" In this volume, the paradoxes, impossibilities, and singular chances that haunt the necessity of "living together" are evoked in Derrida's essay "Avowing--The Impossible: 'Returns,' Repentance, and Reconciliation," around which the ...
With the collapse of the bipolar system of global rivalry that dominated world politics after the Second World War, and in an age that is seeing the return of "ethnic cleansing" and "identity politics," the question of violence, in all of its multiple ramifications, imposes itself with renewed urgency. Rather than concentrating on the socioeconomic or political backgrounds of these historical changes, the contributors to this volume rethink the _concept_ of violence, both in itself and in relation to the formation (...) and transformation of identities, whether individual or collective, political or cultural, religious or secular. In particular, they subject the notion of self-determination to stringent scrutiny: is it to be understood as a value that excludes violence, in principle if not always in practice? Or is its relation to violence more complex and, perhaps, more sinister? Reconsideration of the concepts, the practice, and even the critique of violence requires an exploration of the implications and limitations of the more familiar interpretations of the terms that have dominated in the history of Western thought. To this end, the nineteen contributors address the concept of violence from a variety of perspectives in relation to different forms of cultural representation, and not in Western culture alone; in literature and the arts, as well as in society and politics; in philosophical discourse, psychoanalytic theory, and so-called juridical ideology, as well as in colonial and post-colonial practices and power relations. The contributors are Giorgio Agamben, Ali Behdad, Cathy Caruth, Jacques Derrida, Michael Dillon, Peter Fenves, Stathis Gourgouris, Werner Hamacher, Beatrice Hanssen, Anselm Haverkamp, Marian Hobson, Peggy Kamuf, M. B. Pranger, Susan M. Shell, Peter van der Veer, Hent de Vries, Cornelia Vismann, and Samuel Weber. (shrink)
Max Weber (1864-1920), generally known as a founder of modern social science, was concerned with political affairs throughout his life. The texts in this edition span his career and include his early inaugural lecture The Nation State and Economic Policy, Suffrage and Democracy in Germany, Parliament and Government in Germany under a New Political Order, Socialism, The Profession and Vocation of Politics, and an excerpt from his essay The Situation of Constitutional Democracy in Russia, as well as other shorter (...) writings. Together they illustrate the development of his thinking on the fate of Germany and the nature of politics in the modern western state in an age of cultural 'disenchantment'. The introduction discusses the central themes of Weber's political thought, and a chronology, notes and an annotated bibliography place him in his political and intellectual context. (shrink)
Depoliticization: The Political Imaginary of Global Capitalism follows in the path blazed by Hannah Arendt and Cornelius Castoriadis, where politics is seen as a mode of freedom; the possibility for individuals to consciously and explicitly create the institutions of their own societies. Starting with such problem as: What is capital? How can we characterize the dominant economic system? What are the conditions for its existence, and how can we create alternatives?, the articles examine the central institutions of modern Western societies, (...) market capitalism, representative liberal democracy, and science. To elucidate the problem of depoliticization, the authors engage a number of thinkers from Karl Marx, Max Weber, Thorstein Veblen to Cornelius Castoriadis, Michel Foucault, Jacques Rancière, and Stanley Kubrick. -/- . (shrink)
Seven eminent authors, all known for their work in deconstruction, address the millennial issue of our “futures,” “promises,” “prophecies,” “projects,” and “possibilities”—including the possibility that there may be no “future” at all. Speculative in every sense, these essays are marked by a common concern for the act of reading as it is practiced in the work of Jacques Derrida. The contributors—Geoffrey Bennington, Paul Davies, Peter Fenves, Werner Hamacher, Jean-Michel Rabaté, Elisabeth Weber, and Jacques Derrida himself—study a range (...) of authors, including Pascal, Kant, Hegel, Leibniz, Marx, Benjamin, Koyré, Arendt, and Lacan. These readings are neither prescriptive, definitive, nor definitional. Each essay seeks out, in the work it studies, those moments that pronounce or propose futures that enable speculation, moments in which the speculator has to make promises. As Derrida says in his essay, “Between lying and acting, acting in politics, manifesting one’s own freedom through action, transforming facts, anticipating the future, there is something like an essential affinity.... The lie is the future.” Or, in the words of Werner Hamacher, “The futurity of language, its inherent promising capacity, is the ground—but a ground with no solidity whatever—for all present and past experiences, meanings, and figures which could communicate themselves in it.” These essays, though arising from deconstruction, point out the ways in which deconstruction has yet to occur, and they do so by scanning the unattainable horizons marked off by thinkers at the forefront of our modern era. (shrink)
Derrida's first book-length work, The Problem of Genesis in Husserl's Philosophy , was originally written as a dissertation for his diplôme d'etudes superieures in 1953 and 1954. Surveying Husserl's major works on phenomenology, Derrida reveals what he sees as an internal tension in Husserl's central notion of genesis, and gives us our first glimpse into the concerns and frustrations that would later lead Derrida to abandon phenomenology and develop his now famous method of deconstruction. For Derrida, the problem of genesis (...) in Husserl's philosophy is that both temporality and meaning must be generated by prior acts of the transcendental subject, but transcendental subjectivity must itself be constituted by an act of genesis. Hence, the notion of genesis in the phenomenological sense underlies both temporality and atemporality, history and philosophy, resulting in a tension that Derrida sees as ultimately unresolvable yet central to the practice of phenomenology. Ten years later, Derrida moved away from phenomenology entirely, arguing in his introduction to Husserl's posthumously published Origin of Geometry and his own Speech and Phenomena that the phenomenological project has neither resolved this tension nor expressly worked with it. The Problem of Genesis complements these other works, showing the development of Derrida's approach to phenomenology as well as documenting the state of phenomenological thought in France during a particularly fertile period, when Levinas, Sartre, Merleau-Ponty, Ricoeur, and Tran-Duc-Thao, as well as Derrida, were all working through it. But the book is most important in allowing us to follow Derrida's own development as a philosopher by tracing the roots of his later work in deconstruction to these early critical reflections on Husserl's phenomenology. "A dissertation is not merely a prerequisite for an academic job. It may set the stage for a scholar's life project. So, the doctoral dissertations of Max Weber and Jacques Derrida, never before available in English, may be of more than passing interest. In June, the University of Chicago Press will publish Mr. Derrida's dissertation, The Problem of Genesis in Husserl's Philosophy , which the French philosopher wrote in 1953-54 as a doctoral student, and which did not appear in French until 1990. From the start, Mr Derrida displayed his inventive linguistic style and flouting of convention."--Danny Postel, Chronicle of Higher Education. (shrink)
The idea for _Philosophy in a Time of Terror_ was born hours after the attacks on 9/11 and was realized just weeks later when Giovanna Borradori sat down with Jürgen Habermas and Jacques Derrida in New York City, in separate interviews, to evaluate the significance of the most destructive terrorist act ever perpetrated. This book marks an unprecedented encounter between two of the most influential thinkers of our age as here, for the first time, Habermas and Derrida overcome their (...) mutual antagonism and agree to appear side by side. As the two philosophers disassemble and reassemble what we think we know about terrorism, they break from the familiar social and political rhetoric increasingly polarized between good and evil. In this process, we watch two of the greatest intellects of the century at work. (shrink)
In the 1980s, a number of philosophers argued that perception is analog. In the ensuing years, these arguments were forcefully criticized, leaving the thesis in doubt. This paper draws on Weber’s Law, a well-entrenched finding from psychophysics, to advance a new argument that perception is analog. This new argument is an adaptation of an argument that cognitive scientists have leveraged in support of the contention that primitive numerical representations are analog. But the argument here is extended to the representation (...) of non-numerical magnitudes, such as luminance and distance, and shown to apply to perception and not just cognition. The relevant sense of ‘analog’ is also clarified, and two powerful objections are addressed. Finally, the question whether perception’s analog vehicles are located in conscious experience is explored and related to a well-known controversy within psychophysics. (shrink)
The integration of personalism into business ethics has been recently studied. Research has also been conducted on humanistic management approaches. The conceptual relationship between personalism and humanism , however, has not been fully addressed. This article furthers that research by arguing that a true humanistic management is personalistic. Moreover, it claims that personalism is promising as a sound philosophical foundation for business ethics. Insights from Jacques Maritain’s work are discussed in support of these conclusions. Of particular interest is his (...) distinction between human person and individual based on a realistic metaphysics that, in turn, grounds human dignity and the natural law as the philosophical basis for human rights, personal virtues, and a common good defined in terms of properly human ends. Although Maritain is widely regarded as one of the foremost twentieth century personalist philosophers, his contribution has not been sufficiently considered in the business ethics and humanistic management literature. Important implications of Maritainian personalism for business ethics as philosophical study and as practical professional pursuit are discussed. (shrink)
While several studies have explored the interactional dynamics of charismatic power, most have neglected the role of what Weber termed the charismatic aristocracy. This article revives the classical concept to respond to contemporary calls for performative, followercentric approaches to charisma. Specifically, the charismatic aristocracy is placed at the center of an analysis of a reiterative moment in charismatization: when influential followers generate content for the emerging charismatic persona. In these germinal moments, the dialogical nature of charisma is most clear, (...) precisely because it is then that charismatic leaders often are not themselves confident in their status and can be found responding to instructional cues—indeed following the lead—of those positioning themselves as obsequious followers. Drawing on 10 years of observations, multistage interviews, and media collections, I provide an interactionist account of the charismatic emergence of John de Ruiter, leader of a successful new religious movement. I conclude by tabling a model that conceives of the charismatic aristocracy as an important fulcrum for expectation, affectation, and recognition in charismatic interactions. (shrink)
This extraordinary book offers a clear and compelling biography of Jacques Derrida along with one of Derrida's strangest and most unexpected texts. Geoffrey Bennington's account of Derrida leads the reader through the philosopher's familiar yet widely misunderstood work on language and writing to the less familiar themes of signature, sexual difference, law, and affirmation. In an unusual and unprecedented "dialogue," Derrida responds to Bennington's text by interweaving Bennington's text with surprising and disruptive "periphrases." Truly original, this dual and dueling (...) text opens new dimensions in Derrida's thought and work. "Bennington is a shrewd and well-informed commentator whose book should do something to convince the skeptics... that Jacques Derrida's work merits serious attention."—Christopher Norris, _New Statesman & Society_ "Geoffrey Bennington and Jacques Derrida have presented a fascinating example of what might be called post-structuralist autobiography."—Laurie Volpe, _French Review_ "Bennington's account of what Derrida is up to is better in almost all respects—more intelligent, more plausible, more readable, and less pretentious—than any other I have read."—Richard Rorty, _Contemporary Literature_. (shrink)
This paper analyses the opposing accounts of ‘the ordinary’ given by Jacques Derrida and Stanley Cavell, beginning with their competing interpretations of J. L. Austin¹s thought on ordinary language. These accounts are presented as mutually critiquing: Derrida¹s deconstructive method poses an effective challenge to Cavell¹s claim that the ordinary is irreducible by further philosophical analysis, while, conversely, Cavell¹s valorisation of the human draws attention to a residual humanity in Derrida¹s text which Derrida cannot account for. The two philosophers’ approaches (...) are, in fact, predicated on each other like the famous Gestalt-image of a vase and two faces: they cannot come into focus at the same time, but one cannot appear without the other to furnish its background. (shrink)
Neither Karl Popper, nor Frank Knight, nor Max Weber are cited or mentioned in Friedman’s famous 1953 essay “On the methodology of positive economics” (F53). However, they play a crucial role in F53. Making their con-tribution explicit suggests that F53 has been seriously misread in the past. I will first show that there are several irritating statements in F53 that are, taken together, not compatible with any of the usual readings of F53. Sec-ond, I show that an alternative reading (...) of F53 can be achieved if one takes seriously Friedman’s reference to ideal types; “ideal type” is a technical term introduced by Max Weber. Friedman was familiar with Max Weber’s work through Frank Knight, who was his teacher in Chicago. Given that in F53’s view ideal types are fundamen-tal building blocks of economic theory, it becomes clear why both instrumentalist and realist readings of F53 are inadequate. Third, the reading of F53 in terms of ideal types gives the role of elements from Popper’s falsifica-tionist methodology in F53 a somewhat different twist. Finally, I show that the irritating passages of F53 make good sense under the new reading, including the infamous “the more significant the theory, the more unrealistic the assumptions”. (shrink)
Taking on the Tradition focuses on how the work of Jacques Derrida has helped us rethink and rework the themes of tradition, legacy, and inheritance in the Western philosophical tradition. It concentrates not only on such themes in the work of Derrida but also on his own gestures with regard to these themes—that is, on the performativity of Derrida’s texts. The book thus uses Derrida’s understanding of speech act theory to reread his own work. The book consists in a (...) series of close readings of Derrida’s texts to demonstrate that the claims he makes in his work cannot be fully understood without considering the way he makes those claims. The book considers Derrida’s relation to the Greek philosophical tradition and to his immediate predecessors in the French philosophical tradition, as well as his own legacy within the contemporary scene. Part I examines Derrida’s analyses of Plato and Aristotle on the themes of writing and metaphor. Part II looks at themes of donation, inheritance, pedagogy, and influence in relation to Derrida’s readings of the works of Michel Foucault, Jacques Lacan, and Jean-Pierre Vernant. Part III considers the promises and legacies of Derrida’s work on autobiography, friendship, and hospitality, themes Derrida has recently taken up in his readings of Martin Heidegger, Maurice Blanchot, and Emmanuel Levinas. In the Conclusion, the author analyzes what Derrida has recently called a “messianicity without messianism” and shows how Derrida develops two different notions of the future and of legacy: one that always determines a horizon for the donation and reception of any legacy or tradition, and one that leaves open a radically unknown and unknowable future for that legacy and tradition. (shrink)
Philosophers and social scientists will welcome this highly original discussion of Max Weber's analysis of the objectivity of social science. Guy Oakes traces the vital connection between Weber's methodology and the work of philosopher Heinrich Rickert, reconstructing Rickert's notoriously difficult concepts in order to isolate the important, and until now poorly understood, roots of problems in Weber's own work.Guy Oakes teaches social philosophy at Monmouth College and sociology at the New School for Social Research.
This book explores the language and arguments Jacques Derrida uses in his writings, and how this is at the core of his work. Marian Hobson explores the French language in which Derrida's philosophy is written in, and the ways his ideas are organized, to suggest that this has an overriding affect on how his translated work affects our understanding of his thought.
Jean Starobinski, one of Europe's foremost literary critics, examines the life that led Rousseau, who so passionately sought open, transparent communication with others, to accept and even foster obstacles that permitted him to withdraw into himself. First published in France in 1958, Jean-Jacques Rousseau remains Starobinski's most important achievement and, arguably, the most comprehensive book ever written on Rousseau. The text has been extensively revised for this edition and is published here along with seven essays on Rousseau that appeared (...) between 1962 and 1970. (shrink)
Wilhelm Ostwald’s program of a physical energetics is the attempt at a comprehensive description of nature on the basis of the concept of energy. In his book Energetische Grundlagen der Kulturwissenschaft, first published in 1909, Ostwald applies this conception to the area of culture. His central assumption is that cultural phenomena should be described by the energetic notion of “efficiency relation” (Güteverhältnis). His systematic thesis is that science, when organized according to the Machian “principle of economy,” proves as the highest (...) form of cultural expression, since it instantiates the notion of quality relation most efficiently, that is, “with the lowest energy expenditure.” This view echoes August Comte’s “law of the three stages” and is intended to supply it with a scientific, i.e., energetic foundation. Max Weber regarded Ostwald’s energetic theory of culture as a misguided attempt at an absolutization of the methods of concept formation within the natural sciences. As he wrote in his devastating review essay “’Energetische’ Kulturtheorien” (1909), Ostwald transformed a certain world view (Weltbild) into a scientifically frivolous ideology (Weltanschauung). In particular, Ostwald’s adherence to the Comtean law of three stages and the associated hierarchy of the sciences were criticized by Weber as outdated and completely beside the point. According to Weber, the concepts of the cultural sciences are not at all dependent on natural scientific concepts such as ‘energy.’ In his view, culture cannot be reduced to nature. But exactly this seemed to be the principal aim of Ostwald’s program. In this paper, I will critically investigate Weber’s critique of that program. I shall argue that Ostwald’s assumption of a natural basis of culture can be ‘rescued’ as a methodological device, but that Ostwald’s – thoroughly substantialist – view of energy should be discarded as a metaphysical relict of ancient ‘stuff ontology.’ . (shrink)
Jacques Rancière relies on references to theatre and literature to articulate the modes in which meanings are communicated. It is because they are displaceable from bodies and dis-incorporable from things that these patterns of meaning are available to being picked up. But this also means that meaning occurs as a pattern of communication that is not entirely rational. Meaning, we might say, moulds as it communicates. Such references to theatre and literature are more than allegorical. The general orientation of (...) Rancière’s thought pivots on the claim that politics is aesthetic; and that theatrical and literary fields of displacement and disincorporation are modes in which politics occurs as an alteration of ordered patterns of meaning, what he describes as ‘ways of being, doing and saying’. Although it would be possible to pursue cases of such alteration in film, in general Rancière’s writing on film does not do so. Rather, his critique of modernism is the framework he uses to examine the aesthetic settings and technical possibilities of film. From this perspective, he argues that the cinematic apparatus is indifferent to its material and that its technical arsenal does not determine cinematic forms. Further, because the ‘critical’ profile of cinema is in fact indistinguishable from the role it plays in the poetic depiction of the minutaie of life, claims regarding the political significance of film need radical qualification. The implications of this position on cinema are double: first, it may be argued that there is no reason that the prospects for dis-incorporation of meaning and the political significance he attaches to such modes of aesthetic communication in the cases of theatre and literature cannot be extended to cinema; a second set of implications bring into question the aesthetic settings he gives to politics. There is a clear fissure in Rancière’s thinking between the topic of film as an aesthetic form and its critical force for remoulding the conditions of communicability of meaning. It is because of the way this fissure occurs in the case of film that we can distinguish the strands that Rancière, on account of his position on aesthetic politics, would elsewhere like to consider fused. For this reason, I argue that Rancière’s discussion of cinema tends to undermine the general perspective he defends in which meaning-forming processes in the arts are taken to be political. (shrink)
Max Weber and Michael Foucault are among the most controversial and fascinating thinkers of our century. This book is the first to jointly analyse them in detail, and to make effective links between their lives and work; it coincides with a substantial resurgence of interest in their writings. The author's exciting interpretative approach reveals a new dimension in reading the work of Foucault and Weber; it will be invaluable to students and those researching in sociology and philosophy.
The book is a critical analysis of the work of Max Weber, Emile Durkheim and Karl Marx. It focuses on their separate analyses of the role of law in society, pointing out their faults and errors, and the resultant impact on modern social science. The author takes issue with Weber's work on rationality, with Durkheim's work on repressive and restitutive law, and with Marx's work on social justice and law as part of the super-structure. In each section of (...) the book he shows the implications that flow from a re-assessment and re-interpretation of their work for an understanding of society. The book is multi-disciplinary, making ample reference to law, sociology, anthropology, history, religion, ecology, criminology, philosophy and economics. Its various chapters discuss a wide range of themes, including rationality, tradition, science, political authority, conflict resolution, community, justice and altruism. (shrink)
Louis Mink wrote a classic study of R. G. Collingwood that led to his most important contribution to the philosophy of history, his account of narrative. Central to this account was the non-detachability thesis, that facts became historical facts through incorporation into narratives, and the thesis that narratives were not comparable to the facts or to one another. His book on Collingwood was critical of Collingwood's idea that there were facts in history that we get through self-knowledge but which are (...) nevertheless objective, his account of re-enactment, and his notion of absolute presuppositions. It is illuminating to compare Collingwood to Weber with respect to these puzzling arguments, for the same issues arise there in different form. Recent work in social neuroscience on mirroring allows a different approach to these puzzles: mirror system “knowledge“ of others and simulation fit, respectively, with Weber's idea of direct observational understanding and Collingwood's re-enactment account. This account allows for the detaching of historical facts about thoughts and action from narrative. (shrink)
Max Weber's distinction in "Politics as a Vocation" between the ethic of conviction and the ethic of responsibility is best understood as a distinction between mutually exclusive ethical worldviews. Interpretations that correlate the two ethics with Weber's distinction between value-rational social action and instrumental-rational social action are misleading since Weber assumes that both types of rational social action are present in both ethics. The ethic of conviction recognizes a given hierarchy of values as the context for moral (...) endeavor. The ethic of responsibility acknowledges value obligations, but assumes the absence of any given hierarchy of values and the inevitability of value conflict as the context for moral endeavor. When interpreted in the context of his multilayered understanding of value conflict, Weber's ethic of responsibility emerges as a coherent ethical perspective. (shrink)
Weber-Fechner Law states that the perceived intensity is proportional to the logarithm of the stimulus. Recent experiments suggest that this law also holds true for perception of numerosity. Therefore, the use of a logarithmic scale for the quantification of the perceived intensity may also depend on how the cognitive apparatus processes information. If Weber-Fechner law is the result of natural selection, then the logarithmic scale should be better, in some sense, than other biologically feasible scales. We consider the (...) minimization of the relative error as the target of natural selection and we provide a formal proof that the logarithmic scale minimizes the maximal relative error. (shrink)
Much contemporary feminist theory continues to see itself as freeing women from patriarchal oppression so that they may realize their own inner truth. To be told by postmodern thinkers such as Jacques Derrida that the very possibility of such a truth must be submitted to the process of deconstruction thus seems to present a serious challenge to the feminist project. From a postmodern perspective, on the other hand, most feminist discourse remains deeply rooted, if not in essentialism, at least (...) in the logocentrism of traditional philosophical and political thought. Stepping beyond the usual confines of this debate, the eleven thinkers whose ideas are represented in this volume take a deeper look at Derrida's work to consider its specific strengths and weaknesses as a model for feminist theory and practice. Despite this common focal point, this collection is extremely diverse. The problems addressed include the status of the female subject, civil disobedience, and the AIDS epidemic; the subjects include Husserl's theory of signs, jealousy in Shakespeare's _Othello_, and Irigaray's concept of the divine; disciplines include cultural studies, literature, philosophy, political theory, religion, and the law as represented by major scholars in each field; and the opinions expressed range from strong criticism of Derrida's work to careful explorations of the avenues it creates for rethinking sexual difference. Included are an analytic introduction by Nancy J. Holland; important new essays by Elizabeth Grosz, Peggy Kamuf, Peg Birmingham, Kate Mehuron, Ellen Armour, and Dorothea Olkowski; "Choreographies," Derrida's 1982 interview with Christie V. McDonald; Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak's "Displacement and the Discourse of Women," published in the same year; and recent articles by Drucilla Cornell and Nancy Fraser. (shrink)
I examine Jacques Maritain's views on the relationship between art and ethics or what is today called the ‘ethical criticism of art’, and examine what Maritain's thought can contribute to debates in contemporary aesthetics and wider society. In part I of the article, I approach Maritain's attempted reconciliation of artistic freedom and the demands of morality in three steps, first recalling Maritain's definition of art, second looking at Maritain's analysis of the extra-artistic concerns of the artist, and third offering (...) a critique of Maritain's views on why art is valued by the community and what justifiable moral claims of the community upon the artist might be—particularly regarding the method of production of artworks. Comparing Maritain's theories to those of contemporary writers in part II, I argue that Maritain's ethics of art can be used to complement Jacques Rancière's notions of the ‘distribution of the sensible’ and ‘artistic regimes’, and that, in the terminology of the ethical criticism of art, Maritain affirms a position which is a composite of ‘moderate moralism’ and ‘ethicism’—a position which is both explanatorily powerful in ascertaining how and why we recognise and value art, and flexible in accommodating changing artistic forms and practices. (shrink)
Jacques Rancière’s work has become a major reference point for discussions of art and politics. However, while Rancière’s negative theses are becoming widespread and well understood, his positive thesis is still poorly understood, owing partly to Rancière’s own formulation of the issue. I first clarify Rancière’s account of the links between politics and art. I then explore a gap in this account; Rancière has stuck too closely to a politics of art’s reception. I argue for a politics of art (...) production, which would expand the possible engagement between politics and art. (shrink)
Maxwell’s programme did supersede the Ampere-Weber one because it did assimilate some ideas of the Ampere-Weber programme, as well as the presuppositions of the programmes of Young-Fresnel and Faraday. But the opposite proposition is not true. Ampere-Weber programme did not assimilate the propositions of the Maxwellian programme. Maxwell’s victory over his rivals became possible because the core of Maxwell’s unification strategy was formed by Kantian epistemology looked through the prism of William Whewell and such representatives of Scottish (...) Enlightenment as Thomas Reid and William Hamilton. (shrink)
“This book will certainly prove to be a useful resource and reference point … a good addition to anyone’s bookshelf.” Network "This is a superb collection, expertly presented. The overall conception seems splendid, giving an excellent sense of the issues... The selection and length of the readings is admirably judged, with both the classic texts and the few unpublished pieces making just the right points." William Outhwaite, Professor of Sociology, University of Sussex "... an indispensable book for all of us (...) in philosophy and the social sciences who teach and care about the shape of social knowledge in the future." Steven Seidman, Professor of Sociology, State University of New York Albany "For a comprehensive account of the ways in which world transformations affect claims to social scientific knowledge, one need look no further than Gerard Delanty and Piet Strydom's Philosophies of Social Science . ...this collection captures nicely the increasingly engaged political nature of the philosophy of social science. Debates about pragmatism, feminism and postmodernism are particularly well represented" The Australian What is social science? How does it differ from the other sciences? What is the meaning of method in social science? What is the nature and limits of scientific knowledge? This collection of over sixty extracts from classic works on the philosophy of social science provides an essential textbook and a landmark reference in the field. It highlights the work of some of the most influential authors who have shaped social science. The texts explore the question of truth, the meaning of scientific knowledge, the nature of methodology and the relation of science to society, including edited extracts from both classic and contemporary works by authors such as Emile Durkheim, Georg Simmel, Max Weber, Alfred Schutz, Max Horkheimer, Jurgen Habermas, Alvin Gouldner, Karl-Otto Apel, Michel Foucault, Pierre Bourdieu, Anthony Giddens, Dorothy Smith, Donna Haraway, Sigmund Freud, Jacques Derrida and Claude Levi-Strauss. The readings are representative of the major schools of thought, including European and American trends in particular as well as approaches that are often excluded from mainstream traditions. From a teaching and learning perspective the volume is strengthened by extensive introductions to each of the six sections, as well as a general introduction to the reader as a whole. These introductions contextualise the readings and offer succinct summaries of them. This volume is the definitive companion to the study of the philosophy of social science, taught within undergraduate or postgraduate courses in sociology and the social sciences. (shrink)