Steve Bruce Sociology: A Very Short Introduction(続き)


Sociology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

Sociology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

Steve Bruce Sociology: A Very Short Introductionの結論部に中る第5章。”Impostors”(ペテン師)と題されている。
ここで論じられているのは、先ず「社会学的問題(sociological problem)」と「社会問題(social problem)」を区別しろよということ(p.84)。”In setting their agenda, sociologists must be driven by what is sociologically interesting, not what is socially problematic.”(p.88)

(…) though the discipline owes much to reformers and many sociologists derive their research interests from moral and political engagement with the world, sociology must be distinguished from social reform. An academic discipline can function only if it is driven by its own concerns and not those of others. Even the most confident advocates of scientific method recognize the constant interplay of explanation and observation. We need tentative theories before we can know what to observe or how to describe it. For sociologists to collaborate in accumulating a body of knowledge, they need to speak a common language. For example, the comparative class analysis (…) is possible only because scholars on different countries use the same model. Furthermore, debates (for example, over the relative merits of Marxist or Weberian views of class) can be rationally advanced only if both sides agree to deal in the same currency. For this reason, only those ideas that are necessary to the task in hand should be allowed to guide our work.(p.84)

When we recognize that reality is a human product, a social construction, we weaken the solid link between perception and objective reality and call into question the standing of our own accounts and explanations. We then go further and point out that how people see things owes a lot to their shared interests. (p.89)
これは「正直(honesty)」とか「嘘(lying)」の問題ではない。しかし、自分の見方は「正確(accurate)」で他人のそれは「イデオロギー」だと見做すという「自然な誘惑」はある。しかし、社会学という営為はそうした処理を困難にする(ibid.)。さらに社会学自体(社会学者自身)の「イデオロギー」性まで問題になる。”Even if the discipline has no special ideological interests, most of its practitioners would be influenced by general racial, gender,and class interests of the white, male bourgeoisie.”(p.90) この矛盾を解消するひとつの途として、「党派的なヴィジョン」に開き直ること、学の目標を「正確さ(accuracy)」から「理念の帰結への関心(an interest in the consequences of ideas)」に置き換えるということが出てくる(p.91)。また、「党派性」の問題は別の側面を有している。所謂insider/outsider問題。

In order to explain we must understand. In order to understand we must experience. Only a black person can really understand what it means to be black. Only a woman can understand other women.(ibid.)
それに対して、「価値中立性(value neutrality)」が擁護される(pp.92-94)。ここでは「客観性」が成立する根拠についての、”Objectivity does not depend on each of us being severally devoid of extra-disciplinary values: competition and collaboration neutralize the distorting effects of any one scholar's biases.”(p.94)という文をメモしておく。

(…) where large numbers of scholars from disparate backgrounds come to the same conclusions, it becomes less easy to suppose that their findings are some sort of collective delusion and more easy to suppose that they are actually making contact with some external realities. That our observations can be persuasive for scholars from a wide variety of cultures suggests that there is a real world out there, which is independent of our beliefs about it, and hence that we can at least aspire to making discoveries about that world that are more than just an expression of our beliefs and preferences. (pp.96-97)

(…) common sense itself provides the best warrant for the possibility of social science. Some of us are better at it than others and we all make mistakes, but everyday, in hundreds of small ways, we attempt to observe, describe, understand, and explain our actions and the actions of others. If we can do it as amateurs, I see no reason why, with greater effort, we cannot do it professionally.(pp.99-100)
この章で論じられた問題について、より詳しくは(”Further Readings”には挙げられていないものの)バーガー&ケルナーのSociology Reinterpretedが参照されるべきなのかも知れない。
Sociology Reinterpreted: An Essay on Method and Vocation (Pelican)

Sociology Reinterpreted: An Essay on Method and Vocation (Pelican)

そういえば、バーガー先生の自伝Adventures of an Accidental Sociologistが出たという;

Michael Dirda “Book review: ‘Adventures of an Accidental Sociologist,’ by Peter L. Berger”
Francois Dubet “Book Review – Adventures of an Accidental Sociologist”

著者のSteve Bruce氏は宗教社会学者で、主な関心領域は北アイルランドにおける宗教―政治関係と世俗化理論*2。この本にも北アイルランドプロテスタント系テロ組織、Ulster Defence Association(UDA)とUlster Volunteer Force(UVF)の話が出てくる(p.5ff.)。