Organizing his work thematically to explore important ideas and trends that have influenced the social sciences since World War II, Daniel Bell charts the rise and fall of major developments in the field and presents a comprehensive survey of the progress of the social sciences over this thirty-five year period. Bell discusses such major advances as the emergence of sotiobiology as an effort to unify social behavior through genetically-based parameters, structuralism, the multiplicity of new paradigms in macroeconomics, and schools of neo-Marxism.
Parts I and II of The Social Sciences Since the Second World War originally appeared as yearly installments in the Encyclopaedia Britannica's Great Ideas Today series and are combined for the first time in book form. Dr. Bell has added an introductory essay that reviews the time frame and details his rationale for focusing on specific disciplines. His emphasis throughout is on those synoptic efforts geared at providing a systematic body of theory that set forth some coherent statement about human behavior or social structure. The book concludes with a discussion of the viability of formulating a unified viewof knowledge through the unity of science.