First published in 1992, this clear and assured book reveals the blind alleys of sociological theory and research. The authors present a bold and persuassive case for abandoning the quest for foundationalism in the social science. Well informed and cogently argued, this will be of particular intrest to students of Sociology and Philosophy.
Part I Formalism and the formation of sociological discourse 1. Empiricism and positivism in history and sociology 2. Philosophical formalism and the development of sociology Part II Formalism in contemporary sociology 3. Claude Levi-Strauss: universal categories and the end of racism 4. Jurgen Habermas: universal categories and the primary of the Occient Part III Some consequences of formalism for sociological analysis 5. Modernization, modernity and beyond: recent trends in social theory 6. Conclusion: theory and history