Social Science

Advances in Social Theory and Methodology (RLE Social Theory)

Toward an Integration of Micro- and Macro-Sociologies

Author: Karin Knorr Cetina,A.V. Cicourel

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317652622

Category: Social Science

Page: 332

View: 2784

After a period in which sociology was torn apart by the polarized claims of micro- and macro-methodology, an increasing number of sociologists are now attempting a fusion of the two approaches. In this volume, some of the most distinguished sociologists set out possible resolutions of the debate. Each of the chapters, placed in perspective by the editors’ prologue, approaches the problem from a unique angle. Aaron Cicourel argues for a macro-basis of social interaction; Randall Collins shows how the macro consists of an aggregate of micro-episodes; Troy Duster presents a methodological model for generating a systematic data base across different contexts of social action through his examination of the procedures governing screening for inherited disorders. Rom Harré launches a philosophical attack on what he sees as a spurious bifurcation of micro- and macro-levels. Anthony Giddens explores the problem of unintended consequences, and Gilles Fauconnier, through a depiction of Jesuitical casuistry, shows how vital clues to macro-structure can be elicited from the micro-phenomenon of language. Victor Lidz continues the language theme in his chapter on the implications of advances in linguistic theory for macro-systems theory. Niklas Luhmann illustrates the micro-macro problem by the communication about law in interaction systems. The theory of historical materialism is reassessed by Jürgen Habermas. Taking the example of Renault and electric vehicles, Michel Callon and Bruno Latour investigate how micro-actor status is attained and the sociologist’s involvement in this transformation. Finally, Pierre Bourdieu, writing on men and machines, analyses the historical imperatives that create the complex relation between man and his environment.
Science

Hazards in a Fickle Environment: Bangladesh

Author: C.E. Haque

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9401151555

Category: Science

Page: 381

View: 9904

This book evolved from a collaborative research project between the University of Manitoba, Canada and Jahangirnagar University, Bangladesh, which commenced in 1984 to study the problems of river channel migration, rural population displacement and land relocation in Bangladesh. The study was sponsored by the International Development Research Center (IDRC), based in Ottawa, Canada. It was through this project that I started my journey into disaster research more than thirteen years ago with basically an applied problem of massive magnitude in Bangladesh. I spent two- and-a half-years, in two stages, in Bangladesh's riparian villages to collect the empirical data for this study. Then the growing disaster discourse throughout the 1980s, especially its conceptual and theoretical areas, drew me in further, gluing my interest to these issues. In the 1990s, during my research and teaching at Brandon University, Canada, I realized that, despite the large body of literature on natural disasters, there was no work that synthesized the approaches to nature-triggered disasters in a comprehensive form, with sufficient empirical substantiation. In addition, despite the great deal of attention given to disasters in Bangladesh, I found no detailed reference book on the topic. Natural hazards and disasters, in my view, should be studied under a holistic framework encompassing the natural environment, society and individuals. Overreaction to the limitations of technocratic-scientific approaches-the control and prevention of physical events through specialized knowledge and skills-has resulted in a call for "taking the naturalness out of natural disasters.
Computers

The Closed World

Computers and the Politics of Discourse in Cold War America

Author: Paul N. Edwards

Publisher: MIT Press

ISBN: 9780262550284

Category: Computers

Page: 440

View: 1678

The Closed World offers a radically new alternative to the canonical histories of computers and cognitive science. Arguing that we can make sense of computers as tools only when we simultaneously grasp their roles as metaphors and political icons, Paul Edwards shows how Cold War social and cultural contexts shaped emerging computer technology -- and were transformed, in turn, by information machines. The Closed World explores three apparently disparate histories -- the history of American global power, the history of computing machines, and the history of subjectivity in science and culture -- through the lens of the American political imagination. In the process, it reveals intimate links between the military projects of the Cold War, the evolution of digital computers, and the origins of cybernetics, cognitive psychology, and artificial intelligence. Edwards begins by describing the emergence of a "closed-world discourse" of global surveillance and control through high-technology military power. The Cold War political goal of "containment" led to the SAGE continental air defense system, Rand Corporation studies of nuclear strategy, and the advanced technologies of the Vietnam War. These and other centralized, computerized military command and control projects -- for containing world-scale conflicts -- helped closed-world discourse dominate Cold War political decisions. Their apotheosis was the Reagan-era plan for a " Star Wars" space-based ballistic missile defense. Edwards then shows how these military projects helped computers become axial metaphors in psychological theory. Analyzing the Macy Conferences on cybernetics, the Harvard Psycho-Acoustic Laboratory, and the early history of artificial intelligence, he describes the formation of a "cyborg discourse." By constructing both human minds and artificial intelligences as information machines, cyborg discourse assisted in integrating people into the hyper-complex technological systems of the closed world. Finally, Edwards explores the cyborg as political identity in science fiction -- from the disembodied, panoptic AI of 2001: A Space Odyssey, to the mechanical robots of Star Wars and the engineered biological androids of Blade Runner -- where Information Age culture and subjectivity were both reflected and constructed. Inside Technology series
Psychology

How Things Shape the Mind

A Theory of Material Engagement

Author: Lambros Malafouris,Colin Renfrew

Publisher: MIT Press

ISBN: 026231567X

Category: Psychology

Page: 320

View: 8516

An increasingly influential school of thought in cognitive science views the mind as embodied, extended, and distributed rather than brain-bound or "all in the head." This shift in perspective raises important questions about the relationship between cognition and material culture, posing major challenges for philosophy, cognitive science, archaeology, and anthropology. In How Things Shape the Mind, Lambros Malafouris proposes a cross-disciplinary analytical framework for investigating the ways in which things have become cognitive extensions of the human body. Using a variety of examples and case studies, he considers how those ways might have changed from earliest prehistory to the present. Malafouris's Material Engagement Theory definitively adds materiality -- the world of things, artifacts, and material signs -- into the cognitive equation. His account not only questions conventional intuitions about the boundaries and location of the human mind but also suggests that we rethink classical archaeological assumptions about human cognitive evolution.
Social Science

Sociological Theory: What Went Wrong?

Diagnosis and Remedies

Author: Nicos Mouzelis

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134901224

Category: Social Science

Page: 236

View: 8752

Social theory is open to many passing currents. Claims to originality tend to thrive and past achievements are often ignored. In Sociologiocal Theory: What Went Wrong? Mouzelis claims that "problems" currently being isolated are not really problems, and that "achievements" claimed are little more than pretensions. He argues that we have been premature to dismiss thinkers from the late 1950s and early 1960s and that we can build on their ideas to produce a more effective, more relevant social theory. Written with precision and with clarity, Sociological Theory: What Went Wrong? is a compelling analysis of the central problems of sociological theory today and of the means to resolve them.

Sociology

Author: N.A

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category:

Page: N.A

View: 8937

Social Science

The Place of Media Power

Pilgrims and Witnesses of the Media Age

Author: Nick Couldry

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134614071

Category: Social Science

Page: 256

View: 1860

This fascinating study focuses on an area neglected in previous studies of the media: the meetings between ordinary people and the media. Couldry explores what happens when people who normally consume the media witness media processes in action, or even become the object of media attention themselves.
Social Science

Choice, Rationality and Social Theory (RLE Social Theory)

Author: Barry Hindess

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317652134

Category: Social Science

Page: 142

View: 8480

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.
Electronic journals

Annual Review of Psychology

Author: Calvin Perry Stone

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Electronic journals

Page: N.A

View: 1270

Publishes original critical reviews of the significant literature and current developments in psychology.
Psychology

Annual Review of Psychology

1997

Author: Janet T. Spence

Publisher: Annual Reviews

ISBN: 9780824302481

Category: Psychology

Page: 742

View: 8163

Social Science

Politics, Geography and Social Stratification (Routledge Library Editions: Political Geography)

Author: Keith Hoggart,Eleonore Kofman

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 131762730X

Category: Social Science

Page: 292

View: 4666

The major themes explored in this book, originally published in 1986, are the political resonances of social stratification and change; the growing distance between the working class and the providers of social services; and the role of locality in social reproduction. The relationship between society and space is the subject of a major debate in developed countries. The key questions are about just how far spatial patterns and local conditions affect social relations and stratification and how far they shape collective action, electoral responses and class.
Social Science

Social Theory and the Family (RLE Social Theory)

Author: D.H.J. Morgan

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317651057

Category: Social Science

Page: 290

View: 1612

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.
Political Science

Unruly Clients in the Atlantic Zone of Costa Rica

A Study of how Bureaucrats Try and Fail to Transform Gatekeepers, Communists, and Preachers Into Ideal Beneficiaries

Author: Pieter G. de Vries

Publisher: Purdue University Press

ISBN: N.A

Category: Political Science

Page: 250

View: 1492

This book attempts to show how development discourse -- while extremely powerful in legitimizing the actions of experts -- is appropriated, transmuted and (re)deployed by different groups of actors including administrators, farmers and field-level workers. How does a social worker from the land reform institute deal with a peasant leader who blames him, as a representative of the state, because the development programme he has helped to initiate has led to debts among a majority of the would-be beneficiaries? How does a settler convince a credit assistant that the loss of his maize harvest was due to heavy rains and not because he spent his credit on consumer goods or in the local canteen? It is argued that such issues are not trivial and instead raise important theoretical questions about the relationship between development thinking, institutional practices of social control and peasant strategies of accommodation and resistance.
Social Science

Contemporary Sociology and Policy Analysis

The New Sociology of Public Policy

Author: Roger Sibeon

Publisher: Liverpool Academic Press

ISBN: N.A

Category: Social Science

Page: 197

View: 7882

Contemporary Sociology and Policy Analysis cuts across institutionalized academic divisions in so far that it introduces students to theoretical and methodological developments in sociology and social theory. It demonstrates that those developments have significance for the discipline of public policy and policy analysis. This book applies the new conceptual frameworks in sociology to the analysis of public policy. A feature of the book is that importance is attached to the exploration of connections between sociology, contemporary social theory and public policy analyisis.
Business & Economics

Social theory and philosophy for information systems

Author: John Mingers,Leslie Willcocks

Publisher: Wiley

ISBN: 9780470851173

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 455

View: 8315

In recent years information systems has evolved from a discipline based primarily on positivist, statistically-oriented research into a more pluralist discipline that allows debates about research methodologies; consideration of a range of social theories and philosophies; and more critical analyses and understandings of alternative approaches. This book has the intention of broadening research within the IS field. It collects together into one volume new critical assessments of major social theorists, philosophers and currents of thought. Detailed coverage is given to: functionalism and neo-functionalism, phenomenology (Husserl and Heidegger), critical theory (Adorno and Habermas), hermeneutics, Foucault, Giddens, actor network theory, social shaping of technology, critical realism and complexity theory. The book provides a vital, accessible and critically authoritative narrative on the relevance of these modes of thinking to information systems research. Contributors include: Debra Howcroft, Minh Q. Huynh, Fernando M. Ilharco, Lucas D. Introna, Matthew Jones, Heinz K. Klein, Allen S. Lee, M. Lynne Markus, Yasmin Merali, John Mingers, Nathalie Mitev, Kamal Munir, Michael D. Myers, Wanda Orlikowski, Stephen K. Probert, Leslie P. Willcocks, Melanie Wilson.
Social Science

Handbook of Social Theory

Author: George Ritzer,Barry Smart

Publisher: SAGE

ISBN: 9780761941873

Category: Social Science

Page: 552

View: 2408

This book is an indispensable resource for anyone interested in the roots, current debates and future development of social theory. It draws together a team of outstanding international scholars, and presents an authoritative and panoramic critical survey of the field. The volume is divided into three parts. The first part examines the classical tradition. Included here are critical discussions of Comte, Spencer, Marx, Durkheim, Weber, Simmel, Mead, Freud, Mannheim and classical feminist thought. This part conveys the classical tradition as a living resource in social theory, it demonstrates not only the critical significance of classical writings, but their continuing relevance. The second part moves on t
Social Science

Situating social theory

Author: Tim May

Publisher: Open Univ Pr

ISBN: N.A

Category: Social Science

Page: 256

View: 8867

Political Science

Approaches and Methodologies in the Social Sciences

A Pluralist Perspective

Author: Donatella Della Porta,Michael Keating

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1139474596

Category: Political Science

Page: N.A

View: 1023

A revolutionary textbook introducing masters and doctoral students to the major research approaches and methodologies in the social sciences. Written by an outstanding set of scholars, and derived from successful course teaching, this volume will empower students to choose their own approach to research, to justify this approach, and to situate it within the discipline. It addresses questions of ontology, epistemology and philosophy of social science, and proceeds to issues of methodology and research design essential for producing a good research proposal. It also introduces researchers to the main issues of debate and contention in the methodology of social sciences, identifying commonalities, historic continuities and genuine differences.