public spaces, clothes, reading material, mass transit, television broadcasts, and movies and constantly colonizes new areas. Universities function as training grounds for managerial classes and research and development centers geared toward market stimulation. In short, as capital is ‘‘the absorber and appropriator y of the productive powers of social labor and of the general social productive forces, such as science’’ (Marx, 1969, p. 392), commodification and proletarianization continually transform social labor and values into capitalist values and prices, extending ever more into private/social life.31 As commodification is a solution (albeit temporary) to profitability crises, capitalists have a concern with ‘‘de-commodification’’ in two ways. On the one hand, they oppose moving exchange-values off the ledger that augments profits whereas, on the other hand, they want to maximize the production costs for which they can have others pay. In 2009, the US Congress debated healthcare reform initiatives. With all other core societies having nationalized/socialized medicine, insurance and pharmaceutical industries had a keen interest in keeping healthcare in the United States (population more than 300 million, third largest in the world) a commodity market. This explains their funding of Democratic and Republican politicians and extensive lobbying efforts at not only keeping a single-payer plan off the agenda but also the defeat of a ‘‘public option,’’ a form of governmentfunded insurance that would insert more competition into the market and thus lower costs to consumers (though also profits for capitalists). They succeeded in this endeavor. And, that the public pays for many of the costs of polluting outputs from industrial production (what economists call ‘‘externalities’’) is not coincidental. Taxes cover costs of government cleanup efforts, whereas illnesses associated with pollution contribute to profits of private healthcare insurers. Capital benefits on both sides of this destruction of individual and social life. When profits are sufficient but capitalists expect a demand too low to meet supply in the next round, reinvestment opportunities decline and problems maintaining profit-value arise. Here, productively formal commodification and proletarianization run into limits, resulting in commodification trends in financial capital (the stagnation thesis of the Monthly Review school), the most recent financial crisis being a case in point.

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The Most Recent Financial Crisis Marx (1983a, p. 302) says that ‘‘the lack of congruence of C–M and M–C is the most abstract and superficial form in which the possibility of crises is expressed.’’ As a process, ‘‘capital’’ is a circuit where money is invested in production, goods are sold (exchange and consumption), wages are paid and profits accumulated (distribution of wealth), and profits reinvested (realization). In this process, monies set out in wages tend lower than the cumulative price of goods for sale (exploitation), an imbalance resulting in overproduction and thus expansion and contraction cycles. This problem is exacerbated when reinvestment flows to symbolic surplus-value (stocks, bonds, etc.), or what Marx (1971a, p. 465) calls ‘‘fictitious capital,’’ something which has ‘‘its own laws of motion.’’ In capitalism, a ‘‘bubble’’ occurs when investments grow out of proportion to any market’s realizable value. If enough total profit pours back into wages to purchase enough supply in the next round, expansion has a productive base (some overproduction will nevertheless exist), investors are more likely to see that industry as safe, and a nonbubble market expands. However, the expansion of profit with financial capital is on paper and the more this paper value grows the more reinvestment detaches from productive activities. With concentration of wealth inherent to capitalism, both expanding demand and capital (including bubbles) have built-in limits; when wealth concentration goes unchecked, purchasing power declines, profits along with it, and the system contracts, which results in a crisis if not reversed. And, the greater the distance between fictitious and productive capital, the more potentially volatile such a crisis is. Consider two scenarios, ends of a continuum. In the first, capitalists pay workers to make commodities (M–C–Mu) and reinvest profits in stocks and bonds (Mu–Mv) instead of production (Mu–C–Mv). In a second scenario, capitalists exchange paper values outside of productive activities (M–Mu only).32 If an asset’s ‘‘worth’’ is relative to its potential conversion into values anchored by commodity production and exchange (realization), then, in the second case, ‘‘All connection with the actual expansion process of capital is thus completely lost, and the conception of capital as something with automatic self-expansion properties is thereby strengthened’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 466). Thus, the expanded numerical expression of this so-called ‘‘interest-bearing capital’’ represents ‘‘illusory capital-value’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 468) and ‘‘as soon as the promissory notes become unsaleable, the illusion of this capital disappears’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 465).

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In the first scenario, the paper value of capital tends higher than the real values generated through production, the magnitude of which determines the potential decline in the value of capital unable to find realizable reinvestment opportunities. In the second, it is nonsensical to speak of the distance between capital’s value and real production, as the latter does not exist.33 Nevertheless, given the tendency that ‘‘capital withdraws from a sphere with a low rate of profit and invades others, which yield a higher profit’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 195), when profitability in productive capital tends lower than financial capital, investors gravitate from the first scenario and tend toward the second, fictitious capital expands, and the quantity of paper value tends away from the real productive activity it needs for its realization. That is, ‘‘stagnation generates financialization’’ (Foster & Magdoff, 2009, p. 106), the magnitude and speed of which can make capitalism’s contradictions come to a head in a way and at a pace more volatile than in the first scenario alone. The roots of the financial crisis in the mid-late 2000 period – an outcome of these dynamics – lie decades earlier. During the Great Depression, both the United States and Europe enacted Keynesian reforms, e.g., government regulation and redistribution. Although military spending during World War II pulled the United States out of the Depression, these reforms leveled capitalism’s cycles to an extent and by the mid-late 1970s, the gap in wealth distribution in core regions had declined. In response, capitalists mobilized state allies to dismantle the Keynesian regulatory apparatus and worker organization in the core and attack antisystemic movements in the periphery. There were several outcomes. With the IMF and World Bank funding development programs there, capital expanded further into the periphery; in the core, unions were busted, wages kept low, capital gains and estate taxes were lowered, barriers to capital’s free movements were removed (NAFTA, for instance), and Wall Street raided assets in places such as Mexico and South Korea, all transferring wealth to the upper reaches of the class structure.34 By the 1990s, a crisis of overaccumulation loomed, i.e., too much money and not enough profitable places to put it (Harvey, 2005). Although CEO salaries skyrocketed, corporate profits rose, and the stock market – ‘‘always a good inverse indicator of the real economic conditions of ordinary people’’ (Prins, 2009, p. 9) – soared, wealth concentrated, real incomes failed to keep pace with inflation, and production was stagnant, in decline, and/or shipped offshore.35 Still, news of the vibrant economy poured from business pages, mass media, and the intellectual classes generally.36

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Dismantling Keynesian policies, exporting jobs, keeping wages low, etc., meant middle and working classes in core regions lacked effective levels of demand to make reinvesting in expanded production a safe bet. But even with stagnant production levels, goods needed markets in regions of high consumption and so lenders made cheap credit available and consumer debt shot upward.37 Nevertheless, capitalists required additional investment outlets. Purchasing other companies (i.e., ‘‘merger mania’’) was not an adequate solution and led to job cuts, exacerbating the problem of stimulating demand. So what happened?38 Flush with capital, investors had state allies. From Thatcher/Reagan to Bush (II), both conservatives and liberals joined in loosening rules on lending plus reducing oversight of Wall Street (e.g., the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act repealed the Glass Steagall Act, which was meant to reduce speculation). Neo-Smithian and Friedmanite economic dogmas declared that the discipline of a ‘‘self-regulating’’ market constrains risky behavior. In looking to direct investment toward the private sector, US Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan cut interest rates at the Fed from 6.50% in 2001 to 1.25% by 2003, and, with the Treasury Bill rate of return set at 1% (not very profitable), capitalists shifted money toward housing. To stimulate demand, banks rolled down payments into adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs), successful for those who could refinance before the low, initial interest rate adjusted upward (usually after 3–5 years). With deregulation, many normally unqualified people could get a housing loan (i.e., ‘‘subprime’’ loans), which lenders packaged and sold to investors as ‘‘mortgage-backed securities’’ (or, ‘‘collateralized debt obligations,’’ i.e., CDOs). Although CDOs seem unsound to everyday thinking, there was an economic logic behind them, given that ‘‘interest-bearing capital y is the fountainhead of all manner of insane forms, so that debts, for instance, can appear to the banker as commodities’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 465). The first step was extending loans to more people (inflating the bubble). As long as demand for housing expanded, even if a borrower defaulted, market appreciation meant a likely resale at profit. As subprime loans and ARMs provided incentives for lenders to turn over ever more housing loans, the prospect of short-term profits pulled more firms into the scheme and competition resulted in loosened qualifying standards for housing loans, which further inflated the bubble of fictitious capital.39 With deregulation, Wall Street started buying mortgage-backed securities with leveraged assets.40 To insure these assets, many bought ‘‘credit default swaps’’ (hereafter, CDSs). Here, if a stock lost its value, the CDS insurer

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covered the loss. Just in the same way as housing insurance, having many policyholders ensures enough money comes into cover money paid out. After the Commodity Futures Modernization Act made it illegal to regulate the CDS market, more businesses sold CDSs, often on companies in which the buyer had no investments, just as buying insurance on a neighbor’s house pays if it burns down. As businesses sold CDSs to each other (often insuring a CDO), they essentially bet on other firms to burn (see Morgenson & Story, 2009). As CDS insurance and their inflated paper value (given that a CDS investment in a firm expected to go under produced greater leverage) went on books as assets, the distance between the real economy and fictitious capital grew.41 However, CDS sellers often bought a CDS elsewhere to cover the original money set out, linking all parties to bad paper with inflated, fictitious values. If a CDS seller honored an insured stock, given that to maintain liquidity ‘‘the capitalist has to pay out money constantly to many persons, and to receive money continually from many persons’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 316), this often meant cashing in the CDS they bought from firms who had to cash in their own CDSs, and so on. This created conditions of extreme, potential volatility. Putting it together, flush with profits but with too few reinvestment outlets, instead of investing in new production in core societies, capitalists suppressed wages, shipped jobs offshore, merged companies (cutting labor), and dumped money into financial capital.42 Politicians freed up lending requirements and deregulated Wall Street. Increasingly risky loans flourished as new financial instruments, producing short-term profits (but not real value). When demand for housing hits its limit, the mortgage bubble clashed with the CDO market and the CDS problem and trade in these assets contracted, leaving thousands of investors with bad paper. Since many of these investments were bundled (see note 39), there was no way to tell how deep in bad debt companies holding them were and so investors fled. Several companies collapsed without government intervention (which some ultimately received). As word spread that a firm was on wobbly legs, CDS purchases on them often went up (sending signals to investors to buy a CDS on that company and to pull out traditional stock-investments). If that company went under, then the purchaser retained investment value and the seller maintained leverage if they had additional CDS money coming in. If one link in the chain broke, those upstream had serious balance of payments problems. CDS sellers in the CDO market had double the problems, tripling if the same sellers bought CDSs from those going under.43 As the dominoes fell, short-term lending (i.e., commercial paper) dried up, already tepid US manufacturing slowed, and the system threatened to spiral out of

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control. Capital and its state allies everywhere looted public coffers in search of a lifeline. If the crisis came from only a situation of M–Mu disconnected from productive activity, then it would be a problem only for investors without wider implications for working people. Marx’s model of fictitious capital is the far end of a continuum and to the extent that practices in the financial sector reflect only a trade in paper value it reflects this disconnection. However, a portion of financial capital connects to the real economy in terms of ‘‘accumulated claims, or legal titles, to future production’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 468). To the extent productive industry overlapped with investment banks and/or invested in these new financial instruments, then financial capital inserted itself into the productive sector, on which real waged jobs, incomes, consumption, standards of living, and so on, depend. Also, given that banks issue commercial paper to businesses on the short term to meet payroll, purchase new equipment, etc., and in crises banks tend to hoard money, the financial crises rippled further into the productive sector. And, the bailout of Wall Street relied on taxpayer funds, sending additional money from working and middle classes to capitalists. An indicator of this connection is the distribution of real money in the form of salaries, compensation, and wages. Between 2000 and 2008, real median US household income dropped 4%, while compensation at major firms increased 7.7% from 2007 to 2009, evidence of how ‘‘Our financial system discovered that there was money at the bottom of the pyramid and did everything possible to move it toward the top’’ (Stiglitz, 2010, p. 30; see citations therein). After the collapse and bailout, official unemployment in the United States topped 10%, though real unemployment was closer to 15–20% (see Solomon, 2009; Arhens, 2009; Mirhaydari, 2009). Prins (2009) estimates that though outstanding subprime loans stood at $1.4 trillion, the actual cost of the Troubled Asset Relief Program bailout was $13 trillion, an attempt, in significant part, to cover the losses of those fictitious capitals that used housing loans as leveraged assets. Would the crisis have been less devastating if governments allowed all overextended firms to collapse? Unemployment would have increased but less taxpayer funds would have been pulled from working and middle classes upward. Both happened. At first blush, this crisis represents a decline in the value of fictitious capital.44 Nevertheless, the loss of real value production was both a causal force and a future effect financial capital brought on. So, despite reservations from some over ‘‘whether labor does actually produce value’’ (Knafo, 2007, p. 82), several principles in Marx’s value theory help us understand the events above. (1) Capital’s realizable value depends on real

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labor productivity. (2) Contradictions between labor’s real value production and capitalist surplus-value extraction and accumulation limit the sustainability of capital’s growth, fictitious or otherwise. (3) A central contradiction is the concentration of wealth produced by capitalist production and exchange, which undermines capitalists’ ability to sell commodities of any form indefinitely. (4) Financial capital increasingly disconnected from the labor–value relation creates volatility that intensifies the dynamics above. (5) If financial capital’s growth is illusory because of this disconnection, then real surplus-value can only be rooted in productive activity, and the basis of this is human labor.

SUMMARY DISCUSSION Marx’s dialectical theorizing, in its historical materialist moment, strives to capture the dynamics of processes that exist across levels of generality as well as, in its political–economic focus, grasping new social developments in capitalist society. The strength of traditional Hegelian dialectic, for Marx, is its ability to capture concrete development, change, generation, and emergence in abstract terms. The strength of science, in his view, is the comparative method’s ability to locate causal agents and conceptualize such variables in precise terms. Bridging scientific and dialectical sensibilities requires developing concepts that can precisely reflect concrete realities but yet remain flexible enough to follow the changing characteristics of these realities over time and space, revealing historical origins and contemporary laws of motion of systems. Put to use in political economy, Marx’s historical materialist moment helps him interpret capitalism in light of labor’s social relations in all historical systems, where controlled comparison distinguishes between labor–value relations in both class systems and capitalism’s unique forms. From here, Marx combines an analysis of capitalism’s pure structure with models where he interiorizes private/social labor and those where he synthesizes structural and historical development. This method allows him to reveal capital’s interconnections with the totality of social relations as a historical accomplishment, a class relation, and a social organizing principle. The concepts of labor in general, the general value-form, and surplus-labor and surplus-value in general connect these levels and help Marx trace how capital absorbs all other labor–value relations, transforming nature, bodies, and private/social labor into capitalist surplus-value. For these reasons, a study limited to socially necessary labor-time, wages,

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prices, and profits in formal capitalist production omits significant elements of Marx’s value theory, a conclusion that will no doubt receive criticism. Some critics might claim my thesis that Marx sees value as a product of labor in all systems is simply incorrect. While he might be misled on this (I do not think he is), evidence presented here reveals Marx arguing that value (including surplus-value) is necessarily related to labor as a general social relation and is not a capitalist-specific relation. Other examples exist as well.45 This view was consistent across his work.46 If Marx sees the labor–value relation as necessary in all societies, and if interiorizing labor–value relations outside the market into a model of modern society is crucial for his approach, why does scholarship rarely recognize these principles? Returning to a point made earlier, Marx says labor attains its truth and full validity as an abstraction only in modern society. What this does not mean is that labor is only a relevant concept for capitalism. Rather, as Engels (1971, p. 14) tells us, Marx’s concepts ‘‘are developed in their historical and logical process of formation.’’ Capitalism crystallizes labor (and value) in a way that brings forth in them new qualities as a matured social relation, whereupon we can now study this relation in its fuller development. As such, labor tells us about life in precapitalist societies, but only in modern society does the full complement of productive activity and social institutions become organized around calculative labor exploitation – and thus the law of value. The fact that labor and value appear to us today as mature forms does not mean they lack embryonic and partial expressions in prior systems. Therefore, each time Marx uses ‘‘labor’’ and ‘‘value’’ they do not always carry the same meaning. Sometimes his meaning is expansive; other times his use refers strictly to the system under consideration, capitalism especially. So, if we sample from Marx’s concepts for labor–value relations in capitalism only – e.g., abstract labor, wage-labor, the law of value, the M–C–Mu cycle, and interest, rent, and profit – such frameworks do not apply to noncapitalist systems. However, other forms of labor and value exist both in societies dominated by the capitalist mode of production as well as other systems, e.g., productive labor in general, surplus-labor and surplus-value in all systems, labor rent as surplus-value in feudalism, and private labor outside the formal sector, social wealth, and consumptionfund in capitalism. Marx refers to these but is often not explicit enough as to his methodological tack and/or too brief in his presentation. As a result, when one’s sample is too narrow – e.g., a single text or chapter or from pure structural models alone – a one-sided reading of his overall approach is likely.

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Some critics may argue that Marx’s references to noncapitalist forms of surplus-value are minor asides in books never finished and, given that Capital, Volumes II and III and Theories of Surplus-Value were cobbled together from notes Marx wrote prior to penning Volume I, it is probable he would have edited these references out. Marx’s statement on method in the Grundrisse, where he states that ‘‘it is not necessary to write the real history of the relations of production’’ (see note 1), offers an alternative explanation. Marx discusses prior forms of surplus-value briefly because an extended analysis is superfluous for his ends.47 Further, it is just as or more likely he would have added to these analyses and been more explicit about his general theory had he finished these books. Given their repetition and their overall collective coherence, assuming Marx’s statements on surplus-value in society in general and in slave and feudal societies are anomalous comments seems unjustified.48 A critic writing from the perspective of, say, Postone (1993, 2004, 2005) is likely to argue that I have muddled Marx’s early views of labor with those in his later work. Just as the so-called ‘‘epistemological break’’ controversy resolved with the recognition that Marx never lost his concern with alienation, it seems unwarranted to see his later approaches to labor as somehow a break from his early views. True, Marx’s later views do add to his earlier understanding of labor. However, I see no evidence to support any claim that he discarded the assumptions that labor produces value in all societies, is an essential activity that makes social relations possible, that labor controlled by a ruling class produces alienated social conditions, and that real private/social labor exists regardless of market situation. That Marx saw new labor–value relations marking capitalist society does not undermine any of these conceptions. Some critics may say my analysis does not solve the transformation problem. Though true, the issue is whether that debate’s premises mislead us about Marx’s models, the relationships their key variables have, and how to study them. As they are all in motion, a conceptualization that freezes Marx’s variables into a pure structural (often mathematical) model and then criticizes that model based on static propositions of equivalence is bound to find discrepancies and falsifications. In addition to the defense of Marx TSSI theorists put forth, there are at least two other reasons for this. First, value inputs are a concentration of many determinations, a unity of diverse, multiple labor-forms and since Marx’s mathematical models abbreviate what they allow in at any one time, their scope of relevance is always partial and attains their full meaning in combination with his other forms of analysis. Second, even in using higher math, it is likely we must examine socially

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necessary labor-time from the vantage point of capital’s motion looking backward before turning to value inputs moving forward. Although I have not offered a way to do this mathematically and, candidly, do not have the skills to do so, I hope to offer fruitful directions in which to proceed. Marx tells Engels that commodity prices – which extend forward toward profit and capital and backward toward wages, the working day, and the laborer’s self-reproduction – regulate the relationship between labor-time and production. These backward and forward links fluctuate with – in addition to commodity prices – technological change, rates of unemployment, and the like, which change the labor-time available at all levels. The problem, in Knafo’s (2007, p. 80) words, is that there has yet to be a satisfactory explanation of ‘‘how a quantity of social labor-time can be attributed to a commodity, or, more concretely, through what process can socially necessary labor-time be measured’’ (emphasis in the original). I believe this misconceptualizes the issue. Marx (1973b, p. 255) says that though it seems to keep money and commodities afloat, circulation ‘‘exists only in so far as it is constantly mediated. Looked at in itself, it is the mediation of presupposed extremes y [and] the phenomenon of a process taking place behind it’’ (emphasis in the original). The processes taking place behind circulation involve the beginning and the end – the ‘‘extremes’’ – of capital as a total social relation. The total component relations in capital’s processes include nature-labor social relations on one side and capital as a social organizing principle on the other. Between these poles lay, on one side, socially necessary labor in general, the general value-form, and surplus-labor and surplus-value in general, and, on the other, capitalist surplus-value, profits, and capital-labor class relations. Between these is the relation between abstract labor and capitalist surplus-labor. Between these lies the relation between average socially necessary labor-time in capitalism and the capitalist value of laborpower, and between these wages and prices. Capital requires capitalists to squeeze profits out of commodity prices, which results in pulling values apportioned from the necessary labor-time workers need for their selfreproduction and other forms of private/social labor (a class relation) through these capitalist labor–value forms and transforming them into the surplus-value produced in formal production and exchange. In this process, necessary labor-time is first regulated by commodity prices rather than causing them. Because of their internal and mutually transformative relations, one can later reabstract necessary labor-time as the causal variable and examine commodity production from that vantage point. Marx’s theory of capitalist surplus-value thus concerns this interrelation,

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where capital is the initial source of changes in socially necessary labor-time between its minimum – if workers only work for themselves, no time remains available to use them as wage-labor – and maximum limits – one cannot engage in wage-labor the entire day.49 Because there is a gap between structural models in pure form, when they are set in motion, and the real world, models with the social interiorized connect these things and set up a framework for research on the activity driven by capitalist production. From this vantage point, criticisms of Marx coming from a simultaneism perspective cannot account for things in our society that we can observe, i.e., capital’s taking over social life through commodification and proletarianization. Still, if Kincaid (2008, p. 195) is correct that ‘‘the capitalist system y conceals the operation of valueprocesses and does not make them directly available for empirical measurement,’’ do we have no recourse for studying socially necessary labor-time’s relation to value production? When Marx (1971a, p. 161) states that the capitalist law of value acts ‘‘as a never ascertainable average of ceaseless fluctuations,’’ he is telling us that any mathematical formulae for the laws he constructs represent a mean around which the empirical concrete will tend to group. Rather than as a predictive law between necessary labortime and the price of production, we could use this as a directive for what we can investigate empirically.50 Astronomers once could not capture unambiguous evidence of planets outside our solar system. After measuring what they could – the movements and wobbles of stars – they deduced this was evidence of the pull from nonsolar bodies or planets. Following this logic, analysts could treat capital’s movements as causal variables and examine changes in other social relations. Marx claims that labor not-yet-commodified counterbalances socially necessary labor-time’s full quantitative expression. We also saw if capital’s growth is rooted in symbolic representations of surplus-value, then this expansion is out of balance and fictitious. Over the system’s cycles of expansion and contraction, the sustainability of the value of capital in general may become threatened and even decline without additional value inputs available for conversion into surplus-value. Because of capitalists’ ultimate concern, the issue becomes what allows for introducing new real value into the system? If the only way to do this is within socially average necessary labor-time’s gravitational field – commodification and proletarianization – then we confirm labor as the source of value by proxy. What is within this gravitational field? The discussion above directs attention to, first, all forms of socially necessary labor-time off the market transformed into quantitative socially necessary labor-time in the market

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and, second, social values not-yet-priced transformed into capitalist exchange-values. These processes occur across time as well as space. Capital extracts labor-power from households, which, historically and at a world level, has increasingly reduced the time available for private labor and its production of the general value-form and surplus-value in general.51 The more time laborers as a whole spend at formal commodity production, the more social space fills with exchange-values and potential capitalist surplusvalue. The more social space commodified, the more individuals must secure the means of subsistence through purchases. If capital cuts the wage-bill – paying less wages per hour and/or hiring fewer laborers as a whole – while more means of subsistence are commodified, then an overall increase in poverty should result. As social life becomes life within capitalist auspices, capital sucks socially necessary labor-time by requiring more of it from us and/or making us spend increasing amounts of time, and thus its capitalist measure, money, chasing down and paying for the means to life through commodity purchases. In investigating proletarianization and commodification, some elements we can measure statistically, others will require different measures. One could trace how falling profit rates track long waves of capitalist development in core societies (Li, Xiao, & Zhu, 2007) and examine how such trends match up with changing social conditions through ‘‘structural fieldwork’’ (Gellert & Shefner, 2009). Here, one could analyze the relationship between global economic institutions and the time individuals spend in formal commodity production and the number of goods and services they increasingly must secure through market purchases as capital extends its global reach. For instance, in an example of ‘‘former means of nourishment transformed into material elements of variable capital,’’ Bolivia’s World Bank loan required privatization of its water supply, making it illegal for local people to collect rainwater, sparking protest and a subsequent militaristic backlash. Thus, in addition to global economic institutions, we must review state repression that enforces capital’s labor– value transformations as part of the commodification process. Such theoretically informed research can produce lines of inquiry to test. In reference to corporate-state behavior, when laboring classes are strong (e.g., a higher percent unionized, improved standards of living, and low unemployment) but profits rates are weak, do we find increasing efforts at commodification of things in space? If spheres available for commodification of things in space are seen as limited, does proletarianization increase during market down turns, especially in areas where remittance to workers is relatively inexpensive – e.g., less powerful ethnic and status groups in the

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core (immigrants, women, etc.) and in peripheral regions where the cost of reproducing a working class is relatively inexpensive in relation to capital inputs? If proletarianization and commodification are successful, all other things being equal, does profitability rise in world markets? When effective demand amid high profits is too low to encourage additional productive investments (measured, perhaps, as excess industrial capacity), do individual capitals tend toward financial capital and do such investments necessarily produce volatility in the long-term? When profit rates reach their current limits and begin to decline and an increasing number of capitals face limited options (a Kondratieff B phase), do we observe efforts to increase the rate and magnitude of appropriation through intensified labor exploitation in terms of keeping the wage-bill low, attacking pensions, demanding cuts in overtime pay, etc.? Further, as commodification and proletarianization reach their limits of 100%, if capital does so as well (as Wallerstein says it does), then, as these limits are approached, crises should be increasingly difficult to overcome, though draconian methods should be expected. A detailed study of these relationships and processes is important because, according to Marx’s theory, necessary labor-time is a gravitational pull that attracts or repels capital from its mean depending on the situation. Showing how this is so will allow Marxist scholars to make a more convincing case for the validity of the labor theory of value.

CONCLUSION One weakness of mainstream science, in Marx’s view, is the hypostatization of concepts, something that dialectical reason and historical analysis help overcome. For instance, rather than a static relation only applicable in modernity, Marx sees labor as something that crosses all historical systems, an exploited social relation in class systems, shaped by the law of value in capitalism, and a social relation targeted in special ways with capitalism’s recent developments, e.g., changes within capitalism that have been dubbed ‘‘globalization.’’ As such, much debate on Marx’s value theory goes on without a sufficiently developed conception of the labor–value relation as a phenomenal form that acquires characteristics in its transformations across levels of generality. Without an appropriate grasp of how Marx synthesizes historical developments and private/social levels with his pure models our lines of inquiry often stall.52 So, to return to a central question of this article, what does Marx’s value theory look like? At core, Marx is interested in how the labor–value relation in general (i.e., the relationships between nature,

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individuals/species, tools, subjects/objects of labor, the terms of laboring, use-value and the general value-form, the quality of labor – or the way it is performed – and the quantity of labor – or necessary labor plus surpluslabor, and therefore surplus-value in general) is transformed into capitalist labor–value relations (i.e., abstract labor – or standardized labor-power for potential sale – commodity production, laboring and capitalist classes, exchange-value – or wages and/or prices – and capitalist expressions of surplus-value, i.e., rent, interest, and profit). Capital’s alienation of labor across these transformation processes gives value production a misleading appearance. Marx (1971a, p. 171) tells us that labor or ‘‘variable capital y is the source of surplus-value, and y anything which conceals its relation to the accumulation of wealth by the capitalist serves to mystify the entire system.’’ For instance, ‘‘Since y surplus-value itself appears to originate from the total capital, uniformly derived from all its parts y the organic difference between constant and variable capital is obliterated in the conception of profit. Disguised as profit, surplus-value actually denies its origin, loses its character, and becomes unrecognizable’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 167). Marx (1988b, p. 21) goes so far as claiming that profit ‘‘is only an illusory manifestation of surplus value.’’ By the time one reaches ‘‘profit as such, surplus-value, and consequently its real source, is already obscured and mystified’’ (Marx, 1971b, p. 459). As profit’s quantities transform into capital’s qualities, the alienating power of capital hits its apex in ‘‘interest-bearing capital y the perfect fetish y capital in its finished form y something dark and mysterious’’ (Marx, 1971b, pp. 454–455). Going from capital backward to profit, from there to capitalist surplusvalue, from there to surplus-labor, and from there back to social value through wage-labor, you have to go through commodity prices. And, if prices, profit, and capital are obscured value-forms, obscured too is that which goes into their formation. Capital’s transformation of labor–value relations into the quantitative relation between socially necessary labor-time and wage exploitation is the fulcrum on which this obscuring pivots. That we can analyze labor–value relations quantitatively is a transformation with historical, social, and revolutionary implications. Capitalism’s market measures human energies increasingly in precise microunits. Squeezed through its self-expansion, capital consumes social value, as individuals must purchase more and more necessities with wages as skills cultivated outside the direct wage relation decline. With raw materials transformed into commodities, capital consumes nature and threatens our ecological foundation. Capital consumes human bodies, broken in the factory, poisoned by products, and killed by diseases associated with

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impoverishment (malnourishment and malaria) and affluence (obesity, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease) with equal measure. Capital consumes social relations as individuals are forced into a daily struggle of securing shares of value, leisure time is reduced, and social institutions are shaped to serve capital, all of which limit access to food, medical care, education (and so on) based on ability to pay. Capital transforms ‘‘ordinary consciousness’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 25) into individualistic consumptive units that mistake capitalism’s competitive social relations for human nature, where people treat each other as ‘‘things’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 77). The centrality of labor, alienation, and the struggle for a classless– stateless society provide theoretical–political reference points for Marx’s value theory. Cooperative social labor is a fundamental social relation. Alienation and exploitation emerge with class society. Appropriation in capitalism transforms labor and class relations into antagonistic quantitative relations, where capital’s expansion increasingly subsumes species’ realities at the social level. Marx (1992, p. 84) believed can ‘‘strip off’’ capitalism’s ‘‘mystical veil’’ when production is based on ‘‘freely associated men, and is consciously regulated by them in accordance with a settled plan,’’ the attainment of which is ‘‘a long and painful process.’’ Just as one class facilitates capital’s problematic social transformations, another class must find their solution. These problems are historical, material, economic, and political. They are social problems and we must solve them socially. Ultimately, this transformation problem is history’s riddle to us all.

NOTES 1. In the Grundrisse, Marx (1973b, pp. 460–461) explained his starting-point in political economy: ‘‘[O]ur method indicates the points where historical investigation must enter in, or where bourgeois economy as a merely historical form of the production process points beyond itself to earlier historical modes of production. In order to develop the laws of bourgeois economy, therefore, it is not necessary to write the real history of the relations of production. But the correct observation and deduction of these laws, as having themselves become in history, always leads to primary questions – like the empirical numbers e.g. in natural science – which points toward a past lying behind this system. These indications, together with a correct grasp of the present, then also offer the key to the understanding of the past. y This correct view likewise leads at the same time to the points at which the suspension of the present form of production relations gives signs of its becoming – foreshadowings of the future. Just as, on one side the pre-bourgeois phrases appear as engaged in suspending themselves and hence in positing the historic pre-suppositions of a new state of society’’ (emphases in the original).

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2. Marx (1976, p. 320) argues that conceptualization fails if ‘‘where it succeeds seeing differences, it does not see unity, and that where it sees unity, it does not see differences’’ (emphases in the original). Though both are exchange mediums, money as a ‘‘transformed shape of [a] commodity’’ in capitalism differs from money as a ‘‘circulating medium y transformed into a hoard’’ under the guild system – i.e., accumulated money is potential capital in the former case, not in the latter (Marx, 1992, pp. 116, 136). 3. Marx (1988a, p. 27) criticizes the traditional view, applicable to both mainstream and some Marxist traditions: ‘‘It goes without saying that the proletarian, i.e., the man who, being without capital and rent, lives purely by labor, and by a one-sided, abstract labor, is considered by political economy as a worker. Political economy can therefore advance the proposition that the proletarian, the same as any horse, must get as much as will enable him to work. It does not consider him when he is not working, as a human being; but leaves such consideration to criminal law, to doctors, to religion, to the statistical tables, to politics and to the workhouse beadle’’ (emphases in the original). 4. ‘‘The earth itself is an instrument of labor, but when used as such in agriculture implies a whole series of other instruments and a comparatively high development of labor. No sooner does labor undergo the least development, than it requires specially prepared instruments. Thus in the oldest caves we find stone implements and weapons. In the earliest period of human history domesticated animals, i.e., animals which have been bred for the purpose, and have undergone modifications by means of labor, play the chief part as instruments of labor along with specially prepared stones, wood, bones, and shells. The use and fabrication of instruments of labor, although existing in the germ among certain species of animals, is specifically characteristic of the human labor-process’’ (Marx, 1992, pp. 175–176). 5. Marx (1992, p. 332) writes: ‘‘the exchange of products springs up at the points where different families, tribes, communities, come in contact; for, in the beginning of civilization, it is not private individuals but families, tribes, &c., that meet on an independent footing. Different communities find different means of production, and different means of subsistence in their natural environment. Hence, their modes of production, and of living, and their products are different. It is this spontaneously developed difference which, when different communities come in contact, calls forth the mutual exchange of products.’’ 6. ‘‘The natural basis of surplus-labor in general, that is, a natural prerequisite without which such labor cannot be performed, is that Nature must supply y the necessary means of subsistence under conditions of an expenditure of labor which does not consume the entire working-day. This natural productivity of agricultural labor (which includes here the labor of simple gathering, hunting, fishing and cattleraising) is the basis of all surplus-labor’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 632). 7. ‘‘As you know, I distinguish 2 parts in capital: constant capital (raw material, [auxiliary materials], machinery, etc.), whose value only reappears in the value of the product, and secondly variable capital, i.e., the capital laid out in wages, which contains less materialized labor than is given by the worker in return for it. E.g., if the daily wage ¼ 10 hours and the worker works 12, he replaces the variable capital þ 1/5 of the same (2 hours). This latter surplus I call surplus value’’ (Marx, 1985a, p. 394).

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8. According to Engels’s (1971) Preface to Volume III of Capital, Marx wrote these lines between 1863 and 1867, i.e., after his 1862 letter that discusses surplusvalue in capitalism (see note 7). McLellan (1973, pp. 462–463) lists Theories of Surplus-Value’s penning at around 1862/1863 and Volume III as being written in 1864. On the overlap and sequence of Capital’s volumes, also see Oakley (1976). 9. ‘‘Whatever the specific form of rent may be y [where you have] the ownership of certain portions of our planet by certain individuals y [whether] in Asia, Egypt y [or] under slavery or serfdom y [and even with] purely private ownership of Nature by non-producers y [the] common element y [is that] [a]ll ground-rent is surplus-value, the product of surplus-labor. In its undeveloped form as rent in kind it is still directly the surplus-product itself’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 634; emphasis in the original). 10. ‘‘The natural conditions must be such that a part of their available labor-time suffices for their reproduction and self-maintenance as producers, that the production of their necessary means of subsistence shall not consume their whole labor-power. y [S]ince the production of means of subsistence is the very first condition of their existence and of all production in general, labor used in this production y must be fruitful enough so as not to absorb the entire available labortime in the production of means of subsistence for the direct producers y surpluslabor and therefore y surplus-product must be possible’’ (Marx, 1971a, pp. 634–635; emphasis in the original). 11. Foley (2000, pp. 10–11) proposes ‘‘At least four different readings of the first three chapters of Volume I’’ that vary from ‘‘a precapitalist system of ‘simple commodity production’ which abstracts altogether from the social and class relations of capitalism’’ on one side to ‘‘completely developed real capitalist social relations’’ on the other. Seeing Marx’s analysis of general social labor as a separate sphere unrelated to formal production greatly limits an understanding of both his purpose in this analysis and his vision of social relations in a society the capitalist mode of production dominates. Marx (1992, p. 72), for instance, writes: ‘‘That form [the general value-form] consequently makes it indisputably evident that in the world of commodities that character possessed by all labor of being human labor constitutes its specific social character’’ (emphasis in the original). Insight to this sort of interiorizing appears again in Capital, Volume II: ‘‘It is a great mistake on the part of Adam Smith to divide the entire social wealth into 1) a fund for immediate consumption, 2) fixed capital, and 3) circulating capital. According to [Marx’s analysis], wealth would have to be divided into 1) a consumption-fund which does not form any part of functioning social capital although parts of it can continually function as capital; and 2) capital. Accordingly one part of the wealth functions as capital, the other as non-capital, or consumption-fund. y [Local products such as buildings, railways, docks, soil improvements] are not movable y [and] either useless, or as soon as they have been sold must function as fixed capital. y From this it does not follow in the least that immovables are in themselves fixed capital. They may belong, as dwelling houses, etc., to the consumption-fund, and in that case they are no part whatever of the social capital, although they constitute an element of the social wealth of which capital is only a part. y [Some such components of social wealth available for capitalist use] are either not carried out on a capitalist basis at all, but rather at communal or state expense (in earlier times generally by forced

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labor, so far as the labor-power was concerned)’’ (Marx, 1973a, pp. 207, 210, 233; emphasis in the original). 12. In an 1858 letter to Engels, Marx (1983a, p. 298) explains: ‘‘The transition from capital to landed property is also historical, since landed property in its modern form is a product of the action of capital on feudal, etc., landed property. In the same way, the transition of landed property to wage labor is not only dialectical but historical, since the last product of modern landed property is the general introduction of wage labor, which then appears as the basis of the whole business.’’ 13. ‘‘The same kind of labor may be productive or unproductive. y A singer who sells her song for her own account is an unproductive laborer. But the same singer commissioned by an entrepreneur to sing in order to make money for him is a productive laborer; for she produces capital. y [T]he jobbing tailor [who works for me at my home] is not a productive laborer. y Once the price has been fixed, it is a matter of complete indifference to me whether he works eight or ten hours. y What then is the special character of this exchange? How is it different from the exchange of money for productive labor?. y [Here] money is spent as money y to be transformed into a use-value, into means of subsistence, into an object for personal consumption. The money therefore does not become capital’’ (Marx, 1967, pp. 401– 403; emphases in the original). 14. Marx (1969, p. 390) explains that ‘‘forms of socially developed labor – cooperation, manufacture (as a form of division of labor), the factory (as a form of social labor organized on machinery as its material basis) – all of these appear as forms of the development of capital, and therefore the productive powers of labor built up on these forms of social labor – consequently also science and the forces of nature – appear as productive powers of capital’’ (emphases in the original). 15. ‘‘Productive labor is only a concise term for the whole relationship and the form and manner in which labor-power figures in the capitalist production process. The distinction from other kinds of labor is however of the greatest importance, since this distinction expresses precisely the specific form of the labor on which the whole capitalist mode of production and capital itself is based.’’ ‘‘Productive labor is therefore – in the system of capitalist production – labor which produces surplus-value for its employer, or which transforms the objective conditions of labor into capital and their owner into a capitalist. y So when we speak of productive labor, we speak of socially determined labor, labor which implies a quite specific relation between the buyer and the seller of the labor. y Productive labor, therefore, can be so described when it is directly exchanged for money as capital’’ (Marx, 1969, p. 396; emphases in the original). 16. In his April 2, 1958 letter to Engels outlining his view of what would become Capital, Marx (1983a, pp. 298, 301) says of his initial approach to value: ‘‘Simply reduced to the quantity of labor; time as a measure of labor. Use-value – whether regarded subjectively as the usefulness of labor, or objectively as the utility of the production – is shown here simply as the material prerequisite of value, and one which for the present is entirely irrelevant to the formal economic definition. Value as such has no ‘substance’ other than actual labor. This definition of value, first outlined by Perry and neatly elaborated by Ricardo, is simply bourgeois wealth in its more abstract form. As such, it already presupposes 1. the transcending of indigenous communism (India, etc.), 2. of all undeveloped pre-bourgeois modes

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of production which are not in every respect governed by exchange. Although an abstraction, it is an historical abstraction and hence feasible only when grounded on a specific economic development of society. All objections to this definition of value derive either from less developed relations of production or else are based on confused thinking, whereby the more concrete economic definitions from which value has been abstracted (and which may therefore also be seen, on the other hand, as a further development of the same) are upheld as against value in this its abstract, undeveloped form. In view of the uncertainty of messieurs les e´conomistes themselves about the precise relation of this abstraction to later, more concrete forms of bourgeois wealth, these objections were [more or less] justified.’’ 17. In Theories of Surplus-Value, Part I, in a section entitled, ‘‘Manifestations of Capitalism in the Sphere of Immaterial Production,’’ Marx (1969, pp. 410–411), writes: ‘‘Non-material production, even when it is carried on purely for exchange, that is, when it produces commodities, may of two kinds: 1. It results in commodities, use-values, which have a form different from and independent of producers and consumers; these commodities may therefore exist during an interval between production and consumption and may in this interval circulate as venerable commodities, such as books, paintings, in a word, all artistic products which are distinct from the artistic performance of the artists performing them. Here capitalist production is applicable only to a very restricted extent: as for example when a writer of a joint work – say an encyclopedia – exploits a number of others as hacks. In this sphere for the most part a transitional form to capitalist production remains in existence, in which the various scientific or artistic producers, handicraftsman or experts work for the collective trading capital of the book-trade – a relation that has nothing to do with the capitalist mode of production proper and even formally has not yet been brought under its sway. The fact that the exploitation of labor is at its highest precisely in these transitional forms in no way alters the case. 2. The production cannot be separated from the act of production, as is the case with all performing artists, orators, actors, teachers, physicians, priests, etc. Here too the capitalist mode of production is met with only to a small extent, and from the nature of the case can only be applied in a few spheres’’ (emphases in the original). 18. In Volumes II and III of Capital, Marx (1987a, p. 390) believed he would show ‘‘how the philistines’ and vulgar economists’ manner of conceiving things arises, namely, because the only thing that is ever reflected in their minds is the immediate form of appearance of relations, and not their inner connection. Incidentally, if the latter were the case, we would surely have no need of science at all’’ (emphases in the original). He also wrote to Engels that ‘‘In Book II, as you know, the process of circulation of capital is presented on the basis of the premises developed in Book I ’’ (Marx, 1988b, p. 21; emphasis in the original; Marx’s reference to Book II became Volumes II and III of Capital, with Book I representing Volume I. See editor’s note in this citation; also see Oakley, 1976). 19. Perhaps the most widely held assumption among Marxist scholars is that for societies that are ‘‘not commodity producers y Marx’s value theory does not apply

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to them’’ (Kliman, 2007, p. 20). Similarly for Hunt (1989, p. 47), ‘‘Value y reflects social relations that are specific to the capitalist, commodity producing society.’’ According to Shaikh (1990, p. 348), only those who ‘‘produce surplus labor for a capitalist employer’’ are ‘‘directly productive of surplus value.’’ Fine and Saad-Filho (2008, p. 171) say that in ‘‘Our view, and Marx’s, pure and simple y value is created and determined in production under the control of capitalists (although value can also be created by non-capitalist forms of commodity production).’’ Kincaid (2008, p. 184) agrees with Fine and Saad-Filho in that ‘‘There is no disagreement that value is created only in production’’ but argues that ‘‘value is not fully and finally produced until commodities are transformed into money in circulation.’’ Finally, Postone (1993, p. 6) holds that, ‘‘Far from considering labor to be the principle of social constitution and the source of wealth in all societies, Marx’s theory proposes that what uniquely characterizes capitalism is precisely that its basic social relations are constituted by labor and, hence, ultimately are of a fundamentally different sort than those that characterize noncapitalist societies.’’ 20. ‘‘Hence, the mistaken idea that the rent corresponding to the capitalist mode of production – which is always a surplus over and above profit, i.e., above a value portion of commodities which itself consists of surplus-value (surplus-labor) – that this special and specific component of surplus-value is explained by merely explaining the general conditions for the existence of surplus-value and profit in general’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 634). 21. As with TSSI readings, the framework offered here challenges dual system interpretations of Marx’s value theory – i.e., that Capital, Volume I offers a theory of values and their transformations in capital, while, unconnected to this first theory, Volume III deals with the price relationship to capital. When Marx (1988b, p. 24) wrote to Engels on what remained to be elaborated after Volume I’s publication, he stated: ‘‘Also to be developed: the changed form of manifestation that the previously developed and still valid laws of value and surplus value assume now, after the transformation of values into prices of production.’’ Marx’s concern with this transformation does not see value and price as wholly separate realities requiring separate analyses but as a ‘‘changed manifestation’’ of a similar reality. In this case, dual system interpretations are untenable. Also see note 18. 22. When addressing the ‘‘transformation of the values of commodities into prices of production,’’ Marx (1971a, p. 163) writes: ‘‘In Books I and II we dealt only with the value of commodities. On the one hand, the cost-price has now been singled out as a part of this value, and, on the other hand, the price of production of commodities has been developed in its converted form’’ (emphases in the original). This analysis of the value-price relation contains those relations inserted into the system of formal commodity production and, as such, debates on the transformation problem tend to rely on this chapter of Volume III. However, in addition to material and labor inputs, Marx includes not only prior means of production – e.g., leftover feudal infrastructure – but also labor-value relations at the private/social levels and their structural–historical development in his conception of total social value (as seen in Volume I). As a result, TSSI approaches are not alone in their limited view. In Foley’s (1982, p. 37) view, ‘‘the labor theory of value starts at the global level with the total abstract social labor expended in commodity production, its form as the whole value of the net commodity product, and money as the social expression of

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this value.’’ All of these perspectives only abstract the formal productive sector in, leaving other elements vital to Marx’s value theory out. Shaikh (1977, p. 113), for his part, recognizes the ‘‘great importance’’ of Marx’s distinction ‘‘between social capital and social wealth,’’ the latter of which capital is a part, though he tells us his article, too, abstracts these concerns out of view (emphases in the original). 23. Marx (1983c, pp. 39–40) argued that ‘‘the value of laboring power is determined by the value of the necessities required to produce, develop, maintain, and perpetuate the laboring power,’’ including such things as ‘‘the mass of necessaries required for his own maintenance y another amount of necessaries to bring up a certain quota of children that are to replace him on the labor market,’’ as well as ‘‘another amount of values y spent [on] y education and development.’’ He also writes elsewhere: ‘‘The substance of value is and remains nothing but expended labor-power – labor independent of the specific, useful character of this labor – and the production of value is nothing but the process of this expenditure. A serf for instance expends his laborpower for six days, labors for six days, and the fact of this expenditure as such is not altered by the circumstances that he may be working three days for himself, on his own field, and three days for his lord, on the field of the latter. Both his voluntary labor for himself and his forced labor for his lord are equally labor; so far as this labor is considered with reference to the values, or to the useful articles created by it, there is no difference in his six days of labor. The difference refers merely to the different conditions by which the expenditure of his labor-power during both halves of his labor-time of six days is called forth. The same applies to the necessary and surpluslabor of the wage-laborer’’ (Marx, 1973a, pp. 385–386). Again, this contradicts basic assumptions of many debates on Marx’s value theory. 24. ‘‘Finally, in Book I we content ourselves with the assumption that when, in the valorization process, d100 becomes d110, it finds the elements into which it is converted anew already in existence in the market. But now [in Volumes II and III] we investigate the conditions under which these elements are to be found in existence, that is to say, the social intertwining of the different capitals, parts of capital and of revenue’’ (Marx, 1988b, p. 21; emphases in the original). 25. Marx (1971a, p. 167) writes: ‘‘As a rule, surplus-value and profit and not their rates alone, are then different magnitudes.’’ With prices and values on different registers, Desai (1990, p. 365) notes that, for Marx, ‘‘values and value relations were unobservable, latent or structural whereas prices were observable, actual, and phenomenal. The hidden nature of value relations – commodity fetishism – is crucial to Marx’s argument and hence it would have been totally uncharacteristic of Marx’s approach not to have foreseen that values and prices diverge from each other.’’ And, he did: ‘‘The vulgar economist has not the slightest idea that the actual, everyday exchange relations and the value magnitudes cannot be directly identical ’’ (Marx, 1988c, p. 69; emphasis in the original). 26. ‘‘There is no automatic conversion of labor-time into units of money, but there are competitive pressures on capitalists to reduce production-time, and so bring labor-time, value, and price towards a closer interconnection. Underlying this is a more fundamental process – as Marx once wrote, ‘economy of time, to this all economy ultimately reduces itself’’’ (Kincaid, 2008, p. 190; emphasis in the original). 27. In the relationship between political economy and historical materialism, some laws are ‘‘peculiar to the capitalist mode of production; and in fact every special

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historic mode of production has its own special laws y historically valid within its limits alone’’ (Marx, 1992, pp. 591–592). However, at the same time, ‘‘every child knows, too, that the amounts of needs demand differing and quantitatively determined amounts of society’s aggregate labor. It is self-evident that this necessity of the distribution of social labor in specific proportions is certainly not abolished by the specific form of social production; it can only change its form of manifestation. Natural laws cannot be abolished at all. The only thing that can change, under historically differing conditions, is the form in which those laws assert themselves’’ (Marx, 1988c, p. 68; emphases in the original). 28. ‘‘Hence, we may understand the decisive importance of the transformation of value and price of labor-power into the form of wages, or into the value and price of labor itself. This phenomenal form, which makes the actual relation invisible, and, indeed, shows the direct opposite of that relation, forms the basis of all the juridical notions of both laborer and capitalist, of all the mystifications of the capitalist mode of production’’ (Marx, 1992, pp. 505–506; emphasis added). 29. ‘‘Historical capitalism involved y the widespread commodification of processes – not merely exchange processes, but production processes, distribution processes, and investment processes – that had previously been conducted other than via a ‘market.’ And, in the course of seeking to accumulate more and more capital, capitalists have sought to commodify more and more of these social processes in all spheres of economic life. Since capitalism is a self-regarding process, it follows that no social transaction has been intrinsically exempt from possible inclusion. That is why we may say that the historical development of capitalism has involved the thrust toward the commodification of everything’’ (Wallerstein, 1999, pp. 15–16). 30. Such processes are expressed in neoliberalism’s ‘‘emphasis on property rights y [and] the patenting and licensing of genetic material, seed plasma,’’ the ‘‘depletion of the global environmental commons (land, air, water),’’ the ‘‘commodification of cultural forms,’’ the ‘‘privatization of hitherto public assets (such as universities),’’ as well as public utilities and the ‘‘rolling back of the regulatory framework designed to protect labor and the environment from degradation’’ (Harvey, 2003, pp. 147–148). 31. ‘‘What then is the position of independent handicraftsmen or peasants who employ no laborers and therefore do not produce as capitalists? y They y belong neither to the category of productive nor unproductive laborers, although they are producers of commodities. But their production does not fall under the capitalist mode of production.’’ ‘‘It is possible that these producers, working with their own means of production, not only reproduce their labor-power but create surplus-value. y And here we come up against a peculiarity that is characteristic of a society in which one definite mode of production predominates, even though not all productive relations have been subordinated to it. y [In capitalism just as in feudalism] the independent peasant or handicraftsman is cut up into two persons. As owner of the means of production he is capitalist; as laborer he is his own wage-laborer. y [Nevertheless] the handicraftsman or peasant who produces with his own means of production will either gradually be transformed into a small capitalist who also exploits the labor of others, or he will suffer the loss of his means of production y and be transformed into wage-laborer.

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This is the tendency in the form of society in which the capitalist mode of production predominates’’ (Marx, 1969, pp. 407–409). 32. For Marx (1971b, pp. 454–455), interest-bearing capital, ‘‘representing the unity of the production process and the circulation process y yields a definite profit in a definite period of time. In the form of interest-bearing capital only this function remains, without the mediation of either production process or circulation process. Memories of the past still remain in capital and profit, although because of the divergence of profit from surplus-value and the uniform profit yielded by all capitals – that is, the general rate of profit – capital becomes very much obscured.’’ Former Wall Street insider, Prins (2009, p. 3) reports a friend, once a partner at Goldman Sachs, claimed that ‘‘finance is one of the few disciplines ‘based on the creation of absolutely nothing.’’’ 33. A good analogy is the game ‘‘musical chairs.’’ Here, the number of players is always one higher than the number of chairs. As music plays, the participants circle the chairs until it stops, at which point each person must find a chair in which to sit, with the result of one person in each round being eliminated when they fail to secure the last chair available. By way of analogy, if the chairs represent productive activities through which capitalist value is realized and the players represent capitals in search of realization opportunities, there will always be fewer opportunities (chairs) than capitals needing them (players). By extension, as the number of capitals grows out of proportion to the number of chairs (say nine players and three chairs), the rate at which capital as a whole across the system loses value becomes more acute and the total number of viable capitals shrinks rapidly. If there are only capitals (players) and no realization opportunities (chairs), one may attempt to play the game but now this is only in the realm of the imagination or even the absurd. 34. According to Federal Reserve Board Chairman, Ben Bernanke (February 2, 2007), the share of after-tax income of the top 1% of households increased from 8% in 1979 to 14% in 2004. In 2006, the wealth of the richest 60 Americans (around $630 billion) had gone up 10% from the previous year (Foster & Magdoff, 2009, p. 85; see citation therein). Between 1950 and 1970, for every dollar the bottom 90% of income earners received, $162 went to the top 0.1% of earners. From 1990 to 2002, this ratio increased to $18,000 to 1. By 2001, the top 1% of US wealth holders had more than twice the bottom 80%, though if calculated in terms of just financial wealth, the difference was four times as much. ‘‘Between 1983 and 2001, the top 1 percent grabbed 28 percent of the rise in national income, 33 percent of the total gain in net worth, and 52 percent of the overall growth in financial worth’’ (Foster & Magdoff, 2009, p. 130; see citations therein). 35. According to the US Congressional Budget Office (December 23, 2008), the United States has lost approximately 3.78 million manufacturing jobs since 2000. See the Economic and Budget Issue Brief of the CBO: Factors underlying the decline in manufacturing employment since 2000. URL (retrieved March 16, 2009): http:// www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/97xx/doc9749/12-23-Manufacturing.pdf 36. ‘‘The insanity of the capitalist mode of conception reaches its climax here, for instead of explaining the expansion of capital on the basis of the exploitation of labor-power, the matter is reversed and the productivity of labor-power is explained

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by attributing this mystical quality of interest-bearing capital to labor-power itself ’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 465). 37. The ratio of debt service payments to disposable income went from just less than 11% to more than 13.5% from 1980 to 2005; by 2005, total US debt was almost three and a half times GDP. ‘‘When all sectors are included, the total debt as a percentage of GDP rose from 151 percent in 1959 to an astronomical 373 percent in 2007’’ (see Foster & Magdoff, 2009, pp. 30, 46, 122; see citations therein). 38. In 2008, National Public Radio’s (NPR) program (in the United States), This American Life, broadcast two stories on the origins of the mortgage crisis and its ripple effects with interviews of economists, stock market traders, workers in the mortgage finance industry, and bankers. Portions of the following discussion come from these broadcasts. See: The giant pool of money (broadcast on May 9, 2008). URL (retrieved January 7, 2010): http://www.thisamericanlife.org/Radio_Episode. aspx?episode ¼ 355. Another frightening show about the economy (broadcast, October 3, 2008). URL (retrieved January 7, 2010): http://www.thisamericanlife. org/Radio_Episode.aspx?episode ¼ 365 Also see Blackburn (2008), Foster and Magdoff (2009), and Prins (2009). 39. ‘‘Not just mortgage lenders and subprime borrowers were caught up in the frenzy. A growing crowd of real estate speculators got into the business of buying houses in order to sell them off at higher prices. Many homeowners also began to view the rapid increase in the value of their homes as natural and permanent, and took advantage of low interest rates to refinance and withdraw cash value from their homes. This was a way to maintain or increase consumption levels despite stagnant wages for most workers. At the height of the bubble new mortgage borrowing increased by $1.1 trillion between October and December 2005 alone, bringing outstanding mortgage debt as a whole to $8.66 trillion, equal to 69.4 percent of US GDP’’ (Foster & Magdoff, 2009, p. 97; see citation therein). For instance, between 2002 and 2006, ‘‘subprime loans originations went from 8.6 percent of all mortgages to 20.1 percent’’ (Prins, 2009, p. 52; see citation therein). To compound matters, mortgage-backed securities often were ‘‘bundled’’ with other stocks and investments. Bundled securities packaged several types of investments together as one commodity bought in a single purchase. In a bundled security, it is hard to tell what portion of the investment is in coal, high tech, and so on, or mortgage-backed securities. Further, bundled mortgage-backed securities based on subprime loans often had their ratings inflated, making them seem a safer investment than was the case. Constructed as such, selling off the whole bundle pulled money out of other industries as well, adding to potential market volatility. Although this is the general thrust of the problem, there was some variability on this issue. See Blackburn (2008) and Prins (2009). 40. ‘‘The greater portions of banker’s capital is, therefore, purely fictitious and consists of claims (bills of exchange), government securities (which represent spent capital), and stocks (drafts on future revenue). y [T]he money-value of the capital represented by this paper in the safes of the banker is itself fictitious, in so far as the paper consists of drafts on guaranteed revenue (e.g., government securities), or titles of ownership to real capital (e.g., stocks), and that this value is regulated differently from that of real capital, which the paper represents at least in part; or, when it represents mere claims on revenue and no capital, the claim on the same revenue is

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expressed in continually changing fictitious money-capital. In addition to this, it must be noted that this fictitious banker’s capital represents largely, not his own capital, but that of the public, which makes deposits with him, either interest-bearing or not’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 469). 41. It turns out that for about every $1 of real money invested in stocks, about $60 of CDS insurance was sold (about $1 trillion in investments was insured for $60 trillion, according to National Public Radio; see previous reference in note 38). 42. Between the mid-1960s and 2005, the portion of domestic profits financial capital accounted for went from 15% to 40% whereas profit accounted for by manufacturing profits went from 50% to less than 15% (Foster & Magdoff, 2009, pp. 54–55, pp. 92–93). 43. ‘‘With the development of interest-bearing capital and the credit system, all capital seems to double itself, and sometimes treble itself, by the various modes in which the same capital, or perhaps even the same claim on a debt, appears in different forms in different hands. The greater portion of this ‘money-capital’ is purely fictitious. All the deposits, with the exception of the reserve fund, are merely claims on the banker, which, however, never exist as deposits. To the extent that they serve in clearing-house transactions, they perform the function of capital for the bankers – after the latter have loaned them out. They pay one another their mutual drafts upon the non-existing deposits by balancing their mutual accounts’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 470). 44. ‘‘To the extent that the depreciation or increase in value of this paper is independent of the movement of value of the actual capital that it represents, the wealth of the nation is just as great before as after its depreciation or increase in value’’ (Marx, 1971a, p. 468). 45. Marx (1971a, pp. 175–176) proposes a hypothetical situation where laborers on their own means of production and the commodities they produce ‘‘would not be products of capital,’’ though, nevertheless, each ‘‘would have created equal amounts of new value, namely the working-day added by them to the means of production,’’ which ‘‘would comprise their wages plus the surplus-value.’’ 46. I believe I have satisfied several of Kliman’s (2007, pp. 60–64) stipulations for interpreting Marx’s value theory, among these being, ‘‘We genuinely understand a text y only if the individual parts are reconciled, brought together as aspects of the whole,’’ ‘‘Sound interpretation thus makes sense of a text by making the text make sense,’’ ‘‘One needs to test whether [competing hypotheses about a text’s meaning] fit with the empirical evidence taken as a whole,’’ and ‘‘textual evidence is not limited to passages in which an author sets out her definitions and premises; another part of the evidence consists of her theoretical conclusions. y Thus, an interpretation that one believes to have other desirable features, but which fails the test of consistency with the main conclusions, must be rejected’’ (emphasis in the original). 47. In addition to Marx’s comments about method in the Grundrisse (see note 1), also see Engels’s (1980, p. 475) statement about method in his review of Marx’s A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy. 48. Be all of this as it may, we must consider if we can ever be certain whether Volume III’s arguments are in a form Marx would have offered had he, rather than Engels, finished and published the book. In his political economy’s maturation, the

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Grundrisse, the Critique of Political Economy, Theories of Surplus-Value, Capital, Volume II, and then Volume III were started first (see Marx, 1991, p. 287). Afterward, Marx started Volume I (publishing it in 1867), while affording Volume III little attention after 1864–1865. Tellingly, Marx (1936b, p. 205) wrote to Engels that Volume I ‘‘could not be prepared for publication by anyone but myself, not even by you.’’ As scholars have found Engels’s historical models and translation of terms problematic (Anderson, 1983; Kline, 1988), perhaps we should not dismiss Marx’s reservations out of hand. In his Preface to Volume III, Engels (1971, p. 2) says that Marx left ‘‘a first extremely incomplete draft. y [T]he farther one went, the more sketchy and incomplete was the manuscript.’’ As editor, however, Engels did not use the 1844 Manuscripts, the Grundrisse, and other notebooks and correspondence (Rubel, 1981, p. 24). And until Luka´cs, alienation was ‘‘almost entirely absent [in Marxian discourse] from Engels onward’’ (McLellan, 1975, p. 85). Further, in Marx’s draft of Volume III, ‘‘there are numerous allusions in the manuscript to points which were to have been expanded upon later, without these promises always having been kept’’ and much of the math in Chapter 3’s analysis of the rate of profit and of surplus-value comes from Samuel Moore’s use of Marx’s notes (Engels, 1971, p. 3). In all, we cannot be absolutely confident how much of the analyses Volume III presents to us is stamped with Marx’s final authority. This issue, of course, raises other problems, not the least of which is the extent to which this reservation generalizes to the other manuscripts Marx did not finish, including Volume II, and all the volumes of Theories of Surplus-Value. This is no place to go into an in-depth analysis of all the problems this opens up and their possible solutions. Here, I only posit that we can have more confidence in concepts that repeat several times in Marx’s writings than we can in solutions to analytical puzzles appearing in one chapter that might have required several revisions, especially when we know Marx never finalized a manuscript for publication. 49. ‘‘If the laborer wants all his time to produce the necessary means of subsistence for himself and his race, he has no time left in which to work gratis for others. Without a certain degree of productiveness in his labor, he has no such superfluous time at his disposal; without such superfluous time, no surplus-labor and therefore no capitalists, no slave-owners, no feudal lords, in one word, no class of large proprietors’’ (Marx, 1992, p. 479). 50. Kincaid (2008, pp. 191, 194) sees a ‘‘proto-emergence approach’’ in Marx’s approach that involves ‘‘identifying active forces of competition which create a tendency to move towards some kind of result which can also be specified in ideal theoretical terms’’ and concludes that ‘‘value theory has to deal with temporality in a more complex way than is often the case. And this means using arguments based on inference and necessity.’’ 51. Wallerstein (1982, p. 24) explains the importance of this issue: ‘‘[C]entral to the functioning of the capitalist world-economy is the partial freedom of the factors of production, the partial realization of the law of value. This ‘partial’ phenomenon is capitalism. Nonetheless, capitalism, through its internal processes, pushes toward the fuller freedom of the factors of production, the fuller realization of the law of value. y Most important of all, we have moved steadily toward the commodification of labor power, the transformation of semiproletarian households into full-lifetime proletarian households’’ (emphasis in the original).

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52. The debate over ‘‘dual’’ models, where Volume I of Capital is applicable to either precapitalist economic formations and/or cases of ‘‘simple commodity production’’ – either as a pure abstract model or in the few empirical cases that might resemble such a model – is emblematic of approaches that do not recognize the interpretation offered here. Even Engels struggled with this issue and seemed to fall prey to its supposed dilemmas for Marx’s theory of value in capitalism. For an example of this problem, see Morishima and Catephores (1975).

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Marx, K. (1992 [1867/1873]). Capital (Vol. I). New York: International Publishers. Marx, K., & Engels, F. (1976 [1846]). The German ideology. In: Karl Marx Frederick Engels: Collected works (Vol. 5). New York: International Publishers. Marx, K., & Engels, F. (1978 [1848]). The manifesto of the communist party. In: R. Tucker (Ed.), The Marx-Engels reader (pp. 469–500). New York: W.W. Norton & Company. McLellan, D. (1973). Karl Marx: His life and thought. New York: Harper & Row Publishers. McLellan, D. (1975). Karl Marx. New York: Penguin. Mirhaydari, A. (2009). True unemployment rate already at 20%. MSN|Moneyblog, July 6, 2009. URL (retrieved September 4, 2009). Available at http://blogs.moneycentral.msn. com/topstocks/archive/2009/07/06/true-unemployment-rate-already-at-20.aspx Morgenson, G., & Story, L. (2009). Banks bundled bad debt, bet against it and won. New York Times|Business, December 23, 2009. URL (consulted December 28, 2009). Available at http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/24/business/24trading.html?pagewanted ¼ all Morishima, M., & Catephores, G. (1975). Is there an ‘‘historical transformation problem’’? The Economic Journal, 85(338), 309–328. Oakley, A. (1976). Two notes on Marx and the ‘‘transformation problem’’. Economica, 43(172), 411–417. Ollman, B. (2003). Dance of the dialectic: Steps in Marx’s method. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press. Paolucci, P. (2009 [2007]). Marx’s scientific dialectics (Reprint of Leiden, The Netherlands: Brill Academic Publishers edition). Chicago: Haymarket. Postone, M. (1993). Time, labor, and social domination: A reinterpretation of Marx’s critical theory. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Postone, M. (2004). Critique and historical transformation. Historical Materialism, 12(3), 53–72. Postone, M. (2005). Critical social theory and the contemporary world. International Journal of Politics, Culture, and Society, 19(1/2), 69–79. Prins, N. (2009). It takes a pillage: Behind the bailouts, bonuses, and backroom deals from Washington to Wall Street. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley. Rubel, M. (1981). Rubel on Karl Marx. In: J. O’Malley & K. Algozin (Eds), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Samuelson, P. (1971). Understanding the Marxian notion of exploitation: A summary of the so-called transformation problem between Marxian values and competitive prices. Journal of Economic Literature, 9(2), 399–431. Shaikh, A. (1977). Marx’s theory of value and the ‘‘transformation problem’’. In: J. Schwartz (Ed.), The subtle anatomy of capitalism (pp. 106–139). Santa Monica, CA: Goodyear Publishing Co. Shaikh, A. (1990 [1987]). Surplus value. In: J. Eatwell, M. Milgate & P. Newman (Eds), Marxian economics (pp. 344–349). New York: W. W. Norton & Company. Solomon, P. (2009). Many left uncounted in nation’s official jobless rate. (Transcript), PBS Online NewsHour, July 2, 2009. URL (consulted September 4, 2009). Available at http:// www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/business/july-dec09/undercounted_07-02.html. Stiglitz, J. (2010). Moral bankruptcy: They knowingly trashed our economy. Why are we letting Wall Street off so easily? Mother Jones (January/February), 29–31. Wallerstein, I. (1982). Crisis as transition. In: S. Amin, G. Arrighi, A. G. Frank & I. Wallerstein (Eds), Dynamics of global crisis (pp. 11–54). New York: Monthly Review Press. Wallerstein, I. (1999 [1983]). Historical capitalism, with capitalist civilization. New York: Verso.

GLOBALIZATION IN AND OUT, OR ‘‘HOW CAN THERE BE A CONSTRUCTIVIST THEORY OF GLOBALIZATION?’’$ Jean-Se´bastien Guy Like a vast shapeless rock worn to a rounded boulder by countless drops of water, the experience was shaped by millions of printed words into a ‘concept’ on the printed page, and, in due course, into a model. Why ‘it’ broke out, what ‘it’ aimed for, what ‘it’ succeeded or failed, became subjects for endless polemics on the part of friends and foes; but for its ‘it-ness’, as it were, no one ever after had much doubt. Benedict Anderson, on the French Revolution

1. INTRODUCTION Still recently, one could read that social constructivism as a paradigm in sociology has yet generated no substantive theory of globalization (Risse, 2007). The argument was that even though social constructivism could certainly contribute to our understanding of globalization, notably by stressing the role of language and cultural norms in the organization of $

The ideas and arguments presented in this chapter have been developed before in Guy (2007). See also Guy (2009, in press).

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collective activities on a world scale, it could not satisfactorily account in its own terms for the entire phenomena under examination, due to the fact that globalization is not solely or even primarily about language and cultural norms. The exposition of such a position in the academic literature is worth mentioning, indeed even significant, if only for the reason that it occurred in a collection of essays edited by David Held and Anthony McGrew, who have done so much over the past decade to establish globalization studies as a solid research field, all at once theoretically sophisticated and empirically informed, with the publication of a long series of books on Global transformations (Held, McGrew, Golblatt, & Perraton, 1999; Held, 2004a, 2004b; Held & McGrew, 2002, 2003, 2007a, 2007b; Held & Kaya, 2007; Held & Koenig-Archibugi, 2003; see also McGrew & Lewis, 1992; Held, 1995). In spite of such credentials, the present article aims directly at challenging and overcoming this position by developing what would be the basis or the framework for a full-fledged social constructivist theory of globalization. Admittedly, this requires us to redefine globalization in a fundamental manner. Such a transformation is possible when one turns toward a new kind of social constructivism: Niklas Luhmann’s radical constructivism as grounded in his systems theory (Luhmann, 2002; see also Luhmann, 1982a, 1989, 1990, 1995, 2000a, 2000b). I contend that globalization is neither a process of social change nor a historical set of forces of transformation having to do with the way human beings shape space through their collective activities; rather, globalization is one of contemporary society’s self-descriptions. The remainder of this chapter is divided into four sections, plus a brief conclusion. I begin by exposing the problem justifying a new constructivist approach to globalization (Section 2). When analyzing globalization defined one way or another as a social phenomenon, the function of the observer has never been addressed and properly conceptualized before. This turns out to be a mistake, for the question of ‘‘how do we know what we believe we know about globalization?’’ is then left unanswered or, more exactly, cannot be addressed as an actual open research question. To move around this shortcoming, a difference between levels of observations must be made so as to allow for the observation of observers. This sets up the framework for redefining globalization as one of society’s self-descriptions. The two subsequent sections identify the elements in Luhmann’s theory supporting such redefinition. The analysis of globalization changes into the analysis of communications about globalization so as to relocate the phenomenon under study inside society. For this, I discuss some key concepts taken from Luhmann’s theory such as communication, of course, and also social

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system, psychic system, and environment (Section 3). I also concentrate on the twin concepts of society and world society as Luhmann conceives them (Section 4). At the same time, this is an occasion to criticize the way Luhmann deals with globalization in his own work. Finally, the process through which society arrives at a description of itself, whether in the form of globalization or not, is explained (Section 5). Society cannot select the best self-description by comparing it with the reality portrayed by it, because society cannot step out of itself. This is precisely why society always generates more than one self-description at the same time, for the system can only compare, or confront, them against each other through the course of its operations. The best self-description is the one proven right by the events unfolding afterwards. Finally, the works of Daniel C. Dennett and Roland Robertson are imported in order to supplement the redefinition of globalization proposed here. Despite obvious differences in research objects, Dennett’s theory of human consciousness is shown as a model sharing interesting similarities with the one elaborated in this chapter. Robertson’s discussion of images of world order helps in the conception of self-descriptions that would be alternative to globalization.

2. OBSERVING GLOBALIZATION With very few exceptions (Bartelson, 2000), sociological researches on globalization have so far consistently ignored the question of the observer. What this means is that globalization has been conceptualized as one objective phenomenon. Consider the work of David Held and his colleagues as mentioned in the introduction. For them, globalization consists in the creation and transformation of transnational networks linking together far-away regions on the surface on the Earth. The features of these networks can be measured in absolute terms. Among these features, they note extensity (or how far one network extends in space), velocity (or how fast flows travel within the network), and density (or how many connections form the network). In the past, globalization went through different phases as these variables took on different values. According to Held and his colleagues, most if not all of the variables increased from ‘‘low levels’’ to the ‘‘high levels’’ seen today (high extensity, high velocity, high density, etc.). Of course, globalization has been conceptualized in other ways: David Harvey speaks of time–space compression (1990); Anthony Giddens talks about time–space distanciation and the stretching of social relations (1990); Roland Robertson sees globalization as the structuration of the world as a

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single place (1992); etc. But none of these conceptual frameworks ever tackles the question of the observer in relation to globalization. Ignoring the observer under the circumstances leaves unproblematized how globalization ever came to be raised in communication as a theme of discussion. All that can be said is that essentially ‘‘people talk and react to globalization, because globalization is happening for real.’’ This is not a sociologically satisfying position. The matter at hand is seen as obvious or speaking for itself, rather than being framed as a scientific research question. To be more specific, the object of dispute here is the relation imagined between globalization on one hand and observations of globalization on the other hand. For Held and his colleagues for instance, globalization occurs independently of any observation of it. Accordingly, the mechanisms theorized as constituents of globalization (e.g. time–space compression, time–space distanciation, structuration of the world) are conceived as separated from the mechanisms ruling over the observation of reality. However, this approach is limited in that it proceeds by making claims about reality without accounting for how this is possible at all. The alternative position developed in this chapter consists in undoing the separation above so that the occurrence of globalization coincides exactly with the observation of it. In this way, the question regarding why globalization ever became a theme of discussion in communication is recaptured as a complex phenomenon calling for a complex explanation instead of being taken for granted. Redefining globalization as one of contemporary society’s self-descriptions constitutes an explicit effort at reincorporating the question of the observer into the analysis of globalization by colliding reality with the observation of reality. When calling globalization a self-description of society, it is indicated that the observer observing globalization happens to be the system of society and, at the same time, that observing globalization is one way for society to clarify its current state as a system. One arrives at such a redefinition by making a move from a first-order level of observation to a second-order level of observation (Luhmann, 2000a, 2002; Von Foerster, 2002; Fuchs, 2001; Akerstrom Andersen, 2003; Moeller, 2006). At the first level, observations are directed toward reality and whatever happens to be observed in this process is ascribed to reality as an attribute proper to it. At the second level however, observations are directed toward another observer. We (as sociologists or social scientists) then observe how this observer in particular produces observations of reality. We then embrace social constructivism. ‘‘A constructivist view of reality directs the attention of observation to the observation, so that the observation of

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reality becomes an observation of the observation of reality’’ (Moeller, 2006, p. 71). Accordingly, at this second level, ‘‘reality’’ is assimilated with one observer’s activities of observing. This is to say that reality as a concept takes a different meaning at each level. At the first level reality presents itself as externally given, whereas at the second level it is presented as internally constructed. Put in another way, the reality that is externally given in the perspective a first-order observer turns out to be internally constructed (by the same first-order observer) in the perspective of a second-order observer (observing the first-order observer). Second-order observers therefore see something about first-order observers that the later do not and cannot see themselves.1 It is important to point out without further ado that the title of observer is not restricted to human beings exclusively. ‘‘‘Observer’ includes bacteria, immune systems, frogs, lovers, and physics. An observer is not an ‘entity’, much less a ‘person’, but a network of related distinctions. It is this network that ‘observes’’’ (Fuchs, 2001, p. 19).2 Furthermore, although observers create reality through their internal operations, it does not follow that they are free to choose as they like what reality is for them. The constraint or resistance that is associated with the experience of reality finds its source in the observer’s own operations (Luhmann, 2000b, pp. 88–89). In other words, observers (as networks or, better, systems) constrain themselves because new operations must be produced within the conditions brought about by previous operations. For more clarity, the switch from first-order to second-order level of observation and the ensuing consequences for the understanding of globalization can be illustrated by contrasting two tales of globalization. To begin with, we have the story of globalization as told by Held et al. (1999), among many others. This is the story of transnational networks as they multiply around the planet over the centuries. In this picture, individuals today come to experience globalization at their own level whenever they take part in social activities or organizations through which they get connected, directly or indirectly, with people and places from across the world. One only has to surf the Internet, buy a foreign car, watch a Hollywood movie (for non-American people), have dinner in a Chinese restaurant (for non-Chinese people), etc. So the story of globalization is at the same time the story of our lives, at least in part. Yet notice that, in this first story, the word ‘‘globalization’’ itself is mentioned not even once. Indeed, it does not have to be mentioned at all for the storyline to unfold as it does. On the contrary, the second story of globalization revolves precisely around the fact that globalization is raised nominally and addressed explicitly as a central issue in people’s lives via various channels: on the

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television, one can see experts debating about the global economic crisis; during election times, one can hear candidates promising to tackle global warming; in the street, one can watch demonstrators marching against neoliberal globalization or for another kind of globalization; etc. In this alternative tale, globalization only began with its formulation as a topic drawing society’s attention and not with the rise of transnational networks 500 or more years ago, even though globalization can be projected topically backward in time. Of course, this has already been done. This reveals the first of the two stories above as the object of the second one. Rather than being a true depiction of the world, the first story is shown in the second story as just that: a story. The first story is therefore a case of first-order observation and the second story, a case of second-order observation. Accordingly, in the last story, the causes and the mechanisms of globalization are suspended or ‘‘nullified’’ as communications around the theme of globalization move on their own accord. There might be, and there is in effect, a desire for uncovering the ‘‘true nature’’ of globalization. Still the fact that such a goal is being pursued in society – along with other goals like wanting to know how to gain effective control over globalization – cannot be taken as a proof for globalization’s happening. And yet this is not to say that nothing is going on at all, except that ‘‘reality’’ must be located not on the side of globalization as a thing-in-itself (first-order observation), but on the side of the observer(s) observing globalization (second-order observation). The sociology of the state provides us with another analogy clarifying what it means to move the study of globalization at a second-order level of observation. The general study of ‘‘the state’’ includes a large number of various objects: elections, political parties, political ideologies, political leadership, public administration, social policies, state financing and state budget, decision-making process, politics and media, democracy and citizenship, sovereignty and nationalism, war and international relations, etc. Such multiplicity leaves one wondering how all these objects hold together within a coherent set. At least two answers can be considered for this question: causality and reflexivity (or self-reference as Luhmann has it – see Luhmann, 1995, p. 443). In the present context, we wish to speak of causality whenever the link between the aforementioned objects (organizations, programs, meetings, rituals, etc.) is taken for granted as if we were dealing with some sort of natural force. By contrast, the concept of reflexivity will prevail whenever this link is presented as enacted and performed through explicit references to ‘‘the state’’ made in the same organizations, programs, meetings, rituals, etc. The first position does not

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leave doubts about the actual contours of the state, even when these limits remain unknown or unspecified. We proceed in a straightforward manner by assuming from the onset that the state really exists and that its proper domain of action has already been defined and covered by the state itself. The second position recenters the state and its action around its own definition. The state does not preexist its own interventions; rather it is made real through them (Luhmann, 1990, chapter 9; Bourdieu, 1999; Meyer, 1999). Because of this, the contours of the state always fluctuate since they are not established a priori and once and for all. Moreover, what is achieved by referring to the state in different places and times is the coordination of the numerous activities listed above. This effect should not be confused with the results of any these activities in particular. Although these activities are orientated toward the state, they remain different from it. Above all, they are embroiled in practical problems of their own. While ultimately all is done in the name of the state, each of these activities progresses independently and thus any overarching force or causal power is missing. The study of globalization also deals with a multiplicity or plurality of phenomena: new information technologies, financial markets, currencies markets, free trade agreements, transnational corporations, international organizations, global civil society, global consciousness, global warming, civilizational risks, homogenization and heterogenization of cultures, etc. Like with the sociology of the state, the question regarding the constitution of such a mind-boggling collection can be answered in two ways. A large majority of researchers and commentators today, perhaps even all of them, see causality in action here. They are the ones speaking of time–space compression, action at a distance, structuration of the world as a single place, etc. It is nonetheless possible to envision something else, namely reflexivity. The opposition between these two options coincides with the difference between first-order and second-order level of observation. In sum, discussions about globalization do not merely pinpoint toward what would happen to be a very important aspect of the world today. Rather, discussing about globalization produces an effect consisting in actively bringing together a constellation of events, institutions, and trends under a common heading so as to establish a new basis for systemic reorganization and a new target for social interventions. We say ‘‘bringing together’’ because, in the absence of one common source, these events are not already together. The conclusion is that globalization does not happen to society; instead it is society that makes globalization happen by framing it through the observations circulating in communication.

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3. GLOBALIZATION, SOCIETY, AND COMMUNICATION The general claim saying that globalization is one of contemporary society’s self-descriptions rests on three working hypotheses or theoretical statements. The first two are directly imported from Niklas Luhmann’s systems theory. The last one is adapted from the same theory by finding inspiration in the work of Daniel C. Dennett on human consciousness. They are as follows: Hypothesis 1. As a social system, society is a network made up of operations of communications and nothing else. Although society exists in an environment and could not continue to exist outside of it, society operates self-referentially so that operations of communication are only conditioned by other operations of communication. Hypothesis 2. Other social systems include interactions and organizations. These also produce communications and reproduce themselves in the same way. Nevertheless, society is unique in that it is the social system encompassing all operations of communication (e.g. communications generated within an organization and by this organization simultaneously take place within society and add up to society’s domain of operations). For this reason, society is identified with the world. Hypothesis 3. Society arrives at a description of itself by confronting many self-descriptions with one another. This can be done since different self-descriptions correspond to different sets of expectations. Together, Hypotheses 1 and 2 articulate the link between globalization, society, and self-description. Hypothesis 1 underlines the fact that everything we know about globalization, we know it through communications. Thus talking and reacting to globalization are activities taking place inside society and shaped by it (as well as shaping it in return). Hypothesis 2 indicates that statements about the world formulated in the discourse of globalization are at the same time statements about the system of society as a whole. But while it is possible for society to generate descriptions of itself through the use of its own operations, no comparisons can be made with the original object these descriptions are meant to depict. This would require the system to step out of itself so as to contemplate itself from the outside. Society is not capable of this because it can only produce new communications out of current communications, so that there is no

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operation available to the system that would allow it to break away from its own network of operations. Hypothesis 3 tackles this problem left behind by Hypotheses 1 and 2. The solution developed in these pages is reminiscent to the ‘‘multiple drafts model’’ imagined by Dennett: like the content of human consciousness, the description of society by society depends on a process of selection between drafts, or alternate versions under continuous editorial revision, of the same narrative. This section deals with the Hypothesis 1 and so the time has come to expose Luhmann’s theory in greater details. Unfortunately, space is not enough here to provide even a short summary of Luhmann’s monumental work. Due to this limitation, efforts of clarification will concentrate on the aspects most relevant to our present purpose. In this spirit of ‘‘economic efficiency,’’ three points will be examined: the concept of communication, the concept of environment, and human beings as psychic systems and their relations with social systems. Social systems like society are different from other types of systems (i.e. living systems, conscious or psychic systems) in that they reproduce themselves through operations of communication. So what is communication for Luhmann? As a first partial answer, it can be said that one communication is an event of a specific kind occurring in the wake of other events of the same kind. The kind of event Luhmann is talking about consists in the instantaneous coordination between two or more persons (Luhmann, 1995, p. 154). Each person comes to select his or her conduct in the light of the course of action selected by the other person(s) involved. In communication, circularity is thus accomplished. Each participant can then claim: ‘‘I do what I do because you do what you do.’’ On the other hand though, communication as event has no duration (ibid., p. 47). It is nothing but a point in time. Still each communication, once it happens, immediately and inevitably turns into a platform for further communications. Having coordinated themselves with each other once, the participants now have a chance or the obligation to recoordinate themselves again on the basis of the new conditions resulting from their own previous efforts. Hence it becomes possible for behavioral patterns and extensive strategy to implement themselves through mutual adjustments via trials and errors (ibid., p. 110). The succession of singular communications through self-sustaining chains of reactions accounts for both the phenomena of change and continuity in time. What passes by with time itself is the many communications as dimensionless events. What continues to exist for at least a period of time is the entire network of communications. It is this network that Luhmann calls a social system. The punctual communications always bringing up more communications are conceptualized as a social system’s operations.

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Luhmann explains that ‘‘system’’ and ‘‘operations’’ are not synonymous with ‘‘whole’’ and ‘‘parts.’’ Indeed, the system is not conceived in opposition to its own operations taken as elements or basic units, but in opposition to an environment (ibid., p. 20). In a social system, communications connect with other communications. This being said, communications are not the only events going around. So there is a boundary beyond which whatever may be happening at that time does not belong to the system, but falls outside of it. This is the system’s environment. The system is both dependent and independent in front of its environment. The existence of the environment allows for the existence of the system. This is a matter of ecology. Beyond this fact however, the system functions autonomously, except in case of drastic alterations in the environment precipitating the end of the system (imagine a fish taken out of the water). Moreover, since communications only connect with other communications, social systems never enter in a direct exchange with their environments. A system can communicate about its environment, but not with it. Even then, communications about the system’s environment are not to be confused with the environment itself. Like all the other communications, the ones about the environment occur in the system and not in the environment. In sum, the operations inside the system are made possible by the conditions prevailing in the environment, all the while without ever being determined by them, or else negatively only (by bringing the entire system to its destruction). Another way to account for the relation between the system and the environment as Luhmann sees it is to evoke Heinz Von Foerster’s principle of ‘‘order from noise’’ (2002; see also Luhmann, 1995, p. 214). The concept of noise designates the undirected energy, or disorder, coming from the environment. As for the system, it is at all times simultaneously partly organized and partly disorganized. More precisely, the organized part in the system corresponds to the communications occurring immediately in the present, whereas the disorganized part refers to the multiple diverging outcomes that could potentially follow from there. The aforementioned principle tells us that the disorder in the environment provides random impulses, thanks to which more communications are brought to completion in the system, so that the disorder in the system is transformed into order, although only temporarily. It also implies that the production of operations inside the system always remains unpredictable to a certain degree, since the process in question is not entirely controlled by the system itself. Introducing the concept of environment has been a preliminarily step for explaining the relations between social systems and human beings in Luhmann’s theory. Conversely, after having scrutinized this relation, we will

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get a better understanding of the role played by the environment of any social system. Actually, Luhmann prefers talking of psychic systems in place of human beings. Although social systems produce operations of communication so as to reproduce themselves, psychic systems produce operations of consciousness to attain the same goal. Individuals qualify as psychic systems insofar as they have a mind. Like social systems, psychic systems exist in an environment, while they simultaneously distinguish themselves from this environment through their operational closure. The relation between social systems and psychic systems is one of reversed symmetry: the former exist in the latter’s environments and vice versa (Luhmann, 1995, p. 212). It can be argued therefore that Luhmann’s theory avoids the ‘‘aggregation problem’’ in sociology. This problem is not so much solved as it is replaced altogether with a different set of parameters. For a social system like society to emerge as one unity, it is not required that a certain number of different individual minds unite together by sharing or agreeing on a set of fundamental values as in Emile Durkheim’s and Talcott Parsons’ theories, for instance. Quite on the contrary, Luhmann is telling us that communication feeds on the fact that different minds or psychic systems are closed to each other and consequently remain inaccessible to one another (ibid., p. 109). In these conditions, living among other persons and having to deal with them to get by one’s own affairs is a source of complexity. It is this complexity that gives rise to communication. In other words, social systems are created when this complexity comes to be organized in the form of structures, although even then everything stays in a transitory phase as explained above. Coordination must perpetually start anew as it cannot be secured for good. According to Luhmann’s theory, there is nothing inadequate or suboptimal in this. It is merely how social systems manage to keep on reproducing themselves. They define an ecological niche from within which operations of consciousness are being used as source of disorder, or noise, to provoke operations of communications (ibid., p. 214). The reverse is true just as well, of course, which means that social systems and psychic systems coevolve with each other, although without ever fusing together. Luhmann’s conceptual apparatus owes its value to the fact that it enables us to articulate the question of the observer in a concrete fashion. A social system like society qualifies as an observer inasmuch as observations can be effectively generated in communications, i.e. through social coordination. Luhmann explains that a social system produces an observation every time one side of a distinction is designated in communication. Each observation is informative insofar as it is conceived in opposition to some alternatives

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(the other side of the same distinction). In this way, social systems re-create inside of them the milieu they inhabit through the use and application of multiple distinctions – near/far, left/right, right/wrong, true/false, friend/ enemy, sacred/profane, comedy/tragedy, modern/traditional, rational/ irrational, progressive/conservative, etc. – although such re-creation is a selective one only and therefore remains contingent. Whatever is observed by the system owes its existence to the system itself. However, it is not entirely accurate to conclude from there that all reality, inasmuch as it must be observed by one observer, or else it does not make any difference, is purely arbitrary in content. Social systems cannot complete their operations unless their environment makes it possible for them to do so. Accordingly, the observations generated within a system must be compatible with the system’s environment, i.e. the conditions prevailing in the environment at that time must make these observations conceivable as operations (ecologically speaking). Luhmann asserts that the task of a sociologist is to observe social systems as they go about their own observations, thus looking into the inner structure of these systems (Fuchs, 2001). One accepts to play the role of a sociologist when one chooses to envision social systems as opposed to other things. Being a sociologist is not an identity, but a function assumed temporarily or under certain conditions only. The distinction between ‘‘sociologist’’ and ‘‘non-sociologist’’ (or ‘‘other occupations’’) does not separate different status groups, but different activities and therefore different moments in time. Moreover, since it is possible to trade one observer’s vantage point for another as we move along the temporal axis, there can be two perspectives on any vantage point: inside and outside. This leads us back to the difference between first-order and second-order level of observation, but with a twist. On one hand, the internal perspective (the systems’ own perspective as an observer) shows reality as externally given. On the other hand, the reality (the reality being observed by one observer) reappears as internally constructed from the external perspective (the perspective of another observer on the first observer).3 Sociologists and other social scientists can rejuvenate the study of globalization by submitting it to Luhmann’s model. The focus of analysis then changes from transnational networks or intercontinental interconnectedness to the social system(s) observing globalization. Globalization is not real in itself or by itself, but only to the extent that people talk and react to it, i.e. only to the extent that globalization is reaffirmed as an object of communication. Since communication implies multiple parallel individual behaviors reciprocally determining each other, communicating about

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globalization is not limited to the expression of opinions and commentaries, whether approving or disapproving of globalization. More importantly, communicating about globalization implies gathering institutional resources and setting up organizational projects based on the assumptions that globalization is effectively today’s new reality and that society in general must respond to globalization without further ado. This does not go without controversies and debates, of course, but these are only the symptoms that social energies and imaginations are indeed being redirected as we speak. Finally, these movements toward society’s reinvention are not forced upon the system by its environment. Rather they result from the system’s own efforts to bring clarity into its already ongoing activities. Observations on globalization are as many attempts made from within society to shed light on society’s own situation.

4. GLOBALIZATION, SOCIETY, AND THE WORLD We now move to Hypothesis 2, the one saying that the system of society is identified with the world, so that statements about the world in the discourse of globalization are by the same token statements about society. The argument thus put forward is similar to the otherwise more familiar position claiming that each human culture translates into a particular worldview or vision-of-the-universe-within-the-universe (e.g. Durkheim, 1912). Globalization is exactly that: a worldview expressing one specific culture and at the same time expressed by it. Luhmann’s theory is well suited to help us understand this dual, even circular, relation between the observer and the observed. At a second-order level of observation, the observer turns into the observed, since the latter actually results from the former’s internal operations, rather than being caused unilaterally (or asymmetrically) by some external objects. The observer here is the system of society, so that globalization becomes a self-description of it. Admittedly, the concept of society as defined in Luhmann’s theory is a source of difficulties or obscurities as it clearly deviates from the conventional view about it. It is therefore necessary to take a closer look at it. At the same time, this will give us a chance to expose Luhmann’s approach to globalization, whose presentation has been delayed until now, and explain how our own approach differs from his. Let us consider very briefly what society is not according to Luhmann before developing what it is. On the negative side, two points must be underlined: society is not formed by a group of individuals and, precisely for

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this reason, society is not contained within a territory either (Luhmann, 2006). In other words, what Luhmann calls society is not equivalent to national society. For instance, United States and Mexico are not admitted as two distinct societies, but only as two distinct states. States are conceptualized in turn as segments of the political system, the latter being one of modern society’s functional subsystem (Luhmann, 1982b, 1990, p. 178). On the positive side, society is characterized as the one social system encompassing all operations of communication. In Luhmann’s own words: Accordingly, society is the all-encompassing social system that includes everything that is social and therefore does not admit a social environment. If something social emerges, if new kinds of communicative partners or themes appear, society grows along with them. They enrich society. They cannot be externalized or treated as an environment, for everything that is communication is society. Society is the only social system in which this special state of affairs occurs. (1995, p. 408)

Luhmann’s theory admits that there are other social systems besides society, also reproducing themselves through communications in the form of a closed network (Luhmann, 1982a). Yet these other social systems distinguish themselves from their respective environment in different ways. For instance, Luhmann considers interactions or face-to-face encounters to be one type of social systems. In this case however, the boundary separating the system from the environment rests on the distinction between presence and absence. It all depends on who is included in the conversation and who is not. Someone who is not included can still be physically nearby the participants (as inside an elevator), except that the latter do not acknowledge him or her as actively engaged in their dialog so that he or she is left out and treated as absent. Organizations constitute another example of social systems alongside society and interactions. The boundary separating organizations from their environment rests on the distinction between members and nonmembers. Within Luhmann’s classification of systems, it is reasonable to assume that globalization can only stand as a description of society and not of some interaction or organization. Indeed, globalization definitely recalls explicitly or implicitly themes like totality or universality and this is why society, or the-social-system-encompassing-allcommunications, must be associated with it. Furthermore, the way Luhmann characterizes society extends into the concept of world society. The latter takes on two different meanings alternatively: a phenomenological meaning on one hand and a structural meaning on the other (Luhmann, 1990, p. 178). As it turns out, for Luhmann, this difference in meanings helps establishing the specificity of

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modern society when compared with other (nonmodern) societies in time and space. So phenomenologically speaking, all societies (whether modern or nonmodern) are world societies for the reason that each of them creates a world of its own. The events taking place within society (communications) make sense as selections, which means that they imply other possibilities not realized at that moment and yet still available anyway. As society reproduces itself, it projects a shadow extending beyond what is realized in its selections. This is one society’s world. ‘‘This is similar to a ship that finds its position and direction by locating itself within the horizon of the sea. Of course, this horizon continuously changes. Through its motion, the ship continuously relocates itself within a horizon and thus has the horizon change with it’’ (Moeller, 2006, p. 66). By contrast, the structural meaning of the concept of world society applies to modern society only. This time around, world society is interchangeable with global society. Modern society is a global society because its operations of communication spread across the entire planet and connect together all the continents (Luhmann, 1997; Stichweh, 2008). Nonmodern societies in the past have never attained such physical scale. In Luhmann’s opinion, the main factor accounting for modern society’s global size is to be found in its mode of internal differentiation. While nonmodern or traditional societies were differentiated into social strata, modern society is differentiated into functional subsystems (Luhmann, 1982a; Muller, 1994). When stratification prevails, communications are arranged so as to articulate identity and difference in social status among the participants. Society then assumes the form of a political hierarchy centered around a ruling group. Since this group must be based somewhere (historically, in a town or a city as place of residence), communications are limited in their geographical reach accordingly. Replacing social strata with functional subsystems as society’s main axis of internal differentiation removed this spatial limitation on communications. Examples of functional subsystems in Luhmann’s theory include general domains of social activities like politics, law, economy, science, religion, art, and intimate relationships (for an overview, see Luhmann, 1989). Each functional subsystem deals exclusively with a specific problem used as a basis for comparisons in communication and therefore channeling the course of communication itself through the comparisons thus made plausible. For instance, scientific activities revolve around the problem of distinguishing true statements from false ones. As we wish to avoid discussing Luhmann’s concepts of system differentiation and functional differentiation too extensively, we can go straight to the heart of the matter by underlining this special consequence: social strata are made irrelevant for

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the operations of communication going on in functional subsystems. Among other things, the difference between, say, what is scientific and what is not scientific does not fall parallel to the difference between noblemen and commoners (or civilized people and barbarians, or true believers and nonbelievers, etc.). The ones engaging in scientific activities are asked to ignore each other’s race, gender, religion, etc., so as to only take into consideration as basis for social coordination the scientific works previously published and duly assessed through further scientific publications. Following such cultural evolutionary achievement (the transformation from stratification to functional differentiation), participants to communication can come from everywhere (at least in principle). Society thus became free to expand in space and, in time, changed into a world (global) society eventually. The way Luhmann speaks of modern society as a world society in the structural sense clearly resonates with the many theories depicting globalization as a process of social change or a set of forces of historical transformation. Having established that, the following criticism can be formulated against Luhmann: when it comes specifically to world society or globalization, Luhmann somehow ignores or neglects the difference between first-order and second-order level of observation, even though he did so much elsewhere to develop it and promote it himself. Repressing the difference or sidestepping it when dealing with world society or globalization involves preserving ‘‘the world’’ from the role or the influence of the observer. Indeed, in order to present modern society as the one and only world society in a structural sense, Luhmann has to apply the same idea of ‘‘the world’’ to all societies as a yardstick – the idea that the world we live in happens to be the globe or planet Earth and also that all individuals living in the world belong to one single human species – and so this idea is taken as a fact of nature (externally given) rather than being ascribed to one observing system in particular as its specific operation (internally constructed). Certainly, the point is not to attack this idea and reject it and replace it with another one; it is simply to remind ourselves that historically and culturally this idea only diffuses itself and gains ascendancy in modern society. Once we redefine globalization as one of contemporary society’s self-descriptions, the same idea about the ‘‘the world’’ can be integrated as a central piece of the discourse of globalization so as to be explicitly acknowledged for what it is: one observer’s observation. This entails that the unification of the globe has not been a gradual development, but an instantaneous redescription of society’s immediate situation. By redescription, we mean that society traded the selfdescription it used to rely on until then for globalization, so that globalization became society’s new face or, in other words, reality’s new name.

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5. FROM SELF-DESCRIPTION TO SELF-REALIZATION We have explained how society functions as a closed system, even though society exists in an environment and even depends on this environment for its operations to happen at all. But the environment merely intervenes by irritating society. Luhmann speaks of irritations instead of strict cause– effect relations, which would establish a direct connection between events in the environment and events in the system. Such point-to-point correspondence is lacking, Luhmann tells us, for events in the system only connect with other events in the same system. Accordingly, communications about globalization (be it, open debates about globalization or concrete collection endeavors undertaken in reaction to it) were not triggered from the outside as if their object (namely, globalization per se) preceded them in history. In other words, globalization was not patiently waiting to be ‘‘discovered’’ along with other features of the cosmos around us. The logic of discovery as fundamental mechanism must be replaced with a logic of evolution involving a dual process of innovation and retention, thus indicating that globalization as one of society’s self-descriptions made its first appearance in communication for some reasons and then later on continued to draw attention for some other reasons. The second half of the process implies that globalization successfully imposed itself at expense of other alternative self-descriptions. We then arrive at Hypothesis 3. More precisely, this section aims at explaining how society proceeds to describe itself. For this purpose, the works of Daniel C. Dennett (on human consciousness) and of Roland Robertson (on images of world order) will be examined and openly adapted so as to complement our own theoretical efforts. But first let us establish the phenomenon at hand. One important principle to remember in a preliminarily manner is that self-descriptions of society cannot be compared directly and unambiguously with the object described by them, i.e. society. Self-descriptions can only be compared with one another, because any comparison must be accomplished by the system itself through the course of its operations. This said, we have still not approached the exact problem closely enough. This problem involves the unity of society as a system. As the system produces communications, still more communications need to be produced so as to constantly reactualize or reorientate the ongoing social situation. The system continues to reproduce itself by reacting to its own operations. This means that, as social systems are ‘‘called in,’’ so to speak, by the complexity which is released whenever psychic systems have to coordinate themselves, since they do not have access

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to each other’s trains of thoughts anyway, social system generate their own inner complexity that also has to be taken care of by the social systems themselves (Luhmann, 1995, p. 31). This is the disorganized part of any system mentioned earlier. In these conditions, society’s unity always remains a problem for society because this unity does not exist in all eternity. Society relies on its self-descriptions to define its unity. Self-descriptions are as many scenarios establishing what is happening exactly in society and the reasons why it is happening to begin with, thus circumscribing by the same token what to expect from this point forward so as to provide a basis and a frame for society’s next operations. It is not correct however, to assume that society either achieves its unity or not, or that society is more or less unified, or that it is sufficiently unified or not, for there is not one true (original, authentic, primitive, etc.) unity of society. Rather society has too many of unities, all legitimate and competing with each other. Operating under such conditions is not dysfunctional, Luhmann maintains. It may be paradoxical, but Luhmann precisely wants us to embrace the paradox. If society’s unity was not a problem for society, there would be no society at all – or at least society would not be the system Luhmann thinks it is. Furthermore, the problem has no definitive solution, or else there is no end to the problem except for the end of the system itself. The concept of problem is meant to define a ‘‘mode of being’’ (Deleuze, 1969). There are multiple self-descriptions of society inside society and because they mutually exclude each other as to what is the best explanation for society’s current situation, a selection must be made between all of them. The selection of one self-description occurs eventually through the subsequent events taking place in society. That is, each self-description illuminates by extension a possible future for society, while society’s present consists in its immediate operations. As these operations come to be produced from one moment to the other, some self-descriptions are proven right by experience and others are proven wrong. There is therefore a circular relation between self-descriptions and society’s operations. On one hand, each self-description circumscribes a range of possible operations to select from (recall the many binary distinctions and their opposite sides as material for observations). For one self-description to indicate what is happening in society, it must specify simultaneously what else could happen in place of this. Consequently, whereas self-descriptions are self-affirmative inasmuch as they present themselves as accurate and reliable depictions of the reality, i.e. society at that instant, they nevertheless include the criteria for their own dismissal or ‘‘cancellation.’’ On the other hand, since society is not limited to one single encounter or association between a limited number

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of participants, it can handle more than one self-description at the same time and trigger in this way a variety of consequences. Since the system partly depends on its environment to produce its operations, one cannot know for sure what these results will be before they finally come about, so that one can always be surprised by the actual turn of events. The multiple selfdescriptions can then be weighted relatively to each other in the light of the results thus harvested. This is how society observes and describes itself: by leaping from one self-description to the other according to their respective success or failure. Certainly, there are exceptions to the rule making the whole process less rigid than it seems. For instance, some self-descriptions might not to be dismissed even in front of events contradicting them. This is possible if the system can afford to ignore the incidents in question. The system then has to assume a cost over time, which might lead the exhaustion of the resources the system counts on. Also, it is possible, indeed even likely, for more than only one self-description to pass through the screening process. This will not become a pressing issue to deal with as long as special circumstances do not force society to confront the inconsistencies thus induced. As soon as one decision must be taken, the Gordian knot will be cut and the system will then go with one self-description and not the other. Finally, instead of being replaced altogether, one self-description can be altered or corrected on the spot so as to positively integrate the latest twist of history in conflict with it. Such deviation from an already available self-description allows for the creation of a new self-description. In any case though, society and its many self-descriptions cannot be placed side by side in an attempt to find out which one of the latter provides the most accurate, and therefore the most reliable, representation of the former. This is not possible because selfdescriptions of society are elaborated and sustained in communication, which means inside society (as opposed to next to it). So images of society produced by society itself are not to be conceived in relation with the object they supposedly depict (for instance, as being forged out of reality through mimesis); rather they stand in opposition to each other, while reality is nothing more than the title given to the one image that keeps on being selected at the expense of the others as a consequence of society’s operations (Luhmann speaks of this phenomenon as condensation, following George Spencer-Brown – Luhmann, 2002, p. 120). At this stage, it may be a relief – or on the contrary a source of even greater puzzlement – to learn that the human mind functions in a similar fashion, at least according to Daniel C. Dennett (Dennett, 1991).4 While we are not interested in formulating a theory of consciousness ourselves,

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let alone a theory encompassing both consciousness and society, we want to discuss Dennett’s reflection here in order to make more explicit our own argument about globalization as one of society’s self-description. As he aimed at elaborating a theory of human consciousness, Dennett first set up a special method, which he called heterophenomenology. This method specifies that the content of human consciousness is taken as equivalent to one person’s reports about his or her own inner feelings and trains of thoughts. Consciousness is no more and no less than that. From there, Dennett worked so as to dismantle the ‘‘Cartesian theater’’ or the belief that the content of consciousness is made up by one center of control inside the head where information coming from outside the body and inside of it would be relayed and where the course of actions to be followed thereafter would be decided. To replace the ‘‘Cartesian theater,’’ Dennett devised the ‘‘multiple drafts model.’’ Dennett’s opinion is that there is no center of control making up the content of our consciousness. He argues that the functioning of our mind is more akin to an editing room where numerous teams are busy reviewing and reworking the same story. At each moment in time, there exist different versions of this story. The edition process never reaches an end and as result no final version, no official version is ever secured once and for all. Among other things, Dennett wants us to think of this story as the inner narrative of one person’s self. So as one individual continues experiencing his or her life, the content of his or her consciousness transforms itself, i.e. within the editing room, parts of the story come to be revised in a certain manner as opposed to some other manners, which implies that one version of the story, or one portion of it, has succeeded in imposing itself over the alternative options available at that time. Finally, it is through the same mechanism of successive substitutions inside the mind that the individual ends up engaging in this or that sequence of behaviors. Numerous similarities between Dennett’s discussion and our own come into view as soon as we agree to consider the multiple drafts Dennett is talking about as formally equivalent to the various descriptions of society within society. We note five points. First, Dennett’s method of heterophenomenology is congruent with the difference between first and second order of observation as developed by Niklas Luhmann. In both cases, the goal for one observer is reconstruct reality as experienced by another observer. Second, Dennett explains that the drafts in the mind are associated with modes of action. When a draft moves to the foreground of consciousness and therefore monopolizes the attention of the mind, this leads the organism into doing something specific as it is then seized by one predetermined program (or ‘‘agent,’’ or ‘‘demon’’). We imagine a similar

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connection between the self-descriptions of society and the sets of expectations stabilized through social coordination and orientating the next operations of communication. Third, the multiple drafts in the mind come to replace each other through the interplay with the environment. Again, we advance a similar argument for the selection of self-descriptions that also depends in part on random inputs (or noise) coming from outside society. Fourth, when Dennett explains that human consciousness has no fix center of control, it should be recalled that the same goes for society as Luhmann defines it. This illuminates the special nature of the problem both systems are perpetually facing. The problem is not to find the means for bringing subordinate parts to execute the will of a higher power. Rather it is for the systems to stay afloat on their own complexity or surplus of meanings. Self-descriptions are not grounded in the sense that they are not attached to something else beyond them, like mutually excluding positions in a social structure or actors having clashing interests. Self-descriptions hold on to each other in a cycle of permutations. While it is in practice possible for a system to distinguish between reality and its reflection, one must realize that the system can only draw such a distinction through the making of an internal operation, as with any other distinctions. Even though the system can use this distinction to guide itself, this doesn’t put the system in contact with reality per se, but solely with its chains of operations. The system cannot escape its own closure. Fifth, Dennett’s conceptualization of time is also relevant to us. The multiple drafts in the mind are like as many reports of the ongoing events. So we have not one, but numerous temporal series. On the other hand, there is yet another temporal series, different from the previous. We are not talking about the events as recounted in consciousness, but about the moments when one draft manages to eclipse its competitors (until further notice). Thus we must distinguish between two levels. This also holds true for society’s self-descriptions. Globalization goes hand-inhand with a new reading of world history (now global history). However, the narrative coming along with globalization is not to be confused with the conditions or conjunctures that lead to the adoption of globalization as the best self-description of society. Accordingly, when studying globalization, we should be careful not to rely too much to globalization itself. The latter provides us with a plausible explanation for why things are the way they are. But whatever causes may be advanced in this way; it cannot be the same as the causes behind globalization’s success as a discourse in communication. If there are multiple self-descriptions of society in the same way there are multiple drafts of consciousness, supplementary self-descriptions must be provided in addition to globalization for our theoretical remodeling to be

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complete. It is convenient at this stage to take advantage of Roland Robertson’s reflection on images of world order (1992). We reinterpret the latter as equivalent to society’s self-descriptions (Guy, 2009). It should be clear that the relation Robertson conceives between globalization and images of world order is not the same as the relation elaborated in these pages between globalization and society’s self-descriptions. In the first case, globalization is defined as the process of structuration of the world as a whole, or else as the process of world compression along with the growing awareness of this compression, whereas images of world order are variables such process depends on, so that in theory different images should take globalization in different directions. In the second case, globalization is defined as one specific self-description among others. By bringing images of world order in line with society’s self-descriptions, we erase the difference Robertson establishes between image of world order and globalization. Robertson identifies four images of world order with two opposite versions for each of them. On total, we have: 1. Global Gemeinschaft 1: In this next image, the world is depicted as a collection of distinct communities. The emphasis is put on the assumption that each community is unique in regard to its customs, beliefs, history, memory, etc. This is exactly what the members of a community share with one another and with no one else, thus circumscribing them as a band apart. Although different communities may not ignore each other’s existence, they do not seek to intermingle intensively. In one version of this image of world order, symmetry prevails between the communities across the globe, so that they are all thought of as equal to one another. In the other version, this symmetry is lost and as a result, one community appears, in its own eyes at least, as a civilization superior to the others. 2. Global Gemeinschaft 2: The world is envisioned as consisting in a single community. The world knows no border as all humanity is bound by solidarity. Such order of things is simply a matter of definition: humanity is one in itself and by itself. No self-interest or rational calculation is involved in the way individuals get and stay together; rather it is about following one person’s true nature as a human being like all the other human beings. Robertson adds that this idea of the world as a single community exists in two forms: centralized (think of the Catholic Church) and decentralized (think of the peace movement). 3. Global Gesellschaft 1: The multiple communities from ‘‘global Gemeinschaft 1’’ are replaced with as many national societies or

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sovereign states. Unlike the same communities, the later are not the expressions or corollaries of local collective experiences; rather they exist as legal entities. States or national societies may very well entertain multiple relations with each other (e.g. import and export, international cooperation for the war against drug trafficking), yet this only remains an affair of mere convenience, not of eternal natural principles. Like with global Gemeinschaft 2, the two versions of global Gesellschaft 1 revolve around the duality ‘‘symmetrical or asymmetrical.’’ There is an asymmetry if one state rules over the other ones as a hegemonic power. When this is not the case, all states in the world are deemed equal to one another. 4. Global Gesellschaft 2: The multiple national societies from ‘‘global Gesellschaft 1’’ are substituted with one unified or integrated world system. The decentralized version of this image would assume the form of a world federation, while a world government would be an illustration of ‘‘global Gesellschaft 2’’ in its centralized version. As one of society’ self-descriptions, globalization can be interpreted as equivalent to one image of world order in particular. This image is global Gesellschaft 2. Privileging this image does not imply denying or ignoring the existence of all or some national societies and local communities. What this means is that within the frame of global Gesellschaft 2, major events going on throughout the world (throughout society) are understood before anything else as being the features or outcomes of global structures, which is to say that globalization is then recognized and accepted as the world’s reality, i.e. as the stable set of laws in action behind the fleeting surface of social history. Admittedly, this does not concur with what Robertson himself has to say about global Gesellschaft 2. He wants us to envision a kind of voluntary association couched on human agents’ self-interest. This is not our focus and yet global Gesellschaft 2 remains relevant for us if only in the way it stands in opposition with the other images of world order. The discourse of globalization stresses the importance of transnational networks connecting one side of the planet with the other, thus turning the whole globe into a single organized unit, albeit not necessarily a very coherent one, far from that. This unity is lacking in the other images Robertson sketches, with the possible exception of global Gemeinschaft 2. In this last image though, the world’s unity does not arise in history and out of global structures like transnational networks, but solely appears as the logical counterpart for the universality of human nature. Obviously this deviates from the discourse of

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globalization and so global Gesellschaft 2 must be preferred over global Gemeinschaft 2. Does the present approach oblige the researcher to choose between options that he or she should not keep separated to start with? Some social scientists might feel uneasy as they do not want have to decide between, say, the states or globalization (as in global Gesellschaft 1 and 2, respectively). They would prefer mixing together the manifold aspects of Robertson’s images of world order in an effort to accumulate as many variables as possible and combine them within one very sophisticated equation (or else to leave unspecified, in the name of scientific humility or heuristic prudence, what these variables would be and how they interact with each other). This aspiration rests on the assumption that globalization and all the rest (states, communities, individuals, etc.) correspond to objects standing on their own in the open world, that these objects have different qualities and that accordingly they are likely to induce different effects on each other (like in the famous child’s game ‘‘paper-rock-scissors’’: scissors are sharp by definition, yet while they can cut paper, they cannot cut rock y). In the literature in sociology, it is indeed often suggested that globalization exists alongside states and communities and that intricate relationships prevail between all of them. The present approach breaks away with this literature by replacing the centrality of objects with the centrality of observers, thus accomplishing the shift from first to second order of observation. Observers operate like systems and as such, they must face the problem of handling complexity. Beginning with complexity places us prior to any images of world order, which to say that no image does justice to complexity or is true to it. Still the point is precisely that complexity must be reduced somehow, or else systems cannot come into existence at all. So although complexity is inscrutable at its own level and cannot be grasped for what it is, it can be reduced in different contingent ways. For society, one way to do this consists in overemphasizing global structures in its observations. In sum, the main goal broadly defined in this chapter and set up as a new research program for globalization studies is not to tell the rest of society ‘‘what is happening right now’’; rather it is to look within society for the procedures or strategies society employs as a system to figure this out all by itself. A parallel exists here with a love relationship (!). Two points must be underscored. Firstly, when the time comes for the persons involved to provide a description of their relationship, it means that the relationship has already been going on. While it may be unclear for the participants how they should see themselves in the near future, the fact remains on the other hand that they shared a history together. Accordingly, much like society, a love

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relationship implies paradoxically both aspects of certainty and uncertainty all at once. In any case, it is up to the couple to determine the answer to the question: ‘‘what’s next for us?’’ The couple is actually required to continue to be; i.e. the answer to the question must be provided by the couple as a couple. In essence, everything must proceed in the fire of action and through it, amid the confusion internal to the love relationship, without a clear conception of the events in progress. The same thing goes for society. Describing society is always a problem for society, because by the time there is a need for it, it means that society has already a past behind her and is then swamped by its own activities. Secondly, because it takes two to tango, it is not possible for anybody in the relationship to decide all by him or herself what the relationship will be from this moment onward. One person may wish to assume the position of a leader, but for this to become effective, he or she still depends on his or her partner’s willingness to follow his or her orders. So it is not enough for one of the two participants to proclaim something (like: ‘‘from now on, things between us will be like this y ’’). How the couple will evolve in time also depends on the other participant’s reaction, since it is all a matter of twoway coordination. In fact, every time one of the two participants offers a description of the relationship in communication, this gives the other participant the opportunity to do exactly the opposite if only because it then becomes possible to use the tentative description as a basis for further communications. Yet the relationship cannot go on unless it eventually comes to be determined one way or another. The persons involved can only play the game by getting ahead of themselves and by acting as if they knew what they do not know or cannot be certain of. Assumptions are enacted and performed by individuals in their respective behavior. However, the individuals make these assumptions insofar as they partake in a relationship and in the name of it. The love relationship stabilizes as the individuals learn to adjust their mutual assumptions, which is to say that a selection has taken place among all the initial assumptions. We account for the emergence of globalization within society in the same way.5 Before ending, we want to remind the reader that while Roland Robertson conceives numerous images of world order, he does not think of globalization as a self-description of contemporary society. Moreover, we modify the images of world order Robertson calls global Gesellschaft 2. As for Daniel C. Dennett, his reflection on the multiple drafts model, meant as an alternative to the Cartesian theater, applies to the case of cognition in the brain only, whereas we borrow it as a metaphor valid in the case of cognition in society just as well. Finally, our efforts at theorizing globalization deviate

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from Luhmann’s propositions on the subject. Luhmann associates globalization with the transition from a stratified mode of system differentiation toward a functional one. The result is an extension of the communicative reach across space on the surface of the Earth. In this argument, the Earth as a plane of reference is attributed to both traditional (stratified) society and modern (functional differentiated) society, so that this plane of reference remains unchanged for one observer to the other. When calling globalization a self-description of society, we treat globalization as one plane of reference in itself that recently came to substitute itself for other planes. In short, globalization proceeds from a change at the level of observations.

6. CONCLUSION Building what would be the foundation of a constructivist theory of globalization becomes possible when the question of the observer is brought back in the theoretical analysis. The principle at work is that there can be no reality without an observer or that whatever is real is only real to one observer – and thus may not be real to another observer. Observers can be observed by other observers. We must therefore distinguish between reality as seen or experienced at a first-order level of observation and at a secondorder level of observation. At the first level, we call ‘‘reality’’ whatever is being observed by one observer. This is ‘‘reality’’ for this observer. At the second level, the observations of one observer are now observed by another observer. Accordingly, the observations of the first observer do not reveal or show ‘‘reality’’ anymore, but only the observer’s internal operations (the making of distinctions and the indications of the one side or the other of the distinctions). It is not that ‘‘reality’’ disappears altogether, but that it becomes coextensive with the observer observing it. Reciprocally, an observer (as a network of operations) exists in the observations produced by it. If an observer ceases to observe anything (to produce operations), it simultaneously ceases to exist. This leads us to a redefinition of globalization: globalization is neither a process of social change, nor is it a historical set of forces of transformation; rather, is it one of contemporary society’s self-descriptions. When stating this hypothesis, society is taken as an observer in its own right. Society observes globalization when it entertains a discourse referring to it and society does so as a way to account for its own state considering the need for perpetually recalibrating the system’s operations. Following Niklas Luhmann, society is conceived as a network of communications precipitating more communications.

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Social systems emerge when psychic systems or persons come together and face the challenge of coordinate themselves. In this picture, one psychic system alone cannot produce communications. Communications as operations must be ascribed to social systems like society. Finally, as a self-description of society, globalization has to compete with other selfdescriptions to be selected as the basis for society’s next operations. This selection is achieved through the application of self-descriptions in practice. Self-descriptions substitute one another, push each other aside, outshine or overshadow one another depending of the consequences brought forth by each of them. Hence we are dealing with an ecology of perspectives that is reminiscent of Dennett’s multiple drafts model for the human mind. The theoretical sketch above is pragmatist in focus. The selection of self-descriptions is worked out in practice as different self-descriptions, as ‘‘ready to use’’ set of expectations or assumptions, yield different outcomes, thus allowing for the exercise of preferences in favor of one self-description or the other. One way to extend the model further still would be to look for additional factors intervening in this selective process. Two avenues can be pinpointed for future discussions. First, there are reasons to assume that any self-description whose content is closely associated with modern sciences might be advantaged in the competition process. This is the case of globalization. The argument is that, since their beginning, modern sciences have become highly prestigious due to their instrumental role in most social activities. Important sectors of society – such as industrial production, healthcare services, tribunal enquiries – today cannot do without the help of modern sciences anymore. At the same time, as it is well known, modern sciences have also generated a large numbers of statements about nature or the universe around us. Some of these statements have been incorporated in some of society’s self-descriptions such as globalization. Among other things, the claim that humanity is one single species, a statement established in biology out of controversies and debates over races and racism up until recent years (Glick, 2008; Marks, 2008; Proctor, 2008), is reemphasized in the discourse of globalization. The prestige of modern sciences then reflects on the self-descriptions allied with them and the latter have presumably a greater chance to be selected as the most accurate description of society in society. Using Robertson’s typology one more time, global Gemeinschaft 2 can be indicated as a counterexample. Even though humanity is presented as one community in this image of world order, it is not enough to bring it in association with modern biology and physics. On the contrary, humanity in global Gemeinschaft 2 is defined in moral or religious terms. These are symbolic resources perhaps still irreplaceable when it is time for

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organizations to justify their programs of intervention. Yet global Gemeinschaft 2 is less helpful to respond in concrete ways to concrete challenges. We have more chances to find a cure for lethal diseases by developing genetic knowledge than by professing good intentions over and over again. So society only falls back on global Gemeinschaft 2 in times of crisis when, for one moment, everything else seems to collapse. In other circumstances though, when social activities assume their normal routine character, global Gesellschaft 2 (or globalization) is more likely to flourish, all the more so since the modern sciences referenced by this image of world order (or society’s self-description) have already flourished by now. Second, the sheer logical requirements of any self-description might have a role to play as well. Perhaps some self-descriptions are more pervasive or more powerful than others for the reason that they are more solid or more complete, logically speaking. More precisely, a good description of society must comprise a description of society’s environment just as well. This is required, at least ideally, by the fact that society owes its existence to the conditions prevailing in its environment. While these conditions escape the control of the system, descriptions of society can nevertheless be extended so as to account for them simultaneously. The logic is that since society ultimately depends on them (even though it remains separated from them), they should be described when describing society. This option is satisfied in the case of some self-descriptions, but not in others. Consider again Robertson’s images of world order. Apparently, global Gesellschaft 1 does not comprise a description of society’s environment, while perhaps global Gemeinschaft 2 does so if it reinstates an Aristotelian kind of philosophy according to which final (teleological) causes apply indifferently to both physical and social phenomena. More exactly, in global Gemeinschaft 2, a first distinction is made between natural (and desirable by the same token) ends and unnatural (and therefore undesirable) ends. Then, the selection of global Gemeinschaft 2 is itself indicated as a desirable end. Hence global Gemeinschaft 2 has the potential to provide a justification for itself and this may advantage it in communication. Since it stresses the fact that we live on one planet, global Gesellschaft 2 also provides society with a description of its environment along with a description of itself. Instead of distinguishing between desirable and undesirable ends, global Gesellschaft 2 divides layers of reality: physical matter, biological life, individual consciousness, and social phenomena. Global Gesellschaft 2 (which means, to repeat again, globalization) thus presents itself as a social phenomenon. It is society (the observer) that describes the environment, and yet the environment is described in such a way that society is consequently confirmed in its own

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description. In short, there is variety among all the self-descriptions of society, and in order to explain why globalization is currently rising as a new self-description eclipsing the others, social scientists would be well advised to look deeper into this variety.

NOTES 1. Still second-order observers have limitations of their own, since they produce their observations in the same way first-order observers do, i.e. through the making of distinctions. As observers like any other observers, second-order observers are not different from their first-orders counterparts. They too take their observations for reality itself, i.e. as externally given rather than internally constructed. This principle applies to social sciences as well. Consequently, when formulating his theory, Luhmann does not pretend that he is assuming a God-like position from which he could see reality in its totality. Rather he wishes to take on the role of a sociologist by addressing himself to other sociologists in an attempt to make a contribution to the discipline of sociology. Luhmann claims that when one adopts such a role, one can effectively see something that other observers cannot see, but this does not mean that one can then see everything. While it is possible for one observer to perceive what another observer cannot perceive, the reverse is true just as well: the second observer can perceive in turn something the first observer cannot perceive (more on this below). 2. For Held and his colleagues, the concept of network designates material structures existing in physical space and having an impact on human geography. Fuchs and Luhmann do not talk about networks in the same way (or else only exceptionally). Moreover, when Luhmann offers his own observations on other observers (starting with the difference between first-order and second-order observers), he does not act as a single individual somehow endowed with extraordinary insight or wisdom. As explained earlier, he is speaking in quality of a sociologist. Luhmann places himself in a very specific context (or network) within which the participants are required to orientate themselves toward some very particular questions regarding conceptual definitions, methodological issues, and bibliographical references among other things. It is in this context only (sociological research) that Luhmann can observe what he observes. Insofar as observing is a context-dependent activity, what is shown as real in (first-order) observations happens to be a matter of what is made relevant in one social context or another. For example, what a sociologist cares about in his or her professional practice does not coincide in principle with what a career politician cares about in his or her own practice. What accounts for this is a difference at the level of social activities. Doing politics is just not the same as doing research and vice versa. Political consequences can admittedly result from the publication of one research, but then these consequences cannot be dealt with through more publications or more research. Political consequences must face with political means (namely, binding decisions or the promise of such decisions), so that politics remains distinct from science. In the same way, law cannot substitute itself for love or intimate relationships, neither for economy for education, etc. This also explains how one

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observer can observe what another observer cannot observe and conversely. For example, what politics can observe that scientific research cannot is what is relevant only in the context of political activities. 3. To be more precise, Luhmann’s arguments actually rest on George SpencerBrown’s ideas about the ‘‘laws of form’’ (for a presentation, see Schiltz, 2007; Schiltz & Verschraegen, 2003; Rasch, 2002). Among many other things, SpencerBrown explains that for the world to come to see itself, it must severe itself in two parts: one part to look at and another part to do the actual job of looking. The world’s efforts at observing itself result in the world being hidden from itself, because the world is not the same after it has been severed in two parts (one could say that the same is different). This is not exactly a failure, for something is being observed indeed, or else something happens as opposed to nothing at all. Spencer-Brown does not want us to think that what is being observed is something false or distorted that could be replaced with something true in the form of a better, more accurate, more careful, observation. Rather, what Spencer-Brown wants us to consider is that the observation of the world is ultimately a paradoxical affair insofar as it is made possible by the nonobservation of the world. The world is not the same after it has been severed in two parts, and yet we cannot know how the world was before that. So the world is not the same and yet whatever is left has to be the world for us (this time around, one could say that what is different remains the same anyway). For Luhmann, this principle applies to all systems as observers. One important consequence is that systems can only exist in a state of indeterminacy. Systems cannot tell whether they observe the world as it is for real or as it is for them. Any operation of observation is always plagued with doubts. This is precisely what drives the systems in Luhmann’s theory: systems keep on producing more operations so as to exercise control over the operations previously produced by them. Another important consequence is that, since observation and nonobservation go hand-in-hand, all systems as observers must have a blind spot. As explained earlier, there is not one system capable of observing everything. When it is possible for one system to observe what another system cannot observe, the second system simultaneously sees something the first system cannot see. This is so because different systems have different blind spots as they recreate the world within themselves through the use of different distinctions. 4. To the author’s knowledge, Luhmann does not refer to Dennett in his writings (while Fuchs does in his). Luhmann found inspiration in the work of Humberto Maturana and Francisco Varela, two Chilean biologists who devised the concept of ‘‘autopoiesis’’ stating that life and cognition are self-producing states of affairs and providing the model for Luhmann’s social systems (see Luhmann, 1990). To what extent Dennett’s ideas are compatible (or not) with the ones of Maturana and Varela is not developed here (for some details, see Varela, 1989). 5. In a love relationship, assumptions are enacted by individuals. But in society, assumptions may be enacted by organizations.

REFERENCES Akerstrom Andersen, N. (2003). Discursive analytical strategies: Understanding Foucault, Kosseleck, Laclau, Luhmann. Bristol, UK: Policy Press.

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Bartelson, J. (2000). Three concepts of globalisation. International Sociology, 15(2), 180–196. Bourdieu, P. (1999). Rethinking the state: Genesis and structure of the bureaucratic field. In: G. Steinmetz (Ed.), State/culture: State-formation after the cultural turn. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. Deleuze, G. (1969). Logique du sens. Paris: Editions de Minuit. Dennett, D. C. (1991). Consciousness explained. Boston: Brown and Company. Durkheim, E. (1912). Les formes e´le´mentaires de la vie religieuse. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France. Fuchs, S. (2001). Against essentialism: A theory of culture and society. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Giddens, A. (1990). The consequences of modernity. Cambridge: Polity Press. Glick, T. F. (2008). The anthropology of race across the Darwinian Revolution. In: H. Kublick (Ed.), A new history of anthropology. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Guy, J.-S. (2007). L’ide´e de mondialisation. Montre´al: Liber. Guy, J.-S. (2009). What is global and what is local? A theoretical discussion around globalization. Parsons Journal of Information Mapping, 1(2)(Available at http://piim. newschool.edu/journal/issues/2009/02/pdfs/ParsonsJournalForInformationMapping_ Guy-JeanSebastian.pdf. Retrieved on January 29, 2010). Guy, J.-S. (in press). The name of globalization: Observing society observing itself. In: I. Farrias, J. Ossandon (Eds), Comunicaciones, Sema´nticas y Redes. Usos y Desviaciones de la Sociologı´a de Niklas Luhmann. Mexico: Universidad Iberoamericana. Harvey, D. (1990). The condition of postmodernity. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Held, D. (1995). Democacry and the global order: From the modern state to Cosmopolitan Governance. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Held, D. (2004a). Global covenant: The social democratic alternative to the Washington Consensus. Cambridge: Polity Press. Held, D. (Ed.) (2004b). A globalizing world? Culture, economics, politics. New York: Routledge. Held, D., McGrew, A., Golblatt, D., & Perraton, J. (1999). Global transformations. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Held, D., & Kaya, A. (Eds). (2007). Global inequality: Patterns and explanations. Cambridge: Polity Press. Held, D., & Koenig-Archibugi, M. (Eds). (2003). Taming globalization: Frontiers of Governance. Oxford and Cambridge: Polity Press and Blackwell. Held, D., & McGrew, A. (Eds). (2002). Governing globalization: Power, authority and global Governance. Oxford and Cambridge: Polity Press and Blackwell. Held, D., & McGrew, A. (Eds). (2003). The global transformations reader: An introduction to the globalization debate. Oxford and Cambridge: Polity Press and Blackwell. Held, D., & McGrew, A. (2007a). Globalization/anti-globalization: Beyond the great divide. Cambridge: Polity Press. Held, D., & McGrew, A. (Eds). (2007b). Globalization theory: Approaches and controversies. Cambridge: Polity Press. Luhmann, N. (1982a). The differentiation of society. New York: Columbia University Press. Luhmann, N. (1982b). Territorial borders as system boundaries. In: R. Strassoldo & G. Delli Zotti (Eds), Cooperation and conflits in border areas. Milan: Franco Angeli. Luhmann, N. (1989). Ecological communication. Chicago: Chicago University Press. Luhmann, N. (1990). Essays in self-reference. New York: Columbia University Press. Luhmann, N. (1995). Social systems. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

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Luhmann, N. (1997). Globalization or world society: How to conceive of modern society? International Review of Sociology, 7(1), 67–80. Luhmann, N. (2000a). Art as social system. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Luhmann, N. (2000b). The reality of the mass media. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Luhmann, N. (2002). Theories of distinction. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Luhmann, N. (2006). From the society of society. In: H.-G. Moeller (Ed.), Luhmann explained: From souls to systems. Chicago: Open Court. Marks, J. (2008). Race across the physical-cultural divide in American anthropology. In: H. Kublick (Ed.), A new history of anthropology. Malden: Blackwell. McGrew, A., & Lewis, P. (1992). Global politic: Globalization and the nation-state. Cambridge: Polity Press. Meyer, J. W. (1999). Changing cultural content of the Nation-State: A world society perspective. In: G. Steinmetz (Ed.), State/culture: State-formation after the cultural turn. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. Moeller, H.-G. (2006). Luhmann explained: From souls to systems. Chicago: Open Court. Muller, H. (1994). Luhmann’s system theory as a theory of modernity. New German Critique (61), 39–54. Proctor, R. N. (2008). Temporality as artifact in paleoanthropology: How new ideas of race, brutality, moecular drift, and the powers of time have affected conceptions of human origins. In: H. Kublick (Ed.), A new history of anthropology. Malden: Blackwell. Rasch, W. (2002). Introduction – The self-positing society. In: N. Luhmann (Ed.), Theories of distinction. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. Risse, T. (2007). Social constructivism meets globalization. In: D. Held & A. McGrew (Eds), Globalization theory: Approaches and controversies. Cambridge: Polity Press. Robertson, R. (1992). Globalization, social theory and global culture. London: Sage. Schiltz, M. (2007). Space is the place: The laws of form and social systems. Thesis Eleven, 88, 8–30. Schiltz, M., & Verschraegen, G. (2003). Spencer-Brown, Luhmann and autology. Cybernetics and Human Knowing, 9(3–4), 55–78. Stichweh, R. (2008). The eigenstructures of world society and the regional cultures of the world. In: I. Rossi (Ed.), Frontiers of globalization research: Theoretical and methodological approaches. New York: Springer. Varela, F. (1989). Invitation aux sciences cognitives. Paris: Seuil. Von Foerster, H. (2002). Understanding understanding: Essays in cybernetics and cognition. New York: Springer.

CONCEPTUALIZING GLOBALIZATION IN TERMS OF FLOWS P. J. Rey and George Ritzer ABSTRACT George Ritzer (2010) recently conceptualized globalization in terms of liquidity and, especially, flows. This conceptualization is largely rooted in Zygmunt Bauman’s theory of a world dominated by increasing liquidity. However, neither Bauman nor Ritzer put these ideas in the context of their intellectual genealogy. This essay seeks to do that by reviewing the surprisingly rich history of thought pertaining to these ideas, especially flows. Through this review we also hope to call attention to some long-debated philosophical questions that inform how a theory of flows (and structures) can be applied to our contemporary globalized world.

INTRODUCTION It has been said that we are living in a – or even the – ‘‘global age’’ (Albrow, 1996). Globalization is clearly a very important change; it can even be argued (Bauman, 2003) that it is the most important change in human history.1 This is reflected in many domains, but particularly in social relationships and social structures,2 especially those that are widely Theorizing the Dynamics of Social Processes Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Volume 27, 247–271 Copyright r 2010 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited All rights of reproduction in any form reserved ISSN: 0278-1204/doi:10.1108/S0278-1204(2010)0000027011

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dispersed geographically. ‘‘In the era of globalization y shared humanity face[s] the most fateful of the many fateful steps’’ it has made in its long history (Bauman, 2003, p. 156, italics added). The following is Ritzer’s (2010, p. 2) definition of globalization focusing on liquids and flows:3 ‘‘globalization’’ is a transplanetary process or set of processes involving increasing liquidity and the growing multidirectional flows of people, objects, places and information as well as the structures they encounter and create that are barriers to, or expedite, those flows.4

In this article, we review several of the most prominent attempts at constructing a social theory grounded in an ontology of liquids and flows, in order to consider ways in which this definition may be enhanced or refined.

FROM ‘‘SOLIDS’’ TO ‘‘LIQUIDS’’ (TO ‘‘GASES’’) Solids Prior to the current epoch of globalization (and, according to most observers, there was a previous global epoch, if not many previous epochs, of globalization), it could be argued that one of the things that characterized people, things, information, places, and much else was their greater solidity. That is, all of them tended to be hard or to harden (metaphorically, of course) over time, and, therefore, remain largely in place. As a result, people either did not go anywhere or they did not venture very far from where they were born and raised; their social relationships were restricted to those who were nearby. Much the same could be said of most objects (tools, food, etc.), which tended to be used where they were produced. The solidity of most material manifestations of information – stone tablets, newspapers, magazines, books, and so on – also made them at least somewhat difficult to move very far. Furthermore, since people did not move very far, neither did information. Places were not only quite solid and immovable, but they tended to confront solid natural (mountains, rivers, oceans) and humanly constructed (walls, gates) barriers that made it difficult for people and things to exit or to enter. Above all, solidity describes a world in which barriers exist and are erected to prevent the free movement of all sorts of things. It was the nationstate that was most likely to create these ‘‘solid’’ barriers (e.g., walls (the Great Wall of China, the wall between Israel and the West Bank, etc.),

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border gates, and guards), and the state itself grew increasingly solid as it resisted change. For much of the twentieth century this was epitomized by the Soviet Union and its satellite states that sought to erect any number of barriers in order to keep all sorts of things out and in (especially a disaffected population). More recently, US concern over illegal Mexican (and other Latin American) immigration has led to the erection of an enormous fence between the two countries. Thus, solidity is far from dead in the contemporary world. It is very often the case that demands for new forms of solidity are the result of increased fluidity. However, a strong case can, and will, be made that it is fluidity that is more characteristic of today’s world, especially in terms of globalization. Of course, people were never so solid that they were totally immobile or stuck completely in a given place (a few people were able to escape East Berlin in spite of the Wall and many will be able to enter the United States illegally even when the fence on the Mexican border is completed), and this was especially true of the elite members of any society. Elites were (and are) better able to move about, and that ability increased with advances in transportation technology. Commodities, especially those created for elites, also could almost always be moved, and they, too, grew more moveable as technologies advanced. Information, because it was not solid, although it could be solidified in the form of a book, for example, or a machine, could always travel more easily than goods or people; it could be spread by word of mouth over great distances, even if the originator of the information could not move very far, and it moved even faster as more advanced communication technologies emerged – the steamship (which itself embodied, as well as transported information), the telegraph, the telephone, and the Internet. As other technologies developed (automobiles, airplanes), people, especially those with considerable resources, were better able to leave some places and get to others. They could even literally move places (or at least parts of them) as, for example, when in the early 1800s Lord Elgin dismantled parts of the Parthenon in Greece and transported them to London, where to this day they can be found in the British Museum.

Liquids and Gases At an increasing rate over the past few centuries, and especially in the past several decades, that which once seemed so solid has tended to ‘‘melt,’’

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like blocks of ice, and become increasingly liquid. It is more difficult to move blocks of ice than the water that is produced when those blocks melt; otherwise, we would have blocks of ice delivered to our homes, as opposed to running water. Of course, to extend the metaphor, there continue to exist blocks of ice, even glaciers that have not melted, at least not yet completely. Solid material realities (people, cargo, newspapers) continue to exist, but because of a wide range of technological developments (in transportation, communication, the Internet, etc.) they can move across the globe far more readily. Everywhere we turn, more things, including ourselves, are becoming increasingly liquefied. Furthermore, as the process continues, those liquids, as is the case in the natural world (e.g., ice to water to water vapor), tend to turn into gases of various types. Gases are lighter than liquids and therefore they move even more easily than liquids. This is most easily seen literally in the case of the global flow of natural gas through lengthy pipelines. More metaphorically, much of the information now available virtually instantly around the world wafts through the air in the form of signals beamed off satellites. Such signals become news bulletins on our television screens or messages from our global positioning systems, letting us know the best route to our destination. It should be noted, once again, that all of the terms used above – solids, liquids, gases – are metaphors. These metaphors are intended to communicate a sense of fundamental changes taking place as the process of globalization proceeds. Karl Marx opened the door to this kind of analysis (and to the use of such metaphors) when he famously argued that because of the nature of capitalism as an economic system ‘‘everything solid melts into air’’ (Marx & Engels, 1848 [2008], p. 12). That is, many of the solid material realities that preceded capitalism (e.g., the structures of feudalism) were ‘‘melted’’ by it and were transformed into liquids. To continue the imagery farther than Marx took it, they were ultimately transformed into gases that diffused in the atmosphere. However, while Marx was describing a largely destructive process, the point here is that the new liquids and gases that are being created are inherent parts of the new world and are radically transforming it. In the process, they are having both constructive and destructive effects (Schumpeter, 1976). And, make no mistake, the increasing fluidity associated with globalization presents both great opportunities and great dangers. Thus, the perspective on globalization presented here, following the work of Zygmunt Bauman (2000, 2003, 2005, 2006), is that it involves, above all else, increasing liquidity (Lakoff, 2008) and gaseousness.5 Several of

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Bauman’s ideas on liquidity are highly relevant to the perspective on globalization employed here. For example, liquid phenomena do not easily, or for long, hold their shape. Thus, the myriad liquid phenomena associated with globalization are hard pressed to maintain any particular form and, even if they acquire a form, it is likely to change quite quickly. Liquid phenomena fix neither space nor time. That which is liquid is, by definition, opposed to any kind of fixity, be it spatial or temporal. This means that the spatial and temporal aspects of globalization are in continuous flux. That which is liquid is forever ready to change whatever shape (space) it might take on momentarily. Time (however short) in a liquid world is more important than space. Perhaps the best example of this is global finance where little or nothing (dollars, gold) actually changes its place (at least immediately), but time is of the essence in that the symbolic representations of money move instantaneously and great profits can be made or lost in split-second decisions on financial transactions. Liquid phenomena not only move easily, but once they are on the move they are difficult to stop. This is exemplified in many areas such as foreign trade, investment, and global financial transactions (Polillo & Guillen, 2005), the globality of transactions and interactions on the Internet (e.g., Facebook, Twitter; see Clive Thompson, 2008, p. 42ff.), and the difficulty in halting the global flow of drugs, pornography, the activities of organized crime, and illegal immigrants. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, that which is liquid tends to melt whatever (especially solids) stands it its path. This is clearest in the case of the much discussed death, or at least decline,6 of the nation-state and its borders in the era of increasing global flows. According to Cartier (2001, p. 269), the ‘‘forces of globalization have rendered many political boundaries more porous to flows of people, money, and things.’’ It is clear that if one wanted to use a single term to think about globalization today, liquidity would be at or near the top of the list. That is not to say that there are no solid structures in the world – after all, we still live in a Modern world, even if it is late Modernity, and Modernity has long been associated with solidity. And it does not mean that there is not a constant interplay between liquidity and solidity with increases in that which is liquid (e.g., terrorist attacks launched against Israel from the West Bank during the Intifada) leading to counterreactions involving the erection of new solid forms (e.g., that fence between Israel and the West Bank). But at the moment and for the foreseeable future, the momentum lies with proliferating global liquidity.

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Flows Closely related to the idea of liquidity, and integral to it, is another key concept in thinking about globalization, the idea of flows; after all liquids flow easily, far more easily than solids. In fact, it is the concept of flows that is widely used in the literature on globalization, and it is the primary concept discussed in the remainder of this chapter.7 Because so much of the world has ‘‘melted’’ and has become liquefied, or is in the process thereof, globalization is increasingly characterized by great flows of increasingly liquid phenomena of all types, including people, objects, information, decisions, places, and so on.8 For example, foods of all sorts increasingly flow around the world, including sushi globalized from its roots in Japan (Bestor, 2005, pp. 13–20), Chilean produce now ubiquitous in the US market and elsewhere (Goldfrank, 2005, pp. 42–53), Indian food in San Francisco and throughout much of the world (Mankekar, 2005, pp. 197–214), and so on. In many cases, the flows have become raging floods that are increasingly less likely to be impeded by, among others, place-based barriers of any kind, including the oceans, mountains, and especially the borders of nation-states. This was demonstrated once again in late 2008 in the spread of the American credit and financial crisis to Europe and beyond: ‘‘In a global financial system, national borders are porous’’ (Landler, 2008, p. C1). Undoubtedly because of their immateriality, ideas, images, and information, both legal (blogs) and illegal (e.g., child pornography), flow virtually everywhere through interpersonal contact and the media, especially now via the Internet.9 To take a specific example within the global circulation of ideas, ‘‘confidentiality’’ in the treatment of AIDS patients flowed to India (and elsewhere) because of the efforts of experts and their infrastructure. The arrival of this idea in India made it possible to better manage and treat AIDS patients who were more likely to seek out treatment because of assurances of confidentiality. Confidentiality was very important in this context because of the reticence of many Indians to discuss publicly such matters as sexually transmitted diseases and AIDS (Misra, 2008, pp. 433–467). Decisions of all sorts flow around the world, as well as over time: ‘‘The effect of the [economic] decisions flowed, and would continue to flow, through every possible conduit. Some decisions would be reflected in products rolling off assembly lines, others in prices of securities, and still others in personal interactions. Each decision would cascade around the world and then forward through time’’ (Altman, 2007, p. 255). At the moment, much of the world continues to be adversely affected by a wide

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array of bad economic decisions made in the previous decade, or earlier, especially in the United States. Even places can be said to be flowing around the world as, for example, immigrants re-create the places from which they came in new locales (e.g., Indian and Pakistani enclaves in London). Furthermore, places themselves (airports, shopping malls, etc.) have become increasingly like flows.10 Even with all of this increasing fluidity, much of what would have been considered the height of global liquidity only a few decades, or even years, ago now seems increasingly sludge-like. This is especially the case when we focus on the impact of the computer and the Internet on the global flow of all sorts of things. Thus, not long ago we might have been amazed by our ability to order a book from Amazon.com and receive it via an express package delivery system in as little as a day. That method, however, now seems to operate at a snail’s pace compared to the ability to download the same content to an e-reader.

Types of Flows It is worth differentiating among several different types of flows. One is interconnected flows. The fact is that global flows do not occur in isolation from one another; many different flows interconnect at various points and times. Take the example of the global sex industry (Farr, 2005, 2007, pp. 611–629). The sex industry requires the intersection of the flow of people who work in the industry (usually women) with the flow of customers (e.g., sex tourists). Other flows that interconnect with the global sex industry involve money and illegal drugs. Then there are the sexually transmitted diseases that are carried by the participants in that industry and from them branch off into many other disease flows throughout the world; all of which connects with flows of drugs from pharmaceutical companies (mainly North American and European) and flows of money from national governments and private foundations; and so on. Then there are multidirectional flows. Globalization is not a one-way process as concepts such as Westernization and Americanization seem to imply (Marling, 2006). While all sorts of things do flow out of the West and the United States in particular to every part of the world, many more flow into the West and the United States from everywhere (e.g., Japanese automobiles, Chinese T-shirts, iPhones manufactured in China, Russian sex workers). In fact, all sorts of things flow in every conceivable direction among nearly all other points in the world.

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Still another layer of complexity is added when we recognize that transplanetary processes not only can complement one another (e.g., the meeting of flows of sex tourists and sex workers) but often also conflict with one another (and with much else). In fact, it is usually these conflicting flows that attract the greatest attention. This is most obvious in the case of the ongoing ‘‘war’’ between the United States (and its allies, especially Great Britain) and al-Qaeda. On the one hand, al-Qaeda is clearly trying to maintain, or to increase, its global influence and, undoubtedly, to find other ways of engaging in a range of terrorist activities. For its part, the United States is involved in a wide variety of global processes designed to counter that threat, stymie al-Qaeda’s ambitions, and ultimately and ideally to contain, if not destroy, it. This involves the US invasion of Iraq11 and Afghanistan, the ongoing warfare there as well as the global flow of military personnel and equipment to those locales and others (e.g., Pakistan); innumerable intelligence efforts to uncover al-Qaeda plots, and counterterrorism activities designed to find and kill its leaders (especially Osama bin Laden), ongoing contact with intelligence agencies of other nations in order to share information on al-Qaeda intentions, and so on. Then there are reverse flows. In some cases, processes flowing in one direction act back on their source (and much else). This is what Ulrich Beck (1992) has called the boomerang effect. In Beck’s work the boomerang effect takes the form of, for example, pollution that is ‘‘exported’’ to other parts of the world but then returns to affect the point of origin. So, for example, countries may insist that their factories be built with extremely high smokestacks so that the pollution reaches greater heights in the atmosphere and is thereby blown by prevailing winds into other countries and perhaps even around the globe (Ritzer, 2008, p. 342). While this seems to reduce pollution in the home country, the boomerang effect is manifest when prevailing winds change direction and the pollution is blown back to its source. In addition, nations that are the recipients of another nation’s air pollution may find ways of returning the favor by building their own smokestacks even higher than their neighbors. While Ritzer and Bauman make extensive use of the concept of flows, neither offers any historical background on the concept. However, a number of notable thinkers have utilized the idea of flows, and it would be useful to offer a brief genealogy of the concept. Our goal in doing so is to see what additional light such a review casts on globalization in general as well as the utility of thinking about it in terms of flows.

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FLOWS: THE GENEALOGY OF A CONCEPT Ancient Roots Some of the earliest written fragments in the history of Western thought describe a world that might seem familiar today – a world where nothing is in stasis, where change is the central force of the universe. Every aspect of being (e.g., people, things, society) is in constant movement. Simplicus famously summed up Heraclitus’ (c. 535–475 BCE) thought with the phrase panta rhei, ‘‘everything flows’’ (Barnes, 1982, p. 65). Rhei, meaning to flow, is the etymological root of rheology, the scientific study of flows of matter. A fragment attributed to Heraclitus uses the metaphor of a river as a device to describe a world in flux (Cohen, Curd, & Reeve, 2005, p. 30): ‘‘Upon those who step into the same rivers, different and again different waters flow.’’ Heraclitus held that though flux is constant, there is a governing principle, logos, which organizes the change. Thus, the world is not simply random or chaotic; its movements can be understood. Like any complex system, however, predictions are difficult. Returning to Heraclitus is somewhat refreshing when his ontology is contrasted with rigid Modernist language of social facts, essences, and human nature. Ontology interests us, because in attempting to theorize globalization, we are engaged in a task that might be called ‘‘social ontology’’ or the study of the nature of the world as it operates in a particular social milieu. To engage in this project, we must overlook the implicit claim Heraclitus shares with Modern positivists that there exists one logos for all times and places. We must detach their insights about the world from their absolutism. Not all early thinkers were so absolutist. In fact, Heraclitus was criticized (at least implicitly) by other Greeks for not being able to account for why the world (and its social structures) appeared more stable in certain historical periods than in others. Rather than giving pure flows primacy, Empedocles (c. 490–430 BCE) attempted to construct an ontology based on the interplay between universal ordering principles and unbounded flows of irreducible, indestructible, and static particles. While the basic units of matter are perpetually unchanging, the principles that regulate that matter are constantly in flux, swinging like a pendulum between love and strife, pure order and pure chaos. At one extreme, elements mix to produce a wholly homogeneous universe, while, at the other extreme, matter is fully separated into groupings of various elements. In between, occur the myriad

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forms or structures we encounter. We employ much the same binary – whether it is called love and strife, order and chaos, or solidity and liquidity – to explain how the social world is ordered in various historical epochs. In many ways, Empedocles is a predecessor of thinkers like Jan Nederveen Pieterse (2009), whose description of globalization is grounded in an ontology which holds that novelty and change are neither the result of the ex nihilo creation of new essences nor the destruction of prior essences. Instead, change and novelty are the result of synthesis, mixture, or hybridity, which creates new forms without negating the parts that constitute them. For example, Spanglish is able to exist without destroying Spanish or English. Plutarch reports that Empedocles once said (Cohen et al., 2005, p. 53): I will tell you another thing. There is coming to be of not a single one of all mortal things, nor is there an end of deadly death, but only mixture, and separation of what is mixed, and nature is the name given to them by humans.

Empedocles’ position that matter is permanent while forms are ephemeral can be understood as a response to his immediate predecessor, Parmenides (c. 540 BCE), who held that it was a contradiction for things to both be and not be. All change was thus illusory for Parmenides. Plato (428–348 BCE), through the voice of Socrates (c. 469–399 BCE), attempts to resolve Parmenides’ paradox by flipping Empedocles on his head, claiming that the form of things is permanent. The sensible world is rife with variation and change because it is inhabited by imperfect approximations of these permanent forms. Aristotle (384–322 BCE), whose thought largely prevailed for two millennia in the West, believed that form and matter are both permanent, but that when the two combine into worldly things, they are imperfect and ephemeral. Flux or flows were always secondary to essence and matter for Aristotle. Flux either occurs to the accidental properties of a thing that continues to have a stable essence, or it occurs as a brief transitory event between two stable things, whereby matter comes to embody a new essence. From Aristotle’s perspective, the idea that flux could be the nature of a thing is outside the scope of conversation. So, we find the early pre-Socratic philosophers most relevant to the contemporary discussion of flows and structure, because the early ontology of the Ancient Greeks tended to assume that, at the most fundamental level, the world consisted of flows of matter. These flows were formed into tangible and recognizable objects by laws intrinsic to the universe itself. Today, by analogy, we often speak of social, economic, and juridical laws

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that are believed to have much the same effect in organizing the various flows that move across the globe. Most ancient thinkers held that the laws of the universe were unchanging (Aristotle even spoke of the force behind these laws as an ‘‘unmoved mover’’). Empedocles stands out because he believed that the laws of the universe were subject to change and that such changes had profound ripple effects throughout the world. Just as Empedocles believed that minotaurs, centaurs, and the other beasts of legend had disappeared because the universe was no longer stable enough to support them, the institutions of Modernity (including, perhaps, the quintessential nation-state) are dissolving in a new globalized system.

Modern Developments Dialectics in the thinking of Hegel (1770–1831) and Marx (1818–1883), though not the same as flows, is an important step in moving away from the rigidity of essence and matter. Of course, both thinkers are essentialists (much like Aristotle (cf. Meikle, 1985, pp. 31–32)), believing that social phenomena are not the product of chance, that human nature is a potential actualized through the unfolding of history, and that history has an endpoint, a telos, in which all human potential is realized. Yet, the concept of dialectics captures the possibility of change in the immediate form of things, portraying it as the resolution of contradictions internal to that very thing. For dialectical thinkers, being and social life is a process. The reemergence of process ontology is a significant step toward the theory of flows. However, because these thinkers believe that change is teleologically directed toward some final state of being, form (or structure) has primacy over flux. As Bauman (2000, p. 3) points out, when ‘‘all that is solid melts into air,’’ it melts only so it can be reformed into a more robust solid. This elevation of form and solidity is what Modernist thinkers share with the Aristotelian tradition and what fundamentally distinguishes them from early pre-Socratic and post-Modern thinkers. Nietzsche (1844–1900) seldom spoke directly of flows, preferring instead the metaphor of forces; however, his philosophy marked a critical turning point by reintroducing the notion of perpetual change into social theory. Like Heraclitus, Nietzsche describes change as being the one constant in the universe. However, unlike Heraclitus (or Marx and Hegel for that matter), Nietzsche did not assume the universe was organized by any overarching telos, hence his use of the famous phrase ‘‘God is dead.’’ The universe, at its core, is a collection of forces in competition with one another. Being, for

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Nietzsche, is the chance outcome of these competing forces. As Deleuze (1962 [1983]) interprets Nietzsche in his influential book, Nietzsche and Philosophy, the ‘‘will to power’’ is the overarching principle that drives all the forces in the universe toward perpetual competition. The ‘‘eternal return of the same’’ describes the one constant in the universe: change. Like Nietzsche, Albert North Whitehead (1861–1947) attempted to develop a ‘‘metaphysics of flux,’’ drawing heavily on Heraclitus and Aristotle. In the conclusion to Process and Reason, Whitehead (1929, p. 338) describes permanence and flux as being in a state of reciprocal causation, each assuming the presence of the other, each existing as a sine qua non for the other: Ideals fashion themselves round these two notions, permanence and flux. In the inescapable flux, there is something that abides; in the overwhelming permanence, there is an element that escapes into flux. Permanence can be snatched only out of flux; and the passing moment can find its adequate intensity only by its submission to permanence. Those who would disjoin the two elements can find no interpretation of patent facts.

One might view this passage as an indictment of both Heraclitus and Aristotle: the former for undervaluing the forces of stability in universe, the latter for having too superficial a notion of the possibility of change. For globalization theorists, Whitehead brings us round to a fundamental question. When we use the language of structures and flows and speak of their interaction, are we assuming that the two are different states of the same substances or two separate substances? Because we hold that structures can and have melted into flows and flows have congealed into structures, we are implicitly affirming the former. In this sense, we are consistent with Whitehead. But Whitehead is also saying something more significant: Without structures, there would be no flows, and, without flows, there would be no structures. This, too, is implied in our theory of globalization, because structures not only block flows but also channel them. Without structures, flows would be more like puddles. Inversely, structures take shape with respect to flows, their form implies a function visa´-vis the dynamics of the flows around them. While a wall with holes in it is not much of a wall, a wall without gates is not much better.

Liquidity and the Self The influences of Nietzsche, Hegel, and the Classical thinkers are manifest in Georg Simmel’s (1858–1918) work, which is as philosophical as it is

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sociological. Hegel and Marx had already situated unfolding social processes in consciousness in radically new ways. They believed that the transformation of the society and the transformation of the self can no longer occur in isolation from one another. Simmel approaches relations in the social world with a renewed focus on both psychology and ontology. As a neo-Kantian thinker, he assumes the human psyche intrinsically seeks unity. Our minds unconsciously blend form and matter. In the same way that we are unable to witness the process that makes bits of matter appear to us in the form of recognizable objects (e.g., a chair), we are also unconscious of how objects come to have value. When others recognize objects that we recognize, we take it as proof of the object’s existence. The same is true for value. When we exchange goods on a market, we take the exchanges as confirmation of the value of the object. Thus, unlike Marx, who fixes value concretely in the duration of the labor process, Simmel recognizes that value is fluid (though Simmel’s most-cited contribution pertains to the manner which value is determined by an object’s distance from an actor). But, like Hegel, Simmel makes self-consciousness the basis of objectivity. So, though value is assigned unconsciously, insofar as we know that we are the kinds of creatures that unconsciously apply value to objects, we can, to some extent, view these objects and their values objectively. For Hegel and Marx, labor was the foremost activity of people’s lives. For Simmel, exchange is. Humans, thus, are not, first and foremost, object or essence creators, but flow creators. Because exchange is increasingly central to Modern life, Simmel claims that Western epistemology is increasingly embracing relativism. Yet, being a good Kantian, he still believes that the structures of consciousness provide an unknowable Archimedean point on which the order and stability of the universe (as we experience it) hangs. He (1900 [2004], pp. 100–101) explains: the basic tendency of modern science is no longer to comprehend phenomena through or as specific substances, but as motions [y] Science posits, instead of the absolute stability of organic, psychic, ethical and social forms, a ceaseless development in which each element has a restricted place determined by the relationship to its own past and future. It has abandoned the search for the essence of things and is reconciled to stating the relationships that exist between objects and the human mind from the viewpoint of the human mind. [y] But all this, even if carried to its conclusion, would still allow, or even require, a fixed point, an absolute truth. Cognition itself, which accomplishes that dissolution, seems to elude the flux of eternal change and the merely relative determination of its content. [y] The flux and the relativity of psychic processes cannot affect those presuppositions and norms according to which we decide whether our cognitions have this or that character. [y] Yet we shall never know what this absolute knowledge is.

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While objects in the world and the structures of consciousness with which they synthesize to form our subjective experiences may be relatively stable, both these objects-in-themselves and the structures of consciousness are beyond our experience. All we know are the products of the fluid synthesizing process. However, because the structures of consciousness and the nature of objects that produce the synthesis are stable, our judgments and experience have a consistent objective foundation. We just cannot consciously know how we derive these objective judgments or experiences. Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) provides an important contrast to Simmel’s neo-Kantianism. While the structures of consciousness are relatively rigid for Simmel (though less rigid than for Kant, as Simmel believes they vary from social milieu to social milieu), Freud assumed consciousness to be a fluid process with supple structures. Pathologies, neuroses, and psychoses are all byproducts of the flexibility of the structures of consciousness to develop in myriad directions in response to the vicissitudes of individual experience. Freud’s metapsychology hinges on the concept of flows of libidinal energy and the structures regulating them. This metapsychology of codetermining flows and structures is the basis of both his theories of consciousness and his social theory. Consciousness is a structure, or really, the aggregation of three structures: id, ego, and superego. Excitations flow from the outside environment and assail the structures of consciousness. We develop defensive mechanisms against the external forces, but, occasionally, these can be breached, resulting in trauma. Freud (1920 [1990], p. 32) explains, ‘‘Towards the outside, [the structures of consciousness are] shielded against stimuli, and the amounts of excitations impinging on it have only a reduced effect. Towards the inside there can be no such shield; the excitations in the deeper layers extend into the system directly and in undiminished amount [y].’’ Pleasure and nonpleasure ‘‘are an index to what is happening in the interior [and] predominate over all external stimuli.’’ More specifically, a healthy psyche exists in a state of equilibrium. Nonpleasure occurs when this balance is thrown off and pleasure occurs as it is restored. Because we are instinctually driven to pursue pleasure, we are, thus, driven toward a state of equilibrium or zero tension. Freud describes, for example, that when we experience a small psychological or physical trauma, our internal energy must flow to the site of the injury to restore its defenses. ‘‘An ‘anticathexis’ on a grand scale is set up, for whose benefit all the other psychical systems are impoverished, so that the remaining psychical functions are extensively paralysed or reduced’’ (1920 [1990], p. 34). Thus, when we are injured, we experience pain at the site of the injury due to excessive levels of energy.

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At the same time, we feel fatigued by a lack of energy everywhere else. As we are restored, we feel pleasure through the relief of tension. Civilization is grounded in humans’ instinctual pursuit of pleasure – what Freud calls ‘‘the pleasure principle.’’ In fact, society’s primary purpose is to regulate the investment of human libidinal energy in order to optimize our collective ability to provide for our basic needs (thus avoiding nonpleasure) (Freud, 1927 [1989]). Left to their own devices, individuals would impulsively pursue whatever was most immediately pleasurable, regardless of any longterm consequences. Society erects barriers to the investment of libidinal energy toward certain objects (e.g., the incest taboo inhibits potentially damaging sexual desire toward one’s children). At the same time, social structures encourage this energy to flow in other directions (e.g., art and labor). This latter process is called sublimation. Because society consists of structures and barriers to regulate flows and investments of libidinal energy, Freudian social theorists often speak of ‘‘libinal economies.’’ Marcuse, for example, has argued that capitalism has thrived and proliferated throughout the world because of its unprecedented ability to regulate libidinal flows (via advertising and manipulation) and to maximize pleasure (via increased productive capacity) relative to previous social formations. The theories of consciousness put forth by Simmel and Freud share a common insight for globalization theory: The mind dynamically engages with its environment and attempts to bring some stability to its experiences. In this sense, people are structures. Yet, because individuals are constituted through their interactions with various flows, globalization has significant implications for their development. If an increasingly liquid world creates opportunities for more experiences than ever before, then we might expect to see more varieties of people than ever before. But, this diversity may have its costs, as we will now explore. Both Deleuze (1925–1995) and Guattari (1930–1992) were heavily influenced by Nietzsche, Freud, and Whitehead. Like Bauman, or rather, inspiring him, Deleuze and Guattari argue that the modus operandi of capitalism is to convert (or ‘‘deterritorialize’’) everything it encounters into flows only so that it can capture, integrate, and control them. ‘‘Civilization is defined by the decoding and the deterritorialization of flows in capitalist production’’ (1972 [1983], p. 244). Capitalism tears down old structures and then tries to organize the flows of people and resources it releases without ever trying to settle them back down into new structures. It tries to maximize flows without slipping into absolute chaos. Even people themselves, as socialized subjects, are the fluid products of the myriad flows captured by the capitalist system.

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Schizophrenia is symptomatic of capitalism’s inability to control all the flows it has captured: Our society produces schizos the same way it produces Prell shampoo or Ford cars, the only difference being that the schizos are not salable. [y] schizophrenia is the exterior limit of capitalism itself or the conclusion of its deepest tendency, but [y] capitalism only functions on condition that it inhibit this tendency [y]. (1972 [1983], p. 245)

Capitalism is thus caught in a contradiction, whereby it must decrease stability and create new flows to perpetuate its own existence, while at the same time increasing the capacities of its own control mechanisms. Humans thus experience more desires and more repression simultaneously; and as desires are deflected from their targets and find ends, repression, in effect, creates new desires. This volatile combination slips easily between extremes of paranoia and schizophrenia. Deleuze and Guattari offer an interesting challenge to our binary concept of liquidity and solidity, because in our model, order is largely synonymous with solidity, while they believe capitalism can enhance its control through increasing liquidity. They tend to use the word ‘‘axiomatic’’ to describe a system that uses flows (primarily flows of capital) to create and organize other flows. This is a unique argument that, though not inconsistent with our definition of globalization in principle, may encourage some further elaboration.

Globalization of Network Society Harrison White (b. 1930) explains that there exists a ‘‘new species’’ of market: ‘‘These markets are mobilizers of production in networks of continuing flows’’ (2002, p. 1). As mobilizers of networks, business firms in a given field cannot be understood as wholly distinct from one another. Firms depend on one another to generate sufficient demand to keep suppliers in business. At the same time, firms discipline one another to ensure that the downstream flow of goods to consumers is of uniform quality. This might mean, for example, all farmers have a vested interested in making sure no one brings vegetables with salmonella to market; otherwise, they all will suffer losses. Buyers aggregated into a network are powerful enough to ensure that no one buyer receives preferential treatment. For White, modern national and international markets have their genesis in the flowing of resources between previously isolated communities with self-contained exchange mechanisms. From this landscape of largely

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isolated economic systems, ‘‘A partition into markets imposed itself among networks of flows among firms’’ (White, 2002, p. 5). Traditional economies tended to be regulated by habit, while contemporary markets are regulated through their situatedness in networked relations. Moreover, conventional economies were bimodal including just buyer and seller. Most contemporary markets are trimodal including supplier, producer, and purchaser. This, of course, depends on a market’s position in the broader network. A few edge markets exist around the borders of the network, but most markets are intermediary markets. White (1970) also described how opportunity tends to flow through chains of social relations. When a person buys a new car, for example, that generally creates an opportunity for another person to buy a used car. Another example is jobs, where the promotion of one person creates a vacancy to be filled by another person. He uses the term ‘‘vacancy chains’’ to describe these sorts of social relationships that are characterized by flows of people or resources. Every network analyst speaks, at least implicitly, about flows. Mark Granovetter (1973), one of White’s early doctoral students, wrote one of the most influential articles on network analysis, ‘‘The Strength of Weak Ties.’’ He differentiates between weak and strong ties, explaining, ‘‘the strength of a tie is a (probably linear) combination of the amount of time, the emotional intensity, the intimacy (mutual confiding), and the reciprocal services which characterize the tie.’’ Ties are relational structures that facilitate flows of information and other resources in various ways. Establishing a wide network to capture these flows is instrumental in accomplishing many social goals such as obtaining a job. In fact, Granovetter finds that it is not strong ties but weak ties that tend to help individuals find jobs. Network analysis provides many descriptors of the structural roles that links can occupy in networks. ‘‘Bridges’’ are one important example: they link individuals to flows to which they would otherwise have no access. Interestingly, Simmel (1909 [1997]) contrasted bridges to doors, the former being directionless, the latter distinguishing entrance and exit. Both are structures that allow mobility between other structures and, in a sense, unite these distinct structures. Yet, while the bridge blurs distinctions between already existing structures, the door is erected to divide the structures that it connects. If bridges and doors link structures (e.g., the sections of a house or city) by allowing flows to move between them, then certain structures (e.g., houses or cities) appear to depend on flows for their very existence. Of course, the flows linking these structures themselves depend on structures

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(i.e., bridges and doors) in order to exist. So, flows and structures appear to have a complicated and mutually necessary relationship. Arjun Appadurai’s (b. 1949) Modernity at Large: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization (1996) emphasizes the concept of global flows as well as the disjunctures among them. These flows and disjunctures serve to produce unique cultural realities around the world; they tend to produce cultural hybrids. Appadurai discusses five global flows – ethnoscapes, mediascapes, technoscapes, financescapes, and ideoscapes. The use of the suffix -scape allows Appadurai to communicate the idea that these processes have fluid, irregular, and variable shapes and are therefore consistent with ideas of heterogenization and not homogenization. The fact that there are a number of these scapes and that they operate independently of one another to some degree, and are perhaps even in conflict with one another, makes this perspective also in tune with those who emphasize cultural diversity and heterogeneity. Furthermore, these scapes are interpreted differently by different agents ranging all the way from individuals to face-to-face groups, subnational groups, multinational corporations, and even nation-states. And these scapes are ultimately navigated by individuals and groups on the basis of their own subjective interpretations of them. In other words, these are imagined worlds, and those doing the imagining can range from those who control them to those who live in and traverse them. While power obviously lies with those in control and their imaginings, this perspective gives to those who merely live in these scapes, or pass through them, the power to redefine and ultimately subvert them. Three things are especially worth noting about Appadurai’s landscapes. First, they can be seen as global processes that are partly or wholly independent of any given nation-state. Second, global flows not only occur through the landscapes, but also increasingly in and through the disjunctures among them. Thus, to give one example of such a disjuncture, the Japanese tend to be open to ideas (ideoscapes, mediascapes), but notoriously closed to immigration (at least one of the ethnoscapes). More generally, the free movement of some landscapes may be at variance with blockages of others. Studies in this area must be attuned to such disjunctures and to their implications for globalization. Third, territories are going to be affected differently by the five landscapes, and their disjunctures lead to important differences among and between cultures. The focus on landscapes and their disjunctures points globalization studies in a set of unique directions. However, the key point here is that such a focus is in line with the idea of hybridization y and flows.

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Manuel Castells (b. 1942) made famous the phrase ‘‘space of flows,’’ implying that, contrary to previous social milieux, time has primacy over space. Cities, for example, once predicted to expand ad infintum, now appear to be reversing course because both labor and consumption are less and less limited to any specific geographic location. In fact, both are now often done from home. Castells (2000, p. 442) explains that in the Information Age: our society is constructed around flows: flows of capital, flows of images, sounds, and symbols. Flows are not just one element of social organization: they are the expression of processes dominating our economic, political, and symbolic life. If such is the case, the material support of the dominant processes in our societies will be the ensemble of elements supporting such flows, and making materially possible their articulation in simultaneous time. Thus, I propose the idea that there is a new spatial form characteristic of social practices that dominate and shape the network society: the space of flows. The space of flows is the material organization of time-sharing social practices that work through flows. By flows I understand purposeful, repetitive, programmable sequences of exchange and interaction between physically disjointed positions held by social actors in the economic, political, and symbolic structures of society.

The primacy afforded flows in Castells’ social theory does raise a question: Are flows truly primary to social structures, or have they just become more salient in the Information Age and thus subjected to more attention by analysts? As was discussed above with respect to bridges and doors, certain types of structures expedite flows. Below the surface, the liquidity of the contemporary world is undergirded by the proliferation of certain types of structures: for instance, fiber-optic cables, satellites, server centers, and search engines all act as bridges and doors in various ways. Network society is inconceivable without such structures. John Urry (b. 1946) has done a great deal of work on the concept of mobility (2009), and he argues for a concept of global citizenship. Globalization challenges traditional conceptions of citizenship – what Urry calls ‘‘citizenship of stasis’’ – that are organized around the notion of civil, political, and social rights. Contemporary notions of citizenship challenge one or more of the three pillars of traditional citizenship: These alternative conceptions could be termed citizenships of flow, concerned with the causes and consequences of the flows across borders of risks, cultures, migrants and visitor [y] Such flows involve both threats to and forms of resistance around, civil, political and social elements. These elements can no longer be distinguished from each other and should not be seen as arriving in different centuries. The citizenship of flow dedifferentiates these various rights and responsibilities. (2000, pp. 63–64)

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Urry (2000, p. 66) criticizes the traditional definition of citizenship as ‘‘that set of practices (juridical, political, economic, and environmental) which define a person as a competent member of society, and which as a consequence shape the flow of resources to persons and social groups.’’ Urry believes: (1) social competence, like society itself, is no longer confined to national borders; (2) it is unclear which social practices are related to citizenship; (3) humans are not entitled to be the sole bearers of rights. From a global perspective, humans are just one flow among many. Nature’s flows should be on equal footing with humans in terms of rights. This means relating to animals (including the whole human species), oceans, the air, and so on as mutual inhabitants of the globe. In pseudo-contractual terms, we have a responsibility to sustain nature and nature has a responsibility to sustain us.

CONCLUSION The focus in globalization studies has tended to be on how flows penetrate structures and how structures control and block flows (Ritzer, 2010). In this framework, creation is usually discussed in terms of flows that combine to create new, hybrid flows (e.g., Pieterse, 2009). Destruction is discussed in terms of opposing structures (i.e., Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations, 1997) or in terms of flows eroding structures (e.g., Bauman’s, 2000 assumption of the tendency of liquids to melt solids). Our genealogical study has highlighted several other relationships that are of importance. Structures like walls may block or control flows. Protectionist tariffs, for example, may block flows of external commodities from coming to market within a certain nation-state. However, it is also true that structures that act like bridges and doors enable flows to pass between structures where it would otherwise be impossible. Thus, if globalization is maximizing liquidity, it will probably (and somewhat ironically) need to produce more of certain types of structures such as communication and transportation infrastructure. Flows are also observed to frequently erode structures, such as the information leaks regularly crossing China’s ‘‘Great Firewall’’ but flow may also reinforce structures: consider that, without the flows crossing its bridges, Manhattan would not be continuous with the rest of the structure of New York City. As Empedocles demonstrates, structures may be mixtures of other structures. For example, objects are comprised of atoms and cities are comprised of buildings. However, structures can also be, in part or in whole,

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comprised of flows. For example, atoms may be reducible to flows of energy (i.e., string theory) or cities might be constituted by the flows of workers and consumers that constantly cycle through them. Flows may also be mixtures of various structures. Immigration describes a mixture of mobile people, who are discrete structures in their own right. Simmel, Marx, and Hegel argue that, in addition to mixing, structures can synthesize to create flux. Human consciousness is one such structure, but this concept might also be applied to multinational corporations that pull together and combine natural resources from all over the world to produce commodities. Conversely, flows may combine to create structures. White argues that contemporary markets emerge from the combination of flows of supply, production, and purchaser capital. Perhaps the most significant insight drawn from this genealogical study (because it is least represented in the definition presented above) concerns the manners in which flows can relate to, and be mixtures of, other flows. A basic example of the mixture of flows is the polluted rivers that emerge as a result of chemical waste flowing into and combining with fresh water. More significantly, Deleuze and Guattari argue that the salient characteristic of capitalism is that it maintains control through using flows (of capital), instead of structures, to control and to organize the flows of resources within the social system. The only form of control described by Ritzer’s (2010) definition is that of structures over flows. Flows can also expedite other flows, and this is another dimension that is absent from Ritzer’s definition of globalization and discussion of it. For example, flows of immigrant labor accelerated the industrialization of the United States by expediting the flow of natural resources across the country. These two facets of flows’ interactions with each other (i.e., control and expedition) merit future attention in the pursuit of a broader and more complete theory of globalization. In sum, the ideas of liquids and especially flows are useful in gaining a better understanding of globalization. This essay has begun a genealogy of these concepts in an effort to learn more about them and their application to globalization. There is much more work to be done on this genealogy, on the application of these ideas to globalization, and on globalization itself which flows merrily along (in spite of innumerable efforts to slow or stop it), and changing, as we write. It is a daunting task to apply ideas such as liquidity and flows to the highly liquid, continually flowing, and constantly changing process of globalization, as well as to the structures that it throws off and that are created to block or expedite its movement.

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NOTES 1. Wolf (2005, p. ix) is slightly more circumscribed in his judgment, saying that globalization ‘‘is the great event of our time.’’ 2. The term ‘‘social’’ here and elsewhere in this chapter is used very broadly to encompass social process in various sectors – political, economic, social, etc. 3. It should be noted that while the concept of globalization, if not this particular definition, is now very familiar to all of us, it is actually of very recent vintage. Chanda (2007, p. 246) reviewed an electronic database that archives 8,000 sources throughout the world (newspapers, magazines, reports). He does not find a reference to globalization until 1979 and then only in an obscure European administrative document. By 1981 there are still only two mentions of the term globalization, but then such references take off reaching over 57,000 in 2001. Interestingly the number drops off after that, but it has begun to rise once again. It seems likely that the number of references to globalization will soon exceed that of the previous peak in 2001. 4. This definition requires several amplifications or clarifications. First, the idea that globalization is transplanetary is derived from Scholte (2005). Second, while globalization is transplanetary, little traverses the entire planet. The latter is the outer limit of globalization, but it is rarely approached. Third, the definition as a whole seems to imply a ‘‘grand narrative’’ of increasing globalization, but it is recognized that globalization occurred on a far more limited scale at earlier points in history and that the changes described here are often uneven and that in some cases (e.g., in the case of immigrants, see below) there was greater liquidity, things flowed more easily, in earlier epochs. Fourth, it should be pointed out that not all of the phenomena mentioned in this definition are equally liquid or flow to the same degree. Clearly, communication is the most liquid and flows the most easily; places and people are far less liquid and their flow is much more limited. However, places are much more likely now than in the past to flow around the world as represented by the global presence of many fast food restaurants and other chains. In some senses, people (e.g., as immigrants) moved more easily in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century when nation-states had far fewer restrictions on immigration than they do today (but those restrictions have increased greatly recently). However, overall people today are more liquid and flow more easily globally as, for example, tourists, business travelers, and the like, and even as immigrants, at least in some senses (e.g., the flow is much more multidirectional than it was in that earlier epoch). It is even more the case that social relationships are more liquid, and flow more easily, than they did in the past. Fifth, Tomlinson (2007, p. 352) offers a definition of globalization that has much of the flavor of the perspective being offered here: ‘‘complex, accelerating, integrating process of global connectivity y rapidly developing and ever-densening network of interconnections and interdependencies that characterize material, social, economic and cultural life in the modern world’’; another definition emphasizing flows, interconnectedness and also barriers can be found in Yergin and Stanislaw (1998, p. 383). 5. A similar point of view is offered by the popular journalist Thomas Friedman, with his notion ‘‘fluid networks’’ that operate in a largely unimpeded manner across

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what he sees as an increasingly ‘‘flat world’’; for more on Friedman’s thinking, and a critique of the idea of a flat world, see Ritzer (2010, chap. 5). 6. For a rebuttal to this argument, see Weiss (1998). 7. This is in line with one of the two approaches outlined by Martin, Metzger, and Pierre (2006, pp. 499–521); that is, that which is truly global is not simply similar changes in many countries. 8. John Urry (2009) sees this as part of the fact that everything these days seems to be on the move and, as a result, we need a new ‘‘mobilities’’ theory to deal with that reality. 9. Although great global inequality – especially in this case, the ‘‘digital divide’’ – prevents large portions of world from receiving many of these flows. 10. See Castells (2000) for more on this and the transition from ‘‘spaces of places’’ to ‘‘spaces of flows.’’ 11. Although it is not likely, contrary to US propaganda, that al-Qaeda had much of a role, if any, in Iraq.

REFERENCES Albrow, M. (1996). The global age. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press. Altman, D. (2007). Connected: 24 hours in the global economy. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Appadurai, A. (1996). Modernity at large: Cultural dimensions of globalization. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Barnes, J. (Ed.) (1982). The presocratic philosophers. London: Routledge. Bauman, Z. (2000). Liquid modernity. Cambridge: Polity. Bauman, Z. (2003). Liquid love. Cambridge: Polity. Bauman, Z. (2005). Liquid life. Cambridge: Polity. Bauman, Z. (2006). Liquid fear. Cambridge: Polity. Beck, U. (1992). Risk society: Towards a new modernity. London: Sage. Bestor, T. C. (2005). How sushi went global. In: J. L. Watson & M. L. Caldwell (Eds), The cultural politics of food and eating: A reader. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Cartier, C. (2001). Globalizing South China. Oxford: Blackwell. Castells, M. (2000). The rise of the network society (2nd ed.). New York: Wiley-Blackwell. Chanda, N. (2007). Bound together: How traders, preachers, adventurers, and warriors shaped globalization. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. Cohen, S. M., Curd, P., & Reeve, C. (Eds). (2005). Readings in ancient Greek philosophy. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing. Deleuze, G. (1962 [1983]). Nietzsche and philosophy. New York: Columbia University Press. Deleuze, G., & Guattari, F. (1972 [1983]). Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and schizophrenia. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Farr, K. (2005). Sex trafficking: The global market in women and children. New York: Worth. Farr, K. (2007). Globalization and sexuality. In: G. Ritzer (Ed.), The Blackwell companion to globalization. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Freud, S. (1920 [1990]). Beyond the pleasure principle (Standard ed.). New York: Norton. Freud, S. (1927 [1989]). The future of an illusion (Standard ed.). New York: Norton.

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Goldfrank, W. (2005). Fresh demand: The consumption of Chilean produce in the United States. In: J. L. Watson & M. L. Caldwell (Eds), The cultural politics of food and eating: A reader. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Granovetter, M. S. (1973). The strength of weak ties. American Journal of Sociology, 78(6), 1360–1380. Huntington, S. P. (1997). The clash of civilizations and the remaking of world order. New York: Simon and Schuster. Lakoff, A. (2008). Diagnostic liquidity: Mental illness and the global trade in DNA. In: J. X. Inda & R. Rosaldo (Eds), The anthropology of globalization: A reader (2nd ed., pp. 277–300). Malden, MA: Blackwell. Landler, M. (2008). At a tipping point. New York Times, October 1, p. C1. Mankekar, P. (2005). ‘‘India shopping’’: Indian grocery stores and transnational configurations of belonging. In: J. L. Watson & M. L. Caldwell (Eds), The cultural politics of food and eating: A reader. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Marling, W. (2006). How American is globalization? Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press. Martin, D., Metzger, J. L., & Pierre, P. (2006). The sociology of globalization: Theoretical and methodological reflections. International Sociology, 21, 499–521. Marx, K., & Engels, F. (1848 [2008]). The communist manifesto. Wildside Press LLC. Meikle, S. (1985). Essentialism in the thought of Karl Marx. London: Duckworth. Misra, K. (2008). Politico-moral transactions in Indian AIDS service: Confidentiality, rights, and new modalities of governance. In: J. X. Inda & R. Rosaldo (Eds), The anthropology of globalization: A reader (2nd ed.). Malden, MA: Blackwell. Pieterse, J. N. (2009). Globalization and culture. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. Polillo, S., & Guillen, M. F. (2005). Globalization pressures and the state: The worldwide spread of central bank independence. American Journal of Sociology, 110(May), 764–802. Ritzer, G. (2008). Modern sociological theory (7th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill. Ritzer, G. (2010). Globalization: A basic text. New York: Wiley-Blackwell. Scholte, J. A. (2005). Globalization: A critical introduction (2nd ed.). New York: Palgrave. Schumpeter, J. A. (1976). Capitalism, socialism and democracy (5th ed.). London: George Allen and Unwin. Simmel, G. (1900 [2004]). The philosophy of money (3rd ed.). London: Routledge. Simmel, G. (1909 [1997]). Bridge and door. In: Simmel on culture. London: Sage. Thompson, C. (2008). I’m so totally, digitally close to you. New York Times Magazine, September 7. Available at http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/07/magazine/07awarenesst.html Tomlinson, J. (2007). Cultural globalization. In: G. Ritzer (Ed.), The Blackwell companion to globalization. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Urry, J. S. (2000). Global flows and global citizenship. In: E. F. Isin (Ed.), Democracy, citizenship, and the global city. London: Routledge. Urry, J. S. (2009). Mobilities and social theory. In: B. Turner (Ed.), The new Blackwell companion to social theory. Malden, MA: Blackwell. Weiss, L. (1998). The myth of the powerless state. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. White, H. C. (1970). Chains of opportunity: System models of mobility in organizations. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.

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White, H. C. (2002). Markets from networks: Socioeconomic models of production. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Whitehead, A. N. (1929). Process and reality (2nd ed.). New York: Free Press. Wolf, M. (2005). Why globalization works. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. Yergin, D., & Stanislaw, J. (1998). The commanding heights: The battle for the world economy. New York: Touchstone.

WHY NAZIFIED GERMANS KILLED JEWISH PEOPLE: INSIGHTS FROM AGENT-BASED MODELING OF GENOCIDAL ACTIONS Robert B. Smith ABSTRACT This chapter explicates the logic of a computational agent-based model bearing on the willingness of perpetrator agents to conduct genocidal actions against Jewish people during World War II. Given realistic distributions of benefits and costs and sufficient time, as a joint consequence of these distributions and interpersonal influence the model readily creates agents who are avowed anti-Semites, Nazis, and perpetrators of the genocide, even transforming agents characterized initially by lower levels of anti-Semitism. Although many agents initially exhibit dissonance (i.e., a disjunction) between their attitudes and choices, toward the end of this period their anti-Semitic attitudes and choices become consonant (i.e., internally consistent). Experiments and parameter studies using this model indicate that different distributions of benefits and costs, changed legitimacy of authority, and different values of anti-Semitism of influential agents can modify the growth of prejudice, Nazism, and genocidal choices in these random-number-based Monte Carlo trials. The results clarify the conflicting interpretations of Theorizing the Dynamics of Social Processes Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Volume 27, 275–342 Copyright r 2010 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited All rights of reproduction in any form reserved ISSN: 0278-1204/doi:10.1108/S0278-1204(2010)0000027012

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Goldhagen and Browning concerning the genocidal actions of a battalion of perpetrators and the role of propaganda in reducing moral costs. Six hypotheses that focus the testing of the model can be generalized creating insights about other genocides.

What the Nazis were trying to achieve was a cultural revolution, in which alien cultural influences – notably the Jews but also modernist culture more generally – were eliminated and the German spirit reborn. Germans did not just have to acquiesce in the Third Reich, they had to support it with all their heart and soul, and the creation of the Propaganda Ministry under Joseph Goebbels, which soon acquired control over the whole sphere of culture and the arts, was the main means by which the Nazis sought to achieve this end. – Richard J. Evans (2005, pp. 16–17) [In Russia today] everybody understands that television is the main institution for the country’s governance. Not the army, nor the secret service, not law enforcement authorities, but TV. – Daniil Dondurei, quoted by Charles Clover (2009, p. 10)

INTRODUCTION A paradox: Erich Fromm’s The Working Class in Weimer Germany suggests that, except for the small number of Nazis circa 1929–1930, racially based anti-Semitism was not widespread, among the German workers in his analytic sample.1 However, Daniel Jonah Goldhagen’s Hitler’s Willing Executioners posits uniformly high levels of eliminationist anti-Semitism among the Germans who perpetrated the mass killing of Jewish people circa 1941 and thereafter.2 Because these killers were ordinary Germans, Goldhagen thought that almost any German would have willingly conducted this genocide because of their intrinsic anti-Semitism. My previous empirical research attempted to resolve this paradox by explicating the process of Nazification of ordinary Germans: anti-Semitism increased from 1929 through 1944 because of the Nazis’ threats of coercion, the German public’s perceptions of the regime’s economic and international achievements, and anti-Semitic propaganda. By 1944 many Germans had internalized the Nazi worldview, which included virulent anti-Semitism as an intrinsic component. Apparently, if such Nazified Germans had been called on to serve in the killing units, many would have – some with

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enthusiasm and some with reluctance. Their anti-Semitism and the cohesion of their killing units would have directed them to kill Jews. Bearing on the Nazis’ genocide of Jewish people and the roots of their radical anti-Semitism, this chapter explicates and presents results from a functioning computational model. Logically, this model explains linkages between properties of organizational macro-units; here how the reward structures of battalions of perpetrator agents engender their counts of willingness to perform different killing actions. To explain these macrorelationships, the model implements micro-level mechanisms and interactions among individual agents, the outcomes of which, when aggregated to the macro-level, generate the organizational macro-level outcomes. This research is thus consistent with the agent-based modeling perspective, which stipulates that explanations of macro-regularities should be generated from interactions among micro-agents (Epstein, 2006), and with Coleman’s (1990, pp. 1–23) theoretical perspective, which stipulates that macro-level relationships should be explained by processes and interactions of individuals at the micro-level. Abiding by these stipulations and the understandings on which they are based, I refer to the hypothetical Germans as ‘‘agents’’ to distinguish them from actual, empirical Germans. From the behavior of these agents I draw some inferences about the actual behavior of German people during this period of time.

Overview of the Generative Model To account for the linkages between the organizational units and their willingness to conduct the genocide, this model articulates agent-based decision, influence, action, and learning modules that stem from those initially developed by McPhee and Smith (1962).3 Iterations through the model represent periods of time; in these studies of the genocide an iteration represents one month. Characterizing the organizational structure of benefits and cost bearing on the perpetrator agents at a unique time point, the decision process exposes each agent to a social environment that has verisimilitude to that of the battalions conducting the genocide. Dual probability distributions portray this environment: one distribution represents the perceived practical benefits of conformity to the Nazis due to their threats of coercion, offers of material benefits, and economic and international achievements; the other distribution represents the perceived moral costs of killing Jewish people.4 Anti-Semitic propaganda can make moral costs negligible or even convert them into a benefit.5 These

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distributions can change over time depending upon coercion, the events in Germany and Europe, the successes and failures of the regime, and propaganda.6 For each agent, the decision process produces a net benefit score (perceived practical benefits � perceived moral costs) for conducting the genocide, which combines with the agent’s prejudice to create the agent’s initial level of Nazism and a choice whether to support or not to support the Nazi agenda during this specific time period. The underlying mechanism is social psychological: the net benefit of supporting the Nazi agenda is a stimulus; the agent’s extent of anti-Semitism is a predisposition; the stimulus and predisposition create a threshold mechanism that produces Nazism, which is a subjective utility the amount of which leads to various choices.7 (Alternatively, this subjective utility can be conceptualized sociologically as the extent of the agent’s ideological commitment, or psychologically as the agent’s reaction potential.)8 Each agent can be tied to others forming a sociometric network of varying density and cohesiveness; in the influence process the agent may or may not converse with the other agents. If they disagree about supporting the Nazi program, then both reconsider their decision and are reexposed to the distributions of benefits and costs characterizing their group; they may reach a different decision about supporting the Nazi agenda and different action choices.9 Intervals (i.e., cut points) on the agent’s degree of Nazism determine the anti-Jewish actions the agent would condone. The action process calculates the agent’s zeal for killing Jews, modifies this value according to the legitimacy the agent attributes to authority, and determines which of the genocidal actions against Jews the agent is willing to take. The learning process modifies an agent’s anti-Semitic predisposition based on his zeal.

New Contributions Given realistic distributions of benefits and costs and sufficient time, as a joint consequence of these distributions and interpersonal influence, the model readily creates agents who are avowed anti-Semites, Nazis, and perpetrators of the genocide, even transforming those that had lower levels of anti-Semitism. Although many agents initially exhibit dissonance (i.e., a disjunction) between their attitudes and choices, toward the end of this period their anti-Semitic attitudes and choices become consonant (i.e., internally consistent). Monte Carlo (i.e., random-number-based) experiments and parameter studies using this model indicate that different

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distributions of benefits and costs, changed legitimacy of authority, and different values of anti-Semitism of influential agents can modify the growth of prejudice, Nazism, and genocidal choices in these trials. The results clarify the conflicting interpretations of Goldhagen and Browning concerning the genocidal actions of a battalion of perpetrators and the role of propaganda in reducing moral costs. Six hypotheses focusing tests of the model can be generalized creating insights about other genocides.

ROOTS OF THE MODEL In an earlier study (Smith, 1998) I attempted to reconcile differences between Fromm’s and Goldhagen’s findings and interpretations about the antiSemitism of Germans. The present generative model of the genocide and growth of Nazism builds upon and advances those earlier analyses. Before turning to this new work, it will be useful to consider differences between Fromm’s and Goldhagen’s characterization of German anti-Semitism, since my model is in part an effort to test and to reconcile those differences.

Reconciling Fromm and Goldhagen Circa 1929–1930 Fromm and his research assistants distributed a comprehensive survey questionnaire to a rather haphazard sample of German workers. About half the returned data were lost when Fromm fled Germany. Although his resulting study, The Working Class in Weimar Germany, was first published in German in 1980 and in English in 1984, his unpublished report served as a precursor to the Authoritarian Personality studies in the United States (Adorno, Frenkel-Brunswik, Levinson, and Sanford (1950). When reading Fromm’s book I noticed that answers to three questions on anti-Semitic themes emphasized by Hitler seemed to indicate that different political groups had different predispositions toward anti-Semitism. Except for the Nazis, few respondents thought that: (1) Jews alone or with Free Masons and Jesuits had too much power in the state,10 (2) too many Jews served in the Judiciary, and (3) Jews were responsible for the inflation. By applying logistic regression to Fromm’s tables and to an index based on the three questions, I found that the Bu¨rgerliche (composed of members of the Catholic parties, the liberal German Democratic Party, the national liberal German People’s Party, and the German National People’s Party) were in the aggregate only moderately more likely than the

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Left to give anti-Semitic replies. In Fromm’s data only the Nazis and Nationalists were strongly anti-Semitic. Thus: During the Weimar Republic, non-voters and Germans who belonged to the Marxist parties or to the political center were less likely to be prejudiced against Jews than the Nazis and Nationalists on the Right (Smith, 1998, pp. 1326–1327). To obtain a rough estimate of the change in anti-Semitism from early 1920 to the Reichstag election of March 5, 1933, I projected the measure of anti-Semitism by weighting Fromm’s unrepresentative sample of groupings of the political parties by their vote shares in Reichstag elections. I found that anti-Semitism had increased from 1919 to 1933 because: In times of economic misery (i.e., severe inflation or severe unemployment or their sum), prejudices of people become manifest, unless these sentiments are countered by social influence that favors the targets of the prejudice (unfavorable propaganda may inflame the prejudice) (Smith, 1998, p. 1328). Validating the projected values of anti-Semitism, I correlated them with an index of induced anti-Semitism based on the diffusion of the Nazi world view. I gauged that variable using these indirect unobtrusive measures: the cumulative and yearly sales of Hitler’s Mein Kampf; the number and circulation of Nazi newspapers; and their composite index. These aggregate measures were almost perfectly correlated with the measure of projected anti-Semitism, thereby validating both measures and suggesting this principle: Because the Nazi worldview unambiguously included anti-Semitism as a key component, indicators of the Nazis’ effectiveness in disseminating their worldview may indicate the relative levels of the anti-Semitism they induced in the German mind (Smith, 1998, p. 1333). Given the validity of the measure of induced anti-Semitism, I now could study the change over time on this measure before and after the Nazis came into power. The Nazis were not voted into power; they gained office via the machinations of Franz von Papen and other antidemocracy reactionaries who thought they could control Hitler and maneuver Nazism into more manageable directions. These schemers influenced President Paul von Hindenburg, who was aged and ill, to appoint Hitler as chancellor on January 30, 1933, suggesting this principle: Members of an upper social class in positions of power will support candidates whose political, economic, and social programs are consistent with their own interests (Smith, 1998, p. 1333). After consolidating his power, murdering potential opponents, and placing under house arrest von Papen, then the vice chancellor and commissar for Prussia, Hitler began the dual processes of degradation of Jewish people and the further Nazification of ordinary Germans. The following principle elucidates these processes: The threat of the use of

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economic and coercive punishment (imprisonment, torture, or death) by a regime against potential opponents creates a reward structure that makes their support of the regime a prudent choice, especially when the regime can reduce moral objections to its immoral policies by its countervailing economic and international achievements and effective propaganda (Smith, 1998, p. 1338). Thus, support for the Nazis would improve when ordinary Germans perceived that the Nazis were responsible for improvements in the domestic economy and international relations; and when they learned via effective anti-Semitic propaganda that Jewish people were dangerous enemies who should be dealt with severely, as the Nazis were doing. Testing these conjectures, I conducted a time-series analysis in which two leading orthogonal variables predicted the yearly membership of the Nazi party (these numbers were provided by Kater, 1983, p. 263). The predictors were the index of induced anti-Semitism and an index of economic misery based on the number and percentage of non-Jewish Germans who were unemployed. For the period 1925–1939, when the German armies invaded Poland, both predictors had very strong, statistically significant effects on party membership. Anti-Semitism had a larger effect than economic misery: A unit increase (from 0 to 1) in the index score for induced anti-Semitism increased party membership by b ¼ 1,545,653 people (t ¼ 8.5, b ¼ 0.83), while a unit decrease (from 1 to 0) in economic misery increased the party membership by b ¼ 735,187 people (t ¼ � 4.1, b ¼ � 0.40). The fit of this simple linear model of party membership was high (R2 ¼ 0.95); the intercept was 1,479,043 people). For this period, during which the Nazis persecuted Jewish people, reductions in economic misery and increased exposure to Nazi propaganda increased the Nazification of the German public (Smith, 1998, p. 1347). Party membership was very low and flat from 1925 through 1931. It increased linearly from 1931 to 1935 and then flattened until 1937, when it began a steep, linear increase through 1944, even though the effects of the war were devastating for Germans during the period 1942–1945, when the Nazis fought on two fronts, intensified the genocide, and vilified Jews by blaming them for all that had gone wrong.11

Hitler’s Willing Executioners Goldhagen explains the willingness of Germans to murder Jews by their virulent, racial anti-Semitism, which he conceptualized as intrinsic to German culture and therefore existing prior to Hitler and the Nazis. He analyzed testimonies and other archival data about the killers who

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worked in police units, in concentration camps as guards, and in the SS (Schutzstaffel: ‘‘Protective Echelon’’).12 From data about these people he probed their subjective reasons for their actions. He found that most, if not all, had high quantities of eliminationist anti-Semitism; they hated Jews vehemently. Since these killers were ordinary Germans, he concluded that ordinary Germans were the perpetrators of the holocaust. Because their hatred of Jewish people was so high, they were able to cruelly murder them without pangs of conscience. Different amounts of anti-Semitic zeal led to the four kinds of actions that he studied. Weighting voluntary killings as more repugnant than ordered killings, and ‘‘excessive’’ cruelty more repugnant than less cruelty, in ascending order of repugnance these actions were as follows: (A1) killing operations and individual killings under orders without cruelty; (A2) organized and structured killings and cruelty under orders; (A3) acts of initiative – individually initiated killings; and (A4) acts of initiative with cruelty – individually initiated killings with excessive cruelty (Goldhagen, 1997, p. 18). The present model conceptualizes counts of these actions as indicating the willingness of the agents to perform these monstrous acts. These counts, when aggregated to form the battalion’s macro-distributions, are the ultimate response variable that this present study aims to explain. For a period of about 16 months beginning in July 1942, Reserve Police Battalion 101 murdered 80,000 Jews. Christopher Browning and Goldhagen offered different interpretations of the motivations of the 500 Germans composing this battalion. Goldhagen (1997, pp. 80–82) emphasized the causal force of their eliminationist anti-Semitism – the beliefs that Jews are harmful and that they should be killed. Browning (1993, pp. 159–189) did not use anti-Semitism as his pivotal construct; in his interpretation of this genocide he placed a heavier weight than did Goldhagen on obedience to authority and pressures from their group as reasons for the perpetrators’ willingness to kill. However, because Browning describes the anti-Semitism of some of the killers and Goldhagen presents compelling evidence about the cohesion of the killing units, their different interpretations might be complementary, as this principle suggests: Social influence exerted by a group on its deviant members (those group members whose behavior does not conform to the norms of the group) is strongest in cohesive groups, especially when the attitudes of group members are consonant with the norms the group enforces (Smith, 1998, p. 1349). Thus, anti-Semitic Germans in killing units would willingly murder Jews because their own attitudes, actions, and pressures from the group were consonant. The less anti-Semitic Germans would experience a cross-pressure between their attitudes and actions, which

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interpersonal influence could alleviate. The present study systematically explores this principle by implementing experiments that have some verisimilitude to Goldhagen’s and Browning’s interpretations of this genocide. Reason Analysis Goldhagen was aware of the problems of selecting crucial cases on the basis of a category of a variable – that is, studying only people in killing units (Goldhagen, 1997, pp. 467–472). But in large part that is what he did. He did not (and, most probably, could not) systematically contrast the level of radical anti-Semitism of those in the institutions of killing – police battalions, ‘‘work’’ camps, and death marches – with the attitudes of Germans in institutions of nonkilling. Not all of the Germans he studied participated in the killings, some did opt out, and some, at least initially, did have difficulties conducting the murders (Goldhagen, 1997, p. 380). Goldhagen’s historical method is similar to the classic sociological method of reason analysis, as developed by Paul Lazarsfeld and his students. Charles Kadushin states: Reason analysis is a set of procedures used in survey research to construct casual explanations for the actions, decisions, or intentions of individuals. [It] deals either with those who have acted or, alternatively, not acted; or if both actors and non-actors are present, it separately analyzes the reasons given by actors and non-actors. y To say that an actor acted because of a given factor is to say that other factors were not as important. y Reason analysis can always be used in studying the subjective factors in any course of individual action. In addition, reason analysis is the method to be preferred if one or more of the conditions hold true: a process is being studied; the act is extremely frequent or extremely infrequent; only those performing the act can conveniently be located or followed. (1968, p. 338)13

Given Kadushin’s definition, Goldhagen’s research exemplifies this approach: he developed a putative causal explanation of the actions, decisions, and intentions of the perpetrators of the genocide against Jews. With very few exceptions he studied only the killers and not the nonkillers. He studied the process of killing in camps, death marches, and mass shootings. He found that the killers all shared a common motivation; they hated Jews and wanted to exterminate them, which they did with extreme frequency and cruelty. Because reason analysis primarily focuses on only those who have committed (or not committed) an action, rather than following a design derived from that of a pure experiment or case–control study, some social

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scientists and historians have questioned Goldhagen’s interpretations. Specifically, they may implicitly question his premise that eliminationist anti-Semitism was an intrinsic component of Germany’s culture (e.g., Brustein, 1996, 2003), his relatively weaker emphases on the transformative role of propaganda (e.g., Bankier, 1992; Herf, 2006, 2009), and his rejection of interpersonal influence as an important factor (e.g., Browning, 1993; Bartov, 2000, pp. 78–87). The absence of a comparison group of nonkillers may have led to an incomplete explanation. That all killers of Jews had high levels of eliminationist anti-Semitism, as Goldhagen reports, does not necessarily imply that all Germans, Nazified or not, had similar levels of anti-Semitism. Goldhagen’s belief that the perpetrators’ strong internal motivations induced them to kill, and not social influence, may be correct. But the absence of a need for interpersonal influence to motivate the killers to kill does not imply that influence processes in general were irrelevant.14 What if the people in the institutions of killing had low levels of hate? Would they have killed voluntarily without social pressure from their peers? How did the Germans’ eliminationist anti-Semitism arise? Might not the situation of killing have reinforced this belief ? Did the killers learn to hate in part because they had killed? Did the killers make a ‘‘rational choice’’ to kill? They might have perceived the moral costs of killing Jews as low and the benefits as high. What if moral and other costs could have been increased? Would the killers have killed as readily as they did? By drawing upon the many strengths of Goldhagen’s reason analyses – the descriptions of processes and the identification of key variables – agentbased models can be created that formalize the logic of the processes, forming a system that can generate the responses. Through parameter studies and Monte Carlo runs, the theorist can apply the logic of experimentation to clarify the implications of the model. In principle, the variables and parameters of the model can be estimated empirically to tie the system to the empirical world. As this exposition shall suggest, agent-based models are able to fulfill Heckman’s (2005, pp. 3–4) criteria for a scientific model if these three tasks are fulfilled: (1) define a model of the phenomena based on a scientific theory, the model being a set of hypotheticals or counterfactuals; (2) identify relevant parameters of the model using hypothetical population distributions and mathematical analysis (i.e., explore the model’s implications using logical analysis and hypothetical data); and (3) estimate the parameters empirically using samples of real data to test the model and the underlying theory (i.e., ground the model empirically). This chapter focuses on all three tasks; the section presenting the results bears on the third (i.e., estimation)

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by reporting experimental findings that contrast Goldhagen’s (1997) and Browning’s (1993) different views of the genocide.

Some Research Questions This chapter presents the logic of, and some uses for, an agent-based computational model that was initially based on Goldhagen’s work and then elaborated by findings from other studies, especially those by Friedla¨nder (2007), Steinweis (2009), and Herf (2006), among others. The programmed model can be used to clarify a variety of questions, including the following: � How do Goldhagen’s variables – radical eliminationist anti-Semitism, Nazism, and the four types of actions against Jews – form a theory, a system of hypotheticals or counterfactuals? Is anything missing? � How did eliminationist anti-Semitism arise? How did Nazi propaganda and repression of dissent affect the development of this key cognitive construct? � What is the role of interpersonal influence? Did Himmler’s permissive policy regarding transfer of operatives who did not want to kill Jews create groups composed of killers who reinforced each other’s motivation to kill? How would lower amounts of anti-Semitism affect the direction and intensity of interpersonal influence and the type of action? � Did the killers implicitly follow a rationalistic cost/benefit analysis? Were they in a situation in which the perceived benefits of killing Jews outweighed the perceived costs? What might have happened if the moral and other costs of killing Jews had been increased? Prior to the war German moral authorities – educators and clerics – might have opposed Hitler’s anti-Semitic policies that he clearly stated in Mein Kampf. During the war the allies might have bombed the death camps, threatened to carpet-bomb German cities, or supplied guns and ammunition to the fighters in the Warsaw ghetto. � What is the role of legitimacy of authority? If legitimacy was low would this have inhibited the killers, or would it have been irrelevant? � Finally, what combinations of the amounts of the variables facilitated the genocide? On the contrary, what amounts of the variables might have mitigated the genocide? Finding answers to such questions as these justifies this research program.

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DEFINING A SYSTEM OF HYPOTHETICALS The present basic model ties together the variables suggested by Goldhagen’s study; it is a special case of a more general theory.15 For each iteration through the model the computer program produces turnover tables on support for the Nazi agenda, aggregated measures of the key variables, and each agent’s updated scores on variables. The characteristics of the agents representing hypothetical Germans are specified in Table 1. The agent’s identification (ID) information includes his ID number, the ID number of the agent’s primary discussion partner, and the grouping to which the agent belongs; the groupings are referred to as perpetrator units (PUs). A battalion of agents in this present study has verisimilitude to Order Police Battalion 101; it groups the agents as: 1 ¼ officers; 2 ¼ Company 1; 3 ¼ Company 2; and 4 ¼ Company 3. To study public opinion change, the four categories can be conceptualized a` la Fromm (1984, pp. 81–98) as these political affiliations: 1 ¼ Communists and Radical Socialists; 2 ¼ Social Democrats; 3 ¼ Bu¨rgerlich; and 4 ¼ Nationalists and National Socialists. An agent’s variables include the following: A pivotal 10-point scale of anti-Semitism ranges from higher values (7, 8, 9, 10) indicating radical, eliminationist anti-Semitism; middle values (4, 5, 6) indicating popular, traditional anti-Semitism;16 and low values indicating little prejudice against Jewish people (1, 2, 3). For a specific time period the perceived practical benefit of supporting the Nazis is drawn at random from a distribution characterizing the agent’s company (which is a collective); this symbol can range from 1 (no benefit) to 11 (high benefit).17 These distributions take into account such logical reasons for supporting the Nazis as their threats of coercion,18 domestic and international successes,19 and material benefits.20 Also, for a specific time period the moral cost of supporting the Nazis is drawn at random from a second distribution characterizing the agent’s company; this symbol can range from 1 (no moral cost) to 11 (high moral cost).21 In this model anti-Semitic propaganda can obliterate the moral costs of persecuting and murdering Jewish people by stressing these interconnected themes: the Jews’ supposed biological inferiority; financial and political power especially that of a hypothetical international Jewry; evilness; responsibility for the defeat of Germany in World War I; and causing of World War II. These supposed despicable characteristics of Jewish people presumably justified their annihilation (Herf, 2006).22

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Table 1.

The Definitions of the Variables.

Identification information Agent’s identification number Agent’s unit (PU): 1 ¼ Officers, 2 ¼ Company 1, 3 ¼ Company 2, 4 ¼ Company 3 Variables of the decision process AS ¼ Anti-Semitism, 0oASr10 B ¼ Perceived practical benefit of perpetrating genocide, 1rBr11 C ¼ Perceived moral cost of perpetrating genocide, 1rCr11 NB ¼ Net benefit, 0rNBr10 N ¼ Nazism, i.e., the subjective utility of the Nazi agenda, 0rNr20 IC0 ¼ Choice Prior to Decision Process IC ¼ Choice after decision process, 1 ¼ Supports Nazis (NW10); 0 ¼ Does not (Nr10) Variables of the influence process Identification number of agent’s sociometric tie FC ¼ Final choice: 1 ¼ Supports Nazis (NW10); 0 ¼ Does Not (Nr10) H ¼ Approval of aspects of the Holocaust If (No9) then H ¼ 0 – Passive acceptance If (9rNo10) then H ¼ 1 – Verbal abuse of Jewish people If (10rNo11) then H ¼ 2 – Legal and administrative measures to isolate Jews If (11rNo12) then H ¼ 3 – Driving Jews to emigrate If (12rNo13) then H ¼ 4 – Forced deportation and resettlement If (13rNo14) then H ¼ 5 – Physical separation in ghettoes If (14rNo15) then H ¼ 6 – Killing through starvation, debilitation, and disease If (15rNo16) then H ¼ 7 – Slave labor as a surrogate of death If (16rNo17) then H ¼ 8 – Genocide If (17rNo18) then H ¼ 9 – Genocide plus calculated cruelty If (NZ18) then H ¼ 10 – Death marches Variables of the action process LAP ¼ Multiplicative legitimacy of authority parameter (0oLAPr2) Actions 0 ¼ No killing 1 ¼ Killing operations and individual killings under orders 2 ¼ Organized and structured killing and cruelty under orders 3 ¼ Acts of initiative such as individually initiated killings 4 ¼ Acts of initiative such as individually initiated killing with excessive cruelty Z ¼ Zeal for killing Jews ¼ (N � 10) – Excess of Nazism over threshold If (Zr0) then Action ¼ 0 If (1rZo4) then Action ¼ 1 If (4rZo7) then Action ¼ 2 If (7rZo9) then Action ¼ 3 If (ZZ9) then Action ¼ 4 The learning process SumPastSupport ¼ Weighted past history of positive zeal SumPastNonSupport ¼ Weighted past history of magnitude of negative zeal Forgetting parameter (0oFPr1) (usually 0.85 or 0.90)

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Decision Process The agent’s initial decision to follow the Nazis depends in part on the net benefit of doing so. This net benefit (benefit � cost) summarizes the effect of the reward structure impinging on the agent from his unit; it is a stimulus (1rnet benefitr10) for the choice of supporting the Nazi agenda.23 It combines with the agent’s predisposition toward supporting the Nazis, which is his level of anti-Semitism (1ranti-Semitismr10), to form the agent’s level of Nazification (1rNazismr20).24 If the value of Nazism is over the threshold value (NazismW10), then the agent chooses to follow the Nazi agenda symbolized by 1. If it is below or at the threshold value (Nazismr10), then the agent chooses not to follow the Nazis, symbolized by 0. Conceptually, this threshold mechanism of the decision process determines whether the stimulus compensates for the agent’s deficit in predisposition. For a threshold value of 10 on the Nazism scale the mechanism calculates: (1) Threshold Value � Predisposition ¼ Deficit; (2) Stimulus � Deficit ¼ Excess Net Benefit; (3) Subjective Utility of Nazism ¼ Excess Net Benefit þ Threshold Value; (4) If Subjective Utility of NazismWThreshold then the agent initially chooses to support the Nazis (IC ¼ 1); If Subjective Utility of NazismrThreshold, then the agent initially chooses not to support the Nazis (IC ¼ 0).25 For each collective and the total, the program monitors this process by producing turnover tables on the agents’ choices before and after this process and average values of individual variables for the agents’ collectives.

Influence Process In the influence process the agent has an opportunity to interact with other agents. A pair of interacting agents will have a conversation about their support for the Nazis if their average level of Nazism is higher than the threshold value (i.e., if the average is W10). They may agree or disagree about supporting the Nazi agenda. If they disagree, both reconsider their decision regarding support for the Nazis, and they are again processed through the decision function. If they agree, they reaffirm each other’s decision and they do not reconsider their decision to support the Nazis. However, other discussion partners may be able to change the decisions of these agents. For each collective the monitoring of the influence process produces: (1) the counts and proportions of agents who do not converse and who do converse, and if the latter the numbers agreeing or disagreeing; (2) turnover

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on the choice before (IC) and after this process (FC); and (3) actions that they condone about the treatment of Jewish people during the Holocaust (H). At different levels of Nazification the agent will condone different aspects of the Nazi genocidal program (Goldhagen, 1997, p. 136). In ascending order of their Nazism these include: passive acceptance (Nazism scale scores 1–8), verbal assault against Jews (9), legal and administrative measures to isolate Jews (10), forcing Jews to emigrate (11), forced deportation and resettlement (12), physical separation in Ghettos (13), killing through starvation, debilitation, and disease (14), slave labor as a surrogate to death (15), genocide (16), genocide plus calculated cruelty (17), and death marches (Z18).

Action Process Zeal is the excess amount of Nazism over the threshold to support the Nazi agenda. The agent’s legitimacy of authority parameter (LAP) can increase zeal multiplicatively when the Nazi regime is legitimate (LAPW1); or it can decrease zeal if authority is illegitimate (LAPo1); or it can have no effect (LAP ¼ 1).26 Thus, the action process function translates an agent’s extent of Nazism into zeal for killing Jews, as this may be affected by the legitimacy of the Nazi regime. The model follows Goldhagen’s typology (1997, pp. 18, 376) that he derived by cross-tabulating the perpetrators’ actions as Ordered by Authority (yes or no) versus Cruelty (yes or no). If zeal is r0, then the agent is not willing to kill (action score ¼ A0). If 1rzealo4, then the agent is willing to kill under orders without excessive cruelty (action score ¼ A1).27 If 4rzealo7, then the agent is willing to conduct organized and structured killing and cruelty under orders (action score ¼ A2).28 If 7rzealo9, then the agent is willing to conduct acts of initiative such as individually initiated killings without excessive cruelty (action score ¼ A3).29 If zeal Z9, then the agent is willing to conduct ‘‘excesses’’ such as killing with cruelty or torture (action score ¼ A4).30

Learning Process Here the agent’s excess zeal feeds back to affect his future level of antiSemitism. First, a forgetting parameter (e.g., 0.90) reduces the agent’s past histories of supporting or not supporting the Nazi agenda. Next, the excess zeal is added to the tally of past support. If the agent does not support the Nazis, then the magnitude of his zeal for Nazism below the support threshold is added to the past history of not supporting the Nazi agenda.

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A new value of anti-Semitism is calculated, which equals SPast Support/ (SPast Support þ SPast Nonsupport). After all of the Germans have a new value of anti-Semitism, the model updates the output and switches to the first process, beginning another iteration month of the genocide. To facilitate inferences about the motivation of the perpetrators and the relevance of their initial extent of anti-Semitism, the programmed model tracks the relationships between the underlying prejudice of the agents and their choices whether to support or not to support the Nazi agenda. For an iteration month the program cross-tabulates the agent’s anti-Semitism at the beginning of the iteration month, dichotomized as higher (ASW5) versus lower (ASr5), and the agent’s choice to support (FC ¼ 1) or not (FC ¼ 0) the Nazis at the end of that iteration month.31 Table 2 presents the logic of the variables that summarize the information in this cross-tabulation: ‘‘good people’’ exhibit cognitive consonance; they are less prejudiced and do not support the Nazis; whereas ‘‘consonant Nazis’’ are more prejudiced and support the Nazis. The ‘‘prejudiced people’’ exhibit cognitive dissonance; they do not support the Nazis but have higher prejudice against Jews. The ‘‘mobilized Nazis’’ also exhibit dissonance; they support the Nazis even though their prejudice is low. Across the months of the genocide the agents will move away from low prejudice, reducing the number of ‘‘good people’’ and ‘‘mobilized Nazis,’’ and converting them to ‘‘consonant Nazis.’’ A number of the measures defined in Table 2 can quantify this change: the proportion of consonant Nazis among the consonant agents will increase; the net difference in favor of the Nazis will increase; the odds ratio for consonance and the value of Yule’s Q correlation will increase as the agents become consistently pro-Nazi; the marginal odds of being a Nazi will increase, as will the marginal odds of anti-Semitism; and so forth. These measures can provide evidence for or against conjectures such as these: initially lower levels of anti-Semitism increase across time when agents are subjected to the environments of the Nazi period; across time attitudes and choices become consonant; killer units composed of agents with uniformly high levels of eliminationist anti-Semitism will kill willingly without equivocation; killer units composed of agents with lower levels of anti-Semitism will exert interpersonal influence on the less motivated agents; and so forth.

Rewards and Costs To portray the Nazi period for each collective at each point in time it is necessary to define the probability distributions of benefits and costs.

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Table 2.

Monitoring of Predispositions and Choices.

Final Choice FC ¼ 0 does not support Nazis FC ¼ 1 does support Nazis

ASr5 0

ASW5 1

Total

Good people a Mobilized Nazis c Less prejudiced aþc

Prejudiced people b Consonant Nazis d Anti-Semitic people bþd

Ordinary people aþb Nazis cþd Total aþbþc þd

Measures: P{Cognitive Consonance} ¼ (a þ d)/Total P{Cognitive Dissonance} ¼ (c þ b)/Total Net Cognitive Consonance ¼ ((a þ d) � (c þ b))/Total Odds Ratio for Consonance ¼ ad/cb ¼ a^ Yule’s Q ¼ (ad � cb)/(ad þ cb) ¼ Q P{Consonant Nazi|Consonant Person} ¼ d/(a þ d) P{Prejudiced Person|Dissonant Person} ¼ b/(c þ b) P{Ordinary Person} ¼ (a þ b)/Total P{Nazis} ¼ (c þ d)/Total Net Difference in Favor of Nazis ¼ ((c þ d) � (a þ b))/Total Odds of Being Nazi ¼ (c þ d)/(a þ b) P{Less Prejudiced} ¼ (a þ c)/Total P{Anti-Semitic} ¼ (b þ d)/Total Net Difference in Anti-Semitism ¼ ((b þ d) � (a þ c))/Total Odds of Anti-Semitism ¼ (b þ d)/(a þ c) P{Prejudiced Person|Ordinary Person} ¼ b/(a þ b) P{Good Person|Ordinary Person} ¼ 1 � P{Prejudiced Person|Ordinary Person} ¼ a/(a þ b) P{Consonant Nazi|Nazi} ¼ d/(c þ d) P{Mobilized Nazi|Nazi} ¼ 1 � P{Consonant Nazi|Nazi} ¼ c/(c þ d) Note: The odds ratio a^ ¼ (Q þ 1)/(Q � 1) and the estimate of Q ¼ (^a � 1)/(^a þ 1).

This involves ‘‘table look-up’’ operations and the mapping of substantive meanings to the biases of the distributions. Illustrating Table Look-Ups To clarify these operations, let’s begin with the unbiased distribution of Table 3. A random number is drawn (RN1) that ranges from 1 to 99. There are 11 possible benefit symbols that could be extracted from the table, 1–11. Given that each interval on a symbol is equal (i.e., 9 units wide), each symbol is equally likely to be drawn; there is zero bias to the distribution.

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Table 3.

Probability Distributions.

An unbiased distribution (all symbols are equally likely) If (RN1W0 andr9) then benefit ¼ 1; If (RN1W9 andr18) then benefit ¼ 2; If (RN1W18 andr27) then benefit ¼ 3; If (RN1W27 andr36) then benefit ¼ 4; If (RN1W36 andr45) then benefit ¼ 5; If (RN1W45 andr54) then benefit ¼ 6; If (RN1W54 andr63) then benefit ¼ 7; If (RN1W63 andr72) then benefit ¼ 8; If (RN1W72 andr81) then benefit ¼ 9; If (RN1W81 andr90) then benefit ¼ 10; If (RN1W90 andr99) then benefit ¼ 11; A þ 9 bias distribution (high benefit symbols are more likely) If (RN1Z0 andr0) then benefit ¼ 1; If (RN1W0 andr2) then benefit ¼ 2; If (RN1W2 andr6) then benefit ¼ 3; If (RN1W6 andr12) then benefit ¼ 4; If (RN1W12 andr20) then benefit ¼ 5; If (RN1W20 andr29) then benefit ¼ 6; If (RN1W29 andr39) then benefit ¼ 7; If (RN1W39 andr51) then benefit ¼ 8; If (RN1W51 andr65) then benefit ¼ 9; If (RN1W65 andr81) then benefit ¼ 10; If (RN1W81 andr99) then benefit ¼ 11; A � 6 bias distribution (low cost symbols are more likely) If (RN2W 0 andr15) then cost ¼ 1; If (RN2W15 andr29) then cost ¼ 2; If (RN2W29 andr42) then cost ¼ 3; If (RN2W42 andr54) then cost ¼ 4; If (RN2W54 andr65) then cost ¼ 5; If (RN2W65 andr74) then cost ¼ 6; If (RN2W74 andr81) then cost ¼ 7; If (RN2W81 andr87) then cost ¼ 8; If (RN2W87 andr92) then cost ¼ 9; If (RN2W92 andr96) then cost ¼ 10; If (RN2W96 andr99) then cost ¼ 11; Note: The random numbers are constrained to vary between 1 and 99 inclusive. An unbiased interval has 9 ( ¼ 99/11)units.

This setup is analogous to an urn with 99 symbols: 9 ones, 9 twos, 9 threes, and so forth. A random number is drawn, say 61. Because this number is greater than 54 and less than or equal to 63, the benefit symbol 7 is selected from this table. This selection of the symbol 7 is analogous to drawing a 7 at

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random from the urn. Because each benefit symbol is equally likely to be selected, this distribution produces random variation. Now consider the second panel of Table 3. The þ 9 bias distribution makes the benefit of supporting the Nazis very high because this distribution is skewed toward high benefit symbols: here the probability of drawing a benefit symbol of 11 is 18/99 ¼ 0.182, whereas the probability of drawing a benefit symbol of 11 from the unbiased table is only 9/99 ¼ 0.091. Moreover, the probability of drawing a benefit symbol of 1 from the þ 9 bias distribution is zero, whereas the probability of drawing a benefit symbol of 1 from the unbiased distribution is 9/99 ¼ 0.091. An RN1 ¼ 61 now selects the benefit symbol 9 from the þ 9 bias table, whereas before it selected the symbol 7 from the zero bias table. The programmed model includes 19 benefit tables and 19 cost tables; both types of tables range from þ 9 bias to � 9 bias and include an unbiased distribution. Table 3 also presents a � 6 bias table for the costs of supporting the Nazis; this distribution is skewed toward low cost symbols: now the probability of selecting a cost symbol of 1 is 15/99 ¼ 0.152, whereas the probability of selecting a cost symbol of 11 is only 3/99 ¼ 0.030.32 An RN2 value of 61 selects a cost symbol of 5. Assume that RN1 ¼ 61 and RN2 ¼ 61. Then the net benefit for the combination of the symbol drawn from the unbiased benefit distribution and the symbol drawn from the � 6 bias cost distribution produces a net benefit (benefit symbol � cost symbol ¼ 7 � 5) of 2. By contrast, the combination of the symbol drawn from the þ 9 bias distribution and the symbol drawn from the � 6 bias distribution produces a net benefit of 9 � 5 ¼ 4, which is a higher stimulus for supporting the Nazis. Substantive Meaning Now let us tie the probability distributions to the environments being studied. This is done by linking up the biases to the factors hypothesized to be operating on the members of a collective at a given point in time. For example, a þ 9 benefit table can operationalize the following hypotheses (the weights are in parentheses): � The higher the threat of coercion, then the higher the benefit of supporting the Nazis (3 bias units). � The higher the economic benefit, then the higher the benefit of supporting the Nazis (2 bias units). � The greater the military achievements of the regime, then the higher the benefit of supporting the Nazis (2 bias units).

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� The higher the appeal of Hitler, the Nazi leadership, and the German ‘‘Volk,’’ then the higher the benefit of supporting the Nazis (2 bias units). I have assigned these weights intuitively. In principle the weights could result from a consensus of experts on Nazism or through statistical analyses that would quantify the effects of the factors. The cost tables operationalize the effects of anti-Semitic themes. A � 6 bias table can represent the overall theme that the Jews are responsible for everything bad that happens; each theme reduces the moral costs of Nazi policies toward Jewish people: The Jews caused the defeat of Germany in World War I ( � 1 bias unit). The Jews caused the hyperinflation ( � 1 bias unit). The Jews have too much power ( � 1 bias unit). The Jews are biologically inferior ( � 1 bias unit). International Jewry is pulling the strings attached to the leaders of Bolshevik Russia and Capitalistic America ( � 1 bias unit). � Jews are inherently evil and should be removed from Germany ( � 1 bias unit). � � � � �

After the Russians defeated the Nazi army at the battle for Stalingrad, Hitler, Goebbels, and Dietrich increased the level of anti-Jewish hate propaganda emphasizing eliminationist anti-Semitic themes (Herf, 2006, p 181, pp. 187–199; Herzstein, 1978, pp. 66–67). They may have thought such propaganda would compensate for the decline in the Nazi regime’s economic and military effectiveness:33 � The Jews are responsible for this war and should be killed ( � 1 bias unit). � Jewry must be eliminated from all of Europe ( � 1 bias unit). � This battle will end with the extermination of Jewry in Europe ( � 1 bias unit). These three themes when added to the earlier six produce a table with a � 9 bias that is skewed toward very low moral cost symbols about degrading and killing Jewish people. Given hypothetical agents, distributions of benefits and costs, and the values for the legitimacy and forgetting parameters, the computational program can implement tests of the internal validity of the model using hypothetical population distributions and planned experiments.

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IDENTIFYING THE MODEL Can different combinations of the model’s variables and parameters generate the apparent characteristics that the underlying theory purports to explain? To explore answers to this question this section and the next focus on agents who are perpetrators of the genocide of Jewish people. This section identifies the structural relationships among the agents, presents an experimental design for testing the model, and six hypotheses based on the logic of the model. These hypotheses will provide the focus for the experimental investigations in the subsequent section, which asks if the results of the modeling can reproduce Goldhagen’s and Browning’s analyses of the killers and also lead to new insights.

Structural Relationships Table 4 delineates the formal organizational structure of a company of Order Police agents; this structure has verisimilitude to that of a company of Police Battalion 101, which Goldhagen (1997, pp. 203–262) and Browning (1993) studied. The battalion is divided into a group of officers (PU ¼ 1) and three companies, Company 1 through Company 3 (PUs 2 through 4). Each company is divided into four platoons, each headed by a different lieutenant agent, two lieutenants report to a captain agent, who in turn reports to the battalion commander agent. Five noncommissioned officer agents, sergeants or squad leaders, report to a lieutenant. Each squad of perpetrator agents is composed of eight rank-and-file agents. Thus, each company is composed of 160 rank-and-file agents, 20 squad leaders, 4 lieutenants, and 2 captains, for a total of 186 agents; the battalion includes 558 agents (3 � 186) plus the commander and his friend, a physician. Table 4 lists the (IDs of the agents forming the hierarchy of Company 1. These linkages determine with whom an agent can interact in the influence process of each iteration month. For example, agents 20001-08 can discuss their choice about following the Nazi agenda with squad leader 20009, who in turn can discuss his choice with lieutenant 20037, who can discuss his choice with captain 20075, who can discuss his choice with the commander 10094, who mutually interacts with the physician 10095. The sociometric structures of Company 2 and Company 3 are identical to that of Company 1, but their IDs begin, respectively, with the number 3 and the number 4, instead of the number 2.

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Table 4. The Formal Organization of a Battalion of Agents Comprising Three Companies (Companies 2 and 3 have an Identical Structure). Commander and Support

Company 1

10095 (MD) 10094 (Commander)

Captains

Lieutenants or Platoon Leaders

Sergeants or Squad Leaders

Rank-andFile Perpetrators

20075

20037

20009 20018 20027 20036 20084

20001-08 20010-17 20019-26 20028-35 20076-83

20074

20046 20055 20064 20073 20093

20038-45 20047-54 20056-63 20065-72 20085-92

22037

22009 22018 22027 22036 22084

22001-08 22010-17 22019-26 22028-35 22076-83

22074

22046 22055 22064 22073 22093

22038-45 22047-54 22056-63 22065-72 22085-92

22075

Note: 20 Squads of 8 agents, each squad reports to a squad leader, who reports to a lieutenant, who reports to a captain, who reports to the commander. Thus, a company includes 6 officers, 20 squad leaders, and 160 rank-and-file agents for a total 186 agents.

Design of Experiments The experimental design of Table 5 facilitates the assessment of the model’s functioning. It specifies a baseline, random variation trial (biases ¼ 0) in which all variables are set so that initially the sum of the initial average values of the predisposition and the stimulus about equal the threshold value, and the multiplicative forgetting and legitimacy parameters are set to 1, producing no effect. The design also specifies four substantive trials that result from the systematic variation of the agent’s initial amount of antiSemitism (8 or 5) and his battalion’s distributions of benefits and costs

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Table 5.

Benefit Cost

Average net benefit Officers antiSemitism Squad leader’s anti-Semitism Rank-and-file’s anti-Semitism Legitimacy parameter Forgetting parameter A recalcitrant can opt out

An Experimental Design for Exploring the Model’s Implications. Trial 1

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Baseline

þ 7 Bias � 5 Bias

þ 7 Bias � 5 Bias

Very high 6.5 AS ¼ 8

Very high 6.75 AS ¼ 8

þ 4 Bias 0 Bias (random moral costs) High 5.76 AS ¼ 8

AS ¼ 8

AS ¼ 8

AS ¼ 8

AS ¼ 8

AS ¼ 5

AS ¼ 8

AS ¼ 5

AS ¼ 8

AS ¼ 5

AS ¼ 5

1.0 (no effect) 0.9

1.0 (no effect) 0.9

1.0 (no effect) 0.9

1.0 (no effect) 0.9

1.0 (no effect) 1 (no effect)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

þ 4 Bias 0 Bias 0 Bias 0 Bias (random (random benefits and moral costs) costs) High Low and random 5.84 4.43 AS ¼ 8 AS ¼ 5

Note: 560 Agents per trial organized as a battalion of three companies. Trials 1 and 3 have some verisimilitude to Goldhagen’s (1997) views about the genocide conducted by Police Battalion 101. Trials 2 and 4 have some verisimilitude to Browning’s (1993) views of this genocide. Eliminationist anti-Semitism ¼ 8; popular anti-Semitism ¼ 5.

(biases þ 7, � 5 or þ 4,0). In each of these four trials there are 560 agents, their legitimacy parameters are set to 1, and their forgetting parameters are set to 0.9, the latter allows the agents to forget some of their experiences. Trials 1 and 2 have a benefit distribution with a þ 7 bias and a cost distribution with a � 5 bias; consequently, the net benefit of killing Jewish people will be rather high; in the actual runs these averaged, respectively, about 6.5 and 6.75 stimulus-scale units. Substantively, I view the benefit distribution with a þ 7 bias as resulting from the four positive rationales mentioned earlier, but with the threat of coercion reduced from þ 3 bias units to only þ 1 bias unit, thereby representing that the rank-and-file perpetrator agents can opt out of the killing operations without punishment if they want to avoid killing the defenseless Jewish people (Goldhagen, 1997, pp. 212–214; Browning, 1993, pp. 56–57, pp. 61–62). The � 5 bias of the cost distributions represents the presence of the first five of the six antiSemitic themes mentioned earlier, none are explicitly eliminationist.

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In trials 3 and 4 the average net benefit is likely to be lower than in trials 1 and 2 because the bias to the benefit distribution is only þ 4 and the bias to the cost distribution is zero. Empirically, the average net benefits in these runs averaged 5.76 and 5.84 stimulus-scale units. Substantively, the þ 4 bias can be viewed as the sum of the reduced threat of coercion, 1 bias unit, plus 1 bias unit each for the efficacy of economic, military, and ‘‘Volkish’’ factors; the zero bias represents indifference to the moral costs of the genocide. The odd-numbered trials 1 and 3 have some verisimilitude to Goldhagen’s (1997) views of Police Battalion 101. With few exceptions he characterized its officers, squad leaders, and ordinary rank-and-file personnel as being eliminationist anti-Semites, which is represented in these trials by assigning an initial anti-Semitism scores of 8 to all agents. Closely following Goldhagen’s views, in trial 1 the battalion is likely to strongly believe that the killing of Jews is absolutely necessary; this very high net benefit of the genocide is represented by the biases þ 7, � 5 to the benefit–cost distributions. Because of the consensus among the perpetrators about the need to eliminate Jews, interpersonal influence would not be a key factor facilitating the genocide in this trial. In trial 3 the benefit of killing Jews is less strong, the bias is only þ 4,0. If the results of these two trials are similar, then this convergence would be consistent with Goldhagen’s interpretation that eliminationist anti-Semitism was the key motivator of the perpetrators. The even-numbered trials 2 and 4 have some verisimilitude to Browning’s (1993) view of Police Battalion 101. He characterized many of its officers and squad leaders as being Nazi party members and some were in the SS (1993, pp. 46–47); their eliminationist anti-Semitism is represented in these trials by their initial anti-Semitism of 8. Browning also described the ambivalence of some ordinary rank-and-file personnel, which was presumably due to their lower initial anti-Semitism, represented in these trials by a score of 5. Such rank-and-file perpetrators became, as Browning (1993, pp. 77) states: ‘‘accustomed to their participation in the Final Solution. When the time came to kill again, the policemen did not ‘go crazy’. Instead they became increasingly efficient and calloused executioners.’’ They learned! In trial 2 the very high net benefit of the genocide is represented by the biases þ 7, � 5, and in trial 4 the weaker net benefit of the genocide is represented by the bias þ 4,0. Browning’s (1993, pp. 184–186) emphasis on the role of propaganda and interpersonal influence as factors in the genocide would be supported if the higher net benefit in trial 2, in conjunction with interpersonal influence stemming from the officers and squad leader agents, works to increase the anti-Semitism of the rank-and-file agents and their commitments to the genocide, beyond those measures produced by trial 4.

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Hypotheses If the model is functioning correctly, then the outcomes of the baseline trial should be considerably different from those of the four substantive trials, as specified by these hypotheses. Hypothesis 1. Higher counts of the battalions’ willingness to perform the more heinous actions of the genocide will be a joint consequence of the more extreme benefit–cost distributions of the battalions and their higher initial average anti-Semitism. The increased anti-Semitism of the agents across the months of the genocide offers a parsimonious explanation of why these counts of willingness to conduct horrific actions increased. After establishing whether this macro-level Hypothesis 1 holds, and whether the agents’ anti-Semitism increases, this exposition will focus on the outcomes of each of the micro-level processes in sequence. Regarding the decision process, Hypothesis 2. The more extreme benefit–cost distributions and higher initial anti-Semitism of the battalions will produce higher levels of the agents’ Nazism and, consequently, a higher proportion of agents choosing to support the Nazi agenda. Regarding interpersonal influence, this process should create Nazified agents who condone the more extreme forms of the genocide, and whose prejudices and their choices about supporting the Nazi agenda become more consonant across time. Thus, Hypothesis 3. The number of instrumental conversations (i.e., influence attempts) will be higher when the level of Nazism of the agents is high, as will the proportion of agents who agree with their sociometric ties. Disagreements will be higher when the initial anti-Semitism of the rankand-file agents is less than that of the squad leader agents. The latter will influence the initially ambivalent to become consonant, and their antiSemitism will increase as will their willingness to condone aspects of the genocide. Regarding the agents’ zeal and their willingness to kill Jews, Hypothesis 4. Given the higher levels of Nazism induced by the agents’ higher initial anti-Semitism and its growth, by the benefit–cost parameters of their battalions, and by interpersonal influence, the agents’ zeal for

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killing Jews will become more extreme as the months of the genocide unfold. In the action process the zeal of the agents will have directly determined the macro-rates presented earlier; moreover, Hypothesis 5. Increased legitimacy of authority will intensify zeal and thereby increase the counts of willingness to perform the more horrendous actions, whereas decreased legitimacy will have the opposite effects. The zeal of the agents will also affect the growth or decline in anti-Semitism operating in the next iteration month. In the learning process, Hypothesis 6. Positive zeal will increase anti-Semitism and negative zeal will decrease anti-Semitism. If the Monte Carlo trials confirm these hypotheses, then these relationships become plausible new inferences about the empirical processes of the genocide. With these hypotheses in mind, let us examine some results of the experiments.

ESTIMATING THE RESULTS Implementing the experimental design, this section presents new results that test the validity of the model by determining the extent to which it generates what it is designed to generate. (I tested the model’s reliability by replicating some of runs but with different random number sequences; the results were very similar.) This section first probes the macro-level relationships between the reward structures of the battalions; their initial extent of anti-Semitism; and their patterns of willingness to implement the more voluntary and cruel aspects of the genocide. It then examines the micro-level processes that produce the macro-level response distributions.

Macro-Relationships For each of the five trials at each of five time points (iteration months 1, 5, 10, 15, and 20), Table 6 presents the distribution of each battalion’s counts of its agents’ willingness to conduct the various genocidal actions. That distribution is referred to as an analytical property of the collective because it is derived by aggregating information on all of its members (Lazarsfeld &

301

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Table 6. A Battalion’s Distribution of Willingness to Conduct Genocidal Actions Varies by its Initial Average Anti-Semitism and Its Benefit–Cost Distribution. Trials

Month

A0 (No Killing)

A1 (Killing under Orders)

A2 (Killing A3 A4 and Cruelty (Individually (Individually under Initiated Initiated Killing Orders) Killing) with Cruelty)

Trial 1 O AS ¼ 8 SQL AS ¼ 8 RF AS ¼ 8 Bias ( þ 7, � 5)

1 5 10 15 20

0 0 0 0 0

191 189 157 129 84

291 289 296 272 319

78 82 107 147 144

0 0 0 12 13

Trial 2 O AS ¼ 8 SQL AS ¼ 8 RF AS ¼ 5 Bias (7, � 5)

1 5 10 15 20

76 68 19 8 0

375 330 305 216 153

102 154 220 283 286

7 8 16 52 118

0 0 0 1 3

Trial 3 O AS ¼ 8 SQL AS ¼ 8 RF AS ¼ 8 Bias (4,0)

1 5 10 15 20

14 10 5 2 2

259 271 212 197 207

253 239 278 266 245

34 40 65 93 98

0 0 0 2 8

Trial 4 O AS ¼ 8 SQL AS ¼ 8 RF AS ¼ 5 Bias (4,0)

1 5 10 15 20

226 193 150 91 44

261 285 297 311 288

67 72 101 140 186

6 10 12 17 40

0 0 0 1 2

Baseline O AS ¼ 5 SQL AS ¼ 5 RF AS ¼ 5 Bias (0,0)

1 5 10 15 20

395 418 422 452 432

146 128 133 106 119

19 14 5 2 9

0 0 0 0 0

0 0 0 0 0

Note: For trials 1–4 the legitimacy of authority ¼ 1 and the forgetting parameter ¼ 0.9. For the baseline trial the legitimacy of authority ¼ 1 and the forgetting parameter ¼ 1. O, officers; SQL, squad leaders; RF, rank and file; AS, anti-Semitism. 560 Perpetrator agents per trial.

Menzel, 1972, pp. 227–229). The multiplicative LAP is set to 1 in all of these trials. In the baseline trial throughout the time series no agents were willing to initiate voluntary killing, with or without excessive cruelty. Moreover, the number of agents who chose not to kill increased by 37, from 395 at month 1

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to 432 at month 20. The number who would kill under orders (with or without cruelty) decreased by that amount (165 � 128). In marked contrast, in trial 1, which most closely reflects Goldhagen’s (1997) views, all agents in the battalion have initial eliminationist antiSemitism set to 8 and the biases of the battalion’s benefit–cost distributions are set to þ 7, � 5, producing a high net benefit. Consequently, all agents are willing to kill, and the counts of their willingness to perform the more horrendous actions increases. From month 1 to 20 these increases are: A2 (ordered killing and cruelty) ¼ þ 28; A3 (voluntary killing) ¼ þ 66; and A4 (voluntary killing and excessive cruelty) ¼ þ 13. These increases offset the decline of 107 in the agents’ preference for A1 (willing to kill only under orders). Similarly, in trial 3 the agents’ initial anti-Semitism is set to 8, but the biases þ 4,0 to the benefit–cost distributions are less supportive of the genocide. However, this battalion still learns to be willing to kill (A0 ¼ � 12) and to perform the more horrendous actions, rather than simply killing under orders (Al ¼ � 52; A2 ¼ � 8; A3 ¼ þ 64; and A4 ¼ þ 8). In trials 2 and 4, which portray some of Browning’s (1993) views, the ordinary rank-and-file agents have their initial anti-Semitism set to 5, at the popular level, and all of the squad leaders and officer agents in the battalion have their initial anti-Semitism set to 8, at the eliminationist level. Then, the higher the average net benefit of conducting the genocide, the greater the battalion shifts toward the more horrendous actions. After 20 iteration months no agent in trial 2 (biases þ 7, � 5) prefers not to kill, but 44 agents in trial 4 (biases þ 4,0) still are unwilling to kill. Because of the shift in trial 2 to the more horrendous actions, the number willing to kill under orders (A1) declines to 153, while 288 are willing to do so in trial 4. Both of these trials, however, do exhibit a shift toward willingness to implement the more horrendous activities. For trial 2 the number willing to kill and be cruel under orders (A2) increases by 184 from month 1 to month 20, the number willing to initiate voluntary killing (A3) increases by 111, and the number willing to kill with excessive cruelty (A4) increases by 3. In trial 4 the shift is less pronounced: the number willing to kill and be cruel under orders (A2) increases by 119, the number willing to initiate voluntary killing (A3) increases by 34, and the number willing to kill with excessive cruelty (A4) increases by 2. A key driver of these changes in a battalion’s willingness to kill Jews voluntarily with or without excessive cruelty depends on the increase in the eliminationist anti-Semitism of its agents. For the five trials, Fig. 1 depicts the growth in the anti-Semitism of the squad leaders and rank-and-file agents. Across the 20 iteration months, the anti-Semitism of the agents in

Average Amount of Anti-Semitism of Squad Leaders and Rank and File, 540 Agents per Trial

Fig. 1.

7

8

9

10

11

12

13

14

15

16

17

18

19

20

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Baseline

The Growth of Anti-Semitism of the Perpetrator Agents Varies with their Initial Amount and the Benefits and Costs of the Genocide.

Trial 1

Iteration Month of the Genocide

Baseline 4.98 4.95 4.92 4.90 4.87 4.84 4.81 4.78 4.75 4.71 4.69 4.66 4.63 4.60 4.56 4.53 4.50 4.47 4.44 4.41

5.37 5.41 5.48 5.54 5.61 5.68 5.76 5.86 5.96 6.09 6.22 6.36 6.51 6.67 6.84 7.02 7.20 7.39 7.57 7.76

6

8.07 8.13 8.20 8.28 8.35 8.43 8.51 8.59 8.68 8.76 8.84 8.92 9.00 9.08 9.14 9.21 9.28 9.34 9.40 9.45

5

Trial 4

4

5.44 5.55 5.68 5.83 5.98 6.14 6.32 6.50 6.71 6.91 7.12 7.33 7.54 7.74 7.94 8.13 8.30 8.47 8.63 8.77

3

Trial 3

2

Trial 2

1

8.08 8.16 8.24 8.33 8.41 8.50 8.59 8.68 8.77 8.85 8.94 9.01 9.09 9.16 9.23 9.30 9.36 9.42 9.47 9.52

Trial 1

0.00

1.00

2.00

3.00

4.00

5.00

6.00

7.00

8.00

9.00

10.00

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the baseline trial actually declines whereas in the four other trials it increases. There is little difference in the growth of anti-Semitism between trials 1 and 3 in which all agents initially have eliminationist anti-Semitism of 8, but are exposed to distributions of benefits and costs with higher and lower biases. This difference in the biases has greater impacts in trials 2 and 4 in which the initial amount of anti-Semitism of the rank-and-file agents is 5. The growth in anti-Semitism is higher in trial 2 in which the biases are þ 7, � 5 rather than þ 4,0 as in trial 4. By the end of 20 months the average anti-Semitism of the squad leaders and rank-and-file agents in all four substantive trials reach the eliminationist level, ranging from 7.76 to 9.45. The agents with initially lower anti-Semitism learned to hate Jewish people. Thus, consistent with Hypothesis 1, a battalion’s initial anti-Semitism, and its increase, and the biases to its cost-benefit distributions, influence its distributions of counts of willingness to conduct genocidal actions. Diagrammatically: A Battalion's Higher Net Benefit of the Genocide and Initial Anti-Semitism

A Battalion's Willingness to Conduct Heinous Actions against Jews Agents' Increased Anti-Semitism

How the micro-level processes produce these linkages is traced next. Decision Process This process calculates the agent’s net benefit for supporting the genocide, combines this amount with his anti-Semitism producing his commitment to Nazism, which determines his initial decision whether to support the Nazi agenda. Consequently, if the model is functioning correctly, then the battalions with the higher average net benefits, in conjunction with their higher initial anti-Semitism, should produce higher levels of Nazism, which in turn should produce a higher proportion of agents supporting the Nazi agenda. Corroborating this conjecture, Fig. 2 depicts the change over time in the Nazism of the squad leaders and ordinary agents in all five trials. In the baseline trial the Nazism of these agents declined slightly, but in all of the other trials their Nazism increased. As expected, trials 1 and 3 generally had the highest levels of Nazism because all agents initially began with

7

8

9

10

11

12

13

14

15

16

17

18

19

20

Average Nazism Score of Squad Leaders and Rank and File, 540 Agents per Trial

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Baseline

Fig. 2. The Growth in Nazism of the Perpetrator Agents Varies with their Initial Amount of Anti-Semitism and the Benefits and Costs of the Genocide.

Trial 1

Iteration Month of the Genocide

Baseline 9.53 9.60 9.50 9.35 9.46 9.40 9.54 9.20 9.38 9.37 9.25 9.17 9.20 9.29 9.03 9.04 9.09 9.18 9.05 9.21

10.86 11.05 11.33 11.20 11.41 11.40 11.35 11.72 11.68 11.94 12.00 12.22 12.35 12.40 12.65 12.73 12.97 13.18 13.16 13.51

6

13.84 13.77 14.04 13.91 14.10 14.19 14.24 14.28 14.43 14.52 14.50 14.67 14.65 14.72 14.71 14.69 14.84 14.94 15.13 15.08

5

Trial 4

4

12.26 12.30 12.59 12.72 12.78 13.00 13.05 13.24 13.49 13.58 13.85 13.91 14.06 14.32 14.45 14.68 14.53 14.97 14.97 15.22

3

Trial 3

2

Trial 2

1

14.58 14.59 14.61 14.91 14.98 15.00 15.02 15.22 15.24 15.20 15.46 15.32 15.33 15.59 15.53 15.68 15.68 15.78 15.87 15.92

Trial 1

0.00

2.00

4.00

6.00

8.00

10.00

12.00

14.00

16.00

18.00

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eliminationist anti-Semitism of 8. For the rank-and-file agents in trial 2, the higher biases (7, � 5) to their companies’ distributions of benefits and costs compensated for their lower initial anti-Semitism of 5; their Nazism reached high levels as these agents learned to be more anti-Semitic. The rank-and-file agents in trial 4 also became Nazified as their anti-Semitism increased, even though their battalion’s benefit–cost distributions were less biased (4,0) and their initial anti-Semitism was set to only 5. Because an agent’s decision to support the Nazi agenda is determined by Nazism greater than a threshold value, the agents with higher anti-Semitism in battalions with higher average net benefits can be expected to strongly support the Nazi agenda. Fig. 3 shows that this expectation holds. In the baseline trial that has anti-Semitism set to the popular level and has no bias to its benefit–cost distributions, the proportion of agents supporting the Nazi agenda drops from 0.36 to 0.29 by month 20. In the four other trials the proportions increase, ending up with the vast majority in each trial choosing to support the Nazi agenda. In trials 1 and 3 in which the rankand-file agents have initial eliminationist anti-Semitism of 8, the proportions supporting the Nazis are consistently high. In trials 2 and 4 in which the rank-and-file agents have initial popular anti-Semitism of 5, the proportions supporting the Nazis noticeably increase across time. A higher proportion (0.95) is eventually produced by the battalion (trial 2) with the higher average net benefit, compared with the proportion (0.79) produced by the battalion (trial 4) that has a lower average net benefit. In sum, this evidence about the increases in Nazism and support for the Nazi agenda confirms Hypothesis 2.

Interpersonal Influence The communicator in an instrumental conversation hopes to influence the person being addressed to reduce the discrepancy that may exist between them (Festinger, 1950, pp. 271–275). For example, a squad leader may address a recalcitrant ordinary member of his squad hoping to influence his support of the Nazi agenda. Such conversations differ from those that are expressive and enjoyable, not aiming to change opinions, attitudes, or behavior. To produce the agents’ instrumental conversations, the influence process implements aspects of Festinger’s theory of informal social communication. In the parsimonious version used here each agent has one pivotal sociometric tie with whom he may choose to communicate. The sociometry focuses on hierarchical rather than peer relationships, and

0.89

0.47

0.36

Trial 3

Trial 4

Baseline

5

Trial 1

0.36

0.50

0.87

0.68

0.96

10

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Iteration Month of the Genocide

0.33

0.57

0.90

0.84

0.98

15

Baseline

0.28

0.66

0.93

0.90

0.99

20

0.29

0.79

0.96

0.95

0.99

The Agents’ Choices about Supporting the Nazi Agenda Varies with their Initial Amount of Anti-Semitism and the Benefits and Costs of the Genocide; these Determine their Level of Nazism, which Determines their Choices.

Proportion of Agents Choosing to Support the Nazi Agenda After the Decision Process, 560 Agents per Trial

Fig. 3.

0.69

Trial 2

1

0.95

Trial 1

0.00

0.20

0.40

0.60

0.80

1.00

1.20

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suffices for the purposes of this chapter. Thus, a rank-and-file agent is tied hierarchically to his squad leader and not to his peers. The squad leader agent is tied hierarchically to his lieutenant and not to other squad leaders. The lieutenant is tied hierarchically to his captain agent, who is tied to the battalion commander, who mutually converses with his peer, the battalion physician. Other peer relationships can be studied later by including other sociometric ties. An instrumental conversation between two agents, say a squad leader agent and a member of his squad, will take place if the average of their Nazism scores (i.e., their ‘‘pressures to communicate’’) is greater than the threshold value of 10. Consequently, a committed Nazi squad leader, who has a Nazism score of 16, will converse with a recalcitrant member of his squad, who has a Nazism score of 8, because 12, the average of their scores, is over the threshold value. In this case there will be disagreement because the squad leader is supporting the Nazi agenda (IC ¼ 1) whereas the member of his squad (IC ¼ 0) is not. Social influence is mutual; that is, after a disagreement, both agents reconsider their own choice by being reexposed to the benefit– cost distributions of their company. Each draws new benefit and cost symbols from the distributions of his collective, calculates a new net benefit for participating in the genocide, and, based on his current anti-Semitism, a new value of Nazism and a new decision (FC ¼ 1 or FC ¼ 0) about supporting the Nazi agenda. For the ordinary members of the squad, this choice will be the final choice. But, since multiple rank-and-file agents are tied to the squad leader, and the squad leader is tied to his lieutenant, the choice of the squad leader agent may change. However, since all squad leaders in the four substantive trials have anti-Semitism initially set to 8, they are unlikely to change their decision to support the Nazi agenda. Moreover, if there is a conversation in which both agents agree, or if the pressures to communicate are below the threshold value, then both agents do not reconsider their choice at this time. Figs. 4 through 6 show how this process can create agreement between agents who mutually communicate. Figs. 7 and 8 show how this process can create consonance between attitude and choice within an agent. Instrumental Communications Fig. 4 depicts the proportions of instrumental conversations in the battalions across time. In trials 1, 2, and 3 almost all the 560 agents have instrumental conversations with their designated sociometric tie. This is so because the biases to the benefit–cost distributions and the agents’ initial amounts of anti-Semitism produce high Nazism scores, which result in high pressures to communicate. In trial 4, because the rank-and-file agents

Proportion of Agents Having An Instrumental Conversation With Their Sociometric Tie, 560 Agents Per Trial

Fig. 4.

0.98

0.82

0.39

Trial 3

Trial 4

Baseline

5

Trial 1

0.36

0.91

1.00

0.99

1.00

10

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Iteration Month of the Genocide

0.32

0.95

1.00

1.00

1.00

15

Baseline

0.25

0.98

1.00

1.00

1.00

20

0.23

0.99

1.00

1.00

1.00

The Proportion of Agents Conversing with their Designated Discussion Partners Varies with their Initial AntiSemitism and Bias to the Benefit–Cost Distributions.

0.96

Trial 2

1

1.00

Trial 1

0.00

0.20

0.40

0.60

0.80

1.00

1.20

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initially have low amounts of anti-Semitism and the benefit–cost distributions are not severe, these agents initially are less likely to have instrumental conversations. In this trial, however, as the anti-Semitism and the Nazism of the agents increase, so does the proportion of agents who converse. As expected, the baseline trial engenders much fewer conversations because the unbiased benefit–cost distributions in conjunction with the lower antiSemitism scores produces lower levels of Nazism. Given that agents converse, do they agree or disagree? Fig. 5 shows that the conditional probability of agreement, given that an agent converses, varies depending upon the characteristics of the trial and the passage of time. In the trials that have some verisimilitude to Goldhagen’s view of the genocide there is high agreement among the perpetrator agents: in trial 1 almost all agents converse because their initial anti-Semitism is eliminationist; the biases to the benefit–cost distributions of their battalion supports genocidal actions; their Nazism is high; and thus almost all agree about supporting the Nazi agenda. Trial 3 exhibits a similar pattern differing slightly because the benefit–cost distributions are less biased toward genocidal actions. In the trials that have some verisimilitude to Browning’s view of the genocide, there are more disagreements between the rank-and-file agents (initial AS ¼ 5) and their squad leader (initial AS ¼ 8). In trial 2 the biases of þ 7, � 5 to the battalion’s benefit–cost distributions induce more agreement, so that by the end of the period the proportion of agents agreeing is about the same as in the first two trials discussed above. In trial 4, the biases of þ 4,0 to the benefit–cost distributions, in conjunction with the lower initial anti-Semitism of the rank-and-file agents, combine to create lower, but increasing proportions of agents who agree. Of course, in the baseline trial there are fewer conversations and also less agreement. Direction of Influence Did the agents increase their support of the Nazi agenda? Providing answers to this question, the programmed model cross-tabulates the agent’s choice about whether to support the Nazi agenda before and after interpersonal influence. A typical table looks like this (for month 5 of trial 3): Initial Choice (IC)

0 1 Total

Final Choice (FC) 0

1

Total

9 1

63 487

72 488

10

550

560

Proportion of Agents Agreeing With Their Sociometric Tie, Given That They Have an Instrumental Conversation, 560 Agents Per Trial

Fig. 5.

0.87

0.47

0.31

Trial 3

Trial 4

Baseline

5

Trial 1

0.29

0.49

0.85

0.68

0.96

10

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Iteration Month of the Genocide

0.32

0.57

0.89

0.84

0.98

15

Baseline

0.20

0.67

0.93

0.89

0.99

20

0.28

0.80

0.96

0.95

0.99

The Conditional Probability of Agreement, Given that the Agents Converse with their Sociometric Ties, Varies with their Initial Anti-Semitism and the Bias to the Benefit–Cost Distributions.

0.70

Trial 2

1

0.95

Trial 1

0.00

0.20

0.40

0.60

0.80

1.00

1.20

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Prior to social influence 72 agents of the 560 in the battalion chose not to support the Nazis and 488 chose to support them. After interpersonal influence the pro-Nazi number increased to 550 and those not supporting the Nazis declined to 10. This difference in trend equals the difference between the numbers in the change cells of the table. Of the 72 not supporting the Nazis 63 changed to support them whereas only 1 of the 488 supporters changed to nonsupport; the net gain to the Nazis was 62 agents, which equals 550 � 488 ¼ 62. Rather than reporting these raw numbers, the following index of net turnover is used: Net Turnover ¼ (Change Toward Nazis/Maximum Possible Change) � (Change Away From Nazis/Maximum Possible Change) ¼ (63/72) � (1/488) ¼ 0.875 � 0.002 ¼ 0.873. In Fig. 6, the depictions of the change in the values of net turnover indicate that the Nazis gained in each of the four substantive trials and lost in the baseline trial. In trial 1 all change favored the Nazis; in trial 3 the turnover index increased from 0.8 to 0.91 across the 20 iteration months. In trial 2 (biases þ 7, � 5) the change, primarily for the rank-and-file agents (initial AS ¼ 5), was even greater, from 0.57 to 1 across the 20 iteration months. Similarly, in trial 4 (biases þ 4,0) the change, primarily for the rank-and-file agents, also was great, from 0.23 to 0.62. Clearly, for these four trials interpersonal influence reinforced a consensus that favored the Nazis, especially in the trials with some verisimilitude to Browning’s views, but not in the baseline trial where all agents had AS ¼ 5 and the biases to the benefit–cost distributions were zero. Dissonance and Consonance Do agents exhibit cognitive consonance or dissonance? Cognitive dissonance occurs when a person’s strongly held belief is contradicted by other beliefs or is inconsistent with a behavior. The person can alleviate this mental discomfort achieving cognitive consonance by bringing in new information, changing the belief to become consistent with the behavior, or changing the behavior to become consistent with the belief (Festinger, 1957). The influence process of this model operates on an agent’s amount of antiSemitism, which is a set of beliefs about Jewish people, and a behavior, the agent’s choice whether to support the Nazi agenda. For conceptual simplicity, I view the latter choice as the agent’s performing the Nazi salute vigorously saying ‘‘Heil Hitler’’ and clicking his heels, or by not performing the salute. Consequently, these agents may be cognitively consonant in one of two ways: by being strongly anti-Semitic and performing the Nazi salute, or by being much less anti-Semitic and not performing the Nazi salute. Moreover, the agents can experience cognitive dissonance in one of two

Fig. 6.

Turnov ver Index Score Across Influence Process, 560 Agents Per Trial

0.57

0.80

0.23

-0.24

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Baseline

Trial 1

-0.33

0.31

0.87

0.64

1

5

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Iteration Month of the Genocide

-0.29

0.38

0.91

0.79

1

10

Baseline

-0.37

0.53

0.95

0.86

1

15

-0.26

0.62

0.91

1.00

1

20

The Agents’ Net Turnover toward Supporting the Nazis Induced by Interpersonal Influence Varies with their Initial Anti-Semitism and Bias to the Benefit–Cost Distributions.

1

1

Trial 1

-0.6

-0.4

-0.2

0

0.2

0.4

0.6

0.8

1

1.2

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ways: by being strongly anti-Semitic and not performing the Nazi salute, or by being much less anti-Semitic and performing the Nazi salute. Theoretically, this influence process can be expected to increase the cognitive consonance of the agents as their anti-Semitism and their support for the Nazi agenda both increase. How can this change be measured? Earlier, Table 2 presented a crosstabulation produced by the programmed model. It cross-tabulated the agent’s anti-Semitism at the beginning of an iteration month, dichotomized as ASr5 or ASW5, and the agent’s final choice after the influence process, dichotomized (as in my mind) as performing the Nazi salute (FC ¼ 1) or not (FC ¼ 0). Using odds ratios and proportion differences I defined a number of indices of cognitive dissonance and cognitive consonance relevant to this chapter. Because of the problem of zero or near-zero cases in some of the cells of the tables, the measures based on odds ratios often exhibit extreme variability. Consequently, the next two figures depict the change (from iteration month 2 through 20) in the agents’ net cognitive consonance, which captures the shift from dissonance to consonance; and the change in the proportion of consonant Nazis among the consonant agents, which captures the direction of change (to smooth the depictions the start-up month 1 is not plotted). Given the earlier definitions of the cells of Table 2, Net Cognitive Consonance ¼ ((a þ d) � (c þ b))/Total ¼ proportion consonant � proportion dissonant. The proportion {Consonant Nazi|Consonant Person} ¼ d/ (a þ d) ¼ consonant Nazis/total consonant agents. Fig. 7 shows that the agents’ predispositions and choices become more consonant across time. In trials 1 and 3, which have some verisimilitude to Goldhagen’s interpretations, the net cognitive consonance is uniformly high; these agents have eliminationist anti-Semitism and support the Nazi agenda. In trials 2 and 4, which have some verisimilitude to Browning’s interpretations, there is marked change toward net consonance: that is, higher anti-Semitism and support for the Nazis. When the biases are þ 7, � 5 and the rank-and-file agents’ initial AS ¼ 5 (trial 2), then the change in net cognitive consonance increases from 0.57 to 1. When the biases are þ 4,0 and the rank-and-file agents’ initial AS ¼ 5, then the net cognitive consonance increases from a low of 0.21 to 0.86. In the baseline trial there is less change toward net cognitive consonance, the index scores range from a low of 0.1 to a high of 0.47. As expected, except for the baseline trial, the agents are, or become, more Nazified as their anti-Semitic attitudes and choices become consonant, see Fig. 8. In trials 1 and 3 all Nazi agents exhibit consonance between their eliminationist anti-Semitism and their support for the Nazi agenda;

0.1

0.23

Trial 4

Baseline 0.15

Fig. 7.

0.32

0.91

Trial 3

4

0.17

0.21

0.96

0.7

1

0.22

0.36

0.96

0.74

1

5

6

0.25

0.32

0.97

0.83

1

7

8

0.37

0.44

0.95

0.87

1

Trial 1

0.21

0.32

0.96

0.85

1

9

0.29

0.46

0.98

0.93

1

10

0.4

0.57

0.99

0.97

1

11

12

0.33

0.56

0.98

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The Agents’ Predispositions and Choices Become More Consonant across Time.

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Why Nazified Germans Killed Jewish People 315

Net Consonance Betwe een the Agents' Attitudes and Choices, 560 Agents per Trial

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0.09 0.09 0.08 0.08 0.07 0.06 0.08 0.07 0.08

0.93 0.93 0.93 0.95 0.96 0.96 0.97 0.97 0.97

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Iteration Month of the Genocide

0.17 0.15 0.15 0.14 0.11 0.12 0.11

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Except for the Baseline Trial, the Proportion of Agents who Are Consonant Nazis, among the Agents whose Attitudes and Choices are Consonant, Increases or Remains Very High.

The Proportion of Consonant Nazis N Among Agents Whose Attitudes and Choice es are Consonant, 560 Agents A Per Trial

Fig. 8.

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these agents do not experience dissonance with respect to these cognitive elements. Apparently, cognitive dissonance did not inhibit the genocidal actions of Goldhagen’s perpetrators. In trials 2 and 4 almost all Nazi agents are or become consonant Nazis. The change is greater in trial 4, in which the biases are þ 4,0 and the agents’ initial anti-Semitism is set to 5. Apparently, after learning to hate the Jews, cognitive dissonance did not inhibit the genocidal actions of Browning’s perpetrators.34 In the baseline trial agents tend to become consonant good people; i.e., 1 – (consonant Nazis/ total consonant agents), who have low anti-Semitism and who do not support the Nazi agenda. After the agent has obtained his final Nazism score for an iteration month, the cut-point intervals on Nazism defined earlier in Table 1 determine what aspects of the degradation and genocide of Jewish people the agent condones; Fig. 9 depicts the trends for the squad leaders and their ordinary rank-and-file agents taken together. In the baseline trial throughout the time series their average scores range from 1.15 to 1.66, implying that these agents would condone verbal abuse of Jewish people (1) and legal and administrative measures to isolate them (2). In marked contrast, when the agent’s initial anti-Semitism is eliminationist (set at 8), as in Goldhagen’s interpretation, then the actions that would be condoned are more horrific. The squad leaders and rank-and-file agents in trial 1 have average scores ranging from 6.21 to 7.30, suggesting that these agents would accept killing Jews through starvation, debilitation, and death (6), and also slave labor as a surrogate of death (7). The agents in trial 3 are slightly more humane, their scores range from 5.46 to 6.53, suggesting that they would accept physical separation of Jews into ghettoes (5), and killing them through starvation, debilitation, and death (6). When the initial anti-Semitism of the rank-and-file agents is set to 5 as in Browning’s interpretation, then cost-benefit distributions are more crucial. In trial 2 the bias to the units’ benefit–cost distributions of þ 7, � 5 induces acceptance of horrific actions. On average these range from 3.99 to 6.74 suggesting a change from accepting forced deportation and resettlement (4) to slave labor as a surrogate of death (7). Even when the agents’ units have the weaker benefit–cost distribution of þ 4,0 as in trial 4, the actions condoned range on average from 2.83 to 5.03, suggesting acceptance of driving Jews to emigrate (3) to physical separation in ghettoes (5). In sum, consistent with Hypothesis 3 this influence processes appropriately produces instrumental conversations among the agents and consequences that are expected theoretically. In the four substantive trials these conversations lead to higher Nazism and decisions to follow the Nazi

Average Willingness of o Squad Leaders and Rank and File to Condone Aspects of the Genocide, 540 Agents perTrial

Fig. 9.

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2.83 2.85 3.07 2.94 3.08 3.12 3.03 3.39 3.34 3.57 3.67 3.82 3.98 4.00 4.22 4.31 4.53 4.75 4.70 5.03

Trial 4

Trial 2

Trial 3

Trial 4

Iteration Month of the Genocide Baseline

The Willingness of the Perpetrator Agents to Condone the Genocide Varies with their Initial Amounts of AntiSemitism and the Benefits and Costs of the Genocide.

Trial 1

Baseline 1.66 1.52 1.52 1.33 1.49 1.44 1.51 1.27 1.40 1.43 1.28 1.25 1.27 1.32 1.15 1.20 1.24 1.25 1.17 1.34

4.08 3.99 4.14 4.24 4.29 4.51 4.55 4.77 5.01 5.11 5.34 5.42 5.58 5.84 5.95 6.18 6.03 6.42 6.45 6.74

5.61 5.46 5.65 5.47 5.58 5.62 5.67 5.81 6.03 6.08 5.98 6.08 6.04 6.22 6.32 6.28 6.36 6.41 6.53 6.42

Trial 2

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6.34 6.27 6.21 6.45 6.41 6.36 6.55 6.85 6.82 6.68 6.87 6.72 6.87 7.19 7.10 7.18 7.10 7.15 7.18 7.30

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agenda. The rank-and-file agents agree more with their squad leaders and become more cognitively consonant and more willing to condone the more horrific aspects of the genocide. Cognitive dissonance does not impede their genocidal choices. In contrast, the baseline trial tends to produce agents who are consonant ‘‘good people’’ who have low anti-Semitism and who do not support the Nazi genocidal agenda.

Action Process Zeal for killing Jews is indicated by an agent’s excess of Nazism over the threshold value to support the Nazi agenda. An agent’s amount of zeal during an iteration month determines his category of willingness to conduct the various actions of the genocide in that period. The counts of these activities, when aggregated across the agents in the companies composing a battalion, translate directly into the macro-rates presented much earlier in Table 6. When the multiplicative LAP is set to 1, as it is in these pivotal experiments, this parameter does not modify the amount of zeal. Consequently, the depictions in Fig. 10 of the average amounts of zeal of the squad leaders and rank-and-file agents in the baseline and four substantive experiments track very closely the time series for condoning aspects of the holocaust depicted previously. Both of these variables are measured by intervals on the agents’ Nazism. In the baseline trial the average zeal is always negative suggesting that these agents are reluctant to kill. When the initial value of eliminationist anti-Semitism is set to 8 as in trials 1 and 3, then the zeal of the squad leaders and rank-and-file agents is quite high and increases across time. For example, in trial 1 the average amount of zeal ranges from 4.58 to 5.92, suggesting that these agents are willing to participate in organized killing and structured cruelty under orders (A2). The zeal of the agents in trial 3 ranges from 3.77 to 5.13, from willingness to participate in killing operations and individual killings under orders (A1) to organized killing and structured cruelty under orders (A2). Trials 2 and 4 begin with rank-and-file agents who have initial popular anti-Semitism of 5. These agents are exposed to probability distributions that produce higher and lower net benefits, and to influence from squad leaders and officers who have eliminationist anti-Semitism initially set to 8. In trial 2 (biases þ 7, � 5) the growth in zeal ranges from 2.26 to 5.22; that is, from killing operations and individual killings under orders (A1) to organized killings and structured cruelty under orders (A2). In trial 4 (biases

Averag ge Zeal of Squad Leaders and Rank and File, 540 Agents per Trial

Fig. 10.

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Trial 4

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Iteration Month of the Genocide Baseline

The Growth in Zeal of Perpetrator Agents Varies with their Initial Amount of Anti-Semitism and the Benefits and Costs of the Genocide.

Trial 1

Baseline -0.47 -0.40 -0.50 -0.65 -0.54 -0.60 -0.46 -0.80 -0.62 -0.63 -0.75 -0.83 -0.80 -0.71 -0.97 -0.96 -0.91 -0.82 -0.95 -0.79

2.26 2.30 2.59 2.72 2.78 3.00 3.05 3.24 3.49 3.58 3.85 3.91 4.06 4.32 4.45 4.68 4.53 4.97 4.97 5.22

3.84 3.77 4.04 3.91 4.10 4.19 4.24 4.28 4.43 4.52 4.50 4.67 4.65 4.72 4.71 4.69 4.84 4.94 5.13 5.08

Trial 2

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4.58 4.59 4.61 4.91 4.98 5.00 5.02 5.22 5.24 5.20 5.46 5.32 5.33 5.59 5.53 5.68 5.68 5.78 5.87 5.92

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þ 4,0) the growth is less, from 0.86 to 3.51; that is, killing operations and individual killings under orders (A1). These results confirm Hypothesis 4. In this model the zeal of the agents based on their values of Nazism can be increased or decreased by increasing or decreasing the LAP the agents attribute to the regime. This parameter can vary from agent to agent, or all agents in a battalion can have the same LAP as in these runs. If the model is working correctly, then increases in legitimacy will increase the zeal, and vice versa. By contrasting the average zeal at the end of the 20th iteration month for each trial, when the LAP is 0.8, 1, and 1.2, Fig. 11 shows that this procedure works. For each of the four substantive trials the zeal increases as legitimacy is increased, whereas in the baseline trial the magnitude of the negative zeal declines. The percentage increase in zeal due to a change from low to high legitimacy is roughly similar in all four substantive trials, and larger in the baseline trial. These are: trial 1 ¼ 51.4%, trial 2 ¼ 66.2%, trial 3 ¼ 55.3%, trial 4 ¼ 45%, and baseline trial ¼ 73.4%. As zeal increases, the agents will be more willing to conduct the more heinous actions of the genocide, and conversely. The next two tables test this conjecture by replicating the earlier Table 6 with the legitimacy parameters set to 1.2 and 0.8, respectively. Table 7 replicates the earlier tabulation with the LAP increased from 1 to 1.2. As expected, the battalions’ distributions of willingness to conduct genocidal actions become more extreme. In trial 1 by the 20th iteration month now 130 agents are willing to kill with cruelty compared with only 13 in Table 6. In trial 2 the increase is from 3 to 91; in trial 3; from 8 to 78; and in trial 4, from 2 to 17. In the baseline trials, however, no agents are willing to kill voluntarily, and the effect of the change in legitimacy is not large; 8 more agents are willing to kill and be cruel under orders, but 5 more are not willing to kill at all. Decreasing the LAP to 0.8 restrains the battalions’ distributions of willingness to conduct the most horrendous actions. No agent in Table 8 is willing to voluntarily kill with excessive cruelty (A4). Compared with Table 6, by the 20th month the number willing to perform individually initiated killing (A3) decreases in all four substantive trials: from 144 to 38 in trial 1; from 118 to 3 in trial 2; from 98 to 17 in trial 3; and from 40 to 3 in trial 4. In the baseline trials no agents would voluntarily initiate killings. These declines are offset primarily by increases in willingness to kill only under orders (A1) and in not being willing to kill (A0). These results about the effects of different values of legitimacy on the battalion’s willingness to conduct genocide confirm Hypothesis 5.

Fig. 11.

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Why Nazified Germans Killed Jewish People

Table 7. A Battalion’s Distribution of Willingness to Conduct Genocidal Actions Varies by its Initial Average Anti-Semitism, its Benefit–Cost Distribution, and the Legitimacy of Authority Parameter of 1.2. Trials

Month A0 (No A1 (Killing A2 (Killing A3 A4 (Individually Killing) under and Cruelty (Individually Initiated Killing with Cruelty) Orders) under Orders) Initiated Killing)

Trial 1 O AS ¼ 8 SQL AS ¼ 8 RF AS ¼ 8 Bias (7, � 5)

1 5 10 15 20

1 2 0 0 0

144 122 102 77 59

257 258 237 205 220

123 144 153 168 151

35 34 68 110 130

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91 54 9 5 0

299 285 228 135 86

154 189 265 254 233

13 26 52 133 150

3 6 6 33 91

Trial 3 O AS ¼ 8 SQL AS ¼ 8 RF AS ¼ 8 Bias (4,0)

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15 14 8 1 0

230 187 186 144 106

226 260 222 245 240

72 83 101 107 136

17 16 43 63 78

Trial 4 O AS ¼ 8 SQL AS ¼ 8 RF AS ¼ 5 Bias (4,0)

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210 165 103 40 21

249 256 254 239 214

88 121 174 206 215

10 16 25 65 93

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Baseline O AS ¼ 5 SQL AS ¼ 5 RF AS ¼ 5 Bias (0,0)

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381 417 420 409 437

156 123 120 135 105

23 20 20 16 18

0 0 0 0 0

0 0 0 0 0

Note: For trials 1–4 the legitimacy of authority ¼ 1.2 and the forgetting parameter ¼ 0.9. For the baseline trial the legitimacy of authority ¼ 1.2 and the forgetting parameter ¼ 1. O, officers; SQL, squad leaders; RF, rank and file; AS, anti-Semitism. 560 Perpetrator agents per trial.

Learning Process After taking into account the legitimacy the agents attribute to authority, the learning process calculates their new amount of anti-Semitism that would hold during the next iteration month. First, the process allows the agent to

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Table 8. A Battalion’s Distribution of Willingness to Conduct Genocidal Actions Varies by its Initial Average Anti-Semitism, its Benefit–Cost Distribution, and the Legitimacy of Authority Parameter of .8. Trials

Month A0 (No A1 (Killing A2 (Killing A3 A4 (Individually Killing) under and Cruelty (Individually Initiated Killing with Cruelty) Orders) under Orders) Initiated Killing)

Trial 1 O AS ¼ 8 SQL AS ¼ 8 RF AS ¼ 8 Bias (7, � 5)

1 5 10 15 20

13 5 10 9 1

296 304 237 207 194

251 251 313 333 327

0 0 0 11 38

0 0 0 0 0

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133 82 51 21 5

373 420 396 350 285

54 58 113 188 267

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45 32 32 4 8

334 363 305 302 285

181 165 223 245 250

0 0 0 9 17

0 0 0 0 0

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241 249 203 156 116

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33 32 35 65 81

0 0 0 0 3

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431 463 480 480 488

126 97 80 80 72

3 0 0 0 0

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Note: For trials 1–4 the legitimacy of authority ¼ 0.8 and the forgetting parameter ¼ 0.9. For the baseline trial the legitimacy of authority ¼ 0.8 and the forgetting parameter ¼ 1. O, officers; SQL, squad leaders; RF, rank and file; AS, anti-Semitism. 560 Perpetrator agents per trial.

forget some of his past experiences by multiplying his past histories of the magnitudes of positive and negative zeal by a forgetting parameter. In the four substantive trials this parameter was set to 0.9; in the baseline trial it was set to 1. Then, it adds the magnitude of the positive or negative zeal for the present iteration to the relevant summation of past experience and

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calculates the agent’s new amount of anti-Semitism as the quotient of the positive zeal summation divided by the sum of the positive and the magnitude of the negative zeal summations. As reported earlier in Fig. 1 (when the LAP was set to 1), this simple algorithm produces a decline in anti-Semitism in the baseline trial and the growth in anti-Semitism in the four substantive trials; changes in legitimacy do not overturn this pattern. Fig. 12 compares the growth of anti-Semitism after the 20th iteration month in the five trials when the LAP is 0.8, 1, and 1.2. In all five trials the amount of anti-Semitism increases without reversal as the legitimacy parameter is increased but the percentage differences vary, depending upon the initial anti-Semitism and the bias to the benefit–cost distributions. In trials 1 and 3 in which the initial AS ¼ 8, the percentage increase in anti-Semitism across the legitimacy parameters is only 1.8% and 1.9%, respectively. In trials 2 and 4 in which the initial AS ¼ 5, the percentage increase is 6% and 21.7%, respectively. The higher initial anti-Semitism and the higher biases to the net benefit distributions both work to limit the effect of changes in the LAP on anti-Semitism; apparently there is a ceiling effect. When the initial AS ¼ 5, and the net benefit is not too severe, then legitimacy has a bigger effect on developing anti-Semitism: in trial 4 the percentage difference is 21.7%, and in the baseline trial it is 18.9%. Taken together, these data confirm Hypothesis 6, suggesting that when anti-Semitism is initially low, at the popular level, the increased legitimacy of an anti-Semitic regime can increase anti-Semitism so that it reaches the radical level.

DISCUSSION This chapter has presented cumulative research derived from a computational agent-based model of perpetrators’ decisions to conduct the genocide against Jewish people during the period of World War II. This model formalizes a system of variables primarily suggested by Daniel Goldhagen’s Hitler’s Willing Executioners. The computer program enables the user to conduct Monte Carlo experiments and parameter studies on the model, clarifying the dynamics of the perpetrators’ decisions and actions in the model and perhaps in real life. Given that the Nazi regime was committed to eliminating Jewish people, and that it created death camps and killer units to carry out their genocidal program, empirical studies have documented some variation in the conduct of the perpetrators (e.g., Browning, 1993, pp. 55–70; Goldhagen, 1997, pp. 203–262; Goldhagen, 2009, pp. 85–88). This chapter has endeavored to study systematically the reasons for the

9.35 6.96 4.03

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Fig. 12.

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Legitimacy of Authority Shapes the Growth in Anti-Semitism across 20 Iteration Months.

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agents’ variability in the model, so that plausible inferences might be made about the conduct of the actual perpetrators. In doing so it develops a generative macro-to-micro-to-macro explanatory structure that illustrates Coleman’s (1990, pp. 6–10) perspective on sociological theorizing.

Summary For a specific period of time Fig. 13 depicts the linkages between the macroand micro-variables of this study. At the macro-level the diagram relates the response distribution of a battalion to its manipulated properties that are set by the experimenter. These manipulated properties include the average amounts of anti-Semitism of its officers, squad leaders, and rank-and-file agents; and the biases to the battalion’s distributions of practical benefits and moral costs of supporting the Nazi program, which produce the battalion’s average net benefit for conducting the genocide. The macro-level response is the distribution of the counts of the willingness of the battalion’s agents to perform one of five actions during this period. The five actions are as follows: A0 ¼ not killing, A1 ¼ killing under orders, A2 ¼ killing under orders with cruelty, A3 ¼ individually initiated killing, and A4 ¼ individually initiated killing with excessive cruelty. The manipulated variables are prior in time to the response; the arrow connecting these variables is asymmetric, connoting directed association. Because of the randomized control design and the stimulus-response logic, at first glance the latter relationships appear to be causal. For example, in trials 1 and 3 all agents are identical, having anti-Semitism of 8. Trial 1 exposes these agents to benefit–cost distributions with biases of þ 7, � 5 and trial 2 exposes them to benefit–cost distributions with biases of þ 4,0. Except for the random variation due to the sequences of the random numbers, the difference in average net benefits produced by the different biases is the only difference that predetermines the difference in rates between the two trials. If the agents in trial 2 had the treatment of trial 1, then their responses would be identical to those of trial 1; if the agents in trial 1 had the treatment of trial 2, then their responses would be identical to those of trial 2. Given these counterfactuals, the difference in the battalions’ benefit–cost distributions may be thought to cause the difference between the battalions’ distributions of willingness to kill. However, this leaves open the effects of the micro-level variables, the parameters, and the feedback loops. Consequently, for now I interpret prudently the asymmetric arrows linking the stimulus, intervening, and response variable as meaning

Fig. 13.

Agent's Support for Nazi Agenda

Interpersonal Influence

Agent's AntiSemitism

Learning Process

Agent's Cognitive Consonance

Influence Process

Forgetting Parameter

Agent's Condoning of Genocide

Agent's Zeal for Killing Jews

Legitimacy of Authority Parameter

Action Process

A Battalion's Counts of Willingness to Conduct Heinous Actions against Jews

Correlational Linkages among the Variables Producing a Battalion’s Willingness to Conduct Genocidal Actions.

Agent's Nazism

Decision Process

A Battalion's Higher Net Benefit of the Genocide and Initial Anti-Semitism

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‘‘leads to,’’ and put aside for future study problems of causality in such systems of social variables. At the micro-level, the decision process computes each agent’s Nazism, which the program calculates by combining his anti-Semitism (a predisposition) with the net benefit from his calculation of the practical benefits and moral costs of supporting the Nazi regime (a stimulus): The higher the net benefit and the higher the agent’s anti-Semitism, then the higher his Nazism (a subjective utility). If Nazism is over a threshold value, then the agent chooses to support the Nazi agenda (in my mind he gives the Nazi salute vigorously, clicking his heels); if Nazism is not over the threshold, he chooses not to support the Nazi agenda. In the influence process if the pressures to communicate are sufficiently high, then an agent may have an instrumental conversation with another agent with whom he is tied. The rank-and-file agents are tied hierarchically to squad leader agents, who are tied to lieutenants, who are tied to captains, who are tied to the battalion commander, who is mutually tied to the battalion physician. By engaging in a conversation the agents attempt to reduce any discrepancy between them regarding their choice about supporting the Nazis. If they agree, then they retain their choice. If they disagree, then both reconsider their choice by returning to the decision process and by making a new decision. In these trials this influence process tends to make the agent’s choice consistent with his social environment and also consistent cognitively. That is, the agent’s anti-Semitism and his support for the Nazi agenda become consonant, not at cross-purposes. Cutpoint intervals on the agent’s Nazism score determine which of a range of horrific actions the agent condones. The action process translates the agent’s excess of Nazism over the threshold value to create his amount of zeal for killing Jews. The agent’s zeal is multiplied by a LAP that may increase zeal (LAPW1), decrease zeal (LAPo1), or have no effect (LAP ¼ 1). The amount of zeal then selects which of the five actions the agent is willing to perform; the program aggregates these choices across the agents to create the distribution of the macro-level response variable for a battalion for that iteration month. The learning process uses an agent’s current level of zeal to calculate a new value of anti-Semitism that the model will use in its next iteration. First, a multiplicative forgetting parameter usually less than unity erases some of the agent’s past history. Then his current anti-Semitism is calculated as the quotient of the updated summation of the positive zeal divided by the sum of the updated summations of the positive zeal plus the summation of the magnitudes of negative zeal.

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Insights In addition to ensuring that the model works as designed, the series of experiments contrasted different perspectives on the genocidal activities of Police Battalion 101. Goldhagen (1997) characterized most if not all of the perpetrators as motivated by their eliminationist anti-Semitism and their strong beliefs about the benefit of killing Jews, whom they perceived as demonical and dehumanized threats that had to be killed, which they willingly did (Goldhagen, 2009, p. 322). Because of the strong consensus among these perpetrators, interpersonal influence would not be an important factor inducing them to kill. Browning (1993) characterized most of the officers and squad leaders as strongly anti-Semitic. However, a number of the rank-and-file perpetrators were ambivalent about killing defenseless Jews (e.g., 1993, pp. 56, 61). Consequently, interpersonal influence from officers to the rank-and-file would be needed to induce some of the less willing perpetrators to kill. To test these contrasting views, the study design specified three sets of Monte Carlo experiments: The ‘‘Goldhagen set’’ included trials 1 and 3, in which the initial anti-Semitism of all agents was set to the eliminationist level. In trial 1 the biases to the benefit–cost distributions were set to þ 7, � 5, and in trial 3 the biases were set to þ 4,0; these distributions created rather high net benefits for supporting the Nazis’ genocidal program. However, the very high initial anti-Semitism of the agents tended to predetermine the results. The ‘‘Browning set’’ included trials 2 and 4, in which all officers and squad leaders had anti-Semitism set to 8, and all rank-and-file agents had anti-Semitism set to 5. In trial 2 the biases to the benefit–cost distributions were set to þ 7, � 5, and in trial 4 the biases were set to þ 4,0. Because antiSemitism was set to a lower level, the different benefit–cost distributions in conjunction with interpersonal influence would be more important factors than in the Goldhagen trials. The baseline trial provided a contrast to these substantive trials: the initial anti-Semitism of all agents was set to 5 and the benefit–cost distributions were unbiased, creating random cost-benefit symbols and a low net benefit of supporting the genocide. Because the practical benefits and moral costs were minimal, these agents would be unlikely to support the Nazis agenda that included the genocide. Table 9 summarizes qualitatively the results for each response variable in the order of their presentation in this chapter. In the two trials with initial anti-Semitism set to 8, which aim to portray Goldhagen’s interpretations,

5: 6: 7: 8:

Agreement Turnover to Nazis Consonance Consonant Nazis

T2WT4, Middle T2 HighWT4 Middle T2 Increases to HighWT4 T2 ¼ T1 and T3WT4, Becomes High T2 Becomes HighWT4 Middle T2 Becomes HighWT4 Middle T2 Become HighWT4 Middle T2 ¼ T1 and T3WT4, Increases to High T2 Becomes HighWT4 Middle T2 Becomes HighWT4 Middle T2 and T4 Increase T2 HighWT3 Less HighWT4 Middle T2 HighWT4 Middle

Very slight increase

T1 ¼ T3, both High T1WT3, both High T1WT3, both High T1 ¼ T3, both High

T1WT3, both High T1 and T3 Increase T1 HighWT3 Less High

Very slight increase

T1 HighWT3 Less High

T1WT3, both High

T1WT3, both High T1WT3, both High T1 ¼ T3, both High T1 ¼ T3, both High

T2 HighWT3 Less HighWT4 Middle

‘‘Browning Set’’

T1 HighWT3 Less High

‘‘Goldhagen Set’’

Baseline Trial

Very slight increase

No killing or killing and cruelty under orders No killing or killing under orders

Negative zeal Less negative

Drift, no change Negative, away from Nazis Low and increasing Very low, consonant good people very high Discrimination, no killing

Low and drops

Low, drift down Low, no change Low, slight drop

No killing or killing under orders

Qualitative Summary of Differences between the Trials.

Note: T ¼ Trial. T1 and T3, all initial anti-Semitism ¼ 8. T2 and T4, initial anti-Semitism of rank-and-file ¼ 5, Others ¼ 8. Cost-benefit biases þ 7, � 5 in T1 and T2, and þ 4,0 in T3 and T4. LAP, legitimacy of authority parameter.

Fig. 9: Condoning genocide Action process Fig. 10: Zeal Fig. 11: Legitimacy on zeal (LAP ¼ 0.8, 1, 1.2) Table 7: Genocidal willingness (LAP ¼ 1.2) Table 8: Genocidal willingness (LAP ¼ 0.8) Learning process Fig. 12: Legitimacy on antiSemitism (LAP ¼ 0.8, 1, 1.2)

Fig. Fig. Fig. Fig.

Table 6: Genocidal willingness (LAP ¼ 1) Decision process Fig. 1: Anti-Semitism Fig. 2: Nazism Fig. 3: Supports Nazis Influence process Fig. 4: Conversations

Table 9.

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eliminationist anti-Semitism is the key driver. For each response the results for trial 1 (biases þ 7, � 5) are equal to, or slightly more extreme than, the results for trial 3 (biases þ 4,0). In combination with the agents’ high initial anti-Semitism, both these distributions of practical benefits and moral costs produce sufficient net benefits so that these agents are willing executioners, without much impact due to interpersonal influence. Their anti-Semitic predispositions and their actions are consonant; cognitive dissonance does not impede their genocidal choices. In the two trials with initial anti-Semitism of the rank-and-file agents set to 5 (the popular level), which aim to portray Browning’s interpretations; the cost-benefit distributions are more pivotal than in the Goldhagen trials. For each response the results for trial 2 (biases þ 7, � 5) are generally more extreme than the results for trial 4 (biases þ 4,0), often reaching the same levels as in trials 1 and 3. Trial 4 also exhibits growth across the response variables. In these trials interpersonal influence tends to change the responses of the agents toward support for the Nazis. Their initially dissonant predispositions and choices become consonant across time and, unlike the baseline trial, these agents become consonant Nazis. The initially weak anti-Semitism and the random cost and benefits of the baseline trial generally do not increase the agents’ anti-Semitism, Nazism, and support for the Nazi agenda. Interpersonal influence is minimal because the pressures to communicate are low and to the extent that there is change toward consonance it is away from the Nazis and toward becoming consonant ‘‘Good People,’’ who have low anti-Semitism and do not support the Nazis. Their zeal for the genocide is negative and not changed much by differences in the LAP. These agents are reluctant to kill and are willing to do so only under orders and with little cruelty. A key insight I draw from these runs concerns the role of attitude change in reducing the inhibitions due to cognitive dissonance. When every agent is radically anti-Semitic, as in the Goldhagen trials, the minimal moral costs of killing Jews along with the practical benefits of following the Nazis agenda creates a strong net benefit for conducting genocidal activities. Although anti-Semitism in these trials increases across the iteration months, the agents have achieved cognitive consonance very early in the time series. Their anti-Semitism and their genocidal choices are not at cross-purposes, they are willing executioners. However, the growth in anti-Semitism of the ordinary rank-and-file in trial 2 in the Browning trials depends upon the practical benefit and most importantly, the negative moral costs of killing Jews emphasized by anti-Jewish propaganda. Through the interpersonal influence and learning processes their anti-Semitism and Nazism

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increases, and the attitudes and actions become consonant as their Nazification proceeds. This process may explain how ordinary German civilians circa 1933 through 1945 became Nazified supporters of the regime, rather than good people who protested the genocide of Jewish people. Future research will test this conjecture.

NOTES 1. This paper refers to the racially based anti-Jewish sentiments of the 1930s and 1940s as ‘‘anti-Semitism’’ to distinguish such beliefs from ‘‘antisemitism,’’ which refers to negative attitudes, prejudice, and hostility toward Jewish people simply because of their identity as Jews. In anti-Semitism an imagined Semitic race was responsible for the stereotypes. In antisemitism the stereotypes are rooted in anti-Jewish cultures. Wistrich (2010) chronicles the nature of anti-Semitism from antiquity to the present. 2. Other research studies document the prevalence of anti-Semitism prior to the Nazi takeover. Abel (1986 [1938], p. 173), studying life histories of members and adherents of the Nazi party prior to its seizure of power in January 1933, suggests that the Nazis’ ‘‘racial doctrine appealed to a prevalent feeling of anti-Semitism which, as we have indicated, was a common popular reaction in Germany in times of crises since the period of the Crusades.’’ Although ‘anti-Semitism’ is not an entry in the index of Weimar Culture, Gay (2001 [1968], pp. 137–138) writes that the Jewishowned publisher, the House of Ullstein, circa 1930, ‘‘sought to accommodate itself to threatening conditions by purging itself of Jews and radicals, and by adopting a patriotic, even chauvinistic tone – which dismayed its friends and did not appease its enemies. Anti-Semitism, long endemic in the universities, and a standard battle cry of right wing parties, became more virulent than ever.’’ 3. I formulated a paper-and-pencil version of this model at the library of the University of Leiden during a brief visit there for a conference circa 1997. Upon returning to the United States, I commissioned Yanhong Huang to program the model in the C and C þ þ programming languages; its logic informed my empirical analysis in Smith (1998). Patrick Tai provided technical assistance that facilitated the use of the model. Recently, Aniruddha Deshmukh and I made some substantive changes and debugged the model. Andrew Tai conducted parameter studies exploring how social networks and interpersonal influence affected the choices of agents. 4. Friedla¨nder (1984, pp. 13–14) stresses: ‘‘Any analysis of Nazism based only on political, economic, and social interpretations will not suffice y Nazism’s attraction lay less in any explicit ideology than in the power of emotions, images, and phantasms. Both left and right were susceptible to them – at least during that crucial period from around 1930 until the German defeats midway through the war.’’ The probability distributions express this duality: the first taps the practical political, economic, and social attractions of Nazism; the second taps the emotions, images, and phantasms of Nazi propaganda. 5. Modern anti-Semitism stems from the Antisemitic League of Berlin circa 1879. It is based more on assumed racial than religious characteristics of Jewish

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people, emphasizes fear more than dislike, is a broad ideology, and involves a permanent persecution of Jews personally and politically (Pipes, 1997, p. 27; Pulzer, 1988). The Nazis’ key anti-Semitic innovation was introducing the idea of killing Jews. Pipes (1997, p. 100) states: ‘‘Claiming that the Jewish conspiracy aimed not just at world power but at ‘annihilation of the northern peoples’ justified their own response in kind. The most original element of the Nazi movement, then, was to turn prejudice and fear into murder; the ‘final solution’ remains its highest creative achievement.’’ 6. Gombrich (1970, p. 14) summarized a key theme of Nazi propaganda as follows: In the course of listening to German broadcasts I gradually arrived at a formula which Goebbels to my knowledge never put into words: it is that whatever is reported of the home front should, if possible, be represented as a symbol of German strength and heroism like the saluting soldier on a sinking ship – while anything that is reported from the enemy camp should be interpreted as symptom of his depravity and basic weakness. y I should like to propose that what is characteristic of Nazi propaganda is less the lie than the imposition of a paranoiac pattern on world events.

7. This mechanism is consistent with Boudon’s (1996, 2003) notions of cognitive rationality. 8. Sociological expositions about social mechanism include Karlsson (1958), Hedstro¨m and Swedberg (1998), Hedstro¨m (2006), Hedstro¨m and Bearman (2009), and Stinchcombe (2005, pp. 176–182). 9. This influence process is similar to that of McPhee, Ferguson, and Smith (1963). For reasons of parsimony both of these applications assume that an agent has one ‘‘best friend.’’ The present model has the capacity to have agents with multiple sociometric ties. 10. Fromm (1984, p. 84) classified 50% of the Nazis in his sample as saying Jews had too much power and 20% as saying that capitalists had too much power; for the total of his analytic sample 3% said the Jews had too much power and 56% said the capitalists. In contrast, Herzstein (1989, p. 256) reports polling data about the US public taken during March 1938, just after Germany annexed Austria, that documents the public’s high level of anti-Semitism at that time: about 41% said that the Jews had too much power in the United States. Of these, 25% wanted Jews to be kept out of politics and government, 20% wanted to expel Jews from the United States, and many would support an anti-Semitic campaign. During World War II anti-Semitic responses to the question, ‘‘Do you think the Jews have too much power in the United States?’’ increased from the 41% in 1938 to 58% in June 1945. Fortunately, in the United States there was a lessening of anti-Jewish sentiment from 1937, when 46% said they would not vote for a Jew for President, to 1987, when only 10% said they would not vote so (Herzstein, 1989, p. 400). This popular anti-Semitism of the depression-era United States limited President Roosevelt’s capacity to aid European Jews who were subject to the Nazis’ genocide (Herzstein, 1989, pp. 150–200). 11. The Nazi propagandists may have realized that by making more negative the moral costs of killing Jews, the net benefit of their policies as calculated by ordinary Germans could be maintained or even enhanced when the positive benefits of Nazism were declining.

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12. The SS was a central internal security organization that coordinated the police of the Nazi state. The members of the SS were vicious anti-Semites and exterminators of gypsies and Jews (Fein, 1979, pp. 20, 28–29, 81). The head of the SS was Heinrich Himmler whose position was ‘‘Reich leader of the SS and chief of the German police’’ (Steinweis, 2009, p. 48). 13. In Smith (2003, pp. 337–345) I show that classic reason analysis can lead to misleading inferences when a comparison group is not used as a benchmark. 14. German civilians discussed the killings of Jews which no doubt led to interpersonal influence (Friedla¨nder, 2002, p. 32): Among the German population, even in small towns in the westernmost part of the Reich, rumors about the massacre of the Jews in the East were rife before the end of 1941. y The information was first and foremost disseminated by soldiers on leave in the Reich or through letters and snapshots sent home as mementoes from the Eastern front. y In the summer and fall of 1941, the mass murder of Jews in occupied Soviet territory was undoubtedly an even greater sensation to be told to family and friends than in the summer of 1942.

15. A more general statement of the theory suggests that the distributions of benefits and costs provide a stimulus that combines with an agent’s prejudice (e.g., anti-Western attitudes that are anti-Jewish, anti-Israel, anti-American, and so forth) to produce the extent of the agent’s ideological commitment (i.e., radical Islamism) and choices to follow (jihadist) or not (not jihadist) the ideology. The influence processes may change this choice and also create ideologically committed agents and various action choices, some of which may entail violence. The agent’s ideological zeal reinforces his prejudicial attitudes. 16. In their book on the New York Times, Tifft and Jones (1999, pp. 92–97) describe the popular anti-Semitism Jewish people experienced in the United States circa 1912. Adolph Ochs, the Jewish publisher of the newspaper, and his family were not allowed to vacation in various resorts, and he was denied membership in exclusive clubs in New York City, whereas several of his employees were members. Newspapers freely used expressions such as Jew boy, Jew store, and Jew down (i.e., bargaining). The lynching of Leo Frank in 1915 for allegedly murdering and sexually abusing a white, 13-year-old female coworker in Atlanta, GA, suggests that popular anti-Semitism can be transformed into murderous anti-Semitism by negative publicity, a biased jury, bigotry, and anti-immigrant attitudes. Popular anti-Semitism was rooted in traditional religious beliefs concerning the Jews’ collective guilt for killing Jesus (Glock & Stark, 1996, pp. 133–135) and in ethnocentrism. Herf (2006, pp. 81–82) reports trends in indicators of popular anti-Semitism in the United States from 1939 to 1941; about a third of the public agreed that ‘‘the Jews in this country would like to get the United States into the European war.’’ 17. The distributions of benefits and costs are properties of the collective (e.g., the perpetrators’ unit) that includes a set of agents, who are the members of that collective (Lazarsfeld & Menzel, 1972 [1961]). Theoretically, these distributions are social facts that represent the constraints operating on individual members (Durkheim, 1958 [1895], pp. 1–13). Empirically, researchers can create such distributions as global properties of the collective that are not based on an aggregation of the scores on variables of the members, or they can create them as analytical

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properties of the collective by aggregating the scores of the individual members. The leadership climates (i.e., group subcultures) in White and Lippitt’s (1953) experiments exemplify a global property of the experimental conditions induced by the experimenters, whereas the analogous leadership climates of Selvin’s (1960) study of the effects of leadership on soldiers in basic training exemplify the aggregation strategy. In this present model these distributions are thought to be global characteristics of the collectives, the traces of which are created by the experimenter’s external manipulations that differentially bias the distributions. 18. Friedla¨nder (2002, p. 34) relates that Bernhard Lichtenberg, prior of St Hedwig’s Cathedral in Berlin, expressed outrage against the Nazis’ treatment of the Jews. He was turned in by two women and then killed. In general, the Nazis did not tolerate any dissent from their policies, as Fallada’s (2009 [1947]) novel so vividly portrays. 19. My time-series analysis mentioned earlier suggests that reductions in economic misery may have allowed the Nazis to induce higher levels of anti-Semitism after their takeover of power in 1933 (Smith, 1998, pp. 1339–1341). 20. Friedla¨nder (2002, p. 39) reports that ordinary Germans bought Jewish personal belongings on the cheap: ‘‘Material benefits reinforced the advantages of silence in the face of mass murder.’’ Also see Fallada (2009 [1947], pp. 54–66). 21. Goldhagen (1997, p. 442) noted the importance of Nazi propaganda for reducing the moral costs of killing Jews by citing the testimony of an executioner: ‘‘y it was hammered into us, during years of propaganda, again and again, that the Jews were the ruin of every Volk in the midst of which they appear, and that peace would reign in Europe only then, when the Jewish race was exterminated.’’ However, Goldhagen (1997, pp. 442–443) attributes the success of this propaganda to the preexisting latent eliminationist anti-Semitism that predated Hitler’s preaching: ‘‘The great success of the German eliminationist program of the 1930s and 1940s was, therefore, owing in the main to the preexisting, demonological, racially based, eliminationist anti-Semitism of the German people, which Hitler essentially unleashed, even if he also continually inflamed it.’’ Moreover, ‘‘the average citizen in Germany [in 1927] is a latent anti-Semite’’ (Goldhagen, 1997, pp. 446–447). In an informal interview I conducted with Marie Jahoda circa 1998, she opined that the anti-Semitism of Austrians during this period was intrinsic to their character: ‘‘it is in their genes.’’ For her interpretation of anti-Semitism see Ackerman and Jahoda (1950). 22. Gombrich (1970, pp. 20–21) interprets anti-Semitism as central to Nazi propaganda: Of course it was not the Nazis who had invented anti-Semitism. Even that notorious old forgery of the so-called protocols of the Elders of Zion who had worked out a secret blueprint for the enslavement of all peoples was only taken over and disseminated by Hitler’s propaganda. And yet it may be argued that if the Jews had not existed, they would have had to be invented; the myth demanded for its consistency some cement that held it all together. The Jews had proved their usefulness as scapegoats in internal propaganda, for since some of them are poor and others rich, some conservative and some radical, any anti-Semitic movement can represent all other parties as ‘Jew-ridden’. The same is true on the international plane, for since Jews are scattered over the globe they provided precisely the unifying element that was still missing. Thus when Hitler attacked Russia without warning on 22 June 1941 he proclaimed, as you know, that he

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was ‘foiling the plot of Jewish Anglo-Saxon warmongers and the equally Jewish overlords of the Bolshevik Headquarters in Moscow.’ It is this gigantic persecution mania, this paranoiac myth that holds the various strands of German propaganda together.

23. When eliminationist anti-Semitism was at peak values the ‘‘Germans believed in the justice [net benefit] of the extermination of the Jews’’ (Goldhagen, 1997, p. 394). Recently, Goldhagen (2009, p.516) writes: ‘‘They have been a politics of impunity with the perpetrators’ subjective benefits [of Eliminationism] far outweighing the costs. Hence the frequency.’’ 24. Goldhagen’s conception of a Nazified mind follows (1997, p. 397): The beast within the Nazi is whole, completely healthy – it attacks and preys upon others; the man within him is pathologically ill. Nature has struck him with the illness of sadism, and this disease has penetrated into the very fiber of his being. There is no Nazi whose soul is not diseased, who is not tyrannical, sadistic. y

Apparently, Fallada (2009 [1947]) agrees: e.g., p. 269, pp. 295–302, 323–333, 402–405. 25. The program calculates this mechanism less literally as follows: Stimulus ¼ Net Benefit ¼ (Benefit � Cost þ 10)/2; this puts the stimulus on a 1–10 scale. Net Benefit þ Predisposition ¼ Subjective Utility. If Subjective Utility � 11Z0 then the Choice is 1 (Choose to support the Nazis). If Subjective Utility � 11o0, then the Choice is 0 (Choose not to support the Nazis). 26. Legitimacy of authority is a parameter of this model that can be the same for each member of a unit, or it can be an individual characteristic of the agent. Different amounts of legitimacy of authority can be implemented in the model by either adding an amount as a base for anti-Semitism or preferably by multiplication of an agent’s Nazism score by a parameter. Increased legitimacy of authority will in general increase the agent’s propensity to kill Jews. However, low legitimacy of authority may have little affect on killing and cruelty if the agent perceives the benefits as high, the costs as low, and is an extreme eliminationist anti-Semite. For evidence on this point see Goldhagen’s discussion of how the perpetrators of the death marches disobeyed Himmler’s orders not to kill Jews (1997, pp. 356–357). 27. The difference between action A4 and A1 is clarified by this passage from Goldhagen (1997, p. 401): Meanwhile, Rottenfu¨hrer Abraham shot the children with a pistol. There were about five of them. These were children whom I would think were aged between two and six years. The way Abraham killed the children was brutal [A4]. He got hold of some of the children by the hair, lifted them up from the ground, shot them through the back of their heads and then threw them into the grave. After a while I just could not watch this any more and I told him to stop. What I meant was he should not lift the children up by the hair, he should kill them in a more decent way [A1].

28. A2 is exemplified by the behavior of the storm troopers (i.e., the brown shirts of the SA) during the Crystal Night pogrom (Goldhagen, 1997, pp. 100–101): The perpetrators, principally SA men, killed approximately one hundred Jews and hauled off thirty thousand more to concentration camps. They burned down and

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demolished hundreds of synagogues, almost all of those that they and their countrymen had not destroyed earlier. They shattered the store front glass of about 7,500 Jewish stores and businesses, hence the appellation Kristallnacht (Crystal Night). y The SA men, with or without the aid of such volunteers, produced a fearsome sight of wantonness and brutality that was lethal to the Jews and unsettling to many Germans. Much criticism of the authoritatively directed, wild violence was voiced by Germans of all stations, including those in the Party.

These actions were authorized by Hitler and ordered by Goebbels (Steinweis, 2009, pp. 46–48). 29. A3 may be exemplified by these actions of the SS, if their killing was efficient and not excessively cruel (cited by Goldhagen, 1997, p. 396): ‘‘These were no longer limited ‘actions’, this was total annihilation. Teams of SS men roamed the streets, searching ditches, outhouses, bushes, barns, stables, pigsties. And they caught and killed Jews by the thousands; then by the hundreds; then by tens; and finally one by one.’’ 30. A4 is exemplified from this passage from Goldhagen (1997, p. 307): The fact is that the German personnel’s beating of the prisoners was so routine that a survivor, when describing one of the more outstanding torturers in camp, can remark upon the camp’s routine cruelty in passing, as if it had been an ordinary expectation: ‘‘Wagner was a sadist. He would not only beat the women; that was done by all the SS men.’’ Elsewhere, she provides a fuller description of Wagner’s singularity: ‘‘He was active not with a gun, but with a whip, and he frequently beat women so terribly that they died of the effects y In his sadism towards women, Wagner appeared to us to be absolutely abnormal; the other SS men, who held total power over us, were of course also very cruel, but were not sadistic in the same way as Wagner.’’

31. In his recent writings, Goldhagen (2009, p. 147) develops a similar typology that cross-tabulates a person’s attitudes and actions regarding a genocide. It is: Person’s Attitude Toward the Annihilation

Person’s actions

Approves

Disapproves

Kills

QUESTION: How does he come to approve?

QUESTION: What induces/ compels him to kill?

Does not kill

QUESTION: Why does he become a supporting bystander?

QUESTION: How does he avoid killing?

The present model suggests that propaganda and interpersonal influence are important facilitators of the killing in that these factors induce consonance: killing and approving of the killing.

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32. The distribution for this � 6 bias table is created as follows, beginning with the eleven 9-unit wide intervals for an unbiased table. From the 9-unit interval for symbol 11 take 6 units and add them to the interval for symbol 1. This interval will now be 15 units wide (9 þ 6) and the interval for 11 will now be 3-units wide (9 � 6). From the 9-unit interval for symbol 10 take 5 units and add them to the interval for symbol 2. This interval will now be 14 units wide (9 þ 5) and the interval for symbol 11 will now be 4-units wide (9 � 5). From the 9-unit interval for symbol 9 take 4 units and add them to the interval controlling symbol 3; the latter will be 13 units wide (9 þ 4) and the former will be 5 units wide (9 � 4). Similarly, change the remaining intervals and then create the new limits for the selection of the numeric symbols. The distributions with other biases are created in a similar manner. 33. The logic of this model suggests that benefits and costs are interchangeable since both determine in part the net benefit calculation. Thus, the implementation of effective propaganda further reducing the moral costs of killing Jews would increases the net benefit for supporting the Nazis, even if the benefit of the regime’s policies were declining. 34. Browning (1993, p. 56) gives this example that I interpret as illustrating the inhibiting role of cognitive dissonance in the context of the genocide: Upon learning of the imminent massacre, Buchmann made clear to Hagen that as a Hamburg business man and reserve lieutenant, he ‘‘would in no case participate in such an action, in which defenseless women and children are shot.’’ He asked for another assignment.

Goldhagen (2009, p. 85) provides an example of a committed Nazi and perpetrator whose activities eventually became dissonant with his cognitions: Three months into the Germans’ systematic annihilation of Europe’s Jews, one German perpetrator, Martin Mundschu¨tz, though a true believer in the cause, found the gruesome killing too unnerving. Like a meat eater unable to bear the gore of the slaughter-house, he had to get out.

Goldhagen (1997, pp. 261–262) also provides examples like this one, which I interpret as illustrating the facilitating role of cognitive consonance in the genocide: In this battalion, killing Jews was the norm in both senses of the word. Even the medical personnel killed. In First Company, in keeping with the all too familiar German perversion of medicine during the Nazi period, the two medical corpsmen inspected the Jews after they were shot, in order to ascertain whether or not they were dead. ‘‘It happened repeatedly that both finished them off with bullets y when the victims were still alive.’’ Not only did virtually all the men of this battalion kill, but they killed with dedication and zeal, which is not surprising, since, as one of the men testifies, ‘‘it is true, that among my comrades there were many fanatics.’’

ACKNOWLEDGMENT I thank Yanhong Huang for programming this model, Patrick Tai and Anirudda Deshmukh for helping to update and debug it, and Andrew Tai

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for testing aspects of the model’s performance. Of course, any errors are my responsibility.

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ECONOMY AND FIELD IN THE RISE OF POSTMODERN ARCHITECTURE David Gartman ABSTRACT Sociologists studying the rise of postmodernism have generally concentrated on either macro-level structures of economy or micro-level subjectivities of individuals. Few have specified how meso-level actions within concrete institutions have produced both these macro- and micro-changes. Bourdieu’s concept of field provides a meso-level concept that allows sociologists to explain the transition to a postmodern society by changes in the composition and competition of producers and consumers struggling for advantage in the economy and culture. The chapter focuses on architecture, revealing that the rise of a postmodern aesthetic was the result of internal changes of this field and their complex interrelation with the external changes of an economy in transition from Fordism to post-Fordism.

By now postmodernism has almost become an orthodox concept in sociology. This word that was once the rallying cry of heterodox dissenters from mainstream sociology has now worked its way into theory readers and introductory textbooks. But just because postmodernism is increasingly accepted as part of our disciplinary discourse does not mean that sociologists Theorizing the Dynamics of Social Processes Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Volume 27, 343–374 Copyright r 2010 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited All rights of reproduction in any form reserved ISSN: 0278-1204/doi:10.1108/S0278-1204(2010)0000027013

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are any closer to understanding the phenomenon – sociologically, that is. The concept was originally imported into sociology from art, literary, and cultural studies, where it was used to identify an aesthetic period beyond modernism. The idea of a postmodern culture implied that society as a whole had moved beyond the modern into some new age. But the exact nature of this postmodern society remained exceedingly vague, even in the hands of sociologists like Jean Baudrillard (1988, 1994) and Zygmunt Bauman (1992), who persisted in defining it mainly by its culture. Fredric Jameson (1991) provided a more substantial social grounding of these cultural changes by postulating that they corresponded to the transition from monopoly capitalism to late or multinational capitalism. David Harvey (1989) similarly provided an economic basis for cultural change with his postulation of a shift from Fordism to flexible accumulation, the latter of which was soon relabeled post-Fordism. The analyses of both Jameson and Harvey, however, remained at a very high level of abstraction, neglecting to specify the concrete agents and institutional sites of these global economic and cultural changes. Mike Featherstone (1991) in particular criticizes Jameson and other postmodern theorists for jumping from the subjective experiences of individuals in society to abstract totalities like late capitalism and post-Fordism. What is missing, he argues, is an intermediate level of analysis that focuses on the concrete practices of particular groups of producers and consumers and details how they use cultural products in their daily social relations of struggle, competition, and cooperation within and between groups. We need answers to sociological questions like: Who produces postmodern culture, and why? How do they differ from other cultural producers? Who consumes postmodernism, for what purposes? What do both producers and consumers of postmodernism have to gain or lose from their practices?

SPECIFYING THE POSTMODERN Featherstone suggests that one important sociologist whose work focuses on just such concrete cultural practices is Pierre Bourdieu. Like Jameson and Harvey, Bourdieu places individual cultural practices in the macro-context of economic classes and their struggles for scarce social resources. But unlike them he also reveals how these macro-struggles are complexly intertwined with the institutional struggles of producers and consumers in particular cultural ‘‘fields,’’ a meso-level concept that distinguishes specific arenas of contest, each with it own rules and rewards. Bourdieu holds that although

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artists and other cultural producers are generally members of the dominant or bourgeois class in modern societies, their practices in cultural fields are subject to different rules and stakes than the bourgeois businessmen in the economic field. Featherstone argues that the explanation of postmodernism must take into account not merely the dynamics of macro-economics but also the dynamics of these specific cultural organizations and institutions. Any account of the transition from modern to postmodern culture must reveal the complex imbrication and mutual determination of these levels of struggle. One of Bourdieu’s concepts that Featherstone believes holds particular promise for specifying the concrete practices and struggles of postmodernism is that of ‘‘the new cultural intermediaries’’ (Featherstone, 1991, pp. 43–48). Although Bourdieu’s theory of culture is more complex than Jameson’s, revealing the interweaving of the relatively autonomous fields of economics and culture, he shares with Jameson a similar conceptual modeling of the relation between class interests and culture. Jameson (1971, 1981) argues that culture is shaped by the prevailing contradictions of a society, which cultural producers experience and seek to resolve in the forms of their work. But the particular nature of these formal resolutions is dependent on the producer’s social class and its relation to other classes in the historical period. The producer’s class provides the conceptual limits to her forms, rendering inconceivable any imaginary resolutions that contradict its interests. Thus, Jameson concludes, all cultural productions are political, even those with no ostensible political content, for they intervene symbolically in the social struggles of the day. These political interventions are most often not intended by the producer, however, but are unconscious. This produces Jameson’s important conception of culture as the ‘‘political unconscious.’’ Bourdieu (1996) offers a variation on this theme of culture unconsciously influenced by class position. He argues that the forms of both the production and consumption of culture are influenced by actors’ class position, or, as he calls it, their position in social space. In resolving the relations between forms in their work, cultural producers are in reality resolving the relations between the social groups (classes) represented by those forms, but from the perspective and interests of their particular group. These social influences, however, ‘‘are not willed as such and operate at the deepest level of the ‘unknowing poetics,’ y [as a] social unconscious fostered by the work on form’’ (Bourdieu, 1996, p. 103). Bourdieu calls the unconscious structures that shape an artist’s forms a habitus, a set of durable embodied dispositions inculcated by early socialization in a particular position in the class structure. These class-specific habitus create the specific cultural tastes that determine

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the forms of culture that people produce and consume (Bourdieu, 1984, pp. 168–175). With Jameson, Bourdieu sees these acts of cultural production and consumption as strategic interventions in struggles, political moves in competition between opponents to accumulate power and ‘‘symbolic profits’’ in either cultural fields (for producers) or the larger social (class) field (for consumers). The competition in cultural fields between producers with different habitus results in distinct cultural products that match the tastes of cultural consumers with different habitus in competition for distinction in the social field. The theories of both Jameson and Bourdieu explain cultural changes, such as the rise of postmodernism, as caused by shifts in the overall class structure, which produce new social contradictions for cultural producers to solve in their forms. The main difference between them is the directness of the linkage they postulate between class background and aesthetic form. Jameson (1981) postulates a direct link, with bourgeois interests of high artists shaping the way they symbolically resolve this class’s changing confrontations with the working class. Bourdieu, by contrast, sees class interests mediated through the structures and positions of the cultural field. Although Bourdieu also sees most producers of high art as members of the dominant or bourgeois class, their unconscious expressions of this class’s interests in their productions are also influenced by their habitus and the structure of the cultural field. When artists from nonbourgeois backgrounds are admitted to high-art fields, their different habitus may stimulate the production of new and different forms. But artistic innovation depends on not merely changes in artists but also changes in fields, especially increased competition between positions that puts a premium on innovation (Bourdieu, 1996). In this chapter I apply this more complex and sociologically specified theory of the rise of postmodernism to one particular artistic field, architecture. My choice of this empirical case is not arbitrary, for the concept of postmodernism was largely pioneered by architectural critics, especially Charles Jencks (1991). His 1977 book, The Language of PostModern Architecture, declared the death of modern architecture, characterized by rationality, efficiency, and universalism, and the rise of its postmodern replacement, characterized by eclecticism, historicism, and populism. Architecture is also a strategic case for testing theories of postmodernism because many have argued that the predominant dimension of this new society is space, and architecture is the art of spatial organization. In the following text I begin my explanation of the rise of postmodern architecture by taking into account the macro-economic changes that have been postulated as the foundation of this cultural shift. I find especially

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useful in conceptualizing these changes the concepts of Fordism and postFordism, as used by scholars like David Harvey (1989), Edward Soja (1989), and Fredric Jameson (1994). The transition from Fordist to post-Fordist capitalism not only shifts the relations between classes but also creates new contradictions of experience that cry out for resolution in cultural productions, especially architecture. But to understand the aesthetic solutions to these social contradictions it is also necessary to examine how this transition transforms the specific dynamics of the architectural field by creating new producers and consumers of its art. The intersection of the changes in the social (class) field with those of the architectural field explains the aesthetic revolution of postmodern architecture, the political unconscious of the new post-Fordist society.

FORDISM AND THE IDEOLOGY OF MODERN ARCHITECTURE Fordism and post-Fordism are historically specific types of capitalism. Developed by the French Regulation School, especially Michel Aglietta (1979), these concepts identify distinct regimes of accumulation, each defined by a specific mode of producing and consuming products. The Fordist regime takes its name from American capitalist Henry Ford, for in the early twentieth century his automobile company pioneered not only the new process of mass production but also its necessary compliment, mass consumption. In 1914, shortly after introducing the automobile assembly line that mass-produced millions of cars from standardized, machine-made parts, Ford introduced the Five Dollar Day, which substantially raised his workers’ wages in order to induce them to tolerate the unprecedented pace and specialization of labor in his factory (Gartman, 1986). Ford provided the model for other mass producers to similarly raise wages, thus increasing workers’ purchasing power so as to absorb the products of speeding Fordist plants. But the increase and stabilization of mass consumption to match the escalating productivity of mass production would wait until after World War II, when governments instituted Keynesian policies to manage aggregate demand and thus set the stage for unprecedented postwar prosperity. In the process of transforming production and consumption, Fordism also transformed class relations. To obtain the technical expertise to build, operate, and coordinate the complex machinery and organization of their factories, Fordist corporations hired increasing numbers of educated engineers, accountants, and managers. And to manage and placate their

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Fordist workers, corporations also hired educated professionals such as psychologists, social workers, and personnel specialists. Slowly the control of industrial corporations shifted from the class of entrepreneur capitalists such as Ford and Carnegie to this new class of technocratic professionals, or the ‘‘technostructure’’ of corporations, as John Kenneth Galbraith (1972) calls it. Once their workers were organized in large industrial unions protected by national labor legislation, this technocratic corporate class bargained peacefully and predictably with bureaucratic labor unions over wages and benefits in a manner that maintained national consumer demand. Unlike the old class of capitalist entrepreneurs, whose power and wealth were legitimated by their individual inventiveness and vision, the new class of corporate technocrats justified their rule by their technical knowledge and collective organization, applied in a disinterested way to serve the needs of society as a whole. Thus, rationality and technology themselves became legitimations. The field of architecture responded to these Fordist changes in the economic field by undergoing a parallel revolution that produced modern architecture. The old class of capitalist entrepreneurs had adopted an architecture of Beaux-Arts historicism to display their individual wealth and hide its industrial origins. This aesthetic was provided by the dominant architects in the field, who had high-bourgeois backgrounds and Beaux-Arts training and were imbued by both with a habitus privileging aesthetic form over practical function. But the rise of Fordism introduced into architecture a new group of producers from the technocratic class, many of whom were trained in engineering and brought with them a habitus privileging efficiency and rationality. These outsiders clashed with the bourgeois formalism of the Beaux-Arts elite in the field, pioneering a machine aesthetic that emphasized the efficient use of industrial materials to create simple, functional buildings. The upstarts eventually found consumers for their work in the rising class of corporate technocrats, whose habitus matched their own, and modern architecture triumphed to become an important part of the ideology of this class as it clashed with other classes. Modern architecture was part of the political unconscious of the new technocratic class, symbolically resolving the problems of the age from its perspective and interests (Gartman, 2000). Drawing inspiration from Jameson’s analysis of the antinomies of postmodernism (Jameson, 1991, pp. 1–71), I argue that these problems of the emerging age of Fordism may be divided into three dimensions of experience: time, space, and self. All these problems are ultimately manifestations of the underlying contradiction within capitalism between subject and object. The capitalist market seeks to subordinate the concrete, qualitative labors of humans to the abstract, quantitative category of exchange value, thus treating

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subjective activity as an objective thing. But how this contradiction manifests itself along these dimensions depends upon the specific organization of production and consumption in a historical period. On the dimension of time, the contradiction appears as one between change and permanence. As Marx and Engels (1976, p. 487) note, the competitive demands of the market compel capitalists to constantly innovate new methods and machines that revolutionize production and create an unstable society in which ‘‘all that is solid melts into air.’’ Yet, as Emile Durkheim (1951) recognizes, this restlessly changing economy requires a stable set of cultural norms and values to regulate the social turmoil created by change. The technological revolution of Fordism unleashed an unprecedented spate of change that destabilized traditional occupational boundaries, community standards, and consumer desires. Gradually, however, the class of corporate technocrats resolved this contradiction socially by pioneering a set of stabilizing private and public institutions that regulated economic change and widely distributed its benefits. They solved this contradiction and legitimated the institutions of Fordism with the ideology of technological progress, which postulated a human order beneath the objective chaos of change. ‘‘Progress’’ was a directional concept of change, promising that an orderly improvement in the consumption of all would be rationally engineered by the technical expertise of corporate capitalists. The ideology of progress served the interests of this class in its struggles with both the old capitalist class of entrepreneurs and the rising class of industrial workers. Against the personal power and extravagant wealth of robber-baron capitalists, the technocrats offered an impersonal and frugal shepherding of improvement for all. And against the risky promise of a revolutionary break by radical labor leaders, the technocrats offered a reassuring tale of evolutionary continuity toward a shared consumer utopia. Modernism in architecture was the manifestation of this ideological resolution in the architectural field. The simple buildings of new industrial materials such as glass, steel, and concrete contrasted with historic BeauxArts buildings of stone and wood to indicate newness and technological progress. And the simple, undecorated, rectilinear forms of modern architecture spoke of the upright, frugal rationality of the technocrats in the use of social resources, in comparison to the decorative excesses and complex forms of Beaux-Arts architecture favored by the old capitalist elite. On the dimension of space, the capitalist contradiction manifests itself as the opposition between centeredness and dispersion. On the one hand, as Marx and Engels (1976, pp. 487–488) recognize, the imperatives of the marketplace drives capital out of metropolitan centers over the entire globe,

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battering down national and cultural boundaries. Capital lives everywhere, but no place in particular. But humans are material creatures centered in the landscape, tied to a community embodied in a particular place. Under Fordism, corporate technocrats resolved this contradiction by a physical segregation of the landscape. The restless, dispersive sphere of the production and administration of capital was concentrated in the urban cores, while the residences of its workers were agglomerated in the stable, centered communities of the suburbs. In the aftermath of World War II, especially in the United States, the working class escaped the fragmented and unsettled space of city centers and joined the middle and upper classes in the suburban periphery, where they established stable pseudo-communities as the location of the humanized consumption that compensated for their dehumanized work. Architecture accommodated this resolution of the spatial contradiction with bifurcated aesthetics. In urban centers of production, modernist skyscrapers symbolized the expansive logic of capital in their open steel frameworks and ephemeral glass curtain walls, which allowed the gaze of technocratic power to penetrate the entire world. But in the suburbs where people ‘‘lived’’ – that is, consumed – an architecture of centered insulation reigned. Sealed off from the street and intrusive neighbors behind the symbolic insulation of opaque walls, overhanging eaves, picket fences, and shuttered windows, the suburban house centered space around the consumption of the nuclear family unit. Finally, the capitalist contradictions of time and space creates a contradictory experience of self. Ultimately, a sense of self depends on a conception of one’s position in time and space. An individual knows who she is when she has a firm grasp of her life as part of a narrative of human history, as well as part of a human community rooted in place. The capitalist contradiction specific to the self is the opposition between unity and fragmentation, or identity and difference. As Marx (1975, pp. 270–282) recognizes with his concept of alienation, capitalist labor has a tendency to force people to be other than they really are, to go against their autonomous nature. The alienated self is a fragmented self, divided against itself and pulled in different directions by the changing imperatives of capitalist production and consumption. Yet, on the other hand, capitalism also demands that individuals have unified identities, since uncoerced, legally free workers must be internally motivated to act in accordance with the demands of capital (Boltanski & Chiapello, 2005, pp. 7–12). In the Fordist regime of accumulation, this contradiction was resolved by the separation of production from consumption. At work, people were alien and other, fragmented into heteronomous, individual actions dictated by an objective master, capital. But

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people were themselves in the realm of consumption, where their identities were unified around the free selection of commodities. To some extent, this consumer identity was also a collective one, tied to a concept of ‘‘man’’ or ‘‘the nation’’ that progressed together through the expansion of life-enhancing consumer goods. The bifurcated architecture of the Fordism also resolved this contradiction of the self. At work, the alienated labor of the Fordist workforce was symbolized by the rigidly rectilinear, functional, standardized architecture of Fordist factories and office buildings. However, workers were persuaded to put up with both this labor and its architecture during the workday by the ideological architecture of the suburbs to which they returned at its end. Although the single-family homes here were mass-produced by standardized, fragmented labor from standardized, fragmented parts, the industrial fragmentation was carefully concealed by the superficial unity of details carrying the look of historic craftsmanship, in styles like Western ranch house, Cape Cod, and colonial. Within such aesthetically unified houses workers could construct whole consumer selves to compensate for the fragmenting experience of Fordist work.

THE CRISIS OF FORDISM AND ITS AESTHETIC RESOLUTION By the late 1950s, however, the Fordist regime of mass production and mass consumption that stabilized capitalism in postwar America and Europe began to fall into crisis. The problems originated in the system of mass consumption that provided the ideological legitimation of Fordism by resolving its contradictions. Consumption problems first appeared in the quintessential industry of Fordism, automobiles, but spilled over into other industries and began to undermine the process of mass production as well. As in architecture, the automobiles of the 1950s reconciled consumers to the fragmentation and heteronomy of Fordism by covering over all aesthetic reminders of mass production with the superficial look of unity and individuality. The fragmentation of parts was obscured by smooth, unified bodies with the look of organic nature. Automakers then superficially differentiated these bodies to produce price-graded hierarchies of models, occluding the fact that they all shared the same standardized parts to secure mass-production economies. Finally, the body of each model was changed slightly every year in a process known as the annual model change, lending the appearance of progress to technology that remained the same.

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But the internal dynamics of the field of mass-produced consumer goods combined with external changes in the social (class) field to undermine the ideology of mass consumption. The postwar Fordist policies of demand management greatly increased the income of the working class, rendering overall income distribution more equitable. Because the market for lowerpriced goods was now the largest and most lucrative, mass producers like automakers concentrated their sales efforts there. The competition for these markets between the big oligarchical automakers of the 1950s was fierce. But because of the aversion to technological innovation created by both oligopoly and mass-production economies of scale, this competition was steered largely into superficial style. The Big Three automotive corporations set their enlarged staffs of stylists to work enhancing sales, and the common strategy that emerged was bringing the size, power, glamour, and accessories of the expensive models down to the workingman’s Ford and Chevrolet. But as they did, the largely superficial differences between the low- and the high-priced makes began to disappear, undermining the individuality that was the original rationale of the auto hierarchy. This required stylists to apply even greater amounts of decorative cliche´s to differentiate models, until designs became so outlandish that consumers began to see through the styling deceptions to the underlying similarities. Further, to persuade consumers to buy a new car more often, stylists accelerated the annual model change, introducing more drastic changes more often. But by doing so they undermined the comforting sense of continuity contained in the ideology of progress and subjected consumers to an accelerated chaos of random variation (Gartman, 1994, pp. 136–181). These problems in the consumption side of Fordism were dramatized by the spectacular failure of the 1958 Edsel, a new model introduced by Ford. To compete in an already crowded market and disguise the mass-produced components shared with Ford’s other models, the stylists made the car look different by tacking on an outrageous orgy of chrome superfluities. But the Edsel protested its difference so loudly that its exhortations rang hollow, and consumers detected a standardized similarity to Detroit’s other dream machines. The abysmal sales of the Edsel seemed to say that Americans were seeing through the game of disguising standardized mass production under superficial individuality and change. By the late 1950s the system of mass consumption was falling into disrepute, for it no longer seemed able to ideologically resolve the contradictions of change versus permanence and identity versus difference. This crisis of mass consumption ultimately redounded on the massproduction process itself. In the early 1960s, mass producers responded to complaints about superficial diversity by giving consumers a growing

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range of products distinguished not merely in style but also by function. In the auto industry, manufacturers moved away from the standardized family sedan and offered a diversity of specialized cars, such as compacts, sports cars, and muscle cars. These cars were targeted no longer to broad income groups, as before, but to small niche markets defined by lifestyle variables such as age, region, gender, and family status. But this escalation of diversity threatened the product standardization on which economies of scale rested. As the number of functionally different models grew, volume per model dropped, along with unit profits (Gartman, 1994, pp. 182–211). Automakers and other manufacturers responded by trying to increase labor productivity by speeding up assembly lines and machines. But this attempt ran up against Keynesian methods of demand stabilization like unemployment insurance and other social wage measures, which strengthened workers by lowering the cost of losing their jobs. So when technocratic managers sped up production, workers resisted, increasing rates of strikes, turnover, and absenteeism (Bowles, Gordon, & Weisskopf, 1984; Rothschild, 1974). Revolting against Fordism along with workers were America’s middle-class youth, many of whom compared the increasing costs of the system to its declining benefits and decided it did not seem like much of a bargain. For them the rewards of a homogeneous and standardized consumer culture were hardly worth the sacrifices entailed by standardized Fordist work. So middle-class college youth rebelled against their degrading apprenticeship for white-collar technocratic jobs in authoritarian schools, and against the demand that they risk their lives to fight in Vietnam for international dominance of American Fordism. To express their growing alienation these youth pioneered a counterculture that offered a more diverse and vibrant range of practices and products to substitute for the standardized mass culture. Often identifying with Fordism’s victims, they incorporated motifs from black, peasant, and indigenous cultures, implicitly asserting the superiority of technological backwardness. Fordist manufacturers began to incorporate into their products bits of this counterculture to enliven and individualize them. But they did so at the ideological price of undermining mass culture’s idolatry of technological progress (Ehrenreich, 1989, pp. 57–96). The United States was not the only country to experience the contradictions of Fordism. Thanks to the Marshall Plan, most countries of Western Europe experienced in the 1950s the ‘‘economic miracle’’ of expanded consumption based on mass-production techniques. But by the early 1960s the initial Fordist boom had subsided, raising European doubts about the staying power of their new economies.

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THE FORDIST CRISIS IN THE ARCHITECTURAL FIELD The crisis of Fordism touched off a concurrent crisis in modern architecture, the aesthetic expression of this regime of accumulation in the architectural field. The external changes in society as a whole combined with internal changes in this field to lead to the decline of modernism and the rise of the new aesthetic of postmodernism. The external revolt against Fordism was imported into the field by young architects, who questioned the underlying assumptions that modernism shared with Fordism, such as technological progress, rationality, and spatial segregation. They attacked the modernist establishment in the field as collaborators with technocratic elites of industry and government in the creation of social problems, especially those associated with urban renewal. Modern architects helped developers and government bureaucrats to ‘‘renew’’ urban areas by replacing low-cost housing and poor residents with profitable, upscale housing and amenities for the upper classes. For young architects, modernism thus came to symbolize an undemocratic system imposed on the majority by an insulated and venal elite. In their battle against modernist renewal projects, young rebels in the architectural field found willing allies in displaced poor and minority residents, who were largely left out of Fordist prosperity. The cooperation of young, white, uppermiddle-class architects with older, poor, and working-class minorities against their common modernist enemy produced an alternative to technocratic urban renewal called advocacy planning, in which architects worked with neighborhoods targeted by renewal to develop competing plans that democratically expressed the interests of current residents (Green & Cheney, 1968; Davidoff, 1993). The external revolt against Fordist structures and their legitimation would not have had such a revolutionary impact on the architectural field, however, had it not been for their confluence with internal changes in the field. As Bourdieu (1996, pp. 127–128, 225) notes, one of the most important influences on the internal structure of a high-art cultural field is the growth of the educated population as a whole, which increases the number of cultural producers and consumers. The 1950s and 1960s was a period of great expansion of education in the United States, especially higher education. Thanks to the G.I. Bill and other governmental supports, the percentage of Americans aged 25 or more who had attended four or more years of college increased from 4.6 in 1940 to 11.0 in 1970 (Hacker, 1983, p. 251). This increase in education led to a rapid increase in the number of producers competing in the high arts, including architecture. The number of architects

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in the United States rose from 25,000 in 1950 to 57,000 in 1970, an increase of 128 percent (U.S. Bureau of Census, 1975, p. 140). This overproduction of architects greatly increased the competition in the field, which, Bourdieu argues, speeds up the natural cycle of innovation and consecration. Artistic fields generally give the highest rewards to producers who create new styles and genres, not those who imitate existing forms. Some of the aesthetic innovators become widely recognized or ‘‘consecrated’’ in the field, leading newcomers once again to break away from them to gain recognition (Bourdieu, 1996). However, when an artistic field becomes crowded with masses of new entrants, innovation is accelerated, for only the most radical departures from consecrated styles stand out in the competitive fray (see also Larson, 1993, pp. 247–248). This was the case in the architectural field of the 1960s. A few consecrated modernist architects and their firms dominated the field, producing a large percentage of architect-designed buildings. This was possible because modern architecture promoted the standardization of design and construction, allowing large bureaucratic firms with hundreds of specialized workers to quickly turn out dozens of projects. Young architects with new firms were left with little business, so they sought to attract attention in the field with provocative drawings and critical writings, the target of which was the modernists. Their competition with and exclusion from this elite made them more sensitive to the wider social criticism of modern architects and their supporters among the technocratic elite, which they often incorporated in their writings (Larson, 1993, pp. 171–176). As Bourdieu (1996, pp. 251–252) would argue, young architects were sympathetic to youthful and minority critics of Fordism because the latter occupied a position in the social field homologous or similar in form to their own position in the architectural field – as outsiders fighting against an established power. Further, as Bourdieu also recognizes, the dominated in every field are more likely to draw on allies outside their field, since their power or capital within the field is low. Apart from the increased amount of competition within the architectural field, another internal factor that contributed to the collapse of modernism was the changing habitus of architects. The newcomers who flooded into architecture in the 1960s and 1970s were from different class backgrounds than the modernist elite that dominated the field. As we saw above, members of this elite were more likely to come from the technical and managerial professions, which constituted the ruling class of the Fordist regime of accumulation. However, the expanded educational opportunities of postwar Fordism drew into higher education more students from working-class and petty-bourgeois backgrounds, giving many the training and credentials

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necessary to compete in fields of high art. Although they had formal training in the arts, however, they did not have the deeply ingrained habitus of the upper class, which is acquired in the home and inclines its members to formalization and aestheticization. The larger number of architects competing for distinction in the field included many whose habitus were shaped by lower-class positions, and hence inclined them toward the more direct and unsublimated forms of pleasure found in popular culture. This was also true in the field of painting, which was revolutionized during this same period by Pop artists, many of whom, including Andy Warhol, came from lower-class backgrounds and began their careers in the commercial arts. They carried their childhood habitus into the high arts, so when they searched for aesthetic innovations they turned to the revitalized popular culture of the day. This not only helped these artists stand out in the fierce competition of the field but also appealed to a broader audience than modern art (Crane, 1987, pp. 32–33). The same importation of popular-class habitus was occurring in the field of architecture, where it shaped the youthful rebels’ criticisms of modernism and their new aesthetic forms. Two of the most important of these rebels were Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown, both architects and professors at Yale University. Scott Brown was a student of sociologist Herbert Gans and heavily influenced by his populist critique of urban renewal in The Urban Villagers. Gans (1967, pp. 305–335) charged the urban planners and politicians who controlled urban renewal with class bigotry, for they judged the lives and aspirations of the working-class people they displaced by the narrow standards of their own upper-middle-class subculture. Influenced by this critique, Scott Brown was active in advocacy planning for a poor black neighborhood in Philadelphia threatened with renewal. Her future partner, Robert Venturi, wrote an important criticism of modern architecture in 1966, charging that it created a narrow and elitist language and could not ‘‘accommodate existing needs for variety and communication’’ (1977, p. 42). By 1972 Scott Brown and Venturi had teamed up and offered in this year a manifesto for the younger generation of architectural rebels entitled Learning from Las Vegas, in which they advocated a new architectural aesthetic based on popular culture. They accused architecture’s modernist elite of ‘‘oldfashioned class snobbery’’ for arrogantly denigrating the popular culture of middle-class Americans, which included commercial strips, Las Vegas casinos, and developers’ suburbs (Venturi, Scott Brown, & Izenour, 1972, p. 104). This culture, they claimed, addressed and met the real needs and desires of the masses, unlike the overblown monuments to technology erected by the modernist experts. ‘‘As Experts with Ideals, who pay lip service to the

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social sciences, they build for Man rather than for men–this means to suit themselves, that is, to suit their own particular upper-middle-class values, which they assign to all mankind’’ (1972, p. 106). So the new generation of architects aligned themselves with ‘‘the people’’ and their popular culture, for many themselves had come from working-class and petty-bourgeois backgrounds. But it is clear that these young rebels did not want to destroy the field of high-art architecture by reducing it to a commercial art subordinated to the marketplace, such as automobile design. The authors of Learning from Las Vegas wrote that ‘‘learning from popular culture does not remove the architect from his or her status in high culture’’ (Venturi et al., 1972, p. 108). They were making a move against opponents within the architectural field to gain its specific rewards. Even though these upstarts, unlike the modernist elite, had popular habitus, their education and entrance into architecture conditioned them to use these dispositions in ways that conformed to the rules of the field in order to receive recognition or symbolic capital, the main stake in all cultural fields. One of the most important of these rules is the privileging of form over function. It is expected of all producers in high-art fields that their work emphasize the form of expression, the defining characteristic of dominant-class habitus, rather than the utilitarian function of inducing pleasure, the desideratum of dominatedclass habitus (Bourdieu, 1996, pp. 299–300). Venturi, Scott Brown, and other young populists took the expressions of direct hedonism from popular culture and inserted them into the architectural field as forms, stripped of their popular, pleasure-seeking content. This allowed them to speak to the popular classes in a language they understood, while simultaneously addressing the educated aesthetic elite in a dialogue of forms. This process became known as double coding, and Venturi and Scott Brown hoped that it would ultimately bridge the gap between classes. ‘‘Social classes rarely come together, but if they can make temporary alliances in the designing and building of multivalued community architecture, a sense of paradox and some irony and wit will be needed on all sides’’ (Venturi et al., 1972, p. 108). One of the most interesting examples of this class-reconciling, doublecoded architecture was the entry of Venturi’s firm in the 1967 competition for the National Football Hall of Fame (Venturi et al., 1972, pp. 116–119). The front of their proposed building was dominated by a billboard the size of a football field containing a continuous electronic display–clearly an element borrowed from roadside commercial culture. But the architects wrote that the culturally educated could see it as analogous to the facade of a Gothic cathedral, with its similarly persuasive religious imagery. The double coding continued on the interior, where the barrel-vaulted ceiling was penetrated by

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the buttresses of the billboard to create chapels, just like a Gothic cathedral. Except here the ‘‘relics’’ displayed in the chapels were football memorabilia, and the mosaics often found on vaulted cathedral ceilings were replaced by projected football movies. So Venturi accommodated the sports culture dear to the popular classes in the high-art forms of Gothic architecture recognizable to the high-class cognoscenti. Here the political unconscious of the architects was almost conscious, with their stated attempt to reconcile classes through reconciling the cultural forms associated with them. Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown did not, however, win this architectural competition, nor did they build much else in the 1960s or early 1970s. Their writings and projects, along with those of other young rebels, were largely rhetorical jabs in their internal struggles against the old modernist elite in the architectural field. Although they received some attention from dissenting groups outside the field, their general reception was muted. These new cultural producers had yet to find new cultural consumers who understood and needed their message. But beginning in the latter part of the 1970s, their rebel voices began to fall on receptive ears because society as a whole was being transformed. New social forces were arising to address the crisis of Fordist institutions and pioneer new solutions to its problems of both production and consumption. And these solutions transformed the social class field, creating new groups whose habitus and social interests matched those of the young rebels in architecture. The latter’s solutions to formal struggles within the architectural field now provided the legitimation of the new class’s social struggles to pioneer a new post-Fordist regime of accumulation. The 1960s architectural rebels provided the aesthetic foundations for the postmodern architecture that became the political unconscious of the post-Fordist establishment.

THE POST-FORDIST REVOLUTION By the early 1970s the Fordist regime of mass production and mass consumption was in dire straits, especially in the United States. The increasing demand of consumers for diverse and changing goods was increasing production costs, but government policies of collective bargaining and demand management prevented capitalists from recouping increased costs through lowering wages or increasing labor productivity. These problems internal to American Fordism were exacerbated by increased competition from Europe and Japan and increased prices for raw materials from assertive developing countries (Bowles et al., 1984; Lipietz, 1987). As

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David Harvey (1989) has argued, many of Fordism’s problems were the result of its underlying lack of flexibility. A standardized labor process prevented changes in products, strong unions prevented adjustments in labor markets, and Keynesian programs prevented adjustments in both labor markets and fiscal and monetary policy. The deep recession in 1973 brought on by federal government attempts to control inflation stimulated a corporate attack on these constraining institutions that ultimately created the new regime of post-Fordism, which gave capital the flexibility to respond to the demand for differentiated and ever-changing goods in increasingly competitive and global markets. Some corporate managers tightened worker supervision and attacked unions, while simultaneously introducing production methods to render the labor process more flexible (Bowles et al., 1984, pp. 105–109). Other capitalists fled from inflexible Fordist institutions entirely, moving plants and jobs to America’s low-wage, nonunionized Sunbelt states or offshore to developing countries (Bluestone & Harrison, 1982). Still others cut labor costs and increased flexibility by decreasing direct employment and ‘‘outsourcing’’ large portions of production to outside contractors (Klein, 1999, pp. 195–229). These capitalist moves to restructure the economy were assisted by changes in the state, which in the United States and Britain during the 1980s was captured by a neoliberal political movement that began dismantling the Fordist–Keynesian regulatory framework (Jessop, 1994; Harrison & Bluestone, 1988). This post-Fordist restructuring drastically changed the occupational structure of core countries, resulting in a decline of manufacturing jobs and a rapid growth in service jobs. In the United States, the majority of these service jobs were in personal, retail, and business services (Clement & Myles, 1994). Saskia Sassen (2001) has argued that the geographic dispersion of economic production since the 1970s increased the importance and complexity of corporate central functions such as management, finance, and communication, requiring highly skilled services that were increasingly bought from outside firms and contractors. These booming business services also included jobs in image creation, which were central to a post-Fordist economy in which the key to selling a product was not its physical composition but its symbolic appearance. So while the production of the physical artifacts was farmed out to low-wage producers dispersed around the world, the manufacture of product images was maintained in-house or contracted to highly paid firms providing design, advertising, and marketing services. The new post-Fordist regime of accumulation profoundly restructured the class relations bequeathed by Fordism. The dominant class was still, as under

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Fordism, a technocratic bourgeoisie whose power and wealth rested on knowledge, skills, and bureaucratic position. But post-Fordism changed the composition of this technocratic corporate class from those with expertise in mass production to those with expertise in finance and image creation. Pierre Bourdieu (1984, pp. 295–315, 354–371) has captured this shift with his concept of the new bourgeoisie of cultural intermediaries, the class created by an economy relying more on symbolic goods than physical goods (see also Featherstone, 1991, pp. 28–50). Concentrated in occupations such as sales, advertising, public relations, fashion, and design, this class’s main function is to create the diverse and changing cultural goods through which consumers express their individuality and fulfill intangible needs for security, excitement, and self. If we also include in this class of cultural intermediaries those who provide corporations with the largely symbolic services of legal and financial information, we have defined the ruling class of this dematerialized economy of images. During the 1980s the word ‘‘yuppies,’’ a loose acronym for young urban professionals, was coined to identify this group. These young adults, members of the rebellious, college-educated generation of the 1960s, found lucrative niches in the new economy of the 1980s. Below this new bourgeoisie was a transformed working class that bore the brunt of post-Fordist restructuring. The corporate search for low-cost labor devastated the unionized blue-collar working class and raised barriers to the struggle of the growing number of service workers. The consequence of the growing power of a reconfigured technocratic ruling class and the growing vulnerability of a reconfigured working class was a polarization of classes unprecedented since the Great Depression. Middle-income groups declined proportionally, while both low- and high-income groups grew. And the overall distribution of wealth and income became more unequal, as the new post-Fordist ruling class used its unregulated power to appropriate more and more of the world economy’s value (Harrison & Bluestone, 1988; Sassen, 2001, pp. 223–229). The new post-Fordist regime of accumulation not only restructured classes in society but also redistributed these classes in space, exerting a profound influence on architecture. Postwar Fordism had produced a distinctly segregated landscape, concentrating the command centers of mass production in urban cores while dispersing the legitimating culture of mass consumption in the suburban fringe. But the post-Fordist restructuring of industry uprooted capital and labor and created a new landscape. In the suburbs, new corporate offices could be found cheek by jowl with shopping malls, while in downtown areas new shopping and entertainment complexes crowded close to the skyscraper office buildings serving the globalized

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economy. Old Fordist cities in industrial areas like the American Midwest declined along with manufacturing jobs. And cities in the Northeast lost back-office white-collar jobs to lower-cost suburban areas, as corporations took advantage of new communication technologies to decentralize them. But the corporate control centers for the global economy remained concentrated in a few global cities like New York and London (Sassen, 2001; Zukin, 1991, pp. 35–77; Soja, 1989, pp. 190–221). During this period these large cities also maintained and enhanced their function as cultural centers, concentrating the increasingly diverse and innovative activities in the arts and culture, both high and low. Consequently, they provided attractive residences for the emerging class of cultural intermediaries, who made culture their business. During the 1970s the yuppies began to migrate back to urban centers from the suburbs where most had grown up. As rebels in the 1960s, they had denounced the mass culture of the suburbs as boring and homogenized. So as they assumed leadership in the post-Fordist economy of image production, the yuppies moved closer to the vibrant, diverse culture of city centers, where they could keep track of the latest trends. They initially moved into older neighborhoods and refurbished the housing, creating the gentrification movement. By renovating an old row house, for example, they not only displayed their cultural capital but also marked their distinction from the older, Fordist class of technocrats whose suburban culture they rejected (Zukin, 1991, pp. 179–215; Smith, 1992). These trends of spatial reorganization caught the attention of urban politicians and real estate developers, who were desperate to restore fiscal solvency to their cities. Many cities sought to attract the new producers of business services by providing new infrastructure such as communication technologies and improved transportation. And to persuade the yuppie employees of these firms to live near their work, cities began to build entertainment and consumption facilities, along with upscale, often rehabilitated housing. In the 1970s and 1980s, the Rouse Corporation made billions developing old downtown districts of American cities into upscale shopping and entertainment districts such as Baltimore’s Harbor Place and Boston’s Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market. As a further lure to the class of cultural intermediaries, cultural facilities were centralized in downtown areas, such as Bunker Hill in Los Angeles. Thus, post-Fordism transformed cities from sober centers of production to exuberant spectacles of consumption aimed at attracting not merely gentrifying yuppie residents but also a broad range of consumers from the suburbs, who were also discontented with the homogenized goods of Fordism and had enough

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cultural capital to appreciate self-consciously aestheticized goods (Larson, 1993, pp. 90–97; Davis, 1991).

POSTMODERNISM: THE POLITICAL UNCONSCIOUS OF POST-FORDISM The post-Fordism revolution in production and consumption sought to resolve the crisis of Fordist institutions, but in doing so it exacerbated the experiential contradictions of capitalism explored above. Its innovations undermined Fordism’s ideological resolution of these contradictions, leaving people in the new regime of accumulation acutely aware of the raw clash of opposites in their daily lives. If post-Fordism was to succeed, it required a new ideology to address and resolve these problems of experience. And, of course, this ideology had to be compatible with interests of the new postFordist ruling class, the new bourgeoisie of cultural intermediaries. Postmodern architecture played a key role in this new ideology that unconsciously resolved these problems from the perspective of the yuppies. The realm of experience impacted most by post-Fordist restructuring was that of time or history, in which the contradiction is between change and permanence. Fordism had resolved this contradiction with the ideology of technological progress, of which modern architecture was an important manifestation. But the 1960s undermined popular faith in progress, especially in the realm of consumption. As we saw above, the style-based ‘‘improvements’’ in automobiles and other consumer goods induced by the heightened competition for individuality became so rapid and arbitrary that consumers began to see through the game. So when post-Fordist restructuring emerged in the mid-1970s to tear down the institutions of Fordism, people could no longer find peace in the comforting notion of gradual but inevitable progress. Their sense of history was lost and replaced by a feeling of overwhelming, arbitrary change. Postmodern ideology faced the dilemma of finding a source of meaning and stability in this period of senseless change. In the realm of space, post-Fordist economic restructuring similarly invalidated the cultural resolution of a contradiction that was prominent under Fordism. Here the general capitalist contradiction manifested itself as the opposition between centeredness and dispersion. Under Fordism, this contradiction had been addressed by a careful physical segregation of the landscape. The realm of unsettled, expansive production was concentrated downtown, leaving the suburban areas for the stable, centered communities

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of consumption. But post-Fordist restructuring broke down this spatial segregation. The productive and administrative functions of capital broke out of the urban core and were dispersed out over the landscape, while the new class of cultural intermediaries migrated from the suburbs back downtown to live and consume. Cities turned themselves into consumer spectacles and became centers of community living. The dilemma faced by postmodern ideology in this realm was instilling in consumers a sense of centeredness in an urban landscape marked by reminders of deindustrialization and capital flight. Finally, these shifts in the cultural depictions of time and space ultimately impacted the experience of self, which is dependent upon a conception of one’s position in time and space. The contradiction here is between unity and fragmentation, or identity and difference. Under the Fordist regime, this contradiction was also solved by the spatial segregation of production from consumption. In production, workers were fragmented into unintegrated actions by the command of capital, while in consumption they were free to create a unified self around consumer commodities. With the rise of postFordism, however, the spatial solution to this contradiction collapsed. Production was dispersed over the landscape, crowding close to and visually polluting unifying consumption with signs of fragmentation. The increased differentiation of post-Fordist products also threatened the collective basis for consumer identities. Fordist product hierarchies were based on broad income groups, with products distinguished by quantitative differences in features appealing to all. But post-Fordism distinguished products by lifestyle differences, thus destroying any sense of a collective subject progressing together. The self now became helplessly fragmented in consumption as well as production. Postmodern ideology faced the dilemma on this dimension of creating selves sufficiently unified to motivate and legitimate effort in the fragmented production system. Although these contradictions of time, place, and self pervaded postFordist society, the postmodern ideological responses to them were specifically, though, unconsciously, formulated to serve the interests of the dominant class of post-Fordism, the new bourgeoisie of cultural intermediaries or symbol producers, for they dominated both the economic and cultural fields. In his analysis of this class, Pierre Bourdieu (1984, pp. 357– 371) has argued that its members’ attitude toward culture was caused by a mismatch between aspirations and achievements, which resulted from either downward mobility from the old bourgeoisie or upward mobility from the working class or petty bourgeoisie. The data reveal, however, that upward mobility was more prevalent that downward mobility during the postwar

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period. The expansion of enrollments in higher education during the 1950s and 1960s drew many working-class and petty-bourgeois people into contact with high culture, leading many to aspire to its professions. But most could not achieve the aspirations that their credentials led them to expect. Their cultural capital, recently acquired in formal education, was not as strong as those from the high bourgeoisie, whose members acquired culture by prolonged socialization in the home (Bourdieu, 1984, pp. 63–96). Among upwardly mobile youth the hysteresis or lag of their lower-class habitus behind their new class position disadvantaged them in the competition in high-culture fields. So in the 1970s and 1980s many channeled their artistic aspirations into commercial culture, where they met the escalating demand for differentiated popular products. So upwardly mobile yuppies had an ambivalent relation to high culture that was the hallmark of postmodernism. While they were knowledgeable about and often aspired to it, most were rejected by it and forced into mass culture. And those who did manage to enter fields of high art were, due to their habitus, usually relegated to the periphery, where they faced an entrenched elite of high modernism. So whether placed in high art or commercial culture, these yuppie newcomers took a stand of ‘‘symbolic defiance,’’ (Bourdieu, 1984, p. 360) challenging the cultural hierarchy by validating popular culture while simultaneously asserting their distinction from the masses by using it in formal ways learned from high culture. Yet, the cultural solutions that this new class pioneered to the contradictions of post-Fordism are explained not only by its ambivalent relation to culture but also by its conflict with other classes. As Fredric Jameson (1981, pp. 83–87) has argued, the truth of ruling-class ideology is found in working-class consciousness, for dominant ideologies must co-opt, deflect, or silence the expression of working-class interests. This was especially true of the new cultural intermediaries, most of whom were employed in commercial culture meeting the symbolic needs of the masses. In the face of change in history, dispersion in space, and fragmentation of selves induced by post-Fordist restructuring, the working masses demanded permanence, centeredness, and unity, that is, the maintenance of the stable, centered communities and unified selves created under Fordism. If the new class of cultural intermediaries wanted to successfully assert their dominance and also sell commodities to the masses, they had to somehow accommodate and defuse these radically conservative demands in a society that was undermining them. In the initial stages of the post-Fordist revolution, they did so by symbolically turning to the past to legitimate the new society.

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As Marx (1979, pp. 103–104) noted in The Eighteenth Brumaire, the revolutionaries of every era initially wrap themselves in the glories of the past, claiming to be restoring the virtues of the old society, not creating a new one. And so it was with the revolutionaries of post-Fordism. In the 1980s, the rising bourgeoisie of cultural intermediaries portrayed their changes to the economy and polity as a restoration of the glories of postwar Fordism. Ronald Reagan, post-Fordism’s main ideologue, wrapped his neoliberal policies supporting the new bourgeoisie in a populist and nationalist language of nostalgic restoration. He promised that policies promoting free trade and slashing social programs would restore Fordist industries and increase the income of blue-collar workers. In cultural fields there was a similar tendency to respond to the contradictions of restructuring with reactionary and nostalgic forms that appealed to its victims. On the dimension of time, when people could no longer believe in the future due to arbitrary change, they were offered meaning from the past, and a nostalgia craze struck both high and low culture. Popular movies like American Graffiti (1973) were set in the 1950s heyday of Fordism, before the problems of the 1960s. In this film, as in others, earlier eras were stripped of their social relations and events, and the past was evoked through material artifacts such as automobiles and fashion. In the reified nostalgia of postmodern ideology history lost its meaning as human actions and was reduced to a timeless treasure trove of pleasing symbols with which to simulate security (Jameson, 1991, pp. 19–21, 170–171, 339–406; Baudrillard, 1994, pp. 43–48). On the dimension of space, postmodern ideology offered working people a sense of centeredness or enclosure to protect them from the dispersive activities of capital around the globe. In the political arena, centeredness translated into trade protectionism to maintain the centrality of domestic industries and their communities in the face of international competition. So workers’ anger was displaced from their own employers onto foreign capitalists. In the new cities of consumer spectacles, this demand for centeredness and protection was symbolically met by sealing off buildings and attractions from the sight of deindustrialized districts and homeless people created by the dispersion of capital. Finally, on the dimension of the self, postmodern ideology gave fragmented egos unity by once again looking to the past. With the collapse of unified, mass identities, postmodern culture argued that identities could be achieved in a multitude of tribelike groups characteristic of premodern society. Such identities were pioneered by the new social movements of the 1970s and 1980s, which countered the mass political movements of the 1960s with the separatist identity politics of feminists, gays, black nationalists, and others. But new identities were also

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adopted by working-class people, many of whom during this period discovered and validated their ethnic pasts. These movements were quickly co-opted by post-Fordist marketers, who provided them with differentiated goods to express their identities and used their styles as sources of newness in the broader market. As post-Fordist capitalism spread around the globe, many indigenous peoples also resisted incorporation by reasserting ethnic and regional identities drawn from the past, which provided both compensation for and a disguise of the totalizing force of capital (Klein, 1999, pp. 107–124; Jameson, 1991, pp. 318–356; Jameson, 1994, pp. 40–42, 189–205). At the same time that the rising class of cultural intermediaries was struggling to divert and co-opt the progressively conservative demands of the working class, it was also battling the old technocratic bourgeoisie of Fordism. The rule of the latter class was legitimated by a bifurcated ideology that simultaneously asserted its superior knowledge of production techniques and its responsibility for pleasurable consumption goods. In the 1960s, discontent with the homogeneity of consumer goods undermined the consumption half of Fordist ideology. In the 1970s, the rising cultural intermediaries in corporations struggled to give consumers more differentiated goods but were opposed by the old technocratic class, creating intrafirm power struggles that were often expressed in cultural terms. The new bourgeoisie rejected the old’s ‘‘uptight’’ art and consumption habits in favor of a more ‘‘laid-back’’ lifestyle focused on spending and enjoying, much like the hedonistic culture of the lower classes (Bourdieu, 1984, pp. 295–315). The new symbol producers validated popular art forms such as jazz and film, creating an image of greater democracy and less snobbery and besting their opponents in the contest for public sympathy. But at the same time they sought to show that they possessed cultural capital at least equal to the old bourgeoisie by appropriating popular culture in aestheticized ways. So ideologically this new bourgeoisie sought to have its cake and eat it too. It legitimated itself to the masses by giving them insulating popular and historical signs, yet revealed to the old bourgeoisie that it was their equal in cultural knowledge by coding into their works a high-art subtext. This brings us to the final characteristic of the general ideology of postmodernism, the illusion of classlessness. Although the rise of postFordism greatly increased inequality between classes, it also made their perception more difficult because their spatial signs were dispersed. The downtown concentration of corporate-headquarter skyscrapers that previously testified to the commanding heights of capitalist power was scattered over the suburbs in low office parks. And the fuming factories and refineries

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on urban outskirts that testified to the dirty labor of the working class were dispersed to rural areas and overseas, making it difficult to conceptualize the existence of opposing classes. Also contributing to the post-Fordist illusion of classlessness was the collapse of product hierarchies in the new economy. Fordist markets of commodities graded by price testified to the income differences between people in the market. But the emphasis on constant innovation and diversification of goods in post-Fordism undermined the hierarchical differences between products. Specific products were no longer seen as better than others, testifying to a higher class, but merely different, expressing a distinct lifestyle. Products aimed at niche markets based on age, region, gender, family status, and ethnicity broke down the broader class categories of marketing into micro-groups that gave people not merely a sense of individuality but also a sense of community with those sharing their lifestyle. Behind these nonhierarchical consumer categories existed large and growing class differences in power that went largely unnoticed. But members of the new bourgeoisie of cultural intermediaries could nonetheless subtly assert their cultural superiority in the new cultural economy by appropriating the same leveled products of popular culture in aestheticized ways that allowed them to recognize each other and exclude class outsiders.

POSTMODERN ARCHITECTURAL AESTHETICS This general postmodern ideology found its quintessential expression in architecture. The art of building had always been a hybrid field, positioned on the boundary between commercial art and high art. Buildings are expensive and require substantial resources, which in capitalist societies usually come from the marketplace. The regime of post-Fordism saw an unprecedented increase in the commodification of art and the aestheticization of commodities, blurring the boundaries between the two. Architecture epitomized the hybrid status of all post-Fordist products and condensed the aesthetic trends of postmodernism. Further, as the preeminent art of space, architecture was in a position to express the rising spatial consciousness in this new regime of accumulation that sought to solve all contradictions by rearranging capital and labor in space (Jameson, 1991; Soja, 1989; Harvey, 1989). The specific aesthetic arrangements of space that solved the ideological problems of post-Fordism were anticipated by the popular architecture of the suburbs in the 1950s. Even in Fordism many new consumers felt insecure about the future and sought signs of a stable past in the pseudo-historical

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styling of their homes and amusement venues like Disneyland. This aesthetic also created an image of centered enclosure that created in consumers a unified identity as middle-class Americans. In the 1960s, young architectural rebels like Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown incorporated aspects of this popular aesthetic into high-art architecture, pioneering new aesthetics of populism and historicism that countered the elitist progressivism of modern architecture. These two aesthetics formed the foundation for postmodern architecture, which flourished under post-Fordism because it fulfilled the increased needs for differentiated identities, protective enclosure, and comforting nostalgia. Although populism and historicism were closely related, they followed different paths of development. The former took the degraded symbols of commercial culture and raised them to the level of art by formalization, while the latter took the exalted signs of high-art architecture and lowered them to the level of entertainment by pastiche and trivialization. In the 1970s, Venturi and Scott Brown developed their ‘‘decorated-shed’’ aesthetic, which was the basis for the populist wing of postmodernism. Borrowing from casinos, strip malls, and diners, they argued that high-art architecture should also be built of standardized industrial sheds differentiated by facades of superficial ornament (Venturi et al., 1972, pp. 64–73). This aesthetic matched perfectly the demand of the competitive building market in early post-Fordism for quick, economical buildings that immediately grabbed the attention of consumers with reassuring symbols. Unlike modernist glass buildings, these decorated sheds also created a distinct barrier between the inside and outside, providing the kind of centered enclosure demanded by people trying to have fun in degraded urban environments. The friendly face of commercial signs or popular historical symbols on downtown shopping districts and museums was reassuringly familiar to the masses coming back to urban centers. At the same time that the populists appealed to the masses with pleasant and popular symbols, they also spoke to the cultural elite through the language of high art. As Denise Scott Brown (quoted in Klotz, 1988, p. 172) stated bluntly: ‘‘We are taking a very broadly based thing, which is popular culture y and we’re trying to make it acceptable to an elitist subculture, namely the architects and the corporate and governmental decision makers who hire architects.’’ This elite subculture of culturally sophisticated people also included the broader class of cultural intermediaries, whose formal education in the arts was mixed with childhood socialization in popular culture. Their positions in commercial culture required them to appeal to the masses, but they also wanted symbols of legitimate art mixed with their

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consumption to distinguish themselves from common consumers. The populists provided the yuppies with distinction by double coding their buildings, that is, speaking simultaneously in a high-art and popular language. Often this involved using popular signs in formal ways, such as abstraction, distortion, and irony. Or sometimes symbols from high-art architecture were simply layered over or juxtaposed to symbols from popular culture. Thus, the populist aesthetic of postmodernism offered something for everyone – the reassurance of popular symbolism for the masses and the distinction of esoteric art for the cultural elite. Consequently, this aesthetic eschewed integration for the clash and confrontation of multiple elements (Jencks, 1991, p. 97). One of the best examples of this double-coded populist aesthetic was Venturi and Scott Brown’s 1991 addition to the prestigious National Gallery of London. In their Sainsbury Wing the architects were politely respectful of the original Corinthian-style building of 1838. The new building, which was separated from the old by a passageway, was the same height, faced with similar stone, and adopted its Corinthian pilasters. But the architects also incorporated obvious elements of commercial culture in their addition to appeal to the broad, consuming public that the new gallery was trying to attract. Margaret Thatcher’s neoliberal government refused to pay for the addition to the public museum, arguing that culture should rely on the market for support. To attract consumer dollars the Sainsbury Wing contained a large gallery shop, a restaurant, and a coffee bar. So in this art museum, just as in shopping malls, the consuming masses could buy trinkets, eat a meal, and sip a latte. Also like shopping malls, the addition was enclosed on three sides by high, blind walls that sealed out any unpleasant reminders of the surrounding urban fabric. The addition was also made familiar to consumers of commercial culture by large, commercial-style lettering on the north elevation announcing that this was indeed the National Gallery. Venturi and Scott Brown here spoke the popular code of consumer culture in order to, as Venturi (1996, p. 229) wrote, ‘‘attract a wider range of people, to increase museum attendance y [and] expand its market’’ beyond the cultural elite. Yet the architects also double coded their Sainsbury Wing with clever allusions to architectural history to hold the interest of the symbol-producing yuppies of London. While the popular viewer noted only the obvious signs of classicism on the south facade, those with cultural capital saw an amusing mannerist composition blending the old and new. To make it clear that their accommodation of the original building was merely superficial, the architects stripped off the stone cladding at the corner

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to the passageway, revealing a modernist building of glass and concrete underneath. And they treated the stone facade itself in a way that suggested the fading relevance of the classical order. Their references to the Corinthian order were strongest near the old building and faded along the length of the new facade. Next to the old museum, Venturi and Scott Brown crammed four Corinthian pilasters into the space of a few feet, then gradually spaced them more widely until they disappeared entirely. The blind windows recessed between the pilasters also lost depth until they faded into the wall. The ultimate result of the double coding here was a multivocal composition that spoke the languages of old and new, masses and elite. Although this populist aesthetic sought unconsciously to solve the dilemmas of post-Fordism from the perspective of the privileged class of cultural intermediaries, it was unable to provide for all of this class’s ideological needs, as indicated by its declining popularity in the early 1980s. The fragmented ways in which Venturi and Scott Brown used the forms of popular culture prevented people from achieving the feelings of unity and protection that they needed to compensate for the unsettling post-Fordist restructuring. And some critics charged that their cute and ironic uses of popular symbols were intended as condescending parodies of mass culture and the common people who consumed it. Even when they used historical symbols, as in the Sainsbury Wing, their parodic forms made history look provisional and paradoxical, thus preventing its use as an illusion of permanence (McLeod, 1989, p. 34). So in the 1980s, this populist trend faded and was replaced by another aesthetic that emerged in the 1960s as a critique of modernism–historicism. In the 1950s, a superficial historicism had been used in the segregated suburban realm of mass consumption to hide the standardization of massproduced houses and give consumers a sense of stability and wholeness. But as the Fordist segregation of work and play collapsed under post-Fordism, aesthetic segregation fell with it, and suburban pseudo-historicism moved downtown to offer consumers the same sense of permanence to disguise the hypermobility and fragmentation of the economy. But now the cartoon historicism was applied by trained architects, who took the high art of historical styles and lowered them to the level of entertainment, much of which was aimed at the overconsuming yuppies. The major postmodern historicists, such as Michael Graves and Robert Stern, developed an aesthetic that reconciled the present with what they saw as the enduring values of the past, like family and tradition. This aesthetic incorporated past forms into modern buildings by stripping them of historic detail and turning them into abstract types that no longer required

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handicraft labor. These types could be quickly applied as decoration to the outside of buildings designed by developers. The abstract forms of historicism gave people not only a sense of history in a period that had destroyed any continuity of time, but also a sense of stability in an era that had uprooted everyone. The historicists sought to create a reassuring sense of place out of the abstract, homogenized space to which post-Fordist capitalism reduced the globe by incorporating symbolic reminders of the bodies and landscapes in which people dwelled. As architect Charles Moore (quoted in Forum Discussion: Beyond the Modern Movement, p. 208) stated,’’ ‘‘those of us who lead lives completely divorced from a single place in which we can find roots, can have, through the channels of our minds and our memories, through the agency of building something like those roots re-established.’’ Postmodern historicists also achieved a sense of place and identity by creating secure enclosures that insulated occupants from outside forces. They replaced the visual openness of modernist glass curtain walls with solid, opaque barriers to a hostile external world, particularly in downtown entertainment venues. Finally, this historicism sought to provide consumers with a comforting sense of integration to mask the fragmented reality of the post-Fordist world outside. While the populists embraced contradictory elements – old versus new, popular versus elite – the historicists integrated all elements into a soothing but superficial wholeness devoid of discomforting clashes. One of the most important patrons of this style of postmodern historicism in the 1980s and 1990s was the Disney Company. Under the leadership of Michael Eisner, Disney was moving its products upscale to capture the market of affluent yuppies, who were demanding high-quality, culturally sophisticated goods to testify to their growing economic and cultural capital. Eisner decided that the way to raise the company’s profile in the eyes of these yuppies was to commission hotels and office buildings by renowned architects, lending a touch of art to Disney’s kitschy theme parks. Most of the early commissions went to postmodern historicists, who took the highart forms of historical architecture and brought them downscale to meet these culturally rising yuppies and their textbook training in art. Eisner’s first foray into architecture occurred in 1984, when he hired Michael Graves to design two hotels for a convention center at Walt Disney World. Graves gave Disney two dreams of reified historicism to entertain and edify yuppie conventioneers. For the first hotel, the Dolphin, he drew on ancient Egyptian motifs, while the second, the Swan, used a curving vault form reminiscent of Baroque cathedrals. Although the hotels were ‘‘themed’’ around creatures from fairy tales, at Eisner’s suggestion, they were also

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packed with subtle references to high-art architecture. The giant swans were from Bernini’s Palazzo Barberini; the sailboat bridge and pyramid, from Ledoux. The yuppie businesspeople staying there could thus distinguish themselves from the masses crowding the theme park by using their cultural capital to pick out the references. At the same time these new cultural intermediaries could distinguish themselves from the old bourgeoisie with Graves’s playful, democratic attitude toward high culture. The architect deprived his historical forms of the gravitas of tradition by abstracting and flattening them. So, for example, many of the themed decorations were flattened to two-dimensional cutouts. Similarly flattened to cartoon outlines were the major masses of the hotels, the pyramid and the vault, which were impressive viewed frontally but from the side appeared as thin as plywood stage props. While the unschooled masses that frequented Disney theme parks might not have understood the allusions to historical architecture, they could consume the comforting, timeless stability of an E