A Philosophical History of German Sociology (Routledge by Frédéric Vandenberghe

By Frédéric Vandenberghe

A Philosophical heritage of German Sociology offers a scientific reconstruction of serious concept, from the founding fathers of sociology (Marx, Simmel, Weber) through Lukács to the Frankfurt university (Horkheimer, Adorno, Habermas). via a close research of the theories of alienation, rationalisation and reification, it investigates the metatheoretical presuppositions of a serious conception of the current that not just highlights the truth of domination, yet is usually in a position to spotlight the probabilities of emancipation.

Although now not written as a textbook, its transparent and cogent creation to a few of the most theories of sociology make this booklet a invaluable source for undergraduates and postgraduates alike. the subsequent in-depth research of theories of alienation and reification provide crucial fabric for any critique of the dehumanizing traits of today’s international world.

Recently translated into English from the unique French for the 1st time, this article showcases Vandenberghe's mastery of the German, French and English colleges of sociology research. the result's an immense and difficult textual content that's crucial interpreting for sociology scholars of all degrees.

Frédéric Vandenberghe is a Sociology professor and researcher at Iuperj (Instituto Universitário de Pesquisas do Rio de Janeiro), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. His writings on a huge variety of sociological themes were released as books and articles world wide.

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Extra info for A Philosophical History of German Sociology (Routledge Studies in Critical Realism)

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While from the perspective of metacritique, reification appears as a metatheoretical error, from the perspective of critical theory, it appears as a socio-historical error that must be theoretically denounced and practically combated. Yet both perspectives are complementary. Social theory can only offer a critique if it does not totalize social reification. qxp 8/29/2008 26 4:14 PM Page 26 A Philosophical History of German Sociology critical theory, but it only maintains its critical force if it consciously and reflexively controls its own presuppositions.

Some of those who are, or who were, among the scientific Marxists include Althusser, Balibar, Macherey, Rancière, Establet, Poulantzas, Godelier, Glucksmann, Naville, Bettelheim, Therborn, and the New Left Review. In the 1980s and 1990s, scientific Marxism (now postMarxism) dissolved into post-structuralism. The critical Marxists include Lukács, Goldmann, Sartre, Lefebvre, Garaudy, Axelos, Avineri, Ollman, Meszaros, Gouldner, Rubel, Schaff, Kosic, Kamenka, the Frankfurt School, the Budapest School, the Telos circle (before it shifted towards the new right), and the Yugoslav group Praxis (prior to its dissolution).

As Marx famously put it, Hegel cannot be treated like a “dead dog” (XXXV, 19). A Hegelian correction to Feuerbach’s contemplative materialism is therefore necessary. While Hegel defines labor as mental labor, he understood the active and voluntaristic aspect of labor and viewed history as a process of self-creation in which man exteriorizes himself, alienates himself, and ultimately overcomes alienation through labor. This is what Marx believed should be retained from Hegel: “Hegel conceives the self-creation of man [and history] as a process, conceives objectification as loss of the object, as alienation and as transcendence of this alienation; that he thus grasps the essence of labour, and comprehends objective man .

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