cover of book

Communication and Community: Implications of Martin Buber's Dialogue
by Ronald C. Arnett
foreword by Maurice Friedman
Southern Illinois University Press, 1986
eISBN: 978-0-8093-8319-1 | Paper: 978-0-8093-1284-9
Library of Congress Classification B3213.B84A87 1986
Dewey Decimal Classification 181.06


Martin Buber’s work suggests that real life begins with two individ­uals engaged in dialogue, not just taking care of one’s own needs as described in social Darwinism.

Arnett argues that the end of the age of abundance demands that we give up the communica­tive strategies of the past and seek to work together in the midst of limited resources and an uncertain future. Today’s situa­tion calls for an unwavering commitment to Buber’s “narrow ridge” concern for both self and community.

Arnett illustrates the narrow ridge definition of interpersonal communication with rich ex­amples. His vignettes demon­strate effective and ineffective approaches to human communi­ty. An effective approach, he makes clear, incorporates not only openness to others’ points of view but also a willingness to be persuaded.

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