Listen to C. Wright Mills’ resonant voice: “You must not expect me to provide a Balanced View. I am not a sociological book-keeper…”

C. Wright Mills“You must not expect me to provide A Balanced View. I am not a sociological book-keeper. Moreover, “balanced views” are now usually surface views which rest upon the homogeneous absence of imagination and the passive avoidance of reflection. A balanced view is usually.. merely a vague point of equilibrium between platitudes… I feel no need for, and indeed am incapable of arranging for you, a lyric upsurge, a cheerful little pat on the moral back.”

This is a recorded excerpt from Mills’ lecture “The Fourth Epoch: Culture and Politics” given at LSE in 1958, that was published later with changes.
Voice record (about 3 min): http://cwrightmills.org
The full (open-access) text: Mills, C. Wright.  1963.  “Culture & Politics.” Pp. 236-246 in Power, Politics, and People: The Collected Essays of C. Wright Mills.  New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Today is Mills’ birthday — and this is our small celebration of his huge intellectual legacy of economic sociology and public sociology.
(Thank you, Jan Milch for bringing to our attention this unique record!)

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