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Positivism, prejudice and progress in the sociology of education: who's afraid of values?

By John Abraham


This article is a response to Hammersley's allegations that my discussion of positivism and differentiation-polarisation theory (d-p), previously published in this journal, was misguided, incoherent and prejudiced against positivism. I refute those allegations by demonstrating that Hammersley has either misunderstood or misrepresented my position. Furthermore, by revealing inconsistencies in Hammersley's arguments about positivism and d-p I expose his incoherencies and prejudices regarding the role of political values in social research. Finally and constructively, I suggest that the 'enlightenment' aspect of the 'political arithmetic' tradition has much to recommend it as a framework for progress in sociology of education

Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Year: 1996
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