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The Third Wave: The Classic Study of Tomorrow [Paperback]

By Alvin Toffler (Author)
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Item description for The Third Wave: The Classic Study of Tomorrow by Alvin Toffler...

Third wave keeps multidimensional perspectives Its for every human being, to read: students, teachers, Doctors, Engineers, Lawyers,sociologist, Economist,IT managers, sales personnels, and whosever can read and understand this Bible.

Citations And Professional Reviews
The Third Wave: The Classic Study of Tomorrow by Alvin Toffler has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • Wilson Public Library Catalog - 12/31/2008 page 145
  • Wilson Public Library Catalog - 01/01/1993 page 117
  • Wilson Public Library Catalog - 01/01/1998 page 109
  • Wilson Public Library Catalog - 01/01/2004 page 118

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Bantam
Pages   560
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 6.82" Width: 4.26" Height: 1.17"
Weight:   0.6 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   May 1, 1984
Publisher   Bantam
ISBN  0553246984  
ISBN13  9780553246988  

Availability  12 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 27, 2016 03:12.
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More About Alvin Toffler

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Alvin Toffler is adviser to companies and governments worldwide on advances in technology, politics, economics, and society. His other books include The Third Wave, Powershift, War and Anti-War, and Creating a New Civilization, he live in Los Angeles, California.

Alvin Toffler was born in 1928.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Popular Culture
2Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Sociology > General
3Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Sociology
4Books > Subjects > Reference > General
5Books > Subjects > Reference
6Books > Subjects > Science > Technology > Futurology

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Reviews - What do customers think about The Third Wave: The Classic Study of Tomorrow?

I like Toffler but I like Xiaoping, published by 1stWorld better  Apr 15, 2008
I recommend all books by this author, but I prefer the works of Wang Xiaoping, published by 1stWorld much better.
I also love the fact that the publisher, 1stWorld Library (or 1stWolrd Publishing) has made the text slightly larger which is a blessing for my thirty-something eyes. Great job. I have dozens of books by this publisher.

The Second Declaration
Wild Knowing
Every Day A Miracle Happens
Les Miserables, Volume I & II
Animal Farm
American Buddha
Your Star Child: Attracting, Birthing and Parenting an Evolved Soul
The Devil's Disciple
The Optimistic Jew  Aug 31, 2007
The second book of Toffler's trilogy covers much of the same ground as Fritjof Capra's "The Turning Point" but in a more journalistic and accessible style. Its greatest contribution to modern thought is the powerful metaphor of its title. The Third Wave concept was a metaphor that gave me insight into what had been troubling me about the Jewish condition in general and Zionism in particular. The Jews are a Third Wave people functioning within Second Wave political, ideological and organizational structures. This was the coherent organizing principle of my analysis of the Jewish people in my book "The Optimistic Jew".
Good book   Aug 13, 2007
Here are my notes

The government was the great accelerator. Because of its coercive power and tax revenues, it could do things that private enterprise could not afford to undertake. Government could hot up the industrialization process by stepping in to fill emerging gaps in the system - before it became possible or profitable for private companies to do so. Government could perform anticipatory integration. By setting up mass education systems, government helps to engineer youngsters for their future roles in the industrial work force (hence, in effect, subsidizing industry)

Without political integration, economic integration was impossible. Distributors wanting to sell goods over territory outside their own communities ran into different duties, taxes, labor regulations, and currencies. Distributors would have to consolidate with local economy and political consolidation as well

The unification/ integration of political system and economic system led to the division of world into distinct national units. As each government sought to extend its market and its political authority, it came up against outer limits - language differences, cultural, social, geographic, and strategic barriers. The available transport, communication, and energy supplies, the productivity of its technology, all set limits on how large an area could be effectively ruled by a single political structure. The sophistication of accounting procedures, budgetary controls, and management techniques also determined how far political integration could reach.
Within these limits, the integrational elites, corporate and government alike, fought for expansion. The broader the territory under their control and the bigger the economic market area, the greater their wealth and power became. As each nation stretched its economic and political frontiers to the utmost, it ran up not merely against these inherent limits but also against rival nations

Imperialism - negotiations between centre and peripheral was often totally lopsided. Often local rulers or entrepreneurs were simply bought off by the Westerners, offered bribes or personal gain in return for sweating the native labor force, putting down resistance, or rewriting local laws in favor of the outsiders. Once conquering a colony, the imperial power often set preferential raw-material prices for its own businessmen and erected stiff barriers to prevent the traders of rival nations from bidding prices up.
Many raw material needed by Westerners were virtually valueless to the local populations who had them.

Geography was embedded in our voting systems. Elected officials are representatives of the inhabitants of a particular piece of land; a geographical district. Political systems assume that people would remain in one locality all their lives. Hence the prevalence of residency requirements in voting regulations

Synchronization. Standardization. Linearization. They affected the root assumptions of the civilization and they brought massive changes in the way ordinary people handled time in their lives. But if time itself was transformed, space, too, had to be repackaged to fit into the new indust-reality.
Spatially extensive to spatially restrictive existence
Schedules - by synchronizes social interaction and coordinates social activity it sets limits to them

Today's corporate critics attack the artificial divorce of economics from politics, morality and the other dimensions of life. They hold the corporation increasingly responsible for, not merely for its economic performance but for its side effects - environmental, social, informational, political, and moral. Corporate executives are now required to pay attention to multiple bottom lines. A corporation is no longer simply responsible for making profit or producing goods but for simultaneously contributing to the solution of extremely complex ecological, moral, political, racial, sexual, and social problems. In this finely strung socio-sphere, corporate decisions are closely scrutinized. Social pollution produced by the corporation in the form of unemployment, community disruption, forced mobility, and the like is instantly spotted, and pressures are placed on the corporation to assure far greater responsibility than ever before for its social, as well as economic, products.
The new importance of information leads to conflict over the control of corporate data - battles over disclosure of more information to the public, demands for open accounting, more pressure for truth in advertising, or truth in lendings.

Rise of the do it yourself industry reasons. Inflation. The difficulty of getting a carpenter or plumber. Shoddy work. Expanded leisure. All these play a part. A more potent reason is what might be called the Law of Relative Inefficiency. This holds that the more we automate the production of goods and lower their per unit cost, the more we increase the relative cost of handcrafts and nonautomated services. For such reasons, we must expect the price of many services to continue their skyrocketing climb in the years ahead. And as these prices soar, we can expect people to do more and more for themselves. In short, even without inflation, the Law of Relative Inefficiency would make it increasingly profitable for people to produce for their own consumption.

With the emergence of multinational corporations, the organization of independent sovereign states is now being overlaid by a network of economic institutions. With their ability to shunt billions back and forth instantly across national boundaries, their power to deploy technology and to move relatively quickly, they have often outflanked and outrun national governments.

For industrialization to operate successfully in third world nations traditional family and marriage customs, religion, and role structure would all have to be crushed, the entire culture ripped up by its roots

Configuration - The relatively concentration mass media. Individuals were continually encouraged to compare themselves to a relatively small number of role models, and to evaluate their life styles against a few preferred possibilities. In consequence, the range of socially approved personality styles was relatively narrow. The demassification of media presents a dazzling diversity of role models and life style for one to measure oneself against. Moreover, the new media do not feed us fully formed chunks, but broken chips and blips of imagery. Instead of being handed a selection of coherent identities to choose among, we are required to piece one together: a configurative or modular me. This is far more difficult, and it explains why so many millions are desperately searching for identity.
All the Toffler Books are worth a read  Aug 13, 2007
All of Alvin Toffler's books yield really useful insights and are well worth your time.
I have read every one in the series including revolutionary wealth and this book "The Third Wave".
No matter what you do for a living or who you are you will benefit from enhancing your world view and your grasp of reality by reading this.
I think there is no doubt that the forward looking aspects of these books are really firmly grounded in the truth.
The Great Overview  Mar 25, 2007
No doubt about it - this book is one for the ages. It offers a great overview of Modern Western Society (mainly the U.S.) ca 1980-2000. In this work, Alvin and Heidi Toffler cover almost every major trend known to them at the time.

But there's more - A LOT more. The authors also take the reader on a historical journey through the Industrial Revolution and explore all of its effects on society. Their first-rate story of how industrial production transformed the world - economically, politically and socially, is not to be missed. This is the kind of material that should be taught in schools everywhere. While it's true that the Tofflers are known as "futurists", the bulk of The Third Wave goes elsewhere. Indeed. they act as three different writers in one volume - historical sociologists, current-world macro sociologists (they don't go deep into any one area, they do the whole ball of wax) and finally, futurists. They even offer opinion (a "what to do") concerning our political and educational systems. Quite some cover !!

But this could hurt them as well - some readers probably won't like this survey-all approach of history, current trends and future predictions. In this sense, I would agree. I awarded the book five stars due to the historical information it provides and for its outline of important things, social and otherwise, happening in our society today. A separate book covering predictions would have been the better thing to do. And the excessive length of this work is also a problem - the authors take too long to make a point. This especially with the "new corporations" topic - the sheer number of times they mention how companies will "shrink" in size, how they'll be cutting "middle layers", etc. All of these points could have been distilled into one (brief) chapter.

Then those predictions. Like Nostradamus, they make many - probably TOO many. Were they trying to look great in the future by "covering" many areas ? After all, you're bound to get SOME things right. I don't know their intentions....but I do know that some of their predictions have indeed come true while others have not....but WILL someday. Then there are those that haven't happened and most likely never will. In the "they were right" category - fiber optics, "linked" computers, e-mail, "narrowcasting" (though music radio had already begun to splinter, their insight still deserves noting), "aqua-culture", cloning, genetic engineering, mapping the Earth by satellite, corporate downsizing and the coming wave of micro-electronics....all of these came to light. They did mention other things like cable TV, video games, video-tape recording, the do-it-yourself movement, the back-to-nature movement and the rise of the "trans-national" corporation. But these were already happening at the time, albeit in small numbers, while the fomer-mentioned items were not.

As for the things that still haven't, but nevertheless WILL happen someday are "new" schools, clean energy, speech recognition, work from home, flex-time, growing human organs and "altering" the brain's chemistry. And one more - China - still not a pluralistic democracy, its economy has gone capitalistic with free markets soaring. The Tofflers said this type of "marriage" between political structure and economy could not last very has so far in China.

Finally, their false points and "wrong" predictions. First is the theory that "crisis" situations erupt when one society transforms into another. Well, it's true....look at the ribbon machine "smashers" in the 1600's and the U.S. Civil War in 1800's - this does happen. But we also had panics, depressions and World Wars DURING the last major society to hit mankind - the Industrial Revolution. Additionally, there are some things that used to be seen as a crisis but no longer are - like divorce. This crisis-during-change theme mischaracterizes the significance of them, especially when compared to other, far more serious eruptions. Rounding out the "wrong" list: major U.S. cities will become a thing of the past, Western Europe is "unlikely" to become a great power (it would become a great political and economic power), Germany will become THE power in Europe (it turned out to be shared), paper money will disappear, the Catholic Church will become more powerful, young people will grow up faster and become more mature, the U.S. will be "innovative" in art. Also: "sub-economies" will develop, "new" religions will appear, the number of years in compulsory schooling will decline, they'll be a "fundamental change" in the role of woman (yes, they're working out of the home more...but...they are still mothers, will always love to shop and tend to that flower garden !!). Not to be left out, "old" social centers like the pub or the prom, will lose significance, homes will become "adult-centered" (vs. the child-centered homes of years past - it would actually become a blend of both), ethnic and racial tensions will "multiply" (it would become a single-race issue in the U.S. - black vs. black, etc. while political, not ethnic, tensions would rise elsewhere in the world). Finally, space manufacturing and oceanic "floating factories" - never happened, nor will they because of something the Tofflers NEVER MENTIONED in The Third Wave or in their next book, Powershift - Nano-technology.

Two more things. First is their idea that the U.S. should take on a "new form" of democracy - one that incorporates direct (citizen) vote. Well, there are two reasons why this is unlikely to happen, although I hope I am wrong. One is the fact that we can't change the U.S. Constitution - The Framers made this virtually impossible to do. Next is the fact that political decisions in America's future will likely become more, not less, complicated. This puts the average American at odds from becoming political participants, being that they won't (in all due respect) understand the issues deep enough to make an informed decision. A "crash coarse" just won't do. As bad as the leaders in America are today, it would be even worse if the average working person got into the national political arena.

Last is an issue that was brought up by the authors in this book but then got fleshed-out in more detail in their next book, Powershift. It's their statement that the main struggle in the future will be over "the control and distribution of knowledge". This simply won't be the case....because it CAN'T happen, thanks to the Internet. Yes, certain governments (like China's) will try to control information but still, this is not The Central Concern of Tommorro. If anything, controlling knowledge was a thing of THE PAST, not the future (before Freedom of Information, M.D.s "controlling" medical knowledge, etc). More ideas and knowledge can only hurt those already in power and since the bulk of humanity is not in this position, the floodgates shall stay all of our benefit.

In the end, a great book, despite its overlength. Even if just for the first part, which covers all the effects of industrialism, this book is a must-read. We ALL live in the modern world, right ? So why not learn, in large part, how it came to be.....

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