What I have been talking about is knowledge. Knowledge, perhaps, is not a good word for this. Perhaps one would rather say my image of the world. Knowledge has an implication of validity, of truth. What I am talking about is what I believe to be true; my subjective knowledge. It is this Image that largely governs my behavior. In about an hour I shall rise, leave my office, go to a car, drive down to my home, play with the children, have supper, perhaps read a book, go to bed. I can predict this behavior with a fair degree to accuracy because of the knowledge which I have: the knowledge that I have a home not far away, to which I am accustomed to go. The prediction, of course, may not be fulfilled. There may be an earthquake, I may have an accident with the car on the way home, I may get home to find that my family has been suddenly called away. A hundred and one things may happen. As each event occurs, however, it alters my knowledge structure or my image. And as it alters my image, I behave accordingly. The first proposition of this work, therefore, is that behavior depends on the image.

Kenneth Ewart Boulding (1910-1993) American economist, educator, poet, philosopher
The Image: Knowledge in Life and Society, ch. 1 (1956)

Added on 21-Oct-13 | Last updated 21-Oct-13
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