magic and technology

   Prof Alan Jacobs wants to know whether magic and technology can learn to get along with each other. He laments the dominant tone of fantasy literature that sees natural magic opposed to cultural machinery.  Jacobs hopes for: "A fictional world where magic rules but is not the only game in town". This sounds … Continue reading magic and technology

Explaining Political Judgement

Fourcultures has previously reviewed the work of Perri 6 , Professor of social policy at Nottingham Trent University.  The Institutional Dynamics of Culture (which he edited with Gerald Mars) remains the most important compendium of sources on Mary Douglas's cultural theory. His latest book is Explaining Political Judgement, which looks to be a very thorough … Continue reading Explaining Political Judgement

“God is a Brazilian” – risk perception in Brazil

John Adams of Imperial College London produced  a new preface for the Brazilian translation of his important  book Risk. His very interesting analysis of the social construction of risk is strongly informed by Grid-group cultural theory: “I have been increasingly impressed by the ability of cultural theory to bring a modicum of order and civility … Continue reading “God is a Brazilian” – risk perception in Brazil

Why Psychology fails to explain the Global Financial Crisis

Listening to Australian historian Robert Mann's recent lecture at the Melbourne Writers' Festival on whether neo-liberalism has a future, I was struck by the deficiency of the rush to psychological explanation. In seeking to analyse the supposed inadequacies of the free-market ideology, there is an increasing tendency to rely on psychology as the master discipline, … Continue reading Why Psychology fails to explain the Global Financial Crisis

On the Meaning of Culture

Grid-Group Cultural Theory is an uncomfortable thing to live with. It claims that our rationality is partial rather than complete. Instead of one version of common sense, which sensible people have and stupid people ignore, there are actually four competing versions of rationality, four different takes on the way the world actually is. Although we … Continue reading On the Meaning of Culture

The Four Cultures of Administrative Justice

New article : A Cultural Analysis of Administrative Justice This chapter from an upcoming book is a thoughtful take on the mismatch between contemporary concepts of public management and the theories of administrative justice that they intersect with. It’s a good example of the usefulness of Grid-Group Cultural Theory to make sense of the social. … Continue reading The Four Cultures of Administrative Justice