SELF-RENEWAL by John W. Gardner


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The author of Excellence: Can We Be Equal and Excellent Too? (p. 1025, 1960) robes another section of the societal psyche in his new book, Self-Renewal: The Individual and the Innovative Society. Interested in what makes a society capable of ontinual development, able to withstand the cycle of growth and decay, he turns to the individual as the primary element. ""If a society hopes to achieve renewal, it will have to be a hospitable environment for creative men and women. It will also have to produce men and women with the capacity for self-renewal."" But other factors are involved, in particular mass society with its tyranny of the formula, standardization, the common denominator. The need not only for the individual but the corporation to take constant stock is important. Mr. Gardner discusses what makes the creative person and organization, the place of pluralism, the uses of communication. But his main interest lies with the philosophical aspects made practical--the role of morality, motivation, freedom--an essential, not an appendage--commitment of the individual to his world. Again a book which presents both questions and answers in a vital area.

Publisher: Harper & Row