Thursday, May 17, 2012

Conflict in institutional change

"Where Marx was grievously in error [in making class conflict the central fact in historical interpretation] was in singling out the ill-defined category of class--the institution in capitalist society with the least possible claim to being regarded as a significant structure of personal allegiance and functions--and in investing conflict with a teleological essence that must make it culminate in a new Golden Age of tranquility. He was wrong in overlooking the far more momentous conflicts in social history between such institutions as kinship, religion, gild, and State. But Marx was profoundly right in stressing the centrality of conflict in institutional change."

Nisbet, The Quest for Community, 80-81.

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