Fatal Remedies: The Ironies Of Social Intervention (Environment, Development And Public Policy: Public Policy And Social Services)
ISBN : 9780306407178
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by Ronald G. Corwin What do the following have in common: regulatory agencies, magnet schools, a declining empire, puritan asceticism, plea bargaining, the recent tax revolt in California, the Boston Tea Party, the Vietnam War, public drinking halls during Prohibi tion, police entrapment, and Yosemite National Park on Labor Day weekend? If the answer is not readily apparent, read this engaging book. Dr. Sam Sieber makes a convincing case that harbored in a potpourri of such events are countless instances of how well-intentioned social interventions often produce harmful effects. Searching for a general framework that will force us to think of heretofore discrete events in new ways, he has chosen to use the term intervention in its broadest sense. His approach is a superb example of how serious schol arship can produce a new creative synthesis from familiar knowledge when the scholar is guided by a lively curiosity. The wide-ranging subject matter of this book provides a re freshing vision of social reform movements and programs. I think that Sieber has succeeded in doing what he set out to do: namely, to develop a general and inclusive typology for cl- ix x RONALD G. CORWIN sifying and interpreting the perverse effects of all kinds of social interventions. This is not merely another treatise on the unintended effects of purposeful action, however. As Dr.
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