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Thinking about Society : Theory and Practice - Ian Jarvie

Thinking about Society

Theory and Practice

Hardcover Published: 31st December 1985
ISBN: 9789027720689
Number Of Pages: 523

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I. C. Jarvie was trained as a social anthropologist in the center of British social anthropology - the London School of Economics, where Bronislaw Malinowski was the object of ancestor worship. Jarvie's doctorate was in philosophy, however, under the guidance of Karl Popper and John Watkins. He changed his department not as a defector but as a rebel, attempting to exorcize the ancestral spirit. He criticized the method of participant obser- vation not as useless but as not comprehensive: it is neither necessary nor sufficient for the making of certain contributions to anthropology; rather, it all depends on the problem-situation. And so Jarvie remained an anthro- pologist at heart, who, in addition to some studies in rather conventional anthropological or sociological molds, also studied the tribe of social scien- tists, but also critically examining their problems - especially their overall, rather philosophical problems, but not always so: a few of the studies in- cluded in this volume exemplify his work on specific issues, whether of technology, or architecture, or nationalism in the academy, or moviemaking, or even movies exhibiting excessive sex and violence. These studies attract his attention both on account of their own merit and on account of their need for new and powerful research tools, such as those which he has forged in his own intellectual workshop over the last two decades.

Industry Reviews

` ... this cohesively organized anthology, written in compact and clear manner, contains an abundance of provocative issues intriguingly stated and cogently argued. ... this is a conceptually opulent work both in depth and scope and one highly recommended for social philosophers, philosophers of the social sciences, sociologists and anthropologists.'
Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology, 29:3, 1995

I: Problems and Theories in the Social Sciences.- I.1. Objectivism Versus Relativism.- 1 / The Notion of a Social Science.- I. Haunted by Natural Science.- II. The Demarcation between Natural and Social.- III. Responses in Detail.- IV. Conclusion.- 2 / Social Perception and Social Change.- 3 / Realism and the Supposed Poverty of Sociological Theories.- 4 / Rationality and Relativism.- 5 / Popper on the Difference between the Natural and the Social Sciences.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Natural versus Social Sciences.- 3. The Argument from Meaningfulness.- 4. The Argument from Interests.- 5. The Argument from Reflexivity.- 6. The Problem of Popper's Reception.- 7. Conclusion.- I.2. Philosophy of Anthropology.- 6 / The Emergence of Social Anthropology from Philosophy.- 7 / On Theories of Fieldwork and the Scientific Character of Social Anthropology.- 8 / Limits to Functionalism and Alternatives to It in Anthropology.- Preliminaries.- Logical and Methodological Limits.- Substantive Limitations.- The Appeal of Functionalism.- Alternatives to Functionalism.- 9 / On the Objectivity of Anthropology.- 10 / The Problem of Ethical Integrity in Participant Observation.- 1. Introduction.- 2. The Ideal of Participant Observation.- 3. Ethical Conflict in Participant Observation.- 4. The Ideal versus the Practice.- 11 / Anthropology as Science and the Anthropology of Science and of Anthropology.- 1. Introductory.- 2. Anthropology as Science.- 3. Douglas on Frazer.- 4. Geertz's Anti Anti-Relativism.- 5. Hanson's Reformulation and Defence of Relativism.- 12 / Epistle to the Anthropologists.- The Crisis.- Philosophical Diagnosis.- Criticism not Revolution.- 13 / On the Limits of Symbolic Interpretation in Anthropology.- 14 / The Problem of the Ethnographic Real.- 15 / Anthropologists and the Irrational.- 1. Repulsion.- 2. Attraction.- 3. Neither Repulsion Nor Attraction.- 4. Lessons.- 16 / Freeman on Mead.- II: Applications and Implications.- II.1 Society and the Arts.- 17 / The Objectivity of Criticism of the Arts.- 1. The Failure of Rational Argument.- 2. The Subjectivist Explanation.- 3. Response versus Evaluation.- 4. Diversity and Disagreement.- 5. Degrees of Diversity.- 6. Locating Objectivity.- 7. The Objectivity of Institutions.- 8. Conclusion.- 18 / The Rationality of Creativity.- I. What is the Problem?.- II. A Logical or a Psychological Issue?.- III. Creativity a World 3 Event.- IV. To explain Away.- V. Self-reference.- VI. Trial and Error.- II.2. Society and Technology.- 19 / Technology and the Structure of Knowledge.- 20 / The Social Character of Technological Problems.- 21 / Is Technology Unnatural?.- A Coming Philosophy.- The Noble Savage?.- Adjusting to Environment.- 22 / Utopia and the Architect.- II.3. Society and social control.- 23 / Nationalism and the Social Sciences.- A Series of Arguments to the Same Point.- The Sociology of Relativism.- Enlightenment Today.- Concluding Observations.- 24 / Explorations in the Social Career of Movies: Business and Religion.- Phase One (1895-1916).- Phase Two (1917-1927).- Phase Three (1928-1956).- Phase Four (1956 to date).- 25 / Methodological and Conceptual Problems in the Study of Pornography and Violence.- 1. Preface.- 2. The Film Not a Love Story (NALS).- 3. Some General Caveats.- 4. NALS and the American Scene.- 5. The Content of Pornography.- 6. The Books Behind NALS.- 7. Erotic/Pornographic.- 8. Examples of Pornographic Films.- 9. The Function of Myths in Discussions of Pornography.- 10. Research Design and Findings.- 11. Who Produces Pornography?.- 12. What Does Pornography Portray.- 13. Who Consumes Pornography?.- 14. Why Pornography in Consumed.- 15. Pornography in its Social Context.- 16. Who Makes/Consumes Anti-Pornographic Material?.- 17. Social Science and the Study of Pornography.- 18. Conclusion.- Sources.- List of Publications.- Indexes.

ISBN: 9789027720689
ISBN-10: 9027720681
Series: Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science (Hardcover)
Audience: General
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 523
Published: 31st December 1985
Publisher: Springer
Country of Publication: NL
Dimensions (cm): 23.39 x 15.6  x 3.02
Weight (kg): 0.93

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