By Alan Swingewood
This lucidly written, jargon-free textual content deals an account of the increase of sociological notion from its origins within the eighteenth century. starting with the classical sociology of Marx, Durkheim, Weber and Simmel, it is going directly to learn the trendy paradigms of functionalism, interactionism, structuralism and significant Marxism, and ends through discussing salient modern sociological thought, together with the theories of Foucault, Baudrillard, Giddens, Habermas and others. Systematic and entire, this can be a textual content that seriously engages with sociological conception all through its improvement, providing scholars a course via competing traditions and views that brings out the special worth and boundaries of those.
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Additional info for A Short History of Sociological Thought
2, pp. 252-7). The comparative method belongs to statics, the historical method to dynamics. He defined the comparative method as The comparison of different co-existing states of human society on 45 Foundations the various parts of the world's surface - those states being completely independent of each other (Comte, 1896, Vol. 2, p. 250). The historical method links these states of society with evolution through the dynamic laws of social development which effectively relate to the growing solidarity and unity of society structured in the co-operative functions of the division oflabour and the universal principles enshrined in religion and language.
Saint-Simon described industrial society in terms of collaboration and consensus: under the old syster'l force constituted the means of social cohesion, but industrial society creates partners not subjects and associated modes of co-operation involving labourers and the wealthiest property owners. The principles of free production generate moral solidarity. Saint-Simon contrasted the authority structure of feudal society, in which corporations symbolised coercion, with the unequal, hierarchical nature of industrial society arguing that industrial institutions were, by their nature, both functional and spontaneous.
50). Comte's Cours de Philosophie Positive ( 1830-42) is essentially an attack on the 'negative' philosophy developed by eighteenthcentury individualistic philosophy. He agreed with SaintSimon that the eighteenth-century had only destroyed rather than provided the foundations for a 'new edifice'. This new structure was to be directed exclusively in the interests of social order and social consensus. The 'essential aim of practical politics', he wrote, was 'to avoid the violent revolutions which spring from obstacles opposed to the progress of civilisation'.