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The Rational And The Social Rle Social Theory

The Rational and the Social  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: James Robert Brown
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317651308
Size: 24.16 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 206
View: 5570

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To paraphrase Marx, sociologists have only interpreted science; the point is to improve it. The Rational and the Social attempts both. It begins by sketching recent sociological approaches to science, notably the strong programme – Bloor’s ‘science of science’ and Barnes’s ‘finitism’ – and that of the ‘anthropologists in the lab’, Collins and Latour and Woolgar. The author argues that although sociological accounts are valuable in many respects, when morals are drawn about the structure and epistemology of science, they are badly flawed. In rejecting the sociological theory of science, it is not necessary to conclude that science develops without reference to the social. James Robert Brown argues for an alternative account. He proposes a novel way of viewing the history of science as a source of evidence for how to do good science and argues that the most important aspect of methodology is that it is comparative. Rival theories are evaluated by comparison and the contribution of the social to this process is inevitable and should be acknowledged. This is the challenge to science.

Rationality And The Social Sciences Rle Social Theory

Rationality and the Social Sciences  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: S.I. Benn
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317651278
Size: 70.28 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 422
View: 4913

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The concepts of rationality that are used by social scientists in the formation of hypotheses, models and explanations are explored in this collection of original papers by a number of distinguished philosophers and social scientists. The aim of the book is to display the variety of the concepts used, to show the different roles they play in theories of very different kinds over a wide range of disciplines, including economics, sociology, psychology, political science and anthropology, and to assess the explanatory and predictive power that a theory can draw from such concepts.

Choice Rationality And Social Theory Rle Social Theory

Choice  Rationality and Social Theory  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Barry Hindess
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317652134
Size: 39.67 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 138
View: 677

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Choice, Rationality and Social Theory is a powerful rebuttal of the remarkably influential theories underlying 'rational choice analysis'. Rational choice analysis maintains that social life is principally to be explained as the outcome of rational choices on the part of individual actors. Adherents of this view include not only philosophers, political scientists and sociologists, but also prominent politicians in Western governments – notably of the United Kingdom and the United States. Rational choice analysis is said to be rigorous, capable of great technical sophistication, and able to generate powerful explanations on the basis of a few, relatively simple theoretical assumptions. Barry Hindess argues that the theory is seriously deficient, first, because there are important actors in the modern world other than human individuals, and second, because it says nothing about those processes of deliberation that play an important part in actors' decisions. The use of highly questionable assumptions about actors and their rationality has the effect of closing off important areas of intellectual inquiry and ignoring the reality of certain forms of thought and the social conditions on which they depend. These points are established through detailed examination of the concepts of the actor and of rationality – providing an overall argument that constitutes a serious challenge to any adherent of rational choice analysis.

Theories Of Industrial Society Rle Social Theory

Theories of Industrial Society  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Richard Badham
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317650522
Size: 76.63 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 190
View: 1211

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The concept of industrial society plays a dominant role in the social sciences. The ‘Great Divide’ between pre-industrial and industrial societies is commonly assumed to be the main bridge separating modern societies from the past, and distinguishing ‘developed’ from ‘undeveloped’ states in the present era. In history, economics, politics and sociology the concept of industrial society underlies a wide variety of discussions, particularly those relating to economic development and social progress. Outside academic writing, too, the concept exerts a great deal of influence. In the developing world, there is a widespread concern to ‘industrialise’, whilst in the developed world there is growing uneasiness as to whether ‘industrialisation’ is beneficial or not, but still the concept is central. This book examines critically the concept of industrial society, its pervasiveness and influence. It reviews all the major theories of industrial society and the research into the changing character of post-industrial societies. It argues that the decision to use the concept severely restricts the social imagination, and that the concept becomes increasingly less useful as criticism of the equating of industrialisation with social progress grows.

Choice Rationality And Social Theory Rle Social Theory

Choice  Rationality and Social Theory  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Barry Hindess
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317652142
Size: 34.46 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 138
View: 6015

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Choice, Rationality and Social Theory is a powerful rebuttal of the remarkably influential theories underlying 'rational choice analysis'. Rational choice analysis maintains that social life is principally to be explained as the outcome of rational choices on the part of individual actors. Adherents of this view include not only philosophers, political scientists and sociologists, but also prominent politicians in Western governments – notably of the United Kingdom and the United States. Rational choice analysis is said to be rigorous, capable of great technical sophistication, and able to generate powerful explanations on the basis of a few, relatively simple theoretical assumptions. Barry Hindess argues that the theory is seriously deficient, first, because there are important actors in the modern world other than human individuals, and second, because it says nothing about those processes of deliberation that play an important part in actors' decisions. The use of highly questionable assumptions about actors and their rationality has the effect of closing off important areas of intellectual inquiry and ignoring the reality of certain forms of thought and the social conditions on which they depend. These points are established through detailed examination of the concepts of the actor and of rationality – providing an overall argument that constitutes a serious challenge to any adherent of rational choice analysis.

Social Theory And Political Practice Rle Social Theory

Social Theory and Political Practice  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Brian Fay
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317652282
Size: 68.57 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 120
View: 5029

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This book examines the question of how our knowledge of social life affects, and ought to affect, our way of living it. In so doing, it critically discusses two epistemological models of social science – the positivist and the interpretive – from the viewpoint of the political theories which, it is argued, are implicit in these models; moreover, it proposes a third model – the critical – which is organised around an explicit account of the relation between social theory and practical life. The book has the special merit of being a good overview of the principal current ideas about the relation between social theory and political practice, as well as an attempt at providing a new and more satisfactory account of this relationship. To accomplish this task, it synthesises work from the analytic philosophy of social science with that of the neo-Marxism of the Frankfurt school.

The Shaping Of Socio Economic Systems Rle Social Theory

The Shaping of Socio Economic Systems  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Thomas Baumgartner
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317651154
Size: 17.85 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 370
View: 5181

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Actor-systems dynamics is an innovative, multidisciplinary methodology for investigating and analyzing social struggles over economic resources and the related interplay between economic and socio-political institutions and processes. The authors, sociologists and economists, offer a systemic perspective on contemporary socio-economic issues such as economic crisis, unemployment, inflation, economic democracy and development; in their analyses, they identify several of the key factors that drive people to interact, to initiate change and transformation as well as to resist such change. Major underlying themes in the book are: Conflict over the distribution of economic resources and economic policies and institutions; the structural bases of economic inequality and conflict; the shaping and reshaping of socio-economic institutions, and the contradictions, conflicts and instabilities evoked by such developments; the failure of orthodox economic theories, including Keynesianism, in the face of recurrent economic crises and instabilities; the development and application of an open, dynamic actor-oriented systems theory – grounded in the social sciences – addressing complex socio-economic phenomena in ways diverging substantially from conventional economics. All in all, the papers collected here deal, on the one hand, with social power, conflict, and struggle concerning economic resources and institutions and, on the other hand, the structural and other factors which drive powering initiatives, conflict, and social innovation and transformation. The book is addressed to a broad spectrum of social and managerial scientists concerned with socio-economic issues, institutions, and development.

The Hermeneutic Imagination Rle Social Theory

The Hermeneutic Imagination  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Josef Bleicher
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317651804
Size: 24.26 MB
Format: PDF
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 180
View: 7670

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In his previous book, Contemporary Hermeneutics, Josef Bleicher offered an introduction to the subject, locating it mainly within the philosophy of social science, and looking at the profound impact it is having on a wide range of intellectual pursuits. This book follows on from this and expounds the author's view that the development of the hermeneutic imagination is an indispensable condition for reflexive sociological work and emancipatory social practice. Dr Bleicher examines the various approaches to sociology – empiricist, functionalist, structuralist, interpretive, critical – by reference to a hermeneutic paradigm, and shows how the hermeneutic imagination leads to a redirection in sociology, away from scientistic presuppositions and towards an awareness of the dialogue which links the subject and object in the study of social phenomena. He argues that by allowing the hermeneutic imagination to develop, it is possible to counter the steering of social processes on the basis of technocratic imperatives, and to provide a rational anticipation of a better future.

Agency And Structure Rle Social Theory

Agency and Structure  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Piotr Sztompka
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317652592
Size: 53.22 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 328
View: 2147

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A striking feature of the human condition is its dual, contradictory, inherently split character; on the one hand, autonomy and freedom; on the other, constraint and dependence on social structure. This volume addresses this central problem of the linkage between human action and social structure in sociological and social science theory. Contributions cover several different approaches to the agency-structure problematic, and represent the work of a number of leading international sociologists. Their efforts point to a reorientation of social theory, both on philosophical and methodological levels.

Social Theory And The Family Rle Social Theory

Social Theory and the Family  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: D.H.J. Morgan
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317651065
Size: 73.11 MB
Format: PDF
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 286
View: 446

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An experienced teacher of courses on the sociology of the family, D.H.J. Morgan frequently encounters a gulf between ‘the family’ as it is often treated in sociological texts and ‘the family’ as it is usually experienced. In this book he provides an extremely valuable bridge between the two by presenting an encounter between some of the mainstream theoretical approaches and concerns in the sociology of the family and what he terms as ‘critical’ perspectives on the family. This is the first British book on a basic social institution that takes into account the literature outside the mainstream of sociological analysis that deals with the subject. The first half examines the varieties of functional theorizing embedded in many texts, the over-concern with the question of kinship in modern society and the treatment of the family as a ‘success story’. In the second half Dr Morgan presents a critical account of some of the counter-theories: those derived from the radical feminist movement, the existential psycho-analytical approach associated with Laing, and the critical analyses of sex in an advanced capitalist society. A final chapter suggests some themes and orientations, derived from this encounter of theoretical approaches and modern perspectives, which can be usefully developed.

Knowledge And Politics Rle Social Theory

Knowledge and Politics  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Volker Meja
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317651634
Size: 18.66 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 324
View: 5356

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Karl Mannheim’s Ideology and Utopia has been a profoundly provocative book. The debate about politics and social knowledge that was spawned by its original publication in 1929 attracted the most promising younger scholars, some of whom shaped the thought of several generations. The book became a focus for a debate on the methodological and epistemological problems confronting German social science. More than thirty major papers were published in response to Mannheim’s text. Writers such as Hannah Arendt, Ernst Robert Curtius, Max Horkheimer, Herbert Marcuse, Helmuth Plessner, Hans Speier and Paul Tillich were among the contributors. Their positions varied from seeing in the sociology of knowledge a sophisticated reformulation of the materialist conception of history to linking its popularity to a betrayal of Marxism. The English publication in 1936 defined formative issues for two generations of sociological self-reflection. Knowledge and Politics provides an introduction to the dispute and reproduces the leading contributions. It sheds new light on one of the greatest controversies that have marked German social science in the past hundred years.

Conservative Capitalism In Britain And The United States Rle Social Theory

Conservative Capitalism in Britain and the United States  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Raymond Plant
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317651995
Size: 54.94 MB
Format: PDF
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 358
View: 411

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The shock waves of conservative advances have reached into every corner of American and British politics. Parties of the right have prospered, while parties of the left have stumbled, retreated, and are now regrouping. The agenda for both right and left is set by the terms of the free-market doctrines that have displaced the post-war consensus politics of liberal capitalism. This volume describes and challenges the ideological basis of the free-market right. Though critiques of the policies of the Reagan and Thatcher governments are hardly in short supply, this major new study offers the most thorough and up-to-date analysis available. No other book considers in such depth conservative ideas and policies on both sides of the Atlantic. It provides the first clear account of the distinction between conservative and other forms of capitalism. It also examines the fault lines dividing opposing camps within conservative capitalism and their consequences for domestic policy in Britain and the US. Linking political theory and public policy, it is one of the few critical appraisals of the New Right based on a clear understanding of what the arguments for the free market really are. Finally, the authors demonstrate what the left needs to learn from its failures, how to remould its understanding of the relationship between politics and the market, and how to recapture the lost initiative.

The Personal And The Political Rle Social Theory

The Personal and the Political  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Paul Halmos
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317651456
Size: 45.66 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 198
View: 3405

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Are human misery, poverty and despair a result of personal inadequacy or social injustice? Therefore is the solution to these problems psychotherapy or political action? In one of the most important books on social work for a decade, Paul Halmos tries to resolve a dilemma which many social workers experience acutely – the conflict between a desire to help those in need and a fear that, by doing so, they merely support a political system which should, itself, be changed. Such a dilemma was highlighted during the sixties when 'casework' and personal counselling became discredited by the 'rediscovery' of widespread poverty and inequality in western society. To many the only solution seemed to be urgent and radical political action. For Professor Halmos the realities are more complex – an exclusive preoccupation with either personal or political solutions is unlikely to prove fruitful – what is needed is a dual sensitivity and balance. Yet for the author it is the political solution which carries within it the greater risk and he warns of the dangers inherent in the total politicization of social concerns. He argues that social action can become political action and ultimately political control.

Talcott Parsons And The Social Image Of Man Rle Social Theory

Talcott Parsons and the Social Image of Man  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Ken Menzies
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317650549
Size: 37.96 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 204
View: 1098

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This account of Talcott Parsons’s work clarifies his basic concepts and sets out their correlation. Dr Menzies believes that the philosophy of science working within the confines of the analytic-synthetic distinction tends to provide a rigid, static and sterile account of theories. He presents a more dynamic account of the scientific enterprise in order to come to grips with the amorphous nature of theory, and to provide the basic framework for his analysis of Parsons. Menzies argues that Parsons’s central problematic in The Structure of Social Action is utilitarianism in general and the classical economists’ account of the rise of capitalism in particular, and as such the book is not a reconciliation of positivistic and idealistic elements and these run throughout his subsequent work. Two major strands in Parsons’s work – the social action theory and the systems theory (structural-functionalism) – are separated and examined individually.

Structure Interaction And Social Theory Rle Social Theory

Structure  Interaction and Social Theory  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Derek Layder
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317650670
Size: 21.65 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 164
View: 377

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A central problem in contemporary social theory is that of providing an account of social interaction that does justice both to the self-monitoring capacities of the individuals involved and to the society that ‘frames’ the interaction. This book attempts to resolve this problem, arguing for an objectivist or ‘structuralist’ account which does not undervalue the importance of the indexical and negotiated aspects of interaction, and which takes seriously the Marxist-rationalist critique of empiricism and humanism and the associated idea that society should be treated as a supra-individual, preconstituted and constraining object of scientific analysis. First, Dr Layder pinpoints certain of the strengths and weaknesses of various schools of thought: social psychology (scrutinized in both its sociological and psychological forms), sociology, the Marxist-rationalist approach. Whilst rejecting the mechanistic or naively deterministic theories which are often associated with an objectivist stance, he argues that the productive activities of situated actors must be understood as existing in an articulated relationship with, and within, sets of preconstituted contextual constraints. This thesis is illustrated conceptually by the development of a framework which distinguishes two types and levels of social structure, with different modes of production and reproduction, and empirically by an analysis of aspects of interaction in the occupation of acting.

Reason And Freedom In Sociological Thought Rle Social Theory

Reason and Freedom in Sociological Thought  RLE Social Theory  PDF
Author: Frank Hearn
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1000155838
Size: 27.43 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
Category : Social Science
Languages : en
Pages : 228
View: 3512

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How has reason, believed since the Enlightenment to be the ally of freedom in the search for a better, more humanly satisfying world, been reduced to a technical rationality that has actually impoverished the bases of human freedom? What might be the options and obligations for sociologists who wish to restore reason to its proper status? Working within the tradition of C. Wright Mills and Jurgen Habermas, Frank Hearn sets out to answer these questions. He surveys the treatment of the relation between reason and freedom in both the classical tradition (especially the writings of Saint-Simon, Comte, Durkheim, Marx, Weber, and Freud) and an increasingly significant segment of social thought and criticism (and, for example, in the contrasting visions of Daniel Bell and Christopher Lasch.) He then analyses both the concrete social and historical forms of expression taken by what Mills calls 'rationality without reason' and their impact on individual autonomy and the freedoms associated with democratic politics. Finally, he develops Mills's and Habermas's claims that the cultivation of democratic publics and a critical social theory committed to a vibrant public life are indispensable to the protection and revitalization of the values of reason and freedom and of the practices they entail. This book updates and enriches Mills's influential argument by demonstrating its affinity with critical theory, by showing its contributions to a critical understanding of the classical tradition, and by showing its implications for contemporary social, political, and economic developments.