Social Capital: An analysis of Robert Putnam

Putnam’s Case and the Big Picture
In the Fifties, it was easy to participate in society, especially at the leisure level. Robert Putnam would have us believe that organized participation and participation in organizations is the defining measure of social capital. But this seems overly simple a conclusion. A broader look at the history of the end of the twentieth century reveals that Americans were not withdrawing; they were rebelling. They did not sit at home and merely watch television and decline to participate, but rather they participated in radically different ways than they had before. Indeed, the ways of participation in the Sixties and Seventies evinces a more direct sense of engagement with society and the government than was to be found in the civic groups of the Fifties. The reason rosters among Elks clubs, Rotarian groups and the Kiwanis declined had little to do with a generation that was passive or withdrawn. The homogeneity inherent in mass culture simply didn’t seem as attractive as it had in the decades after World War II. Americans in the last half of the twentieth century were actively engaged in remaking society into one worth joining.
Participation in society is not necessarily an indicator of anything other than economic affluence and optimism. Easily counted rosters are not so much indicators of social capital, but rather about the habits of the enfranchised members of society. “Few Americans doubted the essential goodness of their society.”1 This seems an innocent statement, but if it is true, it belies the fear of Communism evident in the McCarthy proceedings, and doesn’t allow for an understanding of why Rosa Parks would refuse to give up her seat on a bus. A more accurate statement is that the affluence available in unprecedented proportions was the salve against the fear unleashed by the bomb, and Americans favored economic expression and conformity over other forms of participation.
Having escaped the shadow of Hitler, Americans in the Fifties embraced the fresh and positive message that surrounded them at every turn. Americans in the Fifties were willing and even eager to receive the white, happy, well-behaved message in the magazines and on the television. Americans saw their country as the land of the free, themselves the rightful beneficiaries of abundance. But did consuming that abundance make Americans more invested in their society? Voting participation and membership rolls swelled; church picnics were attended in unprecedented numbers, stock housing developments were filled before they were completed as Americans rushed not only to buy but to buy in to the American Dream. The safety craved in the Fifties expressed itself through a mass culture which could be purchased, had a soundtrack and a uniform and they mistrusted anything which seemed to threaten its stability. The Fifties were categorized predominantly by “fantastically successful collectives.”2 Participation in a collective, in “large scale organization and group identification” was “effective and rewarding.”3 As the participation in these collectives diminished, the evidence does not bear out that members of American society in the waning decades ignored their society. Rather, the activities of Americans, especially the youth and those on college campuses reveals a rejection of group identification, especially one which seemed to carry strict prescriptive behavior and tolerated little dissent.

Crime, Mistrust and McCarthy
In 1955, the New York Times changed how it indexed articles pertaining to juvenile delinquency. No longer did these articles occupy their own category, but were now grouped together as a subheading under the larger category of crime. Juvenile delinquency came to be seen as a social problem, requiring formal organizations to combat it, such as the Bishop Sheil Foundation, formed in Illinois in 1954 for just that purpose.4 How best to address juvenile delinquency received vats of ink through the fifties, with punishing parents of offenders5, taping confessions of the offenders to play to the parents,6 publicizing arrests as a deterrent, 7 and even the hiring of Jersey Joe Walcott to combat delinquency.8 Much of this delinquency was not the typical vandalism or large-scale theft and battery, but was merely the staying out past curfew or the saying of things not conforming with public sentiment. In Michigan, a youth organization threatened to seize a microphone at Briggs Stadium in order to tell the public of abuses by the police9. While there was no doubt crime, this sort of behavior reflects genuine dissent more than it does standard delinquency.
Fascination with crime, criminals and the criminal mind gains prominence in the Fifties, with the biggest investigation being that of Communism by the House of Un-American Activities as led by Senator Joseph McCarthy. Eric Bentley, in his investigation of the trials, finds the practice of informing the Committee with names as “slimy” and “seldom free of personal malice and perhaps suprapersonal vindictiveness.”10 Informers revealed associations in attempts to return to their livelihood, to avoid a prison sentence, to protect themselves, and most of all to clear their names. Larry Parks, the first member of show business to testify reluctantly divulged the names of others with whom he met to read that the Communist Party meetings were gatherings wherein members would engage in “discussions of how the war was going, current events, problems of actors and their work.”11 As an activity, this seems to accord with Putnam’s definition of social capital, yet clearly this is not what either Putnam or McCarthy had in mind.
Guilt by suspicion was rampant in the McCarthy era, with even Albert Einstein being decried as a “foreign-born agitator.”12 Richard Millhouse Nixon proclaimed in 1947 that “our national security demands that we protect our free American institutions from being infiltrated and dominated by those who serve the Communist cause.”13 Members of the staff at Harvard were investigated as well as actors and those in Hollywood. Eventually, suspicion would run through every organization and into the very halls of the Congress. Putnam’s investigation makes little of the paranoia that accompanied the “powerful tide [which] bore Americans into ever deeper engagement in the life of their communities.”14
The Fifties
The decade after World War II saw unprecedented economic affluence. The rolls of the middle class grew, with everyone who held a job able to buy a home, a car, or a television. And buying the right things on a list was the measure of one’s success, not aristocratic family lines or physical prowess, but economic power, a time when “the American Dream was to exercise personal freedom not in social and political terms, but in economic ones.”15 To buy American was to be American, and to be American was to be bright, beautiful and trouble free.
The persistent hallmark of the Fifties remains our sense of its placid cadence, its overarching optimism and its gentle sense of inherent belief in the system. Nostalgic representations of James Dean and his ever-present motorcycle seem to patronize his portrayal of rebellion, presenting not a scary rebel defying the social order and inciting all viewers to join his reckless disregard of social order, but an endearing bad boy with a bit of growing up yet to do. In ways, he was the first image of the young dissenter who would die by the very code he espoused. But Dean’s image remains trapped in a banal understanding of the Fifties, more nostalgic than tragic, romanticized by a varnish of innocence.
Americans believed what they were told. The magazine ads told them that nuclear power was clean, that smoking was good for you, and that the latest model stove would clinch your social standing. Planned housing developments sprang up around the country, with homes that looked just like everyone else’s being part of the selling point. Living here, the American public was advised, was where everyone was like you, and you were like everyone. You could be safe, happy, and most of all, you could belong. Television sitcoms told us that Father Knows Best, and that the happiest of families featured My Three Sons. Donna Reed showed us how mothers did (and didn’t) behave. The sitcoms “sought to shape their audience’s aspirations,”16 all brought to you by our sponsor.
The terms of the American dream became couched in photos, still images which urged us all to emulate the image, and thereby achieve exactly what the images displayed. The black-and-white photographs of the Fifties brought us teenagers occupying a middle ground between childhood and adulthood, a time of infinite energy without culpability, a time romanticized as the happiest time of life. Sock hops, church socials, drag races, bowling alleys and diners all presented an image of what was acceptable. The images of the National Guard in Little Rock don’t factor into Putnam’s analysis. However easy it might be to overlook this event and others like it as the exception, it would prove to be the rule. The “general good will”17 which pervaded the Fifties doesn’t run as deep as it might at first seem.
In the background of the calm, there are the seeds of discord. Elvis Presley, Jack Kerouac, Allan Ginsberg, elementary school Blacks and Rosa Parks were all writing, singing, educating and seating the beginnings of a civic discord which would ripple beyond the safe confines of corporate consumer community. The hegemonic middle class culture and its code of behavior and belonging gave us one of the longest decades in American history, hallmarked by getting along and getting by. Though it lasted longer than ten years, it had no staying power, for while Americans joined all the right groups and played together during the halcyon time of the Fifties, the numbing of the individual members of society left a huge rift in the social fabric.
The Sixties and Civic Participation
The assassination of John F. Kennedy remains a watershed event for almost every American alive at the time. This is not only because the loss of a popular president was tragic in itself, but because it seemed our innocence as a country and a society was the true victim. No longer could we play along in the time of Camelot, and Americans grieved not only for a leader but for the country. The years that followed saw increasing acting out at the social level, led primarily by the youth, with the regular and predictable patterns of social life shattered.
No longer would the disenfranchised be content merely to complain. Now there were riots and rock music. Concerts were no longer merely a nice gathering to listen to music. Woodstock continues to be the example of a generation spun out of control, uncontrollable, and unrepentantly defiant. The messages and missives sent forth during the Sixties are fraught with vulgarity. Abbie Hoffman’s letters to political officials are rife with not only imagery and defiance, but a violence of the language that seems to be its own weapon in tearing down not only what we think but how we think it. Putnam argues “weakened social capital is manifest in the things that have vanished almost go unnoticed – neighborhood parties and get-togethers with friends, the unreflective kindness of strangers, the shared pursuit of the public good rather than a solitary quest for private goods.”18 Yet during the time when these things were vanishing, Americans were doing exactly what Putnam recommends: social activists set out to “create new structures and policies (public and private) to facilitate renewed civic engagement.”19
Putnam’s arguments and understanding of America rests on mountains of data. Yet this amassed statistical analysis measures participation in mass culture and fosters the sense that a society which is statistically divergent is somehow lacking. Wielding data to take society to task for not conforming seems eerily reminiscent of McCarthy himself. How is it that we are to believe that the generation who gave rise to the Black Panthers was more passive than those who attended church picnics?
Since the death of Kennedy, Putnam paints a picture of Americans passively in front of the television, a generation who doesn’t read and can barely be bothered to think about one another let alone the society in which they live. However abrasive and self-centered the defiance of the Sixties and Seventies might seem, it remains that through all the protests and sit-ins, the letters written and the folk music, the rock music, and the punk music, there was a common thread of reinventing society for the good of everyone. Americans didn’t merely outgrow the Elks Club; the Elks club no longer addressed issues which had anything to do with reality. The list of events illustrating the great civic involvement of the youth is long, and almost always in direct response to political matters: when you’re trying to stop a war, you’re too busy to play bingo.
In 1963, Kennedy was shot. In the coming few years, Americans became familiar with assassination and tragedy as Bobby Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X were shot also. The space missions saw astronauts burn up on the launch pad and later face possibly not being able to get back down from the moon. Nixon’s use of the National Guard at Kent State only served to leave us less trusting of our government and by the time Nixon was caught lying, listening and stealing, the rallying cry of trust no one under thirty was well in place.
The American Dream, while under attack, was never before so truly up for grabs. Woodward and Bernstein were junior staff at The Washington Post and it was the youth on college campuses who seemed to be crying for a remaking of society and then delivering. They formed communes and called them nations. They smoked pot and dropped acid, led by Dr. Leary who was fresh from the halls of Harvard and willing to make a lifetime pursuit of tuning in, turning on, and dropping out.
The Woodstock Generation, the Me Generation, the Yippies – whatever their label or incarnation, society after the Kennedy years was one that was shaken, where definitions no longer seemed definitive, and the patters of sock hops, malt shops and drag races no longer seemed to apply. Not only was the church losing members, it was losing its hold and along with other institutions no longer seemed able to meet the needs of a society which was disillusioned and bereft, spiritually bankrupt. Dissatisfied with the answers they had been given, the very concept of answers came to be questioned.
Once upon a time, about a generation ago, right after the thirteen-thousand-seven-hundred-and-sixty-fourth demonstration against the war in Vietnam, young people started to congregate in an area of San Francisco known as the Haight-Ashbury. They were sick of being programmed by an educational system void of excitement, creativity and sensuality. A system that channeled human beings like so many laboratory rats . . . into a highly mechanized maze of class rankings, degrees, careers, neon supermarkets, military-industrial complexes, suburbs, repressed sexuality, hypocrisy, ulcers, and psychoanalysis.20
Americans after 1964 aren’t the passive, apathetic slackers Putnam would have us believe. The Elks Club roster diminished with its declining relevance.
What emerges is a new definition of what it means to be involved. The new rules of inclusion and participation aren’t based in consumption or conformity, but in one which has a measure of expanding and following one’s conscience. Far from the era of McCarthy, Abbie Hoffman writes “Dear Jack, It has been some time since you have indicted me for conspiracy.”21 Francis Fukuyama would agree with Putnam that “crime, family breakdown, and diminished trust [are] negative measures of social capital.”22 Yet Hoffman’s writings invite us to see the time of discord in a different light. “Cultural revolution requires people to change the way they live and act in the revolution rather than passing judgments on how the other folks are proceeding.”23
The Seventies and the Family
The Seventies saw a rise in the growth of organic communities, co-op buying, vegetarian diets and organic farming. Self-sustaining energy and the ability to live not only in spite of one’s government but ultimately without it was the motto of the decade. Weirdoes in the seventies had enough of a following that whole magazines and marketplaces were created to foster alternative living. Mother Earth News and Real Goods both began publication in the Seventies, bringing tips on self-sufficiency and practical conservation. Articles included everything from solar ovens to organic gardening to buying and using a composting toilet. These publications still have readership today, without having changed their focus one bit. These Americans engaged in their environment, making demands on the government as well as their peers. While they listened for a Silent Spring, they printed not only letters and tracts, but also made their own bread and currency.
In the Seventies, Americans had to effect the changes they had espoused and had taken on, incorporating them into the home. Putnam presents thirty years of non-joiners, but it’s clear that Americans did join. He doesn’t measure or mention some of the defining pieces of the Seventies: Tupperware® parties, fondue parties, house-swapping, partner-swapping and time-shares. America in the Seventies had to assimilate new products and technologies from the VCR to plastics to the microwave into an old framework of marriage and the family.
The family framework itself was unreliable, with no-fault divorce, the birth control pill, legal abortion and the rise of single-parent families all changing the fabric of the family, the microcosm of society itself. The women’s movements, the ecology movement, the space age and the Cold War all converged on a generation trying to find meaning and doing the best they could in the recession. By the time Reagan took office, American corporate culture bore little resemblance to that in the Forties, and any predictability of home life had been shattered. Even nuclear families faced dual-income households, latch-key children and the prevalence of day care. The debate and tension concerning the division of labor in the home continues today.
On the educational front, parents sought to reclaim what was seen as the brain-washing of their children by the dominant culture through the public school system. They started alternative schools, pushed legislators to accept home-based schooling, and rejected the childhood models and aims presented through the Scouting organizations. Labeled as Hippies, these families found clothing optional, and seemed to be more upset if their children used the word “stupid” than “shit.”
The Public Broadcasting System was founded in 1969 and began airing Sesame Street and later the Electric Company in an attempt to prove that learning was fun, and out of the philosophy that every child deserved an education whether they attended a public school or not. Funded by grant dollars, federal tax dollars, member station subscriptions and personal contributions, PBS’s mission is to provide quality commercial-free television. Available in over seventy percent of homes, it is the odd child of the Seventies who can’t hum a bit of Conjunction Junction or name a favorite character amongst Big Bird and pals.
In many ways, Putnam’s analysis of the burgeoning subscription to television is accurate. Especially among small children, television was a prime socializing tool as well as an entertaining one, and in ways replaced previous, traditional forms of socialization. Shows such as The New Zoo Review, Captain Kangaroo, and Mr. Rogers all sought to impart a socializing message along with their educational one. Children learned to talk instead of fight, to face their fears, and to trade their jacket for a cardigan when they came inside. More than ever, television became part of the parenting tools of the time and the children brought up in the Seventies have a relationship with the shows of the Seventies that is more akin to a religious mythology than mere entertainment would provide.
But unlike religion, television offerings were ephemeral, subject to corporate whims and driven by a bottom line. Measured by the Nielsen Group, a long-running show could be deemed unprofitable and be taken off the air without so much as an article in the newspaper. In a time of spiritual bankruptcy and shifting social norms, children found solace in the communities presented on the small screen. Some became wrapped up more than others, and when a child killed himself in 1979 because Battlestar Galactica was canceled, parents began to rethink the impact of television, some of them forming groups about television’s content and others advocating a diversity of activities for their children away from the set entirely.
Parenting as a process gained center stage in the Seventies, and discussion groups and magazines provided suggestions and opinions. Women’s magazines in the Seventies were riddled with articles about the impact of broken homes, the spanking-free approach to parenting, how to get dinner on the table in less than an hour. Women wrestled with a sense of guilt and responsibility for the parenting and chores, and a sense of duty to prove that they could hold careers no less than men.
The Eighties, the Nineties, and Now
Americans’ mistrust of the government and belief that they could and should remake society into something they wanted carried through into the Eighties. More than ever, the threat posed by nuclear holocaust and the Cold War lent a sense of imperilment to the times. Movies such as “The Day After” which aired on television and Red Dawn in the theatres gave voice to the suspicion that the least reliable members of society were the ones with their hands on the button. For the most part, the Eighties saw a banal time of reflecting and of getting by. Americans enjoyed the expansiveness of the Eighties economy, especially having just come out of leaner economic times. Conspicuous consumption raised its head again, and the youth and other idealists cried foul.
The conservative backlash in the Eighties saw picketing in front of abortion clinics, with some protests near the end of the decade turning violent. The anti-military quarter found its voice again, but only briefly, against the war in the Persian Gulf. It was difficult to oppose an all volunteer military.
Musically, there was another British Invasion, and all things English enjoyed brief status as hip. Americans flocked to their television sets at the crack of dawn to watch royalty marry. But none of this brought back the traditionalism or white-male oriented culture of the Fifties. By the time the investors in Savings and Loan banks across the country realized they were impoverished, women and men had already accepted that things were simply different these days. Any meaning to be had was going to be of their own making.
The founders of Earth Day and organizers of love-ins did not wait for an event on a calendar to get involved. Julia Butterfly Hill has made no small career of tree-hugging (now referred to as tree-sitting), and these activities do not accord with Putnam’s presentation of decades of diminished involvement or of a reduction of pressures on the political system. How can we see this group or this time as less philanthropic? The idea that music can change the world had no diminished audience in the Eighties when Band-Aid released the “We Are the World” record to raise money for hunger relief. The generation who opposed apartheid, believed in Solidarity and Glasnost, who watched as the wall came down and who now want to free Tibet are not alienated from the political issues. Indeed, there seems no lack of involvement in the local politics in California, where the populace joined together to oust their current governor and selected from 135 candidates.24
The reason Putnam can’t measure these things is because they have never happened before. There is no chapter in Putnam’s book for number of times the people have thrown an incumbent out on his ear for discontent with the fiduciary policies. It was not measurable before 2003; furthermore it was unthinkable. This is the society born of the last third of the century, one marked by discord, violence, vulgarity, loud music and manifestos. The Beat generation was there in the Fifties, and one could have as easily written an analysis on how the writings of Kerouac and Ginsberg not only defied the mass culture with which they were presented, but defined the outburst of rejection which was to follow.
How can Putnam justify his cursory and dismissive treatment of the radicalism of the Sixties and the decades which sought to incorporate it? He claims the challenge for Americans is “to restore American community for the twenty-first century through both collective and individual initiative.”25 This sounds positive, and yet it seems to carry with it a call to remake that which was the Fifties, to ignore the lessons of the danger of hegemony, and it denies the change in interaction brought about by a culture which interacts at least as much through and with machines as it does with people.
Bowling: Optimism and Social Capital?
The members of bowling leagues in the Fifties certainly felt a sense of optimism, but did they feel as though they were personally responsible for the continuation of the American Dream? The suburbs grew and were filled with every labor-saving device the manufacturers could imagine. The cover of Putnam’s best selling book Bowling Alone shows a single bowler in blue hues, shadowed, looking down. The message is one of alienation, loneliness, and is vaguely reminiscent of posters advocating psychological help for those suffering from depression or suicidal tendencies. R. Kenton Nelson’s illustration invites us to pity the solitary bowler. Yet what is really to be found at the bowling alleys during the last decades of the twentieth century are young adults and teenagers, laughing and talking with each other and goofing off, often after midnight, with glow-in-the-dark pins and laser shows accompanying the bowling experience.
As a place for youngsters to congregate and possibly to date, the bowling alley has seen a resurgence, much to the relief of many a teenager’s parent’s mind. Bowling today among teenagers means bowling after hours, usually with a few friends, a mixed group of young men and women, with coke, beer, nachos and maybe cigarettes. But what parent wouldn’t rather hear “I’m going bowling with some friends” than “I’m going over to a friend’s to hang out in her basement room and watch movies” which so often in the previous decade meant drinking, making out, possibly having sex, probably smoking pot, with a potential for harder alcohol and drugs. In the decades before that, the sex and harder drugs were a foregone conclusion, with attendant violence and possible arrest accompanying social gatherings.
According to Putnam’s research, there aren’t any fewer games bowled today than there were in the Fifties. But it is the membership in a league that Putnam uses to determine whether we are bowling alone. Those who bowl in the lanes outside the league are rarely bowling by themselves, are most often employed, and seem to be having a very good time. Are we to believe the image on Putnam’s book and his overall conclusion that we are alone and adrift in our society, that the American Dream has been tainted by isolation brought of the television, the internet, and overwork?
Putnam’s ultimate conclusion is correct and we are less engaged in the social and civic organizations than we were in the Fifties. As Neil Postman observed “skepticism, disillusionment, alienation – and all the other words we use to describe a loss of meaning –- have come to characterize our age, affecting every social institution.”26 Postman finds an “almost worldwide return to ‘tribalism’ signifies a search to recover a source of transcendent identity and values.”27 Yet it is the American Dream that has changed and the members of the civilization who have changed it. As Americans rebuild the social fabric, they have brought with them underlying beliefs and values which no longer seem revolutionary. That the ecology should be considered in our decisions, that it is wrong to measure intellectual ability through a filter of enfranchisement, that it is wrong to exclude whole segments of the population from opportunity, that women are equally viable in all endeavors are ways of thinking which we cannot easily unlearn, and seem reluctant to let go. While Americans are busily rebuilding the fabric of society, they seem less the victims of a generation that “killed civic engagement”28 than the generation who gave it meaning.

Eric Bentley, 1977. “Are You Now or Have You Ever Been?” in Rallying Cries. Evanston, Illinois: Northwestern University Press.
Bentley, Eric. 1971. Thirty Years of Treason. New York: Viking.
Fukuyama, Francis. 1999. The Great Disruption: Human Nature and the Reconstruction of Social Order. New York: The Free Press.
Halberstam, David. 1993. The Fifties. New York, Villard Books.
Hoffman, Abbie. 1969. Woodstock Nation. New York: Vintage.
Leinberger, Paul and Bruce Tucker. 1991. The New Individualists: The Generation After the Organization Man. New York: Harper Collins.
Neil Postman. 1999. Building a Bridge to the 19th Century: How Our Past Can Improve Our Future. New York: Vintage.
Putnam, Robert. 2000. Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of the American Community. New York: Simon & Schuster.

1 David Halberstam, The Fifties, (New York, Villard Books), 1993.
2 Paul Leinberger and Bruce Tucker, The New Individualists: The Generation After the Organization Man, (New York: Harper Collins), 1991, p. 2.
3 Paul Leinberger and Bruce Tucker, The New Individualists: The Generation After the Organization Man, (New York: Harper Collins), 1991, p. 2.
4 New York Times, December 24, 1954, 11:7.
5 New York Times, July 1, 1954, 29:6.
6 New York Times, February 20, 1954, 19:6.
7 New York Times, February 21, 1954, 39:7.
8 New York Times,  January 30, 1954, 9:2.
9 New York Times, August 8, 1954, V,3:3.
10 Eric Bentley, Thirty Years of Treason, (New York: Viking), 1971, p. 577.
11 Eric Bentley, “Are You Now or Have You Ever Been?”, in Rallying Cries, (Evanston, Illinois: Northwestern University Press), 1977, 21.
12 Eric Bentley, Thirty Years of Treason, (New York: Viking), 1971, p. 667.
13 Eric Bentley, “Are You Now or Have You Ever Been?”, in Rallying Cries, (Evanston, Illinois: Northwestern University Press), 1977, 17.
14 Robert Putnam, Bowling Alone, (New York: Simon & Schuster), 2000, p. 27.
15 David Halberstam, The Fifties, (New York: Villard Books), 1993, p. x.
16 David Halberstam, The Fifties, (New York: Villard Books), 1993, p. x.
17 David Halberstam, The Fifties, (New York, Villard Books), 1993, p. x.
18 Putnam, Bowling Alone, (new York: Simon & Schuster), 2000, p. 403.
19 Putnam, Bowling Alone, (new York: Simon & Schuster), 2000, p. 403.
20 Abbie Hoffman, Woodstock Nation, (New York: Vintage), 1969, p. 15.
21 Abbie Hoffman, Woodstock Nation, (New York: Vintage), 1969. Letter to John Mitchell, p. 108.
22 Francis Fukuyama, The Great Disruption: Human Nature and the Reconstruction of Social Order, (New York: The Free Press), 1999, p. 112.
23 Abbie Hoffman, Woodstock Nation, (New York: Vintage), 1969. Letter to John Mitchell, p. 108.
24 Who knew there were so many Republicans in California?
25 Putnam, Bowling Alone, (New York: Simon & Schuster), 2000, p. 403.
26 Neil Postman, Building a Bridge to the 19th Century: How Our Past Can Improve Our Future, (New York: Vintage), 1999, p. 113.
27 Neil Postman, Building a Bridge to the 19th Century: How Our Past Can Improve Our Future, (New York: Vintage), 1999, p. 113.

28 Robert Putnam, Bowling Alone, (New York: Simon & Schuster), 2000, p. 277.
Heidi Schmidt
Hollins University

May 2004