THIS REPORT DEALS WITH SOCIAL CHANGE as it manifested
itself in a representative area of Minnesota. It describes and analyzes
some modifications in individual and collective behavior that occurred
in Goodhue County over a period of time. And time is of the essence.
Change is observable only by intervals of measured time-there must
be a starting and an ending point. These base marks are not easy to come
by in the social sciences, at least not with the precision ideally desired.
Nevertheless, some approximations are possible.
A major resource for this study of social change was the U. S. census.
We gave major emphasis to the 1940 and 1960 reports. However, the
1940 census was not always comparable with the 1960. Therefore, when
1950 data were more nearly comparable with 1960, they were used instead.
Furthermore, several changes in institutional structure, which
took place during the time interval concerned, were matters of record.
A supplementary resource was an earlier study of the same area.1
But the time periods used in the two studies were not uniform. The
earlier study was made during late 1946 and early 1947; we interviewed
for this report during late 1958, 1959, and early 1960.
The project's design permitted certain judgments and implications
regarding change to be drawn. vVe interviewed a random sample of
farm, hamlet, village, and urban residents. Such a cross section of social
groups permits some generalizations from the observed differences and
Nelson, Lowry; Donohue, George.
Social Change in Goodhue County 1940-65.
Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station.
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