The Book

“social capital theory is that social networks have value.”

“Place-based social capital is being supplanted by function-based social capital.”

“Historically social capital has been the main weapon of the have-nots, who lacked other forms of capital.”

Drawing on vast new data that reveal Americans’ changing behavior, Putnam shows how we have become increasingly disconnected from one another and how social structures—whether they be PTA, church, or political parties—have disintegrated. Until the publication of this groundbreaking work, no one had so deftly diagnosed the harm that these broken bonds have wreaked on our physical and civic health, nor had anyone exalted their fundamental power in creating a society that is happy, healthy, and safe.