Ideas of Ferdinand Tönnies, by Theme

[German, 1855 - 1936, Professor at the University of Kiel.]

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24. Political Theory / D. Ideologies / 7. Communitarianism / a. Communitarianism
Early societies are based on community, and modern societies on association
     Full Idea: Pre-modern societies are based on community (Gemeinschaft), whereas modern societies are based on association (Gesellschaft).
     From: report of Ferdinand Tönnies (Community and Association [1887]) by Peter Watson - Ideas Ch.32
     A reaction: A very interesting distinction. The modern term implies contracts, and it strikes me as an extremely accurate description of modern liberal democracies. There is very little sense of community, but a strong sense of innumerable contracts that bind us.