The Philosophy of Social Science: An Introduction
This new interdisciplinary textbook by Martin Hollis offers an exceptionally clear and concise introduction to the philosophy of social science. It unearths central philosophical problems underlying the standard ways of thinking about social institutions and social actions, leading the reader to reflect upon the nature of scientific method itself. Is the aim to explain the social world after the manner of the natural world, or to understand it from within? Writing in his characteristically clear and incisive prose, Martin Hollis reveals the crucial role to be played by philosophy in the study of the social sciences.
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Introduction problems of Structure and Action
Discovering truth the rationalist way
Positive science the empiricist way
Ants Spiders and Bees a third way?
Systems and functions
Games with Rational Agents
Understanding social action
Self and roles
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actors analogy analysis axioms Azande basic behaviour beliefs causal causes Chapter claims concepts conflict consciousness coordination game culture depends Descartes dispute distinction empirical empiricism empiricist epistemological ethics experience explanation external Figure forces functional Game Theory generalisations Hence hermeneutic holism homo economicus human hypotheses idea identify individual individualist induction inference instance institutions interpretation involved Jack and Jill judgement knowledge language laws left box logic Logical Positivism meaning mechanical mind moral natural sciences necessity normative expectations notion numbers objective observation ontology organised outcomes particular perception phenomena philosophical play players Popper Positive economics Positive science predictions preferences Prisoner's Dilemma problem psychology question rational agents Rational Choice theory rationalist reality reason relations relativism roles Rouget rule-followers rules scientific method sense simply social action social facts social sciences social scientists social world society statements strategy structure suggestion termite thought tion true truth understanding Weber