• Frederick L. Bates
Part of the Contemporary Systems Thinking book series (CST)


This book argues in favor of a cognitive-systems-theory, constructivist view of social structure and social organization that clearly separates the conceptual apparatuses employed in structural studies in sociology from that centered upon individual actors in the social-psychological sense or upon the relationship of the individual to society in the sense of social stratification. The objective has been to allow the structure of society to stand out as a distinct reality from the population of actors who people that structure and execute the transpiring events that constitute society as an emergent behavioral phenomenon. The point has been made repeatedly that to see any of these “realities,” it is necessary for the observer to use an organized cognitive system to construct a cognitively comprehensible model. This means that an approach that uses self-referential systems theory and a structural strategy will construct a different reality than that produced by symbolic interactionism or by the Marxian stratification perspective.


World Order Ecological Field Contingent Relationship Governmental Unit Structural Conflict 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Frederick L. Bates
    • 1
  1. 1.The University of GeorgiaAthensGeorgia

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