Seeing Like a State - Scott, James C. - Yale University Press
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Seeing Like a State
How Certain Schemes to Improve the Human Condition Have Failed
Winner of the 2000 Mattei Dogan Award
Why have large-scale schemes to improve the human condition in the twentieth century so often gone awry? Political scientist James C. Scott analyzes diverse failures in high-modernist, authoritarian state planning throughout the history of the twentieth century, from Asia to Africa to Latin America, and uncovers conditions common to all such planning disasters. What these failures teach us, he argues, is that any centrally managed social plan must recognize the importance of local customs and practical knowledge if it hopes to succeed.
James C. Scott is the Eugene Meyer Professor of Political Science and Anthropology at Yale University and current president of the Association of Asian Studies. He is the author of Weapons of the Weak: Everyday Forms of Peasant Resistance, Domination and the Arts of Resistance: Hidden Transcripts, and The Moral Economy of the Peasant: Rebellion and Subsistence in Southeast Asia, all published by Yale University Press.
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