Advertisement

Science of Society Lost: On the Failure to Establish Sociology in Europe During the “Classical” Period

  • Peter Wagner
Part of the Sociology of the Sciences Yearbook book series (SOSC, volume 15)

Abstract

Sociologists usually have a clear conception of the history of their discipline. They may disagree on the merits of individual contributions to the development of the subject, but they share the view that there was a first blossoming around the turn of the century, a period which they label the “classical era.” The era is easily demarcated. While there was a wide diffusion of sociological activity, a limited number of towering figures emerged, often named the “founding fathers” of the discipline, whose intellectual lifespans coincided neatly. Emile Durkheim got his first appointment, at the University of Bordeaux, in 1887, Max Weber at the University of Freiburg, in 1895, and Vilfredo Pareto at the University of Lausanne, in 1893. Durkheim died in 1917, Weber in 1920 and Pareto in 1923. By that time, they had all contributed to the construction of the intellectual field for which two of them had appropriated the name “sociology” while the third one, Weber, was more reluctant but increasingly used this label after he had been involved in the founding of the German Society for Sociology in 1909. It should probably be no wonder, therefore, that sociologists look back on this period as constitutive for their field and that even to the analytical view of an historian, the era appears as the one of professionalization of sociology, the setting of standards for sociological work and, consequently, the demarcation of boundaries to other academic fields and to “lay” non-professional activities (Torstendahl 1987).

Keywords

Political Economy Social Theory Political Legitimacy Founding Father Legal Positivism 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Asor Rosa, Alberto (1975), “La Cultura,” in: Storia d’Italia, Vol. IV.2, Turin: Einaudi.Google Scholar
  2. Barbano, Filippo (1985), “Sociologia e positivismo in Italia, 1850–1910,” in: Filippo Barbano and Giorgio Sola, Sociologia e scienze sociali in Italia, 1861–1890, Milan: Angeli.Google Scholar
  3. Bobbio, Norberto (1969), “Profilo ideologico del novecento,” in: Storia della letteratura, Vol. 9, Milan: Garzanti.Google Scholar
  4. Bourdieu, Pierre (1975), “The Specificity of the Scientific Field and the Social Conditions of the Progress of Reason,” in: Social Science Information, 14,No. 6: 19–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bourdieu, Pierre (1984), Homo Academicus, Paris: Minuit.Google Scholar
  6. Coleman, James (1986), “Social Theory, Social Research and a Theory of Action,” in: American Journal of Sociology, 91: 1309–1335.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Croce, Benedetto (1942), Conversazioni critiche, Vol. I, Bari.Google Scholar
  8. Dahrendorf, Ralf (1969), “Anmerkungen zur Diskussion der Referate von Karl R. Popper und Theodor W. Adorno,” in: Theodor W. Adorno et al., Der Positivismusstreit in der deutschen Soziologie, Neuwied: Luchterhand.Google Scholar
  9. Durkheim, Emile (1888), “Cours de science sociale: leçon d’ouverture,” in: Revue international d Education, 15,No. 1.Google Scholar
  10. Durkheim, Emile (1950), Leçons de sociologie, Paris: Presses Universitaires Franchises.Google Scholar
  11. Durkheim, Emile (1970, first 1909), “Sociologie et sciences sociales,” in: Emile Durkheim, La science sociale et l’action, Paris: Presses Universitaires Françaises.Google Scholar
  12. Dyson, Kenneth H.F. (1980), The State Tradition in Western Europe, Oxford: Robertson.Google Scholar
  13. Foucault, Michel (1971), L’ordre du discours, Paris: Gallimard.Google Scholar
  14. Freund, Mien (1976), Pareto. La teoria dell’equilibrio, Bari: Laterza (French original 1974).Google Scholar
  15. Gentile, Emilio (1982), Il mito dello stato nuovo dall’antigiolittismo al fascismo, Rome: Laterza.Google Scholar
  16. Giddens, Anthony (1985), The Nation-State and Violence, Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  17. Giddens, Anthony (ed.) (1986), Durkheim on Politics and the State, Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  18. Gierke, Otto von (1915), Die Grundbegriffe des Staatsrechts und die neuesten Staatsrechtstheorien, Tübingen: Mohr (first published 1874).Google Scholar
  19. Habermas, Jürgen (1985), Der philosophische Diskurs der Moderne, Frankfurt/M.: Suhrkamp.Google Scholar
  20. Hawthorn, Geoffrey (1976), Enlightenment and Despair, A History of Sociology, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  21. Heilbron, Johan (1985), “Les métamorphoses du durkheimisme, 1920–1940,” in: Revue française de sociologie, 36,No. 2.Google Scholar
  22. Heilbron, Johan (1988), “Particularités et particularismes de la sociologie aux Pays-Bas,” in: Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales, No. 74: 76–81.Google Scholar
  23. Hughes, H. Stuart (1958), Consciousness and Society. The Reorientation in European Social Thought, 1890–1920, New York: Vintage.Google Scholar
  24. Käsler, Dirk (1984), Diefruhe deutsche Soziologie und ihre Entstehungs-Milieus 1909 bis 1934, Opladen: Westdeutscher Verlag.Google Scholar
  25. Karady, Victor (1976), ‘Durkheim, les sciences sociales et TUniversite’: bilan d’un semi-échec,” in: Revue franqaise de sociologie, 17,No. 2: 267–311.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Klingemann, Carsten (1981), “Heimatsoziologie oder Ordnungsinstrument? Fachgeschichtliche Aspekte der Soziologie in Deutschland zwischen 1933 und 1945,” in: Kölner Zeitschrift für Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie, Special Issue 23.Google Scholar
  27. Lukács, Georg (1954), Die Zerstörung der Vernunft, Berlin: Aufbau.Google Scholar
  28. Lukes, Steven (1973), Emile Durkheim, London: Allen Lane.Google Scholar
  29. Lutz, Burkart (1975), “Zur Lage der soziologischen Forschung in der Bundesrepublik-Ergebnis einer Enquete der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Soziologie,” in: Soziologie, 1: 4–102.Google Scholar
  30. Maier, Charles S. (1975), Recasting Bourgeois Europe. Stabilization in France, Germany and Italy in the Decade after World War I, Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  31. Manicas, Peter T. (1987), A History and Philosophy of the Social Sciences, Oxford: Basil Blackwell.Google Scholar
  32. Miceli, Vincenzo (1885), “La divisione nelle scienze sociali,” in: Rassegna di scienze sociali e politiche, 3,No. 55: 341–356.Google Scholar
  33. Michels, Robert (1930), “The Status of Sociology in Italy,” in: Social Forces, 9, October.Google Scholar
  34. Mozzarelli, Cesare, and Stefano Nespor (1981), Giuristi e scienze sociali nelVItalia liberale, Venice: Marsilio.Google Scholar
  35. Nowotny, Helga (1983), “Marienthal and After. Local Historicity and the Road to Policy Relevance,” in: Knowledge, 5,No. 2:169–192.Google Scholar
  36. Pareto, Vilfredo (1923), Trattato di sociologia generale (2nd edition), Florence: Barbera.Google Scholar
  37. Paulsen, Friedrich (1902), Die deutschen Universitäten und das Universitätsstudium, Berlin: Asher.Google Scholar
  38. Pollak, Michael (1976), “La planification des sciences sociales,” in: Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales, Nos. 2–3.Google Scholar
  39. Ringer, Fritz K. (1969), The Decline of the German Mandarins, Boston: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  40. Rossi, Pietro (1982), “La sociologia nella seconda metà del’ottocento: dairimpiego di schemi storico-evolutivi alia formulazione di modelli analitici,” in: IL pensiero politico, 15,No. 1.Google Scholar
  41. Rothblatt, Sheldon, and Bjorn Wittrock (1990), The Three Missions: Universities in the Western World, forthcoming.Google Scholar
  42. Seidman, Steven (1983), Liberalism and the Origins of European Social Theory, Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  43. Sola, Giorgio (1985), “Sviluppi e scenari della sociologia italiana, 1861–1890,” in: Giorgo Sola and Filippo Barbano, Sociologia e scienze sociali in Italia, 1861–1890, Milan: Angeli.Google Scholar
  44. Therborn, Göran (1976), Science, Class and Society, London: New Left Books.Google Scholar
  45. Torstendahl, Rolf (1987), “Transformation of Professional Education in the 19th century,” conference paper “Higher Education”, Dalarö.Google Scholar
  46. Van Doom, J. (1965), “Die niederlandische Soziologie: Geschichte, Gestalt und Wirkung,” in: Joachim Matthes (ed.), Soziologie und Gesellschaft in den Niederlanden, Neuwied: Luchterhand.Google Scholar
  47. Villé, Philippe de (forthcoming), “The General Equilibrium Tradition and Beyond,” in: Bjorn Wittrock (ed.), Social Theory and Human Agency, London: Sage.Google Scholar
  48. Wagner, Peter (1987), “Reform Coalitions Between Social Scientists and Policymakers,” in: Stuart S. Blume, Joske Bunders, Loet Leydesdorff and Richard Whitley, The Public Direction of the Social Sciences, Sociology of the Sciences Yearbook Vol. 11, Dordrecht: Reidel.Google Scholar
  49. Wagner, Peter (1989), “Social Science and the State in Continental Western Europe: The Political Structuration of Disciplinary Discourse,” in: International Social Science Journal, 41,No. 4: 509–528.Google Scholar
  50. Wagner, Peter (1990), Sozialwissenschaften und Staat, Frankfurt/M.: Campus.Google Scholar
  51. Weber, Max (1973), “Die ‘Objektivität’ sozialwissenschaftlicher und sozialpolitischer Erkenntnis,” in: Johannes Winckelmann (ed.), Max Weber, Gesammelte Aufsdtze zur Wissenschaftslehre, 4th edition, Tubingen: Mohr.Google Scholar
  52. Wieacker, Franz (1952), Privatrechtsgeschichte der Neuzeit unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der deutschen Entwicklung, Göttingen: Vandenhoeck und Ruprecht.Google Scholar
  53. Wiese, Leopold von (1920), “Die Soziologie als Einzelwissenschaft,” in: Jahrbuch für Gesetzgebung, Verwaltung und Volkswirtschaft (Schmollers Jahrbuch), Vol. 44.Google Scholar
  54. Wittrock, Björn (1985), “Dinosaurs or Dolphins? Rise and Resurgence of the Research-Oriented University,” in: Björn Wittrock and Aant Elzinga, The University Research System. Public Policies for the Home of Scientists, Stockholm: Almqvist and Wiksell.Google Scholar
  55. Wittrock, Björn (1988), “Rise and Development of the Modern State: Democracy in Context,” in: Diane Sainsbury (ed.), Democracy, State and Justice, Essays in Honor ofElias Berg, Stockholm: Almqvist and Wiksell: 113–125.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Klower Academic Publishers 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter Wagner

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations