An open society is one that enjoys transparent governments that meet the needs and opinions of the population. Thoughts are not imposed unilaterally, but a democratic organization is carried out where the freedoms of citizens are also taken into account.
The open society takes into account the citizens who belong to it. It is a type of society in which there is continuous dialogue and the intention is to make decisions that represent the maximum benefit for all.
The French philosopher Henri Bergson was the one who originated this term in 1932. He focused on defining this concept taking into account the main characteristics that sustain it. For example, the defense of human rights, the need for the existence of people's freedoms and the actions of governments to carry out a two-way dialogue with them.
An open society will always be more fruitful in the sense that it will take into account the opinions and needs of the people. This means that they can decide for themselves, do not feel oppressed and avoid an authoritarian regime where the impositions are constant.
What are the main characteristics of an open society?
These are the most outstanding characteristics of an open society:
- They are societies where the government does not impose or force citizens to decide based on their beliefs.
- Open societies are characterized by being tolerant, respectful and conciliatory.
- The suggestions of society are accepted and changes and modifications are carried out to improve the lives of citizens, as well as the social structure.
- The individuals that make up these societies are more committed, they feel more listened to, satisfied and active.
- Social welfare is a priority in an open society.
- There is no unilateral dialogue, but a closer and more tolerant form of communication is created to learn about the proposals of the citizens.
Differences between an open and closed society
These are the main differences that exist:
- Open society: It is one in which the freedoms of citizens are respected, there is a two-way dialogue and their proposals are taken into account. There is no imposition of criteria by the rulers.
- Closed society: It is the opposite type of society where citizens do not have individual freedom to make decisions, but feel coerced and subjected by the wishes and beliefs of the governments that lead them. Dialogue is one-way at all times when we speak of closed societies.
Example of an open company
When we talk about this type of society in which the rights and freedoms of citizens are taken into account, we can point out that a democracy would be the most illustrative example.
On the contrary, dictatorships are the most prominent example of what a closed society would be.
In any case, the concept of an open society goes even further than those of democracy or dictatorship.