Main Currents in Sociological Thought: Durkheim, Pareto, Weber - Vol. 2

By Raymond Aron; Richard Howard et al. | Go to book overview

VII
Final Remarks on Pareto

PARETO IS ONE of those thinkers who are to be defined largely in terms of their enemies; he is a man who thinks against. But Pareto thinks against both barbarians and civilized people, against both despots and naïve democrats, against both philosophers who claim to discover the ultimate truth of things and scientists who imagine that only science has any importance. Because of the plurality of his enemies, the intrinsic meaning of his work cannot but remain uncertain. Moreover, Pareto explicitly refuses to decide what goal the individual or society should set itself. Somewhere he raises the question whether it is a good idea to grant a collectivity a few decades or centuries of civilization if this brilliant period must end with a loss of national independence, and he adds that there is no answer to a question of this kind. This may lead some to conclude that the splendor of a civilization should be safeguarded, even if it must be paid for by political decline at some later date. It leads others to believe that the unity and strength of the nation must be maintained before all else, even at the expense of the achievements of culture. Finally, Pareto implies a kind of inherent contradiction between scientific truth and social utility. According to him, the truth about society is something of a factor in social breakdown. If this contradiction is authentic, if the true is not the useful, if the useful

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Main Currents in Sociological Thought: Durkheim, Pareto, Weber - Vol. 2
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Preface v
  • Contents ix
  • Introduction i
  • ÉMile Durkheim *
  • I - De la Division Du Travail Social 11
  • II - Le Suicide 24
  • III - Les Formes éLéMentaires de la Vie Religieuse (1) 35
  • IV - Les Formes éLéMentaires de la Vie Religieuse (2) 47
  • V - Las RèGles de la MéThode Sociologique 59
  • VI - Socialism 70
  • VII - Philosophy and Morality 82
  • Vilfredo Pareto *
  • I - Logical and Nonlogical Actions 101
  • II - Residues 116
  • III - Residues and Derivations 128
  • IV - From Analysis to Synthesis 138
  • V - Elites and Cycles of Mutual Dependence 148
  • VI - The Significance of Pareto's Work 160
  • VII - Final Remarks on Pareto 169
  • Max Weber *
  • I - The Conception of Science 179
  • II - Science and Action 188
  • III - Historical Causality and Sociological Causality: the Ideal Types 197
  • IV - Philosophy of Values and Sociology of Religion 205
  • V - The Sociology of Religion: Economy and Society 220
  • VI - Political Sociology 233
  • Conclusion 253
  • Bibliographies 265
  • Index 269
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