Saturday, June 26, 2010

New Institutionalism

This is a must-read for all our fans of Luhmann's systems theory:

Personally, I'd like to stress the idea that actors within an institution act in certain ways because they cannot perceive of any alternative. Think priests within the catholic church who have sinned and cover it up, and now the question of assigning guilt to them, to their superiors, to the church as a whole, and the ramifications for how one should deal with all of them. Mix in path dependency from church history, theological constraints, and in priests' careers, and you got the whole fabulous spectrum of debates from psych tests for priests to abolishing the catholic church altogether.

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