Seeing like a state : how certain schemes to improve the human condition have failed (Book, 1998) []
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Seeing like a state : how certain schemes to improve the human condition have failed

Author: James C Scott
Publisher: New Haven : Yale University Press, ©1998.
Series: Yale agrarian studies.; Yale ISPS series.
Edition/Format:   Print book   Computer File : EnglishView all editions and formats
In this wide-ranging and original book, James C. Scott analyzes failed cases of large-scale authoritarian plans in a variety of fields. He argues that centrally managed social plans derail when they impose schematic visions that do violence to complex interdependencies that are not - and cannot be - fully understood. Further the success of designs for social organization depends on the recognition that local,  Read more...

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Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Scott, James C.
Seeing like a state.
New Haven : Yale University Press, ©1998
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Computer File, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: James C Scott
ISBN: 0300070160 9780300070163 0300078153 9780300078152
OCLC Number: 37392803
Description: xiv, 445 pages : illustrations, maps ; 25 cm
Contents: State projects of legibility and simplification. Nature and space ; Cities, people, and language --
Transforming visions. Authoritarian high modernism ; The high-modernist city : an experiment and a critique ; The Revolutionary Party : a plan and a diagnosis --
The social engineering of rural settlement and production. Soviet collectivization, capitalist dreams ; Compulsory villagization in Tanzania : aesthetics and miniaturization ; Taming nature : an agriculture of legibility and simplicity --
The missing link. Thin simplifications and practical knowledge : mētis ; Conclusion.
Series Title: Yale agrarian studies.; Yale ISPS series.
Responsibility: James C. Scott.
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The 20th century features many examples of grand utopian schemes that have inadvertently brought death and disruption to millions. Why do well-intentioned plans for improving the human condition go  Read more...


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"A magisterial critique of top-down social planning that has been cited, and debated, by the free-market libertarians of the Cato Institute (which recently dedicated an issue of its online journal to Read more...

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