"Making Human Beings Human tells the remarkable scientific story of Urie Bronfenbrenner's journey toward 'a bioecology of human development'- a dynamic perspective of individuals in ever-changing, multi-level contexts. Building upon years of distinguished teaching and research at Cornell, the author skillfully weaves each part of his story together, highlighting the puzzles and fresh insights that enhance understanding. This is a marvelous book to read and cherish from one of our giants in the field of human development."
-Glen H. Elder, University of North Carolina
"This volume is a remarkable compilation of several critical writings of one of the most influential developmental psychologists of the 20th, and now 21st, century. Making Human Beings Human is an essential reader for all students of human development, whether they are undergraduates, graduate students, teachers, practitioners, or policy makers. . . . To read this book is to be a passenger on an exhilarating six-decade-long journey of discovery which, for those interested in the landscape of human development, is every bit as exciting as a Lewis and Clark expedition."
-John Eckenrode, Cornell University
To a greater extent than any other species, human beings create the environments that, in turn, shape their own development. Given this, Making Human Beings Human: Bioecological Perspectives on Human Development endeavors to demonstrate that human beings can also develop those environments to optimize their most constructive genetic potentials. What makes human beings human, therefore, is both the potential to shape their world in intricate physical, social, technological, and cultural ways and the possibility that these actions will nurture positive development.
Making Human Beings Human is a landmark collection that traces and summarizes Urie Bronfenbrenner's thoughts on the bioecological theory of human development and recommends avenues for future research. The majority of the twenty-three retrospective articles were written by Bronfenbrenner, while some were written with colleagues in his own or related fields, over the course of six decades. The book's articles document the domain of inquiry that has emerged gradually over many years and has now acquired a title of its own-the bioecological theory of human development.
The book is rich in cultural and historical comparisons, and the concepts of the bioecological model and the ecology of human development represent a unique contribution to the field of developmental psychology. As a co-founder of the Head Start program, Bronfenbrenner has played a major role in shaping many educational and public policies; therefore the book emphasizes social context within the bioecological theory.
Making Human Beings Human is a culminating work by a prominent figure in the field of human development and will help to shape the future of the field. It is an invaluable resource for every developmental psychologist, educator, and public policy individual involved with families and education. The book is also an excellent supplementary text for courses in Psychology, Family Studies and Human Development, Human Ecology, Education, and Public Policy.