Do all of the major theories agree that there is potential for human progress?Do all of the major theories agree that there is potential for human progress?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that some level of clarification is needed here.  If we are seeking to include all major theories that encompass all intellectual thought, then the answer would be no.  I would say that theories such as post-modernism and modernism do not focus much of their energies on human progress.  If anything, these theories are exploring the aspect of the human condition that lies outside the stated and socially accepted values of human progress.  I think that there has to be some limiting function in the question to narrow down the scope being discussed.  On some level, there are theories that argue for human advancement and progress being possible.  However, to suggest that all theories do so doesn't make sense because some theories seek to explain why cruelty exists and why individuals do what they do, which in its explanation can help to reveal a lack of progress.  For the most part, theories of intellectual development do agree that there is potential for human progress.  However, I am a bit leery of extending that to all theories.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator
All major theories in any field are never going to agree on anything, so I think it's safe to say that the answer is no. Personally, I do feel like humans have potential for progress and I hope they do progress. Most major theories beleive that we have not reached our full potential as humans or humanity yet.
lrwilliams eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I am a little confused by what major theories you are referencing, however I would think that most any theory about humans or human nature would think that humans have the capacity to progress. I think if you look at the history of mankind this is seen throughout the history.