Beyond Sociology's Tower of Babel
Reconstructing the Scientific Method


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Beyond Sociology's Tower of Babel
Reconstructing the Scientific Method

by Bernard Phillips (Author)



ISBN: 9780202306667


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The Babel tower of the title is the author's image for the contemporary fragmentation of sociology into 40 sections that rarely follow the scientific ideal of attempting to communicate with each other. He argues for a sociological vision created by building bridges connecting these sections.

Going far beyond a programmatic effort to sketch what prevents sociologists from dismantling their tower of Babel and what might be done in the future, Phillips sets forth a second, heuristic image, that of a "web". He presents one illustration after another to document each aspect of a web approach to the scientific method, an approach that opens up to the theories and methods that have been developed within every substantive area of the discipline. His approach is similar to other developments of a synthetic orientation, that would link "micro" with "macro" phenomena. To the extent that the utility of the web approach holds up to empirical testing and comes to be established, it holds out to sociologists the promise of achieving the cumulative development and credibility that are hallmarks of any science. The book should be useful for courses in method, in the classical tradition of sociology, and in undergraduate seminars where the theoretical underpinnings of the discipline are taken up.


ISBN 202306666
ISBN13 9780202306667
Publisher AldineTransaction
Format Paperback
Publication date 31/01/2002
Pages xvi,245
Weight (grammes) 395
Published in United States
Height (mm) 230
Width (mm) 150