Contemporary articles citing Marcuse H (1964) 1 Dimensional Man
approach, whose, turns, emancipatory, argued, turn, forms, structures, culture, project
- Langman, L. 2005. "From Virtual Public Spheres to Global Justice: a Critical Theory of Internetworked Social Movements." Sociological Theory. 23:1 42-74.
- From the early 1990s when the EZLN (the Zapatistas), led by Subcommandte Marcos, first made use of the Internet to the late 1990s with the defeat of the Multilateral Agreement on Trade and Investment and the anti-WTO protests in Seattle, Quebec, and Genoa, it became evident that new, qualitatively different kinds of social protest movements were emergent. These new movements seemed diffuse and unstructured, yet at the same time, they forged unlikely coalitions of labor, environmentalists, feminists, peace, and global social justice activists collectively critical of the adversities of neoliberal globalization and its associated militarism. Moreover, the rapid emergence and worldwide proliferation of these movements, organized and coordinated through the Internet, raised a number of questions that require rethinking social movement theory. Specifically, the electronic networks that made contemporary globalization possible also led to the emergence of ``virtual public spheres'' and, in turn, ``Internetworked Social Movements.'' Social movement theory has typically focused on local structures, leadership, recruitment, political opportunities, and strategies from framing issues to orchestrating protests. While this tradition still offers valuable insights, we need to examine unique aspects of globalization that prompt such mobilizations, as well as their democratic methods of participatory organization and clever use of electronic media. Moreover, their emancipatory interests become obscured by the ``objective'' methods of social science whose ``neutrality'' belies a tacit assent to the status quo. It will be argued that the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory offers a multi-level, multi-disciplinary approach that considers the role of literacy and media in fostering modernist bourgeois movements as well as anti-modernist fascist movements. This theoretical tradition offers a contemporary framework in which legitimacy crises are discussed and participants arrive at consensual truth claims; in this process, new forms of empowered, activist identities are fostered and negotiated that impel cyberactivism.
- Mirchandani, R. 2005. "Postmodernism and Sociology: From the Epistemological to the Empirical." Sociological Theory. 23:1 86-115.
- This article investigates the place of postmodernism in sociology today by making a distinction between its epistemological and empirical forms. During the 1980s and early 1990s, sociologists exposited, appropriated, and normalized an epistemological postmodernism that thematizes the tentative, reflective, and possibly shifting nature of knowledge. More recently, however, sociologists have recognized the potential of a postmodern theory that turns its attention to empirical concerns. Empirical postmodernists challenge classical modern concepts to develop research programs based on new concepts like time-space reorganization, risk society, consumer capitalism, and postmodern ethics. But they do so with an appreciation for the uncertainty of the social world, ourselves, our concepts, and our commitment to our concepts that results from the encounter with postmodern epistemology. Ultimately, this article suggests that understanding postmodernism as a combination of these two moments can lead to a sociology whose epistemological modesty and empirical sensitivity encourage a deeper and broader approach to the contemporary social world.
- Panayotakis, C. 2004. "A Marxist Critique of Marx's Theory of History: Beyond the Dichotomy Between Scientific and Critical Marxism." Sociological Theory. 22:1 123-139.
- This article argues that an application of Marxism to itself can help us transcend Gouldner's (1980) dichotomy between scientific and critical Marxism. After demonstrating that the paradigmatic document of scientific marxism, Marx's Preface to A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy, turns the structural logic of capitalist economy into the basis for a transhistorical theory of social-economic development, this article explores the limitations of critical Marxism's response to scientific Marxism and concludes that a viable, not class-centered, reformulation of the emancipatory project is possible through an analysis of capitalism's ``dialectic of scarcity.'' The task of the emancipatory project, it is argued, is to turn humanity, and not the working class, from a political subject in itself to a political subject in and for itself.
- Gartman, D. 2002. "Bourdieu's Theory of Cultural Change: Explication, Application, Critique." Sociological Theory. 20:2 255-277.
- Pierre Bourdieu's theory of cultural change is more powerfull and comprehensive than other recent theories, which neglect one or another of the important dimensions of cultural markets. Bourdieu's theory conceptualizes both the supply and demand sides of the market, as well as specifying their interaction with external social factors. Two cases from American culture are developed to demonstrate the explanatory power of Bourdieu's theory of cultural change: the demise of tail fins in automobile design and the fall of modernism in architecture. These cases reveal, however, that Bourdieu's theory fails to account for the leveling of cultural hierarchies and the emergence of pluralized cultural fields. The general conditions,for such leveling and pluralization are developed from a comparison of the two cases.
- RAMBO, E. 1995. "Conceiving Best Outcomes Within a Theory of Utility Maximization - a Culture-level Critique." Sociological Theory. 13:2 145-162.
- Coleman's rational choice theory introduces the idea of a `'social optimum'' into sociological theory. This idea of conceiving best outcomes is central to the project of reasoned progress and is an important tonic against the postmodern doubt. The utility maximization approach is inadequate, however because it is locked into an analysis of social structures. As a result it cannot conceptualize common standards, which are essential to best outcomes. These are treated adequately only within a cultural analysis. Welfare economics has dealt with this problem of best outcomes for a long time. Its history with the problem verifies the insuperable difficulties in a conception of action as utility maximization. When Coleman generalizes that approach, he manages only to reduce standards to power. This is inadequate. Some implications of conceiving common standards as culture are discussed.