DM101 – Module 2.04: Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community

Reading #2. Robert Putnam, Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community
Social bonds are by far the most powerful predictor of life satisfaction.
More Americans are bowling than ever before, but they are not bowling in leagues.
Joining and participating in one group cuts in half your odds of dying next year.
It has the equivalent benefit to your health of quitting smoking.
Every ten minutes of commuting reduces all forms of social capital by 10%
Watching commercial entertainment TV is the only leisure activity where doing more
of it is associated with lower social capital.
Declining Social Capital: Trends over the last 25 years
Attending Club Meetings: 58% drop
Family dinners: 43% drop
Having friends over: 35% drop
Sociologist Robert Putnam’s research indicates that American networks of engagement are breaking down and that this loss of “social capital” is the primary cause of many serious social problems. As the church is the primary builder of social networks, the decrease in social capital is both a cause and a result of the decline of church participation in America. Relationships that build community bonds between neighbors are essential to disciple making.

Reflection Question: Do you agree? What are the implications of this?

 

COMMENTS

 

 

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:

*Reflection Question 1.1.5:

SOURCES:

Robert Putnam, Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community, 65-79, 391-392, 408-410. See also www.bowlingalone.com.

Robert Putnam, Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community, 65-79, 391-392, 408-410. See also www.bowlingalone.com.

The photo “Disciple Making 101” is by David Kueker.

All Scripture quotations are from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

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