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Daniel Bell: R.i.p.


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Daniel Bell died this year. I have followed his writings with interest all my academic life. He began to teach sociology at Columbia in 1959, the year I joined the Baha’i Faith. He then taught at Harvard until his retirement in 1990. I won’t give you chapter and verse of his distinguished career which you can easily access on the Internet. I began studying sociology in 1963. I taught it from 1974 until my retirement in 2005. I won’t give you chapter and verse of my quite undistinguished career since I have been a generalist and taught many subjects. I was not the precocious student, nor the specialist academic and prolific writer that made Bell the famous professional in the social sciences.-Ron Price, Pioneering Over Five Epochs, 8 August 2011.


You were born the very year

those Tablets were unveiled(1)

in New York……I always liked

your writings on ideology and

post-industrialism in your two

books listed as among the 100

most important books: 1950 to

2000. There is, as you say, an(2)

ambiguity, irony, complexity, &

paradox woven into our very real

world politics, you who were, a(3)

socialist in economics, a liberal in

politics, a conservative in culture.

Thanks Daniel Bolotsky! I’ll write

more about you on another day.


1 Daniel Bolotsky(10/5/’19-25/1/’11 had his name changed to Daniel Bell in 1932; The Tablets of the Divine Plan, Abdul-Baha, 1919.

2 The End of Ideology(1960) and The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism (1976) were so listed by the Times Literary Supplement.

3 Russell K. Nieli, “R.I.P. Daniel Bell,” The Socjournal: The New Journal of Sociology and Media, 15 February 2011.


Ron Price

8 August 2011

Edited by RonPrice
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