Sociological Theory Positivistic Interpretative And Critical Essay
Sociological Theory: Positivist, Interpretative, And Critical Essay, Research PaperSociological Theory: Positivist, Interpretative, and CriticalRemark on the three types of sociological theories, explain and argue, basedon your library or Internet research, which type of theory is the mostappropriate theory for sociology to follow.The three general types of sociological theory are positive, interpretativeand critical theory.In finding which theory is the most appropriate forsociology to follow, a basic apprehension of each theory & # 8217 ; s strengths andfailings is necessary.
In specifying each of these theories, it is of import tofind the ontological footing orthe theory & # 8217 ; s footing for finding what iscognizable ; the epistemic footing or the theory & # 8217 ; s relationship between theapprehender and the cognizable ; and, eventually, the methodological footing or the theory & # 8217 ; smethod for garnering informations and obtaining cognition.A.POSITIVISTIC1.Ontology.The positive theory is based on an ontology ofbeing a realist.The realisticangle of positivism is besides known as determinism.
The rationalist knows that aworld is & # 8220 ; out there & # 8221 ; to be defined and categorized.The difficult scientific disciplines from theclip of Newton and Decartes have traditionally relied on the positiveapproach.The rationalist hopes to be able to come close & # 8220 ; world & # 8221 ; in a elaborategeneralisation or theory on how world operates.
The theories of a rationalistgenerallytake the signifier of cause and consequence Torahs depicting the exteriorreality.Robert Merton defined these theorems as & # 8220 ; clear verifiable statements ofthe relationships between specified variables. & # 8221 ;2.Epistemology.Positivism relies onan nonsubjective epistemology.The perceiver remains distant anddoes non interact with the observation or experiment.Values and any otherfactors that might take to prejudices are to be carefully removed so that the cold,monological regard of scientific discipline can be used to analyse the data.The rationalist is anobjectivist.
3.Methodology.The methodological analysis of positivism is experimental and manipulative. The attack isthe same as propounded in most junior high scientific discipline categories: Begin with ahypothesis on how & # 8220 ; world & # 8221 ; plants, so garner informations and prove the informations againstthe hypothesis.The inquiry propounded ab initio is tested against empiricalinformations gathered in the experiment under carefully controlled conditions.B.
INTERPRETIVE1.Ontology.The interpretivist ontology is relativism.The belief, unlike the rationalist, isthat cognition is comparative to the observor.Reality is non something that existsoutside the observor, but instead is determined by the experiences, societalbackground and other factors of the observor.Because of this position sociologicaljurisprudence is non a changeless, but a relationship between altering variables.2.Epistemology.
The epistemology of interpretivism is the subjective.The enquirer ininterpretisim becomes portion of an interaction or communicating with the topicof the inquiry.The findings are the consequence of the interaction between theenquirer and the topic. Reality becomes a societal building.3.Methodology.The methodological analysis ofinterpretivism can outdo be described as hermenutic ordialectic.
Hermenutics is the survey of how to do interpretative inquiry.Dialecticis brooding of the duologue imagined in the subjective attack and the demandto prove interpretative theory against human experience. Max Weber described themethodological analysis as & # 8220 ; a scientific discipline which aims at the interpretive apprehension ofsocietal behavior and therefore at the account of its causes, its class, and itseffects.
& # 8221 ;Through hermenutics, the natural information consists of description.The description ismade through the of course symbolic usage of language.The significance of the linguistic communicationis derived in portion by the society from which it arises.
Interpretive theory istested by mentioning back to human pattern within the society.If the interactionproduces the awaited consequence so the theory is corroborated and frailty versa.C.CRITICAL THEORY1.Ontology.Criticalrealism is the ontology of critical theory.Critical pragmatism believesthat a world exists & # 8220 ; out there & # 8221 ; and is non simply relative.
However, worldcan ne’er be to the full comprehended or understood.Natural Torahs still control andthrust realityand to the extent possible should be understood.2.Epistemology.Critical theory is value oriented.Therefore, the critical theoretician is subjectiveto the extent that the enquiries are governed and conducted in the context ofthevalues expounded by the theoretician.3.Methodology.
Critical theory has a transformative methodology.The replies provided should beon how we should live.The position quo is critiqued and attacked.Actions arecriticized because of the consequence they will bring.The transmutation is broughtabout by doing social participants more cognizant of the linguistic communication and the universein which they live.
By beat uping members of society around a common, clear and& # 8220 ; true & # 8221 ; point, social unfairness and development can be eliminated.POSITIVISM VERSUS INTERPRETIVISMThe positive attack is first-class for analyzing exterior informations that canbasically be utilized in an nonsubjective fashion.The rationalist is an first-classdoctrine for sing social tendencies andchanges.The monological or scientificgazeis limited in its perceptual experiences and can outdo be used for finding when andto what extent groups in the society interact.The interpretivist, on the other manus, wants to cognize why things are go oning ina peculiar society.The subjective attack allows communicating with thecultural background of a society and an apprehension of why things operate.An illustration of how the two attacks differ can be seen by analyzingsomething like the local Mormon baptism rite for 8 twelvemonth old children.Therationalist would state per centums of kids who participated in comparing tothe clip the parents spent in church.
The hypothesis may get down that a higherper centum ofchildren would take part in the ritual if their parents were moreactive in the religion.Data would be gathered and tested against thehypothesis.The decision would be that the information confirmed the hypothesis and sothe decision could be reached that the more active the parents, the moreprobably that the kid would take part in the rite.The interpretivist would study and analyze why the kids were baptized andwhat the baptism meant to the participants.
The concluding concept for theinterpretivist would be thatthe baptism signified a spiritual cleaning and aP >new beginning and acted as a right of transition for the immature kids.Both decisions are right, the consequences are immensely different.The rationalistexpressions at the outside of society, while the interpretivist expressions at theinterior.It is the difference between analyzing the electrical synapses in theencephalon and cognizing what person is thinking.
Both enquiries have there value, butin the terminal, they are looking at different facets of the same subject.Therationalist examines the exterior, while the interpretivist examines the inside.Critics of interpretivism and rationalists attack interpretative theory for beingsubjective and therfore being unreliable.This is non an accurate review.
Justas there can be hapless positive theories, there can be hapless interpretativetheories. Likewise, there can be good positive and interpretative theories.An analogy to literary review is the best illustration.Literary review isever interpretive.A positive review ofHamlet would amount to nilmore than a catalog of the figure of times each word is used, the sum of inkand the figure of pages in the story.It would state us nil about the powerand strength of the drama.
Interpretative attacks of Hamlet can be either goodor bad. An reading that it is a drama about & # 8220 ; being happy & # 8221 ; would be a badreading, while a review on retaliation would be more accurate.The commonexperience of people who have seen or read the drama helps find the qualityof an interpretation.While it is subjective, a sensible finding can bemade as to its value.
Positivism besides has some built-in troubles in maintaing the objectivist positionwhen making sociological research.Unlike physical scientific discipline which can mensurateequations like Force peers Mass times Acceleration, human establishments arereplete with human subjectivity.Positivistic scientific discipline is a tool which merely worksfor external scrutinies. Biesta and Miedema describe the job in this manner:The point here is, that the scientific survey of human subjectivenesshas purposes that differ radically from the purposes of physical scientific discipline.Physical scientific discipline purposes at control of a ( human ) topic over a ( non-homo ) object.The relationship between the two can be characterizedas an external relationship, foremost because the object is controlledby the topic, and secondly becasue the knoweldge acquired by thetopic in order to explicate the behavings of the object does noninfluence the behavings of the object.While effectual for the external analysis, positivism is missing in explicatingsocietal behaviour.Probably, the biggest job in using positivism in a sociological sceneis the trouble with language.
Language, by its really nature, defiesset uping empirical truth. Positivism relies on empirical facts derived fromobservation, yet & # 8220 ; [ t ] here is no absolute manner to insulate the analytic, necessarytruths from the simply empirical. & # 8221 ;Because of the built-in jobs positivism has been modified in thepostpositivism movement.The ontology is that of the critical realist.Theobjectiveness is modified to acknowledge that it can merely be approximated. Themethodological analysis is a modified experimental which tries to carry on the research inmore natural scenes with more qualitative components.This postpositivismremains an ideal methodological analysis for analyzing external constituents of the society.
POSITIVISTIC AND INTERPRETIVE VERSUS CRITICAL THEORYThe nonsubjective demands of positivism are straight counter to subjectivecritical theory.Critical theory attacks sociology as a agency to easesocial change.A rationalist would instead detect from behind a thick glass andbase removed from the observation.The declared intent of critical theory is to transform society into a betterworld.
Positivism simply wants to specify world, non redefine.Positivism willbe reductionsitic, while critical theory will be given to be holistic.The twotheories could non be further apart. The ends and aims areantithetical.Balaban summarizes the struggle as follows:Positivism and Critical Theory offer us a positive history of afetishistic society. The first accepts it ( evaluates it positively ) ;the 2nd culls it ( evaluates it negatively ) .Positivism congratulationsssociety, Critical Theory blames society.Meanwhile the human scientific disciplinesexpect a true critical account of society.
Similarly, interpretative theory and critical theory differ.Interpretive theory islooking at the interior to understand why.Critical theory is seeking to alter thesociety.The difference is between seeking to understand and seeking tochange.Thomas R. Schwandt described the difference betweeen the two theories asfollows:If constructivism [ interpretivism ] can be characterized by itsconcern with a hermeneutic consciousness & # 8212 ; capturing the livedexperiences of participants & # 8212 ; so critical theory can bycharacterized by its critical consciousness & # 8212 ; consistentlylook intoing the mode in which that lived experience may bedistorted by false consciousness and political orientation.
. . . If theconstructivist [ interpretivist ] methodological analysiss are preoccupiedwith the Restoration of the significance of human experience, socritical scientific discipline methodological analysiss are preoccupied with decreaseof semblances in the human experience.
DecisionAll three methodological attacks involve precautions to modulate objectiveness.This is non the same as objectivism.Each has its ain & # 8220 ; norms for continuing witha peculiar signifier of enquiry in a rational manner. & # 8221 ; However, because of theorientation of each theory, the terminal consequences will change.Based upon these difference, critical theory does non look to be a theory thatshould be adopted by sociologists.It belongs more in the kingdom of political relations andlegislation.Critical theory in that context could take advantage of scientificenquiry by both positive and interpretative sociologists to dofindings about societal change.If so critical theoretician are to beinvolved in sociological survey, full revelation of biass and aimswould be needed for any enquiry to be good and trusty.Postpositivism remains the best attack for detecting the outsides ofsociety.Coupled with the interpretivist & # 8217 ; s position of the interior civilization, the twotheories working manus in manus would be most good for the sociologist inanalyzing society.Utilizing a double attack would be the most comprehensive andgive the scientific enquiry both deepness and span in measuring our societies andmaking a functional organic structure of sociological research.