Anomie

Was struck by the sentiments expressed on Newsnight report (tweeted this lunchtime). See: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/newsnight/9603216.stm?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

In part of my exploration of the possible use of lean or other business philosophies and techniques at different scales of economic system, last December, I was looking for plausible outcomes if a country “goes out of business”. Initially I thought that a country cannot actually go out of business, in the sense that it cannot sell the factory and land to pay off creditors and lay-off workers, as a company would do. Even though the consequences would be real and tangible for it’s inhabitants, the country “still exists”. The dramatic Malthusian-like consequences of conflict, homelessness, famine, disease etc. are plausible and evident, but there seems to be also a sense of Anomie – observed by Paul Mason’s report on the human cost in Greece. I paraphrase: Anomie,  from Greek, from a- “without”, nomos “law”, a feeling of a lack/breakdown of social norms and values. Perhaps also a sense of helplessness ?

I think this can often be followed by a need for change, which can take many forms, with both positive and negative consequences. Echoes from 1920’s and 30’s ?

Keep an eye out for anomie at home and abroad over the next few months and years.

Update One year later (26.09.2012): As Greece has a general strike today, this still seems relevant.

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About Dr_JAH

Independent Researcher
This entry was posted in Human Behaviour, Indicators, System Behaviour and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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