Social realism and social idealism: Two competing orientations on the relation between theory, praxis, and objectivity
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Inquiry 21 (1-4):271 – 311 (1978)
Although the opposition between realism and idealism is exhibited in their different assumptions on objectivity, in the field of social theory, John Anderson's social realism and Jürgen Habermas's social idealism are united in their rejection of positivism's separation of theory from praxis. Social realism's agreement with social idealism's critique of Popper's ?positivism?, on logical, methodological, ethical and ontological grounds, does not mean, however, a dissolution of the conflict between these two traditions. Indeed, social idealism's and social realism's rejection of the fact/value dichotomy and synthesis of theory and praxis take different forms. Accordingly, social idealism advances a prescriptive ethic and rejects objectivity whilst social realism advances a descriptive ethic, and accepts objectivity. The strength of social realism, as an objective basis upon which positivist sociology might be reconstructed, lies in its refutation of social idealism. Through immanent critique, social idealism is shown to rest on an ontological mistake, a mistake of synthesis, a subjective mistake, and a substantive mistake
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
John Anderson (1962). Studies in Empirical Philosophy. [Sydney]Angus and Robertson.
John Burnet (1957). Early Greek Philosophy. New York, Meridian Books.
Fred R. Dallmayr (1972). Review Symposium on Habermas : II—Critical Theory Criticized: Habermas's Knowledge and Human Interests and its Aftermath. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 2 (1):211-229.
James Farganis (1975). A Preface to Critical Theory. Theory and Society 2 (1):483-508.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Hans G. Despain (2011). Karl Polanyi's Metacritique of the Liberal Creed: Reading Polanyi's Social Theory in Terms of Dialectical Critical Realism. Journal of Critical Realism 10 (3):277-302.
Wilbur Marshall Urban (1949). Beyond Realism and Idealism. London, Allen & Unwin.
Willem A. deVries (2009). Getting Beyond Idealisms. In Willem A. DeVries (ed.), Empiricism, Perceptual Knowledge, Normativity, and Realism: Essays on Wilfrid Sellars. Oxford University Press.
Robert P. Farell (2001). Feyerabend's Metaphysics: Process-Realism, or Voluntarist-Idealism? [REVIEW] Journal for General Philosophy of Science 32 (2):351-369.
Mark Basil Tanzer (1998). Heidegger on Realism and Idealism. Journal of Philosophical Research 23:95-111.
Michael Esfeld (2001). How a Social Theory of Meaning Can Be Connected with Realism. Facta Philosophica 4:111-131.
Robert B. Pippin (1989). Hegel's Idealism: The Satisfactions of Self-Consciousness. Cambridge University Press.
Isaac Reed (2008). Justifying Sociological Knowledge: From Realism to Interpretation. Sociological Theory 26 (2):101 - 129.
Howard Ponzer (2008). Reconciliation in Hegel's Speculative Idealism. Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy 13 (1):49-66.
John Hund (1998). Hegel's Break with Kant: The Leap From Individual Psychology to Sociology. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 28 (2):226-243.
Added to index2009-01-30
Total downloads10 ( #165,643 of 1,410,536 )
Recent downloads (6 months)2 ( #108,810 of 1,410,536 )
How can I increase my downloads?