Book Review of Seeing Like a State by James C. Scott

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Book Review Topic : James C. Scott, Seeing Like a State : How Certain Schemes to Improve the Human Condition Have Failed Submitted by : Mehmet Süreyya Kiraz
Submitted to : Dr. Bilge Azgın
Submit date : 20th May 2014

Nicosia, 2014

1. Introduction and Main Significance of James C. Scott’s Book 2. High Modernism : Its Roots, Meaning and Its Headliners
2.1. Le Corbusier and Lenin’s View about High Modernism 2.2. A Failure in High Modernist Urbanism : The Case of Brasilia 3. Critiques Against High Modernist Ideology : Jane Jacobs and Rosa Luxembourg 4. Critical Appraisal and Missing Points of Second Part of the book 5. Conclusion

Seeing Like A State : How Certain Schemes to Improve the Human Condition Have Failed by James C. Scott Book Review by : Mehmet Süreyya Kiraz
1.Introduction and Main Significance of C. Scott’s Book
In our book review, we will analyse James C. Scott’s seminal work from 1998 , Seeing Like a State : How Certain Schemes to Improve Human Condition Have Failed . C. Scott’s work aimed to give a critique on political methods which seeks to make ‘’ legible ’’ societies . In this book, the author tries to put a strong critique on the vision of high modernism and the architectural application of this ideology . Main aim of this book is to show us how modern state imposed order upon many aspects of society which needed to understand and administer. Here, the order is imposed through simplified complex phenomenas like land ownership and processes such as making regular maps1. This process is called by James C. Scott as ‘‘ Legibility ’’. For him, Legibility stands as a central problem for statecraft . Regarding the Legibility problem of statecraft, author gave an example of development German Forestry and the results of the failure of Scientific Forestry in Germany. However, the practices of Scientific forestry have failed. Similar to German Scientific forestry case, in...
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