What is Sarokin’s theory of social change?


Sorokin saw all great civilisations in an endless cycle of three cultural systems:

(i) The ideational culture which is guided by supernatural beliefs and values;

(ii) The idealistic culture in which a blend of supernatural beliefs and evidence-based rationality creates the ideal society; and


(iii) The sensate culture, in which sensations are the test of reality and the goal of life.

In his Social and Cultural Dynamics he viewed modern Western civilization as rotten; it would soon collapse, to be followed by new ideational cultures.

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