Search Results

You are looking at 51 - 60 of 511 items for :

Clear All
Restricted access

Isabelle Gouarné

Cet article examine quand et comment la référence conjointe à Durkheim et Marx est devenue pensable dans l'univers des sciences humaines françaises. Malgré l'ancrage durable du marxisme en France, cette question n'a guère été étudiée. On se propose donc ici de rendre compte du travail réalisé, au cours des années 1930, par des intellectuels situés à la jonction de l'univers des sciences sociales durkheimiennes et du monde communiste, et de préciser ainsi à quelles conditions les oppositions très vives de Durkheim et de ses disciples vis-à-vis du matérialisme historique ont pu être levées.

Free access

In Defence of Social Science

U.K. 2015 – A Review of the 2015 CfSS Report 'The Business of People: The Significance of Social Science over the Next Decade'

Natali Valdez

In 1954, C. Dollard wrote an article in the American Journal of Economics and Sociology titled ‘In the Defense of Social Science’. In 1967, W. Grundy wrote another article in the journal of Social Studies with the same title. A report from the New York Times used the same title in 1985 to highlight how neglected the social sciences are in the American education system (Maeroff 1985). Most recently, in 2012 B. Maguth also draws on the same title to write an article examining the need to incorporate social sciences in STEM education. The list goes on and on; defending the social sciences across the spectrum of education has a long history in both the United States and the United Kingdom. Making a case for why the social sciences are vital and deserve recognition through funding is, unfortunately, not a novel campaign.

Restricted access

Jo Lindsay

Contemporary undergraduate courses in research methods are challenging to teach because of the wide scope of the subject matter, limited student contact hours and the complexity of supervising research projects undertaken by novices. Focus group assignments within class offer an interesting and enjoyable way for students to develop and apply research skills and reflect on the process of being both a researcher and a research participant in social science disciplines. Using focus groups enables deep learning, formative assessment and the development of reflexive research skills. This article discusses the use of focus group assignments as a key assessment tool in a Sociological research methods course taught at Monash University, Australia. The use of focus groups as a teaching tool is further assessed through analysing the reflections and evaluations given by students participating in the course.

Restricted access

Glennis Byron

In a 1909 article for the North American Review on ‘The American “Tramp” Question’, Bram Stoker turns his attention to the issue of vagrancy and urges the necessity of swift action to deal with the ever increasing problem of the ‘wilfully-idle class’: ‘When certain persons – or classes of persons – are manifestly dangerous to the more peaceful and better-ordered classes of communities’, he declares, ‘it is the essence of good government – indeed, a necessary duty to responsible officials – to keep them in restraint, or certainly under observation’. There is consequently a need for some means of identifying these ‘undesirable’ characters, so that they can easily be located and detained in order to be taught to be industrious. Anticipating the introduction of GPS (Global Positioning System) or electronic tagging, he suggests that while the primitive system of ‘ear-marking with a “hot yron”’may not be acceptable to the modern age, ‘surely the resources of science are equal to some method of personal marking of an indelible quality’.

Restricted access

Calamity Meat and Cows of Abundance

Traditional Ecological Knowledge in Irish Folklore

Patricia Monaghan

Opposition between evidence-based science and improvable religious belief is assumed in Western intellectual tradition. By contrast, Native American theorists argue that religion constitutes part of Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK), which this paper argues exists in European contexts. Irish tales of changeling cattle encoded vital data for survival in a specific region; such Local Sanctions describe human difficulties that follow ecologically inappropriate actions. Other narratives are Global Warnings, concerning interconnections whose significance transcends individual health to include threats to the health of the planetary system. This paper urges analysis of European folktales and folk rituals as traditional environmental texts.

Restricted access

Eric S. Rabkin

Frankenstein and Dracula represent two different genres in print but only one in film. The emergence of science fiction from the Gothic exemplifies normal public genre development. The translation of the written Frankenstein and Dracula into film exemplifies genre development as an adaptation both to historical moment and to medium. In both the print and film cases, we can see the same mechanisms by which a genre is not only established in the public sphere but in the mind of a reader or viewer, a dialectic process in which the genre forms and informs reading and viewing and potentially, as a genre, is reformed by reading and viewing. Consideration of cognitive mechanisms involved in verbal and visual cognition shows both the interaction and the typical dominance of the visual, although genre, and hence individual works, can be modified by increasing our focus on the verbal.

Restricted access

Benoît Godin

Our present understanding of innovation is closely linked to science and research on the one hand and economy and industry on the other. It has not always been so. Back in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, the concept was mainly used in religious and political discourses. In these contexts, actors used it in a pejorative sense. Innovation, imagined as a radical transformation, was considered a peril to the established social order. Such was natural philosophers’ understanding. This article documents Francis Bacon’s work as an eminent example of such a representation. To Bacon, natural philosophy and innovation are two distinct spheres of activity. It is documented that Bacon’s uses of the concept of innovation are found mainly in political, legal, and moral writings, not natural philosophy, because to Bacon and all others of his time, innovation is poli tical.

Free access

Introduction

What Is Happening to Epistemology?

Christina Toren and João de Pina-Cabral

Anthropologists debate the primacy of epistemology over ontology, and vice versa, or whether the one is bound always to implicate the other. Our collective and personal history, however, makes the lived world what it is for us, and not all explicit knowledge is constituted in the same way, with the same purposes in mind and within the same sets of binding parameters. Thus, the task of ethnography is to inquire into the different nature of the different forms and modes of constituting knowledge, even while we strive to understand what our own histories make us take for granted as self-evident. This article argues that as a profoundly radical endeavor after knowledge, ethnography goes to the very roots of inquiry into what it is to be human and thus provides for anthropology as a continuing comparative project of fundamental importance to the human sciences.

Restricted access

Markus Schlecker and Kirsten W. Endres

During the Vietnam War, unprecedented numbers of dead soldiers were buried in unmarked graves and remain missing today. Starting in the mid-1990s, the services of psychics came into high demand, prompting the establishment of a state-approved Center for Research into Human Capabilities that continues to offer grave-finding assistance for the general public. This article discusses the cases of two well-known female psychics. As the case studies demonstrate, such research programs have established a niche for psychics on the perimeters of the official discursive nexus of truth, science, and visuality. They also highlight the variability of social and semantic proc esses by which different psychics are positioned in relation to recognized distinctions between legitimate and illegitimate knowledge practices and truth claims.

Restricted access

Michael S. Carolan

This article maps key epistemological and ontological terrains associated with biotechnology. Beginning with the epistemological, a comparison is made between the scientific representations of today, particularly as found in the genomic sciences, and the scientific representations of the past. In doing this, we find these representations have changed over the centuries, which has been of significant consequence in terms of giving shape to today's global political economy. In the following section, the sociopolitical effects of biotechnology are discussed, particularly in terms of how the aforementioned representations give shape to global path dependencies. By examining the epistemological and ontological assumptions that give shape to the global distribution of informational and biological resources, this article seeks to add to our understanding of today's bioeconomy and the geographies of control it helps to create.