Sociology and the Twilight of Man: Homocentrism and Discourse in Sociological Theory

Sociology and the Twilight of Man: Homocentrism and Discourse in Sociological Theory

Sociology and the Twilight of Man: Homocentrism and Discourse in Sociological Theory

Sociology and the Twilight of Man: Homocentrism and Discourse in Sociological Theory

Synopsis

A critique of modern sociological theory, this brilliant new work rather than announcing the twilight of man accepts the event both as an intellectual conclu sion and an empirical fact, and proceeds systematically to examine the alterna tives beyond the Weber-Durkheim-Par sons episteme.

Addressing himselfto the issues of pluralism in sociological theory, Lemert rigorously examines representative writings of important theorists in America and Europe, including the writings of Homans (Lexical Explana tion), Blalock (Theory Construction ism), Parsons (Analytic Realism), Blumer (Symbolic Interactionism), Schutz, Berger, Luckmann (Phenomen ology), Cicourel (Ethnomethology), and Habermas (Critical Theory). Lemert challenges the celebrated pluralism hy pothesis in his argument that recent sociological theory is not so pluralistic after all and has not made particular use of available styles of thinking.

Sociology and the Twilight of Man is an important contribution to the modern sociological enterprise for several rea sons. First, it raises basic questions about the progress made beyond earlier theoretical writings. Second, it ques tions the explanatory force of current theories. Third, it questions whether contemporary theory can continue to develop in a meaningful way without a profound reexamination of its assump tions and premises. And fourth, it dem onstrates the value of discursive analysis to theoretical studies. Lemert's critique could lead to fundamental revisions of sociologists' perception of their disci pline.

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