Drawing on the intellectual tradition of the leading comparative political science scholar, Giovanni Sartori, the contributors examine the theoretical and methodological basis of: Concept Analysis, Comparative Political Analysis and Qualitative Methods.
This book provides a clear introduction to key philosophical and epistemological issues in the socialsciences, to both positivist and interpretative methodologies through comparing contemporary debates surrounding social change.
While it is heartening to see that more researchers in the field of the socialsciences are using some version of the phenomenological method, it is also disappointing to see that very often some of the steps employed do not follow phenomenological logic. In this paper, several dissertations are reviewed in order to point out some of the difficulties that are encountered in attempting to use some version of the phenomenological method. Difficulties encountered centred on the (...) phenomenological reduction, the use of imaginative variation and the feedback to subjects. Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology , Volume 8, Edition 1 May 2008. (shrink)
Academia’s mathematical metaphysics are briefly explored en route to an elaboration of the qualitatively rigorous requirements underpinning the calibration and unambiguous interpretation of quantitative instrumentation in any science. Of particular interest are Gadamer’s emphases on number as the paradigm of the noetic, on the role of play in interpretation, and on Hegel’s sense of method as the activity of the thing itself that thought experiences. These point toward and overlap with (1) Latour’s study of the metrological social networks (...) through which technological phenomena are brought into language as modes of being that can be understood, and (2) the way that Rasch’s models for measurement comprise a potential beginning for metaphysically astute, qualitatively and quantitatively integrated, mathematical methods in the socialsciences. The paper closes with observations on the general problem that is philosophy, the need to remain open to multiplicities of meaning even as clear understandings are sought and obtained. (shrink)
The author characterizes the model of rationality devised by critical rationalism in opposition to the classic model of rationality and as an alternative to this. He illustrates and criticizes the trichotomous theory of knowledge which, going back to Max Scheler, is received in a secularized version by Habermas and Apel, also under the influence of the hermeneutic tradition of Heidegger and Gadamer and of the so-called “critical theory” of Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno. The author criticizes historicism as it expects (...) to be an alternative to naturalism and not to make use of the method based on scientific laws. The author proposes as an example of technological social science the model developed in economics starting from Adam Smith. With regard to legal theories, natural law is rejected because of its sociomorphic cosmology. It is proposed that legal science as social technology has two parts. One part aims at efficient interpretations of valid law (for the space-time region concerned) and a second part aims at the construction of efficient norms for the modification of valid law by legislation. (shrink)