Contemporary articles citing Karin K (1981) Manufacture Knowledg
science, knowledge, concept, world, truth, society, tend, scientific, nature, conventional
- Abend, G. 2006. "Styles of Sociological Thought: Sociologies, Epistemologies, and the Mexican and Us Quests for Truth." Sociological Theory. 24:1 1-41.
- Both U.S. and Mexican sociologies allege that they are in the business of making true scientific knowledge claims about the social world. Conventional conceptions of science notwithstanding, I demonstrate that their claims to truth and scientificity are based on alternative epistemological grounds. Drawing a random sample of nonquantitative articles from four leading journals, I show that, first, they assign a different role to theories, and indeed they have dissimilar understandings of what a theory should consist of. Second, whereas U.S. sociology actively struggles against subjectivity, Mexican sociology maximizes the potentials of subjective viewpoints. Third, U.S. sociologists tend to regard highly and Mexican sociologists to eagerly disregard the principle of ethical neutrality. These consistent and systematic differences raise two theoretical issues. First, I argue that Mexican and U.S. sociologies are epistemologically, semantically, and perceptually incommensurable. I contend that this problem is crucial for sociology's interest in the social conditioning of scientific knowledge's content. Second, I suggest four lines of thought that can help us explain the epistemological differences I find. Finally, I argue that sociologists would greatly profit from studying epistemologies in the same fashion they have studied other kinds of scientific and nonscientific beliefs.
- Brown, RH & EL Malone. 2004. "Reason, Politics, and the Politics of Truth: How Science Is Both Autonomous and Dependent." Sociological Theory. 22:1 106-122.
- The concept of ``science'' usually includes commitments to reason, objectivity, and disinterest in the search for truth about the nature of the world. In this view, politics, in the sense of maneuvering to gain power, corrupts both the process and the product of science. However, we show that science is political through and through-in the process of constructing scientific knowledge, in maintaining disciplines, and in being responsive to partisan sponsorship. Nevertheless, the practitioners of both science and politics maintain the boundary between the two fields; in fact, the disciplines most dependent upon government support tend also to be the most autonomous. This situation becomes understandable when both fields are considered as discursive practices. Then, scientific debates can be seen as productive precisely because they derive from an objective agreement about science as an autonomous intellectual enterprise, and science itself can be seen as a politics of truth.
- Jones, MP. 1996. "Posthuman Agency: Between Theoretical Traditions." Sociological Theory. 14:3 290-309.
- With his recent introduction of ``posthumanism,'' a decentered variant of constructivist sociology of science, Andrew Pickering advertises novel conceptual resources for social theorists. fn fact, he tenders nothing less than a fundamental reordering of social thought. By invoking the concept of ``material agency,'' Pickering seeks to redefine the relationship between ``Nature `` and ``Society,'' while dismissing the ``humanist bias'' inherent in sociological inquiry. However, for all its ambition and good intentions, posthumanism delivers only analytical inconsistencies, the consequences of an uneasy synthesis of pragmatist and poststructuralist influences. When translated into the language of conventional sociological theory, these problems surface as an inadequate treatment of human agency The works of the original pragmatists, particularly C.S. Peirce and G.H. Mead, illustrate how the objectives of posthumanism can be achieved without decentering, suggesting a renewed appreciation of ``humanist'' sociologies.
- Pels, D. 1996. "Karl Mannheim and the Sociology of Scientific Knowledge: Toward a New Agenda." Sociological Theory. 14:1 30-48.
- In previous decades, a regrettable divorce has arisen between two currents of theorizing and research about knowledge and science: the Mannheimian and Wittgensteinian traditions. The radical impulse of the new social studies of science in the early 1970s was initiated not by followers of Mannheim, but by Wittgensteinians such as Kuhn, Bloor, and Collins. This paper inquires whether this Wittgensteinian program is not presently running into difficulties that might be resolved to some extent by reverting to a more traditional and broader agenda of research. A social theory of knowledge (or social epistemology) along Mannheimian lines would not only reinstate the ``magic triangle'' of epistemology, sociology, and ethics, and hence revive the vexed problem of ``ideology critique,'' but would also need to reincorporate the social analysis of science into a broader macrosocial theory about the ``knowledge society.''
- Gieryn, TF. 2002. "What Buildings Do." Theory and Society. 31:1 35-74.
- Leuenberger, C. 2002. "The End of Socialism and the Reinvention of the Self: a Study of the East German Psychotherapeutic Community in Transition." Theory and Society. 31:2 255-280.