Sociology of the Sciences Yearbook

Discourses on Society

The Shaping of the Social Science Disciplines

Editors: Wagner, Peter, Wittrock, Björn, Whitley, Richard P. (Eds.)

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About this book

This book, which represents probably the most comprehensive discussion of the emergence of modem social science yet produced, is of far more than merely historical interest. The contributors set out to rewrite the history of the social sciences and to show the limitations of conventional conceptions of their development. These tasks they accomplish with great success and much distinction. Yet in so doing they contribute in a direct way to our understanding of the relation between social analysis and the nature of human societies today. The brilliant and distinctive perspective of the papers in this collection is to demonstrate, with many specific examples, that social science and modem institutions have helped shape each other in mutual interplay. Modem systems are in some part con­ stituted through the reflexive incorporation of developing social science knowledge; on the other hand, the social sciences organise themselves in terms of a continuing reflection upon the evolution of those systems. Such a perspective, as Wagner and Wittrock in particular make clear, does not in any way either impugn the status of knowledge claims made within social science or destroy the independent reality of social institutions. The book questions the notion that the institutionalising of the social sciences can be understood as a process of their increasing autonomy from extemal social connections. 'Autonomy' forms a mode of legitima­ tion and a basis of power rather than a distinctive phenomenon as such.

Table of contents (13 chapters)

  • Analyzing Social Science: On the Possibility of a Sociology of the Social Sciences

    Wagner, Peter (et al.)

    Pages 3-22

  • Knowledge for Certainty: Poverty, Welfare Institutions and the Institutionalization of Social Science

    Nowotny, Helga

    Pages 23-41

  • The Social Science Disciplines: The American Model

    Manicas, Peter T.

    Pages 45-71

  • The Tripartite Division of French Social Science: A Long-Term Perspective

    Heilbron, Johan

    Pages 73-92

  • “Science and Politics” as a Political Factor: German and Italian Social Sciences in the Nineteenth Century

    Schiera, Pierangelo

    Pages 93-120

Buy this book

eBook $299.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-0-585-29174-1
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $379.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-0-7923-1001-3
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $379.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-94-017-4076-0
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Discourses on Society
Book Subtitle
The Shaping of the Social Science Disciplines
Editors
  • Peter Wagner
  • Björn Wittrock
  • Richard P. Whitley
Series Title
Sociology of the Sciences Yearbook
Series Volume
15
Copyright
1991
Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright Holder
Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
eBook ISBN
978-0-585-29174-1
DOI
10.1007/978-0-585-29174-1
Hardcover ISBN
978-0-7923-1001-3
Softcover ISBN
978-94-017-4076-0
Series ISSN
0167-2320
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XV, 386
Number of Illustrations and Tables
1 b/w illustrations
Topics