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Visions of the Future: The Distant Past, Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow (Oxford American Lectures) Paperback – 30 May 1996

3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; New Ed edition (30 May 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019510286X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195102864
  • Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 0.7 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 851,884 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

`A worldly philosopher's provocative broad-brush perspective on what the morrow could bring.' Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Robert Heilbroner's many books include The Worldly Philosophers, An Inquiry into the Human Prospect, and Twenty-First Century Capitalism. He was recently selected the first Scholar of the Year by the New York Council of the Humanities.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Most noticeable error in Heilbroners work is the lack of a reasonable historical support from which he arrived to his conclusions. Although Heilbroner may have provided a plausible conclusion on what things might imaginably be, especially in the field of economics from which he laid heavy emphasis in the last part, he failed to provide to the readers justification on his central concept of dividing the distant past, yesterday, today, and tomorrow. In short, the most contestable part of his study is the dating of the period. Going through the text repeatedly, I can almost say with certainty that no where in the book can we find a valid even justification on the timelines that separates the so-called distinctive eras of mankind. Much worse is Heilbroners summation of the mood of this era's stating that of the distant past as characterized by resignation, hopefulness that of yesterday and apprehension for today. One would marvel on the genius of the author on such summation in so brief a book, which poorly contains sufficient historical data, not even enough to assert clearly the division of time.
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Format: Paperback
Robert Heilbroner has again proven the insight which has made him one of the twentieth century's greatest economic minds. Now, Heilbroner has turned from ecnomy and focused his intellect on human perception of the future. He categorizes human history into four major eras: Distant Past, Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow. He then goes on to illustrate how each era perceived the future and what it would bring. Using this, Heilbroner then postulates how our perception has changed and what the future may hold.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x923d1210) out of 5 stars 6 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x92bf815c) out of 5 stars Tour-de-force. 4 Dec. 2002
By Luc REYNAERT - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
In this small book Robert Heilbroner succeeds in summarizing his vision on the history of mankind from the beginning to the ... future.
"Resignation sums up the Distant Past's vision of the future, hopefulness was that of Yesterday; and apprehension is the dominant mood of Today." (p.69)
His analyses are succinct, clear and on target.
His vision for tomorrow and after is more speculative:"a spectrum of capitalisms is the most probable political setting for the Western world over the coming of the next century, but that ultimately capitalism will exhaust its vitality, perhaps making way in some societies for a more egalitarian society and in others for more centralized and controlledones." (p.115)
I believe that capitalism will continue to be the dominant economic system in the far future, but that the proceeds of the successes of capitalism will be better distributed under the pressure of the democratic process.
But I agree with the author that in order to 'save' our planet, we need a stabilization of the population of the globe and a better protection of the environment.
A small, but important and stimulating book. Not to be missed.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9250b510) out of 5 stars A different vision of our visions. 12 Oct. 1996
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Robert Heilbroner has again proven the insight which has made him one of the twentieth century's greatest economic minds. Now, Heilbroner has turned from ecnomy and focused his intellect on human perception of the future. He categorizes human history into four major eras: Distant Past, Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow. He then goes on to illustrate how each era perceived the future and what it would bring. Using this, Heilbroner then postulates how our perception has changed and what the future may hold
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x92538cc0) out of 5 stars Inconsistent and lackes historical support 18 Sept. 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Most noticeable error in Heilbroners work is the lack of a reasonable historical support from which he arrived to his conclusions. Although Heilbroner may have provided a plausible conclusion on what things might imaginably be, especially in the field of economics from which he laid heavy emphasis in the last part, he failed to provide to the readers justification on his central concept of dividing the distant past, yesterday, today, and tomorrow. In short, the most contestable part of his study is the dating of the period. Going through the text repeatedly, I can almost say with certainty that no where in the book can we find a valid even justification on the timelines that separates the so-called distinctive eras of mankind. Much worse is Heilbroners summation of the mood of this era's stating that of the distant past as characterized by resignation, hopefulness that of yesterday and apprehension for today. One would marvel on the genius of the author on such summation in so brief a book, which poorly contains sufficient historical data, not even enough to assert clearly the division of time.
HASH(0x93763bb8) out of 5 stars WORLDLY PHILOSOPHER 2.0 16 July 2016
By Gloria C. Joyner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The only thing I did not like was it was so short. This author has been a favorite of mine for several years, way back to the college years. He writes in a way that is understandable, thoughtful and compassionate
HASH(0x952678a0) out of 5 stars Give Heilbronner his due; futureist. 10 Dec. 2013
By Terry Dudas - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Reading this at the end of 2013, I am struck at Heilbronner's prescience. If he had not died in early 2005, his conclusions in this book could have been written yesterday.
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