What is the relationship between the social sciences and the natural sciences? Where do today's dominant approaches to doing social science come from? What are the main fissures and debates in contemporary social scientific thought? How are we to make sense of seemingly contrasting approaches to how social scientists find out about the world and justify their claims to have knowledge of it? In this exciting handbook, Ian Jarvie and Jesus Zamora-Bonilla have put together a wide-ranging and authoritative overview of the main philosophical currents and traditions at work in the social sciences today. Starting with the history of social scientific thought, this handbook sets out to explore that core fundamentals of social science practice, from issues of ontology and epistemology to issues of practical method. Along the way it investigates such notions as paradigm, empiricism, postmodernism, naturalism, language, agency, power, culture, and causality. Bringing together in one volume leading authorities in the field from around the world, this book will be a must-have for any serious scholar or student of the social sciences
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