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  1. Cosmopolitanism and the Uses of Tradition: Robert Redfield and Alternative Visions of Modernization During the Cold War*: Nicole Sackley.Nicole Sackley - 2012 - Modern Intellectual History 9 (3):565-595.
    The history of the rise and fall of “modernization theory” after World War II has been told as a story of Talcott Parsons, Walt Rostow, and other US social scientists who built a general theory in US universities and sought to influence US foreign policy. However, in the 1950s anthropologist Robert Redfield and his Comparative Civilizations project at the University of Chicago produced an alternative vision of modernization—one that emphasized intellectual conversation across borders, the interrelation of theory and fieldwork, and (...)
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  • The Language of Social Science in Everyday Life.Peter Mandler - 2019 - History of the Human Sciences 32 (1):66-82.
    An ethnographic or ethnomethodological turn in the history of the human sciences has been a Holy Grail at least since Cooter and Pumphrey called for it in 1994, but it has been little realized in practice. This article sketches out some ways to explore the reception, use and/or co-production of scientific knowledge using material generated by mediators such as mass-market paperbacks, radio, TV and especially newspapers. It then presents some preliminary findings, tracing the prevalence and, to a lesser extent, use (...)
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  • The Grudging Modernizer: A Trip to the Middle East and Cold War Social Science.Matteo Bortolini - 2021 - Minerva 59 (2):261-284.
    The postwar era is generally recognized as a unique moment of impetuous growth of the social sciences, due to the interest of Western internationalist elites in the development of a set of pragmatically-oriented intellectual tools that could be of use in the confrontation between the self-proclaimed “Free World,” the Soviet bloc, and emerging postcolonial nations. In the last twenty years, however, doubts about the impact of the Cold War syndrome on the development of ideas, methods, and infrastructures of Western social (...)
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  • Keynes Goes Nuclear: Thomas Schelling and the Macroeconomic Origins of Strategic Stability.Benjamin Wilson - 2021 - Modern Intellectual History 18 (1):171-201.
    Among the most important ideas in Cold War nuclear strategy and arms control was that of “stability”—the notion that by protecting weapons for use in retaliation, the superpowers would be less likely to fight a thermonuclear war. Conventional wisdom among strategists and historians of strategy has long held that stability was inherent to the logic of rational nuclear deterrence. This essay shows the conventional wisdom to be mistaken. It examines the technical practice of Thomas Schelling, who introduced the stability idea (...)
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  • The Con Man as Model Organism: The Methodological Roots of Erving Goffman’s Dramaturgical Self.Michael Pettit - 2011 - History of the Human Sciences 24 (2):138-154.
    This article offers a historical analysis of the relationship between the practice of participant-observation among American sociologists and Erving Goffman’s dramaturgical model of the self. He was a social scientist who privileged ethnography in the field over the laboratory experiment, the survey questionnaire, or the mental test. His goal was a natural history of communication among humans. Rather than rely upon standardizing technologies for measurement, Goffman tried to obtain accurate recordings of human behavior through secretive observations. During the 1950s, he (...)
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  • ‘This War for Men’s Minds’: The Birth of a Human Science in Cold War America.Janet Martin-Nielsen - 2010 - History of the Human Sciences 23 (5):131-155.
    The past decade has seen an explosion of work on the history of the human sciences during the Cold War. This work, however, does not engage with one of the leading human sciences of the period: linguistics. This article begins to rectify this knowledge gap by investigating the influence of linguistics and its concept of study, language, on American public, political and intellectual life during the postwar and early Cold War years. I show that language emerged in three frameworks in (...)
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  • Democracy and Expertise in the Lippmann–Terman Controversy.Tom Arnold-Forster - 2019 - Modern Intellectual History 16 (2):561-592.
    Historians often interpret American political thought in the early twentieth century through an opposition between the technocratic power of expertise and the deliberative promise of democracy, respectively represented by Walter Lippmann and John Dewey. This article explores Lippmann's concurrent controversy with Lewis Terman about intelligence testing, in which Dewey also intervened. It argues that the Lippmann–Terman controversy dramatized and developed a range of ideas about the politics of expertise in a democracy, which centered on explaining how democratic citizens might engage (...)
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  • Getting Over It? From the Social to the Human Sciences.Dorothy Ross - 2014 - Modern Intellectual History 11 (1):191-209.