2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 15 October 1998
Many would say that Mary Parker Follett was ahead of her time. I think that perhaps she was just in time, but the Progressive Era was rudely interrupted by a Depression, a world war, and then a complacent and insular 1950's. Even today, with the themes of this book as fresh as ever, the reader will find her arguments challenging yet undeniable. This book is not just about democracy and politics and community. It is about nothing less than conscious evolution. Follett turns conventional notions of politics and group process upside down, and she has no qualms about redefining terms that we take for granted, in ways that are simply this: empowering. Follett's sometimes poetic expression and passionate articulation, and her common-sense approach, will make this book enjoyable for any reader. And it is backed up by just enough intellectual argument to satisfy the social scientist. I would recommend this book for anyone interested in the issues at the forefront of our public conversation today: community, communication, civic participation, neighborhood, political reform, diversity and equality. It is a landmark for 1998 as much as when it came out eighty years ago, if not more so.
on 16 April 2013
Written in 1918, Mary Parker Follett's The New State takes a fresh look at Democracy, and turns many "givens" on their heads. Early on in her introduction she comments, "We talk about the evils of democracy. We have not yet tried democracy." From their she goes on the explore the relating between the all important individual AND the state. She asks, "Are we capable of a new method? Can the inventive faculty of the American people be extended from mechanical things to political organization.
Without spoiling a thing, I happen to like what she says about War and Peace on pages 357-358.
"We have thought of peace as the passive and war as the active way of living. The opposite is true. War is not the most strenuous life. It is kind of a rest-cure compared to the task of reconciling our differences."
If you like Follett you might want to check out a web site that now has 346 members from 55 countries: [...]
And keep your eyes open for a copy of The New State (1918 or reprints), Creative Experience (1924 or reprints), Dynamic Administration (1940 or later.) She was born in Quincy, Massachsuetts, USA in 1868 and died in Boston, MA in 1933.