Prince Sultan University (SAUDI ARABIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2016 Proceedings
Publication year: 2016
Pages: 6585-6594
ISBN: 978-84-608-5617-7
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2016.0559
Conference name: 10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2016
Location: Valencia, Spain
This article addresses the theories of three important theorists on the topic of social and cultural change; they are Daniel Chirot, Jerome Bruner, and Alvin Toffler. I chose these writers for the purpose of examining their differing perspectives. Their concepts and assumptions will be examined and differences and similarities in their views will be contrasted and compared. An attempt will be made to integrate the theories and derive some guidance for leaders of the social sciences, who should be able to use this knowledge to further their understanding of the problems that our 21st century society faces today. A key concept that writers on the topic of social change bring to light is that change is inevitable in any society and in any century.

According to Chirot, the primary aspect of social organization is internal stratification, that is, who in society has what form of power and to what ends or means are those powers used. He uses the term “core society” to refer to a group of societies that hold power and wealth and dominate the weaker societies. A peripheral society is an underprivileged society, usually rich in raw materials but lacking in the technology to develop them. Then, there are the semi-peripheral societies, between the core and the periphery, trying to become core societies themselves such as China. Another concept to be addressed in the Breadth component is culture change. Bruner states that culture is always in a process of change, and when society changes drastically, its culture is affected; sometimes, culture change will effect social change. A futurist concept of social change is exposed by Toffler, whose perspective provides insight into what a power shift would entail, if transformation of a dominant power source were to take place especially within the 21st century. Other theorists where studied, their positions considered, and reference made to their thoughts on social and culture change. Lastly, a comparative examination of the different concepts of these theories was undertaken, as befits the outcome of this paper.
Theories, impact on 21st century.