Theory and Evidence in Comparative Politics and International Relations
Richard Ned Lebow, Mark Lichbach
Palgrave Macmillan, Jul 15, 2007 - Political Science - 290 pages
This book explores the epistemology and the methodology of political knowledge and social inquiry. What can we know, and how do we know? Friedrich V. Kratochwil and Ted Hopf question all foundational claims of inquiry and envisage science as a self-reflective practice. Brian Pollins and Fred Chernoff accept their arguments to some degree and explore the implications for logical positivism. David A. Waldner, Jack Levy, and Andrew Lawrence address the purpose and methods of research. They debate the role of explanation versus prediction, the relationship of theory to evidence, and their implications for the Democratic Peace research program. A concluding chapter by Mark Lichbach offers a pluralistic reformulation of neopositivism. An alternative conclusion by Steven Bernstein, Richard Ned Lebow, Janice Gross Stein and Steven Weber contends that social science should be modeled on medicine and reformulated as a set of case-based diagnostic tools. The distinguishing feature of the book is the inclusion of authors who represent different approaches to social science and their willingness to engage with one another in a constructive debate.
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