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The Cultural Creatives

If you look at our culture today, you can see the results of a 500 year struggle between Modernity, inspired by the "Enlightenment", and Tradition, the patriarchial, closed-world, church-centered view of Medieval Europe. Modernity began usurping Tradition just after the Crusades  It flowered during the Renaissance in Europe (c 1500) and it has borne fruit ever since. As Modernity blossomed, Tradition withered.

However, for the past 150 years, as the negative effects of Modernity have begun to show themselves, Tradition has been making a come-back. Large numbers of people, disillusioned with the failures of Modernity have joined the smaller numbers who never accepted it.  Together, they are attempting to restore the ideal world they never knew, but believe once existed.

 You can watch this battle being played out daily in the media. What you won't see, however, is that there is a third force in play:

 After 12 years doing survey research, 100 focus groups and dozens of interviews, Sociologist Paul Ray and psychologist Sherry Anderson have discovered the emergence of a profound shift in cultural values in the United States and Europe.

According to Ray and Anderson, this shift has come about as a result of people individually realizing that we don't necessarily have to give up the benefits of Modernity in order to correct its failings.

 "These people take the ideas of ecology very seriously, and they support slowing business growth in order to save the planet. They also take very seriously women’s issues and issues of personal growth and relationships.

"We found that the typical Cultural Creative cares intensely about the issues raised by post–World War II social movements. These movements include those focused on civil rights, the environment, women’s rights, peace, jobs and social justice, gay and lesbian rights, alternative health care, spirituality, personal growth, and now, of course, stopping corporate globalization.

"All of those concerns are now converging into a strong concern for the whole planet. (1) "

 Ray and Anderson estimate that Cultural Creatives number 50 million in the U.S. and 80 million in Europe.







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