tradition vs modern

Length: 8 Pages 1952 Words

The terms ¡¥traditional¡¦ and ¡¥modern¡¦ are so often used in conversation, and also in reference to Society, that it is a good exercise to consider what these terms do mean in a comparative light. Berman in All that is solid melts in air puts forward an interesting set of ideas in the comment that people who live in traditional ways, or in modern ones, can almost be said to occupy different states of mind. For instance, a full 500 years have passed since some peoples first met up with the influences of the more modern Western world. (1988, pp. 15-16) However, in many cases, the adjustment has still not been made, and the conflict of what is traditional and what is modern continues to occur with different impacts upon the individual, as well as the society in which he or she lives which is apt to reflect an ongoing conflict. For example, it could be said that what is lived in a remote western Chinese village differs very much from the experience that is given to human beings by life in New York City. It would be easy to state that the former was very ¡¥backward¡¦ or just very different from what is imparted by New York City, but obviously, this contrast cannot be made too neatly. The modern has arrived in Continue...


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185) What is implied is that such thinking has gone away in modern societies, replaced by the greater weight placed on the concept of the individual, a generic unit who has choices which do not rely so much on the social position into which a person is born or the social group to which he or she belongs, again by birth and upbringing. The Modern Age in the West began with ideas of great optimism as to what a free and enlightened humankind might do to improve the human condition, and with great attention to science and to politics. Pragmatic liberalism and the critique of modernity. 1) It is explained how the idea of the modern came to emphasize the dichotomy between authority and reason as the influences that ought to shape how people see things, direct their lives, and respond to what happens around them. New York: John Wiley and sons, 1973. In the traditional society of mainland China, western influence came only in a trickle for some time, only to coastal or other directly affected areas during the centuries of attempted European colonization of China, and afterwards, only according to what a Communist regime has permitted to take root in the country. Given that the influences of the modern world are so irregular in the different ways in which they shape the traditional societies to which they are exposed, one wonders if such a definite line can be drawn between these two sets of concepts. Furthermore, the systems under which modern influence did begin to arrive happened to be different from those which produced modernity in the West. There is room for wrong assumption when the modern world is held up as something advanced, or terribly different, from the dynamics of traditional societies and what they ask of the individuals who live in them.

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