Pitiri, Sorokin, ISCS


This study analyzes the legacy of Pitirim Sorokin, founding President of the ISCSC, in terms of his methodology, the scope of his works, and his acceptance by his American peers. He was perceived as a prophet rather than a scientist. Furthermore, he was a hidden anti-Leninist who lived through and was obsessed with crises, and, being spiritually cultivated, he perceived altruism, the Absolute, God, love, duty, sacrifice, grace, and justice as the only solutions that can reconstruct and save humanity. His theory of social and cultural dynamics is like Marx’s socioeconomics; however, it was reconfigured to sound different, since he was a staunch anti-Communist as well as someone who had been sentenced to death and later pardoned by V. Lenin. It appears that his stay in the U.S. was aimed more at developing a theory of how to reconstruct humanity from a big-picture point of view than to develop sociological solutions for the actual processes of industrialization, urbanization, and mechanization, even though he kept the very prestigious position of being founding chair of the Department of Sociology at Harvard University. This study found that his prophetic predictions have not taken place in the last 70+ years since the publication of his first book on humanity's dynamics and future.