Focusing on the disciplines of economics, sociology, political science, and history, this book examines how American social science came to model itself on natural science and liberal politics. Professor Ross argues that American social science receives its distinctive stamp from the ideology of American exceptionalism, the idea that America occupies an exceptional place in history, based on her republican government and wide economic opportunity. Professor Ross shows how each of the social science disciplines, while developing their inherited intellectual traditions, responded to change in historical consciousness, political needs, professional structures, and the conceptions of science available to them. This is a comprehensive book, which looks broadly at American social science in its historical context and to demonstrate the central importance of the national ideology of American exceptionalism to the development of the social sciences and to American social thought generally.
Despite remarkable economic advances in many societies during the latter half of the twentieth century, poverty remains a global issue of enduring concern. Poverty is present in some form in every society in the world, and has serious implications for everything from health and well-being to identity and behavior. Nevertheless, the study of poverty has remained disconnected across disciplines. The Oxford Handbook of the Social Science of Poverty builds a common scholarly ground in the study of poverty by bringing together an international, inter-disciplinary group of scholars to provide their perspectives on the issue. Contributors engage in discussions about the leading theories and concept...
The Social Science Encyclopedia, first published in 1985 to acclaim from social scientists, librarians and students, was thoroughly revised in 1996, when reviewers began to describe it as a classic. This third edition has been radically recast. Over half the entries are new or have been entirely rewritten, and most of the balance have been substantially revised. Written by an international team of contributors, the Encyclopedia offers a global perspective on the key issues within the social sciences. Some 500 entries cover a variety of enduring and newly vital areas of study and research methods. Experts review theoretical debates from neo-evolutionism and rational choice theory to poststructuralism, and address the great questions that cut across the social sciences. What is the influence of genes on behaviour? What is the nature of consciousness and cognition? What are the causes of poverty and wealth? What are the roots of conflict, wars, revolutions and genocidal violence? This authoritative reference work is aimed at anyone with a serious interest in contemporary academic thinking about the individual in society.
The use of quotations in scientific writings often fails to capture the force of formulations that made the quotations memorable. In this reference work, the date and source of each quotation serve to help place them in their larger contexts, making it useful in examining the discipline's history.
Is knowledge what counts in today's society? How does knowledge shape social change? Do we trust experts less now than in the past? How do we decide which knowledge counts and which experts to trust? Knowledge and the Social Sciences: Theory, Method, Practice looks at the role of the social sciences in explaining and exploring what has been called the explosion of knowledge in the contemporary world. It takes as its starting point the claim that all forms of knowledge, including the social sciences, must be understood in their social context. It argues that the social sciences both describe and transform what they study and introduces students to some of the key concepts and arguments that are essential for further study in the social sciences. In a radical and practical introduction to ways of thinking and knowing in the social sciences, this text investigates the origins and consequences of different types of knowledge in areas of social change both in everyday thinking and in more academic fields, in medical science, religious belief systems and the environment and political responses to environmental change. These issues are explored in th context of the emergence of what has
Social scientists are often vexed because their work does not satisfy the criteria of "scientific" methodology developed by philosophers of science and logicians who use the natural sciences as their model. In this study, Paul Diesing defines science not by reference to these arbitrary norms delineated by those outside the field but in terms of norms implicit in what social scientists actually do in their everyday work. Patterns of Discovery in the Social Sciences is a detailed and systematic report on the full range of methods and procedures as they are actually practiced. Neither a how-to-do-it handbook nor a lofty philosophical treatise, this is a truly interdisciplinary study of the basi...
This introduction to the philosophy of social science provides an original conception of the task and nature of social inquiry. Peter Manicas discusses the role of causality seen in the physical sciences and offers a reassessment of the problem of explanation from a realist perspective. He argues that the fundamental goal of theory in both the natural and social sciences is not, contrary to widespread opinion, prediction and control, or the explanation of events (including behaviour). Instead, theory aims to provide an understanding of the processes which, together, produce the contingent outcomes of experience. Offering a host of concrete illustrations and examples of critical ideas and issues, this accessible book will be of interest to students of the philosophy of social science, and social scientists from a range of disciplines.
This title offers a one-volume introduction to social science methodology, relevant to the disciplines of anthropology, economics, history, political science, psychology, and sociology. It is written for beginning students, long-time practitioners and methodologists, and applies to work conducted in qualitative and quantitative styles. It synthesizes the vast and diverse field of methodology in a way that is clear, concise, and comprehensive. While offering a handy overview of the subject, the book is also an argument about how we should conceptualize methodological problems. Tasks and criteria, the author argues - not fixed rules of procedure - best describe the search for methodological adequacy. Thinking about methodology through this lens provides a new framework for understanding work in the social sciences.