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POSITIVISM AND DIAI,ECTICS: A COMPARISON

3y

Johan Galtung

[o appear as chapter I in Met]g$ologv,gE9 ldeologv'


Copenhagen: ChristiEn Ejlers.- 1976
al

POSITIVISM AND DIALECTICS: A COMPARISON

t. fntroduction

The title of this chapter is pretentious and the reader wil-l soon
discover that there is neithen philosoohical depth nor any real
effort to immerse oneself into the richness of the contemDorlarv
Po siti vi s musstneit. This is e n t ire lv d e lib e ra t e for the purpose
is diffe:.ent: to explore some aspects of positivism and dia-
lectics from the point of view of rnethodologrcal tools. Tools
not only serve to define what one can do with some objects, but
also to define these objects. And that leads straight to the
two domains of the present inquiry: ;-,rethodology and ideolog- v,
what are the ground-rules of the scientific enterprise, and rvhat
is the nature of the reality to which these gnound-rules apply?
Put somewhat differently: what ar"e the basic tooIs, defined
through the rules of using them, and what are the basic properties
of tre ohiects to which these toolS can be annl'icd?

For.mulated this way ther.e is a centain asymmetry between


positivism and dialectics: positivism seems to be more explicit
on the use of the too1s, dialectics more on the natune of the
objects, the reality to which tool-s aue to be apnlied. The
mutual stereotypes point in t|,at direction, portr.aying positivism
as the basic fname of mind of the shallow tool-maker and tool-
user, the technician who may even becorne a technocrat, and
portraying the other side as verbose, possibll' subtle, but
jncan ab le of ev an r laf jnr ' nc c 'l e : r - l r z r j l ( f rovr 1 . iS
vr u u ! \ OtherS) Wh a t dialectis

afl about. In shortr or the one hand operations without much


undersl-anding: ofl the other understanding that has not been made
very operational.

Taking this as the very simplest aoproximation to the problem


i-n ho c, v r lnna. l jp t his 6. 1 . 1 n f a n ;+ ] - 'a n ^ 1 g S
VVVVIIILO Cleaf
UIUUI that
L TI q L thene m i S- h t

be some basis for a synthesis, at least for a mariage de con-


j an-a "n
rzon pv a ' { - ,.r a a n cn - a t} r i
ovrrreLrrrrrS S tfOng
_ __ -__o On pgl_Ltrvuvrv23y
-1-rni n'l :ni Weak ( bOth
) -.y ^-., Gllu

t" at. =ense of being implicit and in the sense of being mislead-
ing) on ideology and something stnong on ideology (both explicit
and well-directed) but weak on methodology. But this formulation
overlook s the important and obvious relation there i-s between
methodology and ideology in the sense these tenms are used here.
fn the case of positivism there is an underlying ideology, a
{

w or ld - vie w, that can be partly in f e rre d f ro m t h e t o o rs u s e < 1 lrv


p osi tivists to come to grips wit h n e a lit y ;
a n d in d ia le c t ic s thene
w o u ld b e constnaints on the c h o ic e o f t o o ls s in c e t h e y wo u ld h a v e
t o b e co m patibl-e with the ide o lo g y . He n c e t h e p n o b re m t o b e
e xplo n e d is certainly not whe t h e r p o s it iv is t me t h o d o lo g y c a n b e
c om b in e d with dialectics as b a s ic c o s mo lo g y , b u t h o w e it h e n o f
t he m ca n be understood, possib ly in s o me c a s e s n e d e f in e d o n
d eve lo p e d to make fon a bette n f it . ( 1 )

In this type of debate o n e p ro b le m is the tendency to re a s o n


a n ti th e ti cally, in terms of c le a n d ic h o t o mie s . rn s t e a d of t n y in g
to i nfen the positivist
view o f n e a lit y f n o m it s t o o rs , it is
d e f i .n e d a s the negation of mo n e e x p lic it d ia re c t ic a r_ v ie ws , a n d
i n stea d o f trying to build too ls o f d ia le c t ic a l- a n a lv s is on
b asic ten e ts of oialectics the y a re a s t h e n e g a t io n o f
p ositi vi st methodology. rn th is t h e re a n e a t le a s t t h n e e p n o b le m s :
t h e m on e 'r o nganic* process of b u ild in g in s id e p o s it iv is m/ d ia le c t ic s
is tr un ca ted l the t'negationtt
ma y t u rn out o n ly to b e a d e c la ra t io n
of d istan ce , not a rrositive a f f in ma t io n ;
a n d t h e n e g a t io n
a ppr "o a ch m ay not lead to the s a me re s u lt
a s t h e in f e r. e n c e a p p ro a c h .
r n the l atte n thene is a sour c e o f f n u it f u l t e n s io n t h a t will- b e
u t il i zed to some extent in the f o llo win g .

To summa.ize, what we wa n t t o d o is to e x p ro re the c e lls a nd


r e l - ati on s in Table 8.1.

Tabl e An ex loration of ivism


^.'+
>IL and d ial ect ics
thro h inference s ) and nesat io n C-- >

P ositivism Dia l-e c t ic s

Methodology
rr') (2 )
L X D I]-c ]- t - -) rmp lic it
1
I
,t
+
(,l- r )
(3 )
'Implicit
- .- | E*pr icit
TAoal
+vuvrvSy an,,
(

This will be done by means of the images of positivism and


dialectics given in the next section, taken to be images important
at the lever of philosophical analysis at which social scientists,
and perhaps also other non-specialist intellectuals, are located
where philosophicar depth is concerned. And the goal of the
exercise is clear:: not onl-v to comDayle the two aDpnoaches to
qa)a'i ;rl ' n o :l itr r hrrt fn exDlone the Droblem whether how
Y. of and
l)o r it iv i s'c nethodology r-an be adanted to f it bet'Len a dialectical
vie!^/ of real i ty.

2. Positivism and dialectics: two images

We start with the upper feft hand corner of table I, positivist


methodology: and build on two of the colrner stones of this book:
nn-n^.i'r- i^---rOdUCtion and theonv-for.maf
j rvrrlruutvli. ion- pr"nnositiOnS
r IUvvDa in the
general sense of t'sentencesil as defined in 2.5 is probably an
unavoidabie pai't in any effort to come to verbal grips with
reality, and as scon as the set of propositions has emer-ged, some
kind of theory has already been formed, however^ minimal where
degree of inference is concerned. The question is to what extent
irositivis:-T.,4n be said to take
L sr \u nar'tie;lap
yq r L r u q !q I sten;s
J L q l tu D 1-1nnyloDosition-
vIr pL vyvr

production and theory-formation, and one formulation would be


as follows:

As to proposition-production: the goal is to produce


invariances, ver"bal formulas that neflect aspects of empirical
reality th.at are invariant of tine, sDace, subject and object.

As to theory-formation: the goal is to arrive at theory


systems whereby the broadest possible basis of propositions can
be arriv ed at from the nar^::owest possible apex.

Tf' -.:e soal of


vr science
oLrsttuu in
arr the
Lrtu nosit-'.''i
pvof LIVTJ -+-
L
i*--^
flllclRc
'"
L s to dis-
cover/uncover truth, then the former poinbto truth in the sense
of correspondence (witfr empirical reality), the latter to tnuth
in the sense of ccnsistency, valid deduction within the theory.
But these are also very general terms. What is typical of
positivism as here portrayed would be the idea of invaniance
Anahf,+;n- :r-
uu two
uwv levels:
luVsrD. at
qL the
LliC level
rsVgI of
UrI neal
I,CC1I_LLy,it.,i :nd
dir at the
Ievel of images of reality created by proposition production and
theory formation. Thus, the assumption is that enpirical reality
is in and by itself constituted in such a way that thene alre
invaniances, and there is the additional assumption that it is
possible to discover/uncover these invariances, at least asymp-
totically, so as to aruive at pnopositions and theories that
ultimatery woul-d themselves be invariant, simply because they
a

-l pmni vri r':l i --- A-


ne f
rLrrLlL ect n r r n f c r .f I rr in r r :z' ie n f :qnentq rl f r.'pe"! f\5
1ls-lrsue+J -**-ILy.

n rrr' nt c d nr r f in r.h a n teu vr'r


urrqP ?: th
L r r rio s means that u emD
e r r r }/ i ri cal reel
r vq f i tvL
! )
has

been caDtllred in a Jrid feafrrr"ins thnqe aSDeCtS that rjo not ohanse
over time, do not change with position in space, are intensub-
jectively comnunicabte and nepnoducible (do not depend on the
scientific subject), and do not depend on the individuality of the
object of inquiry (through abstnaction): orr its consciousness.

As fan as one can understand there is no doctrine in posi-


tivism to the effect that neality does not have other aspects;
the doctrine would be (1) that there are aspects that by and lar:ge
sat-isfv the cnitenia ipst l:r'rl zrnt.rn =-.1 (2) that theSe are the
aspects that are the objects of scientific inquiry.

Let us now move one step deepen and try to point to an even
more fundamental tenet of positivism: the idea that the'ridea of
invar"iancerris itself i.nvaniant, of variations in time, space,
S ubi ect an fl of r i en' l- M ano n:
yqt
nl- i L nrrl :nl rr thefe iS the famOUS lOW

l-evel of self-understanding in positivism which we take to mean


precisely an understanding of how methodology ( in the broadest
possible sense of this term) woul-d be conditioned of variations
in time, space, subject and object - such as historical changes,
geographical positions, and variatjons in who are the subjects
pronouncing tnemselves cn wirich objects. The questions a social
scientist would be most interested in in this connection would be
soeial I rr rel ovant vqrr u variations
vq! rq u !vrro in
rlr tine
u !l - l L and
erru s-,:-F - the
o uqug, L l tg sor-ial
D vu r q J nosi -
yvo r

tion of the ::esearcher, and the cincumstance that the object


jtself is other human beings in a social setting. fn words,
other
.)na r.rnrr'lrl nrrr- dOWn aS a Cha:raCteristiC
_y *
q vrrq!UULL!f,JLIU Of
V* oositivism
yvr L u !vr u tr t the bel-ief
"

that it is possible to arrive at the same understanding of social


affains (meaning the same pnopositions and the same theories)
regardless of social- context and the researcher's position in this
context.

Given these three basic assumptigns, positivism can move


ahead, producing an astounding variety of canons of research,
meaning rules fon proposition-production and theory-formation. ft
is highly explicit, communicable and reproducable. ft also yields
seemingly valid r"esuLt,s, meaning pnopositions and theories that
satisfy the cniteria of invariance p::ovided the va:riation in time,
< n:-F e rr fri a nf : nd
gIIU ni- r i I Uant i_g S U f fI iTUCI9iIIe n t l v I imi tLeu uj. The COnditiOn iS
L VU U L !D DUI L I- v Ir j f!! -
-
t

that social science is focussed on very limited tirne-spans,


even so limited that they have no historicity; that resear^ch
centers on a handful of similar count::ies and those aspects in
other countries that are believed to be sufficiently simila:: to
the reference countnies I that the subj ects of nesearch are all
trained in the same way s o that intensubj ectivity in reality takes
place within one relatively homogeneous, collective mind, and
f inally 'i-hat the obj ects, the social matters studied, ane trans-
formed in advance in such a way as to look rtsepfiElrdble". A thought
fonm of that kind, applied to social affairs, has obvious
imperialistic aspects, as pointed out in chapter 2) and is also
highly compatible with the social history and geography of the
major Center country, the United States with her relatively high
leveI of ahistoricity, social uniformity and intellectual homo-
/a\
opnai+.,\z/ c.'.,o11 this it shoUld follow that cunnent changes in the
world powetl structu::e would be accompanied by changes in funda-
/?)
monr:1 l-1-'n'r-hf forms as to how to conceive of social neality.'"'

ft may be misleading to refen to alternative thought forms


as rrdialecticsr' - so this ter"m should rather be taken as standing
fn n : =mi 1. ' .1f : nnnn: n] - oq dif
vL f fef
l 9 !u tl L ent ffOm
t!vj r ! n Ositivi sm aS hefe
r vvJ!L r vr Jl l L

nnnf n: r z ari ne6'essapi I rz aS a dOC tri ne that C an be i denti f ied


,
-^ t
I rv

with any specific author. The question then becomes: what would
be the basic tenets of belief on which dialectics could be said
to be based, as opposed to the thr.ee ideas presented above fon
positivisn (that the epistemology is invariant of time, space,
qrrh ian t : nr l . tLhaJ - i+ iLso m ettrar l Slnui n o f r r .
^hiaal- rrqu l tr u q l tO SeafCh fOf inVafianCeS

in empinical reality, and that it is meaningful to sear.ch for


unified, general theory). The answer might be: as a first
approxjmation srnply the negations of the three assumptions made.
Thus, dialectics woul-d craim that methodology (or epistemology
to use a broaden term) would be a function of the social context
in which it emerges; that it is meaningless (or at least not very
meaningful) to identify proposition-production with invaniance-
seeking, and that it is equally meaningless (or not very meaning-
fu1) to identify theory-fonmation with the constr:uction of large,
unif ied thought systems. But these views are preciserly negationr;
in the sense indicated in section 1 above, they do not have
sufficient organic connection with more explicit dialectical
assumptions.
6

And those assumptions should now be spelt out. V/e identify


them with what is often referred to as rtthe thnee laws of dialec-
tics r', and add one extra pr.inciple, a "founth lawtf : the ideas
of interdependence and holism, and the possibility that the
holism can be identified precisely with the intendependencies
(relations) between the parts (elements).

The following formulations of the thnee basic clialectical


principles will be used in the following:

Ever ything has built- in and dynamic contnadictions (t h e s i s


a n d a n ti-thesis) that are transcended (synthesis).

Processes take place through a transition from accumulation


of quant-ity to a djscontinuous quarily.
ffi
of ttle negation - a synthesis is in itsel_f contra-
T?gation
orctory and will be negated, a quality starts a new quanti-
tative accumulation leiding to .i new quality, and so forth.

(The key terms usually quoted are emphasized.)

Togethen they give an image of'neality as something contradictory


and highllz f1uid, cf Drocesses that are discontinuous, and as
som ething never coming to any final rest, The important third
principle says the contrary, everv negation is itself to be
negated; transcendence and processes in general rvilt continue
fo. ever. one might also combine the first and the second
principles into a deeper understanding of how transcendence takes
trlac e: on the one hand there is contnadictionr ofl the other hand
-t l-rene i s acculnulaLion (of the contradictions) l-eading to a point
where the. systensburst,
/tJr\
and something new (a new rquality,,)
emerges."All of this should then be seen in the light of the
holistic principle that everlzthing is interdependent, there are
linkages in empirical reality in all directions meaning that the
dra|r at j c phenomena referred to as transcend.ence, discontinuous
junps ancl negation of the negation would have reverberations in
all dinect ions.

At tl'ris point it might be usefuf to pnoceetl directly to the


f or:rth cell of Table B. f , trying to say somethins about the
implicit oositivist world view, partly as inferr.ed from the
methodological assumptions, partry as anrived at by negating the
dialectica] principles mentioned. What kind of basic imaee of the
u;onld does one arr.ive at?
7

If we pnoceed in the two ways indicated in Table I, both


inferuing fnom rrethodological assumptions and negating the dia-
Iectical assumptions one would arrive at a world view totally
different from what was just described. Finst of all, the elernents,
the particles so to speak of that world might differ, and they
misht be hetennsenp^uq l-rrrt thev
.,,"J woulcl be basiC elements with a
non-contradictor.y nature, so to speak at nest with themselves.
This does not imply a static world view, the world is not imrnutable,
but its mutability takes place according to immutable laws. This
means that ther:e is a knowable empinical reafity, knowable in the
sense that it carr be cast in invaniant fonms. The negation of
emnir-ica'l realitr,' is onlv ir.r.eal itv- thene i s no notential
ro: I j t.z -in -haf iss6n that c an be brought into being by transcend ing
empiricai reality. The strictest vension of this would be that
ftttrrre emninic'a'l re:'l itrr
r eurr L) is identical witn
wr Lrr oast (incI'rrlin-
\ l r r e l q u r r tS
nnaqonf
yr ururr L )
e m p ir ica l- neality; the w e a k e r v e n s io n wo u ld b e t h a t futune
e m p ir ica l reality will als o in c lu d e that wh ic h can be extna-
nn'l =J-arl rnn- n :cf :n .i ny ! n o capf
ysu e q.ru u J U tr L eprni pi
u r r ty!t C .al
!9 sf neal
! e s4 4 i tVL J bV meanS Of

immutable laws (invariances). What is excluded frorn this position


would be the idea that the invariances can themselves be trans-
cended. One example here would be the marxist position: it is
:nt'i-n.\eifr'rrisf insofan as it Says that the laws Of (say)
caoitalist
-*r*
societv will be tnanscended tosethen
L v6 e L r r vr with the trans-
ce n d e n ce of capitatist so c ie t y it s e lf , but it is p o s it iv is t in
sta ti ng that this transcend e n c e is in e v it a b le . Ma rx is m d o e s n o t
i nclu d e the possibiiity of the t ra n s c e n c ie n c e of the t ra n s c e n d en c e ,
a n d i n that sense still im p o s e s s o me : : ig id it ie s o n a wo rld wh i c h
r 't r \
otherwise is seen as verv fluid.\'/

Second, the typical process as conceived of within the


nnc if j' r r ' c J - f-a m e Wo rk w OU l d nOt be di S C Onti nU OU S , ttl U mpytt: it
r ^r nt r lr l nn n n o a .l in a m o re c o nti nuous, negul ated fashi on. A nd thir d:
t her e wil -l be no idea of an i nfi ni te seri es of negati ons of
negat ions - ra th e r, s o m e w hene in the total w orl d vi ew the notion
of a final nesting p1ace, a final state both for empirical reality
and for oun image of empirical neality wil} have a position.

What about holism? The positivist world view would not deny
interdependence, but would probably seem to feel that the
degree of dependency is highly unevenly distributed. More parti-
cu1ar1y, the assumption woul-d be that it is possibl-e to isolate
I

:lome units and some variables, often two at the time, because of
a :teep decnease in interdependency relative to the outside. A
dialectical view woul-d probably distribute the degree of inter-
dependence somewhat more evenly in social (and also physical?)
'l
sD.rcc- eading to neiections of bivariate analrzses-
q tr q r j ruo.

The positivist world is considenably


view Iess dramatic
and correctly refenred to as more trmechanistictf . The wonld con-
sists of parts that are rel-atively unchangeable and that mostly
' l- n rUr
r nnh:hft6r F.' l a 'l r " o. :l -qL!v ur yj r z ol r r
rI oler
6
e ]rhr uainr t;L
oe a su
a n n vl
6 rn rl i1nc
u !1 5 LU lUJlOltBsctUIE rutl
r nir ntonnol
ll :toj
Lg! ! gIoLs U ,
- LdW D t

processes ar e continuous, and the total system is at or relatively


near it s f inai ( somet ime s even seen as rrperf ectrr ) state The
.
dialectjcal- view is dramatic, flujd; changing partly in known,
partly in unknown directions; discontinuous, unruly, inter^-
dependent, r everberating, evel ? r.estless. I^Jhich view is the correct
one ?

A luestion like th j s, sornetimes r"e j ected, is pnobably highly


meaningful precisely because it brings out the importance of the
position of he on she who tnies to answer. One tentative anstver
might be as folfows: even a bnief glimpseof social history and
soc ial, geography should inform one that the positiv:rt image as
here portrayed cannot possibly be a coruect or even fruitful way
of viewing the wonrd. Thene are sirnply too man]' deep disconti-
nuities in tirle and space, too much interdependence, too much
transcendence for that to be the case - and it is very difficult
to believe that the system is heading towands a final resting
place (different from its own annihilation). On the other hand,
an equarly brief grimpseat time and space should convince one
that the dialectical view represents an ove:rdramatization: if all
ti,ir 1-ook n'lace u wjthin
wl Lrrltr short
ollvL L fime-snans-
Lrllls D l /q r r D ,
.'+.'^,''l
rL w ( JL l r u ,
.i ^r, 'insf:nne-
:L J! fl l Ju a t!!9 ,

be hard to berieve that human beings could continue to exist.


There seems also to be a minimum of stabifity, unchangeability
and predictability, continuity, systems at nest at least during
some periods, and possibility of isolating some parts from the
whole in which they are embeddedlG) rn shont, our conclusion would
be that both views are correct, that they both say something
terribly important about world reality, and for that reason the
question should be answered in tenms of a both-and nather than
an either-or. Both in time and in space positivist and dialectical
worl-d views could coexist, each of them focussing on aspects
of reality that seem to complement nathen than to exclude edch
other.

This, of course, is an ideology tike any clear position in


favor of positivist or dialeetical wor.Id views woufd be ideological.
From this, then, methodological implications shoul-d follow: they
would have to take the form of being eithen a compromiser dfl
ecclectic rnixture, a synthesis, orf some more adrzanced fonm of
tnanscendence between positivist and dialectical methodologies.
And that rvill be the subject of the next section; we shall only
summarize the present section by contnasting what has been
n osite.lLEU
YVDJ
As r
GO h: qi
UAJTU c ' as ner - t q
ODP9LUJ of
VI PUJ LLIV!DL O

rln'ln-., :A^^1 ^--.


uu!uEy ojru
-nl t f rr f q,r
-LucuruEy

aotrtc 3. Positivist and dialectical methodoloqv and ideologv:


some Dasr-c _es!99f t

Po s i ti v i s m D i al ecti cs

(I) Bast-c asszunption: (r) Basic assutnption:


Epistemology invariant of Epistemology a function
ti m e , s p a c e , subj ect, obj ect of social context

(2) Proposition pz.oduetion: \z) Trcnseendence,


Method.ology th e s e a rc h for i nvari ances not invariance-seeking
i n e rn p i ri c a l real -: ty

(3 ) Theorg- forrnation : (3) Reality-constvwction


th e s e a rc h for uni fi ed, through praxis,
conor :l l- hoa'
-----ry not theory-formation

(4 ) Non-ty'ansc endence : (4) Trqrtseendence:


reality immutable or the si s-anti thesi s,
mutable accordj-ng to contradrcti ons i nto
immutable laws syntheses

(5 ) C o n ti ru ,L o u s proeesses: 1q) Dis continuous proc es s es :


quantitative changes transition from
Ideoloq-y
quantity to gualitY

(6 ) T h e re is a fi nal state (6) No final state,


each negation will
in turn be negated

(7 ) Is o l a ti o n , w eak (7) Interdependence artd


interdepend.encies holism
a
t0

P os it iv is m and d i a l e c ti c s : the probl em of methodol ogi cal


#
Dr r O ge-D u ].l O rn g

/, ,i , r iCl lr t r t l dt ti rr: p o i n ts r' . n ' 1l al .,-1


e 2 will tel1 the
r:adt:r, c.rf this book (who has not already undenstood the not-so-
l-,jdden I,lan) what is comming in this chapter: the points cor-
n a q rr nnr l f n fhe e h a n te p s in th e bOOk. fn Other W OrdS , the S even

f i nst c hant ens ane n o tl i i n g h rrt a D reD A rati on for w hat is now
.:
u
^ vi
^ - Llr r"-, 6.
-
.
Grr = l
^ ffo r^ t to ma k e use of w hat has been done to try to
e xrlr/IvI
un nr e u qr lm p
Jvlrlc o
U-f th e m An v i s -" ^ - -1^--
CLJ\JrlEi
+Llls
1-p nosi ti rri
u sm-di
f V rorrl]al -ecti cs
-Jbt-tCJ I/vor

axes. By and large the position taken will be the following:


mAn\/- moqt- ,
nc-hans r al I
ur of +he etends nr'eSented in the pfeceding
' lr v J ut

nh, an t a r ^ q hr r qv
: rgr a o yr .) r ^ r n rrrrt
vuL of a
s n.)e'i f i rz'i st tn:rl i tr'nn -t not
Jr vL onl rr in
6tvwrt

th o . ar r f ohir - Lr or ,.rrh
pLVE) q I / ! r r e-i
s r r,,a l sense re
! ul! q atiu rns
r16 to thF arl fhnr,- hrrt in the

nuch more important sense that it looks as if some kind of con-


tinuum can be found between the extreme positivist and the
extreme dialectical positions. fn fact: both extreme positions
ane nnohahl v rrnintenestinp- hecarrse thev so ohrri ottslv do not
neflect sociai realitv.

To start with the first point: chapter I is an effort to


present some kind of self-understanding. The methodologies of
proposition-pnoduction and theory-constnuction are both related
to social structure, at the macno and micr^o levels. It is
pointed out that all- thrre, macro structune, micro structure and
the str:ucture of the scientific pnoduct belong to the same family,
*-'--+ Ilti- +-'^^
Lllc -'r-e ..ases
uqoeJ thev
urruJ are all exDnessions of the same under-
-rrQr- PL^- ---r-
-
' rrr-in c r-l-nrrn i-ru,u na
r e, t! /-v : o - t - h: 1- M 1del
1r\ f, fI, fTI, Or IV. At the Same

time there is the possibility of asynchrony, of some structure


being out of tune with the othens, possibly creating changes in
the ol-hers. However, the general perspective would be to relate
all three to some conmon phenomenon that for lack of any better
tcrrn one might be temDted to refer to as Zeitgeigt, the common
denominator running through them al-] - highly unsatisfactory
as an explanatory basis fnom a positivist or dialectj-cal
materialist standpoint; more satisfactory from the point of view
of clialectical idealism a }a Heg.t.(7)

Leaving that issue aside let us open for another l-ssue:


what is the self-undenstanding underlying the typology in chapter
1? Where js the person, in this case the present authorr located
wlio opei:ates with that kind of analysis? Thene seem to be two
rI

extreme answers to that type of .luestion: the person has found


an objective platfonm from which social fonmations can be vieweo;
the nerscln r'c ooeratins inside the socief v that h.:s nrcrdrrnerl him-
ModeI f i , liberal society. Both answel?s ar"e obviously inconr ect .
There is no criterion available for ascertaining the degree of
"obj ectivitytt in viewing social formations; atl it seems to be
Dosqihle to talk about is the desree of fr"uitfulness. To what
extent does a typology serve to highlight important features in
the structure of scientifj-c production and development? And as
to the second answer: Model ff society may not be the worst
basis for catching glimpses of Model I and Model fII societies,
and Fnn c-o-,'latins on Model TV societrr. ft is in the nature of
Modet II society to be eclectic and precisely because of that
diversity one may be better equipped to understand aspects of the
other social formations than one would be had one of the others
qon.'orl :c = The ethos of collectivism demands a }oyalty
Il^latform.

to one's own formation incompatibl-e with an effor.t to see oners


own social order as one among many, even as one to be superceded
and the ethos of uniformity makes it more difficult to get hold
of model-alien elements. If this type of view is most easily
attainable in a l-ibenal society, then it is also to a lar"ge extent
a product of liberal society.

But so what? That social onden is


imnontant toclar' lror.:ttqp nf its wor^1d-wide diffusion ( in democratic
and authcritarian forms), and because many of the Model II societies
of tod:rr ayle amons the wor^] d t s most nor^zarful . To view the
u yvvv! world
ta i ntecl bv Moriel TT nersnectives is not neeessari I v to view the
r^rnnlri r.rnnnclrr. Karl ManX WaS OVenWhelmed by the impfeSSiOnS he
got from capitalist society when he wnote his works, that does not
mean that he could not make use of those impressions and other
sources to catch important glimpses of slave societies, feudal
societies and socialist societies. He did not know that, but
recent history seems to indicate that it is more easy to be a
marxist in capitalist society than to be a manxist in socialist
society; undenlining what was just said about the importance of
( B)
Iiberat society as a platf orm f or viewing soc ial- formatiorrn .

No doubt the perspectives of chapter I go further towards the


dialectical than the positivist position; they rule out the idea
nf a cnrna- ,nd timeless methodology and epistemology. But that
n n6 nc fn n new nr , ohlem : imagine that the h v n o +h e s i s Of a C IOSe
'
nelation between social stnucture on the one hand arrd methodology/
L2

epis temology on the other is weil confirned, in space and in


time. Would that not mean that a new invaniance has been bnought
into the world? Yes, and that leads us immediately to the
nnoh'l
vurlrrro e ms di
ur qc- ' - ^^r
DUUJ>cL.l Llt UlrdP LE!'> z d.llu J .
t-r

taken in chapten 2 is a critique of the whol-e idea of ftinvariancerr,

opening for" the idea of tnanscendence, tnansitions wheneby a


notentja-l realitv is made pmni nin:l JU q r
A bnoaden view of science rs
called for, bringing value-sentences in on par with data-sentences
and theory-sentences, defining the goal of scientific activity as
that of obtaining colrlrespondence/agreement between the thnee.
fn order to do this, verbal activity reflecting reality is
insufficient - research beeomes traction researchrt.

Chapter 3 goes further" in indicating


one way in which this can be done: breaking up invariances by
changing the values of 'tthird variables'r. Both of these views
are clearly more towards the dialectical end of the spectrum:
transcendence is one of the stronger points in the dialectical
tradi tionr ano in the indications given for transcendence in
chapter 3 the reader will recognize the thesis/antithesis/syn-
thesib scheme. In chapter 3frthesisrris taken literally exactly
cls a thesis, a pnoposition stipulating an invariant relationship.
*'re another
"antithesis'ris thesis stipulating a relationship where
the pr^efenred but unobsenved and unfoneseen corner has become
observed (and foneseen)rand therfsynthesisilis a more complex thesis
having thesis and arrtLthesis as special cases, depending on the
values of third vaniables. But this i s not seen merelv as verbal
act ivity: thesis, antithesis and synthesis coruespond to
patterns of action, with thesis being the empirical, institu-
+ i^*- rLt4cL1
L r vrlQ
"-^ J I b- t r_-t r r . f r r r . ed n: if er n: :nti.thesie * h_ o__--o
ino fhe rieeir.pri
^ne-
and synthesis being a concrete pnogram of action, indicating
which third variables to chanee how.

But in what sense, then, can we say that this is b:ridge-


building when the positions taken are so much close:r to the
dialecticar end of the spectrum? simply because the tools and
the material made use of are largely taken fr:om the positivist
side. We have tr.ied to show how the form of a proposition can
be retained as long as the principle fon dividing world spaces
are expanded, including the dichotomy preferred/r"ejected. h/e have
also tried to show that the general idea of arniving at consonance
(or coruespondence or agreement as it is refenred to above)
I3

can be retained also when values are brought explicitly into the
process. And we have tried to indicate that increasing the com-
plexity of propositions by increasing the number of variables is
nnr mara] .' can be used to obtain a hisher
- tool that level of vvL u r r r q r r r Sr r L !

specificity and a better correspondence with empirical reality; it


is an excellent tool- fon social praxis. Both transcendence and
invariance-br"eaking - two terms referuing to the same matter - are
alien to the positjvist tradition, but the ways of conceiving of
them in chapters 2 and 3 a::e not.

And then one could also look fon continuities in positions


taken. Obviously, there are degnees of transcendence. fn 3.3
three methods of invariance-breaking have been presented: the
rrthirdrf variable is already part of the invariance, the invariance
is emnirical lv imnenfeet so that trdeviani' r'Fqeqtt uqlr
r-an Brvg o-
raa'n+
!uqrrJ rrlryvr
!ue L ov LlloL uEVfallL uqDcD -;.'^ rLrlt L

about potential realities; the invariance is empirically perfect


so that the only guide is theory, inspired by imagination and
i n J - r r - i f i n rLlv lr ,
r r r Lut .- d
oitu fin :' l lr z th e nnqqi
yvJr L JL L _'ni
r J l i frr nf
vr hcraT T-r,i -ya:rl i ome A mon s

-these foui: the finst one is already within the acceptable posi-
tivist onbit s ince th is i s the way 't synthet icrf compounds are
bro ug nt int o em nir ". i r-:-l r "c : l r '. r - r r {- h r n r r n l - r rr *h e o r r . 'd e s for
Lllv tiu_uur rvt action

given by organic chemistr.y. To argue against a positivism that


would deny this possibility is to beat a dead honse. And the same
actually applies :o ':he second case: al-1 it says is essentially
that 1-he ryaonrlqifinn-rr.odrrr:tion has been refativelv qlnnnrr- u r vu fj JL vyyJ,

failing to take into account t'deviant casesrr, thereby bringing the


Dr ov rorm -
ta - oDos
- Y
i ti on i n to a r.o re c o mrl OnIrr the ihirrl and

fourth possibilities represent types of scientific activity that


can be said to break new paths, and even they look modest once
thev have been implemented and new realities have been bnought
into being anC accounted fon. As a conclusion: the only point
made hene would be in favor of pushing much more scientific
activity in the dinection of the thind and fourth possibility,
certainly not of neglecting the first and the second approaches.

Let us then return fon a moment to the pnoblem of self-


understanding: can a possible invariance between social stnucture,
scientific structure and science product itself be transcended,
be broken? 0f course it can, and one obvious thir"d variable
would be the degree of integnation into the surrounding social
context. It was probably thnough this kind of isolation that
Modef I science structure managed to sunvive inside liber.al
llr

l4ctrIezl 1 7 i',()()iet'./ ) lreinq 'thr-' f,ocus; o f :;"Lrrdent nevol,t- iltt.rcl,,. fn ,genr .r.al,
the: Lrigher the level of integnation, the mone valid the proposition.
But this also means that ModelI[ science can su::vive fon some time
in Model IfI society, pnovided the level of isolation is sufficient.
And this throws some perspective over. the cultural nevolution in
China. Just as the student r"evolt in Western Europe at the end of
the sixties could be seen as an effort to synchnonize the academic
structune with Mode1 fI society, the cultural- revolution in China
at the same time was an effont to do the same, with an academic
structur:e that probably was a mixtune (like in Western Europe) of
Model I and Model ff elements but this time to align it with a
Model III soc iety. fn Westerp Eunope there were also efforts in
that dinection, but they failed since there was no surnounding
Model rrr society to align it with.(1r)

But imagine for a moment that nothing of this had taken


place, nothing had succeeded at all, that the academic communities
all over the world haci nemained in isolation relative to their
qnni ar.'oc unlike monastic orders , and at the same time in
-^t
good contact with each othen. fn that case the idea of a universal
methodology/ epistemology would be much molre tenable. And that is
the kind of thing we want to dnaw the attention to: methodology/
onicramn]n-rr 3s a function of social stnuctune and variations in
variables used in socio-political analyses. Much courage would
be needed to deny the significance of such factons.(12)

Let us then proceed to chapter u in the book, obviously


dealing with the transition from quantity to quality. A glance
at the chapter wi.ll tell the neader that the tools are taken from
positivist methodology, but the conclusions are not necessarily
i/vDaLrvrDL.
--a -.'* -'
, . - ' ^+
Cne basic conclusion is in favon of diachnonic
research (few units, one or two variables, as many time-points
over as long a period of time as possible); another conclusion
would be in favor: of casting social analysis in such forms that
jumps in variables are seen as nonmal, easily accounted for. Much
of this will be explored in the final chapter, suffice it he:re
only to say that the basic tool is a comparison between the rates
of change of two (or more) variables. fn economic analyses this
i e \/pr'\/ nff an done
' --
(elasticities), but it has not penetnated to
-l

se n e r al s 4
o--.--
s oc r ' al c n r' o n n o n^n is it si ven the i mol i cati OnS
r r r r l /r r e u L t attri -
buted to th is type of analysis in e c o n o mic s . T h e b a s ic d is t in c -
-1 5

tio n is between the simple s t case, a constant n a t io b e t we e n t h e


two r a tes of change, and t h e mo s t d ra ma t ic extnene wh e n e o n e
var .i ab le constant f o r a lo n g p e n io d o f t ime a n d t h e n u n d e r -
remains
go e s a discontinuous jump . T h e la t t e r c o n re s p o n d s t o t h e
tn a n siti on fnom quantity t o q u a lit y (t h e n e is a n a c c u mu la t io n in
the va lue of X , some kind of s a t u ra t io n of the s y s t e m, u n t il an
e xp lo sive burst takes plac e in the vafue of Y ), but the f o rme : r
w ou ld only corl:espond to a n e x t : re me ly n a rro w p o s it iv is t stand
w he n e only rectilinean pro c e s s e s a re c o n s id e n e d rf re a lrt . If a
lin e should be drawn betwe e n p o s it iv is m a n d d ia le c t ic s a lo n g
th ic:w i - +he idea would n o t b e t o d e n y t h a t p o s it iv is m
, srr t a k es
car e of curvilinean nelatio n s h ip s o v e n t ime , o n ly t h a t it is
w ea k on discontinuities (it is a ls o s o me wh a t we a k wh e n it c om e s t o
bn in g in g time, at least lo n g e r t ime s p a n s , in t o s o c ia l a n a ly s i s ) .
Wha t is done in the chapter is me n e ly t o p o in t out that if one
acce p ts processes whene t h e t n a je c t o n y re ma in s p a : ra lle 1 to one of
the a xe s fon a long tine and then s u d d e n ly ma k e s a s t e e p t u rn
an d p n o ceeds panallel to the othen a x is , then o n e s h o u ld a ls o
acce p t a lump instead of a c o n t in u o u s , steep eunve. A c t u a lly ,
acti on s can be seen as su c h d is c o n t in u it ie s b e t we e n in a c t iv it y and
acti vi tyr possibly triggere d off by the a c c u mu la t io n a lo n g a
co n ti nu o us variable (hunge r, f ru s t ra t io n , c u n io s it y , id e a s
accu m u l-ating and leading to b u rs t s of venbal a c t io n ). Ho we v e r ,
so cia l analysis is often f o rmu la t e d in t e n ms o f v a ria b le s t h at are
con ti nu o us although they ma y c h a n g e v e l? y g u ic k ly . But data seem to
in d ica te that even for su c h v a ria b le s the re e t ilin e a r t ra je c t o n y
wo u ld constitute a highly e x c e p t io n a l c a s e . (1 3 )

Then, chapten 5 on f u n c t io n a lis m: wh a t wo u ld t h is have to


d o w i th the'tnegation of the n e g a t io n rt ? T h is is in d ic a t e d in 5.6
an d 5.7 , in two fonms of a n a ly s is , b u t f irs t it s h o u ld b e p o i n t e d
ou t tha t the chapten is n o t d in e c t e d ' a g a in s t c o n s e u v a t iv e
fu n cti on alism - that is an o 1 d is s u e a s h a s re p e a t e d ly been
/'r l t\
n n i n l -o r] 't '
t 7v ' r Lv u nr
v ur f L -
hr
v ur + L a- - 6 .,rrrD
- i^^+ -
: l - ^- - 1
L Ii benal ..- aa-
functi onal i sm* .t-' W hat is said in
5 .6 is that the functional s c h e me o f a n a ly s is ma k e s it p o s s ib l e
to d isti nguish between ze ro onden, f irs t o rd e : : a n d s e c o n d o rd e n
co n tna d ictions. In the f in s t case thene is n o c o n t n a d ic t io n and
on e g e ts the (nane) case t h a t c o n s e ra v a t iv e f u n c t io n a lis m t r ie d to
m ake i nto a univensal pnin c ip le . fn the second case, f in s t order
co n tr :a d iction, one may talk about a n in c re a s in g s c a le of c o nt n a -
dicti on , fnom the isolated o r ma n a g e a b le p a t t e rn s h a n d le d well
l7

orre minus will take on overwhel-ming pnopo:rtions, fn short r w arle


arsuins that thene is to each stnuctural-functional matnix an
accompanying subjective matrix that gives much molre information
about what is going to happen in society because it is seen
through tempenaments that would equip the elements in the matrix
with heavy weigh-ts, highlighting some, neglecting othens.

Let us then turn to chapter 6, obviously the chapter where


holisn is br.ought into the picture. The problem is how to make
holism meaningful, and the suggestion is very simple: the density
of the web of relations between the el-ements. Structurat analysis
does this, it equips us at least with some ways of seeing the
whole nather than the parts. But thene ane two clear dangers
involved in pushing this point too far.

Thus, if only nelations between the actors are emphasrzed,


a highty structune-oriented view will- emerge, but the actors will
disappean into the backgnound. More particularly, their indivi-
dual ity will get fost because of the focus on the web of inter-
nelations in which they are embedded. Positivist analysis, not
because it is positivist but because it has been tied to a liberal
social perspective, has been more actor-oriented, sometimes
emphasizing the individuality of their actors, sometimes getting
the wonst of both worlds by grouping them together in categories
exploning thein differences, blind to their relations expressed
in a more stnucture-oniented DensDective. and blind to thein indivi-
duality.
Then, there is the obvious cincumstance that not everything
that happens in a society should be unde:rstood in holistic terms.
Some elements are less tied to the whole than others, the density
of the web of inter-'relations is not uniform. There can be changes
in the penipheny of a system highly consequential for that
periphery, yet neither much conditioned by the system as a whole,
nor very consequential to that system. To reject a social view
r.rha -o}. r'l 'l ane det a c h e h l e and rI esPl
n 'lq vg q vr ga c e : h 'l e h
9Jr r
lf e
vyuc!vq
l tr u r r Lirv a l e n ts rr
" ^1r
yqr t S Lo u!v u s L q v r l q vtr e qrru

from a stonehouse of equivalents (and functionalism goes very


far in this di::ection whethen of the consellvative, libenal or
radical vanieties) does not mean that one has to embrace a social-
view acconding to which nothing is detachable without causing
nn nfn rrnd oanf e 'l
a I tuhr
r r ! . orvrub
sr rh tLhl tue s v s to e m
oJ l e tr tt - n91r even Undef Standable

e xce p t in nelati-on to the t o t a lit y . Ha v in g s a id t h is , a c o n-


ti nu u m between extneme po s it iv is t a n d d ia le c t ic a l o o s it io n s has
lti

already been indicated, and the density factor mentioned above


.rs well as its distribution is an expression of that continuum

l- in a lly, there is the cha p t e n o n t h e o ry f o rma t io n . (ln


Ta ble 2 it comes as no. 3, in t h e book as chapten 7 for l: e a s o n s
of p r e se n tati on.) What the ch a p t e r s a y s is me re ly t h is : the
b e t te r ? a the ony is constructed a c c o n d in g to the c la s s ic a l : : u le s ,
the m o r e will it senve as a tho u g h t p n is o n , not a s a g u id e for
a c t i on . It will senve as a too l of c o n s o lid a t io n nathe:: than
l i b e r a ti on . The fonmulas gi v e n in chapter 7 wa s a s f o llo ws :
a mo r e n e la xed view of theony f o n ma t io n , mo lre b u t s ma lle n p y ra mid s
not n e ce ssa n ily pyramids but o t h e r^ t o p o lo g ic a l shapes, t h e o ry as
g r o win g out of action based on in t u it io n nathe:: than a s a c t io n
g u i de ; an d theonies in an even-n e g a t in g , e v e n -t ra n s c e n d in g pnocess

O ne i nte:resting point in t h is c o n n e c t io n wo u ld b e t h a t t h is
o p en attitud e to theory formati o n is mo n e t y p ic a l of lib e ra ls
w o r ki ng in the positivist tradi t io n then of ma n x is t s wo rk in g in
a dia le cti cal tnadition. It lo o k s a s if it is the la t t e n nather
than th e fo n men who are engage d in a constant seanch to o b t a in
c l o se d th e o n y systems, and who a n e mo s t o p t imis t ic wh e n it c o me s
to th e po ssibility of obtaining s o me t h in g lik e that. We h a v e , in
8.2, po in ted to another similan it y b e t we e n ma rx is m a n d p o s it iv is m
(th e t enden. \ / to nesancl th e tra
q! nscendence
q r r o u vr r u 9 r r vL nf
vr n:ni
u q Pr t:' l
L q r !o i stL soei
o vvl v etri
LJ

and its tnansition to a socialist society as an ir.on law, an


invariance incapable of being transcended), and this may be a
second instance of ttctf ossing-ove::rt between the two tr.aditions.
A possible neason why might be that manxist scholanship is
particularly strong in Germany and hence particulanly likely to
be colored by what elsewn-e:1e has been nefenned to as'rteutonic
intellectual style". Thus, oun angument would be that the
culture-bound tendency towards grand theony has taken precedence
over a rnore cool analysis of the nelation between theory-formation
/ 'r A \
and the possibility of engaging in liberating social pnaxis.'--'

Tha t conc1udes our explona t io n of the re l-a t io n s h ip b e t we e n


f h o n n c j J-j r r i .m/dialectics dilemma a n d t h e p re c e d in g c h a p t e rs .
W h at w e ha ve tnied to indicate c a n b e s u mma riz e d in one sentence:
the disti ncti on is not that sha rp : the d ic h o t o my not that a b s o lu t e ;
c o nstn u cti ng from some of the t o o ls u s e d in p o s it iv is t me t h o d o -
logy a m e thodology compatible wit h d ia le c t ic a l in s ig h t s s h o u ld
not b e un a ttainable - with the e f f o rt s in t h is book as one
p r o p o sa l.
19

Conclus ion

fn conclusion, therr, let us try to tie the cndr; together witlr


some reflections on the total- image of society implicit in the
methndolno\/6J giving
-v ^ne would arnive at much weight to the approaches
highlighted above. Here are some suggestions:

First, a higher level of consciousness about the rel-ation


between social structure and scientific activity; the idea being
that a highen level of consciousness would make the r"esearcher
more awalre of the political forces he senves when he engages in a
na r.tir.rrl a- r " f or . n nf nr . onos it i n n - n r o d r r n t - i n n nn f nannrr-fgpp3f i o n.

Second: much more emphasis on images of prefenred social


onders, not only the empirical social- orders; and on strategie:;
of action, not only on reflections of empirical reality. This
requires a much higher level of social- imagination and potitical
exnenienee than rrsr:al lv forrnd in the formulas for trainins soc Lal
scientistso breaking down division of labor with politicjans.

Thir"d, much more emphasis on how to break up an invar.iance,


not only on how to find one on the basis of data. Thl s would
require the same type of skills as indicated in the preceding
poin t .

Founth, much more dia c h ro n ic re s e a rc h , a n d p a rt ic u la rly with


th e i nclusion of variables that wo u ld u n d e rg o d is c o ; rt in u o u s
t:r an siti ons - fo:r instance e v e n t -v a ria b le s . a c t io n -v a ria b le s .

Fifth, consistent efforts to explone rel-ations between struc-


tural and functional elements with a view to locating contradictions
of the finst and second orders: so as to be better able to under-
stanC bneaking-points of social orders, relative to a given
system of val-ues and rrf actstt.

Sixth, more focus on structures, on how efements are related


to each othen, not only how they diffen fnom each other.

Seventh, less focus on theory-buil-di.g, more on how imagina-


tive explorations, verbal and non-verbal-r mdy serve invariance-
breakinp'
* . - * , . - . ^t : ) 14. . t ) in seneral and tnanscendence to social onder^s with a
higher level of value-implementation in particulan.
I \)

Clc,:"rly, t-he sjeven preceding chapters point'in thcse dirc(:-


' ion:;. l'hat, :lowever, does not constitute a genera] methodo-l ogv
- r:. indication of rvhich, based on everything said up till now in
tiris book, will be given in the f inal chapter.
21
0 'il ii :)

1, Ad h e re n ts o f e i th e r tr aditicn, and otir er sr ffi&y decide


t h a t i n o rd " e r to o b ta i n this, a car j- catur e vr as mar le of eithe r .
l h e l i n e o f d e fe n se w o u l d be to say that the pr esent a:r alysis
i s a t tl i e l e ve l o f th e pr acticing social scientist r ather tlr an
a t t h e 1 e ve l o f th e co mmentator , fr om either ( or a:r y o- ther )
p h i l o s o p h i ca l tra d i ti o n ,

2. "Eo r a n e xp l o ra ti o n of this them e, see tr fhe United ^jtate s


i n I n d "o -C h i n a : T h e P a ra digm for a Gener atioh", jlssays, V.B,

3, -tnd" one such ehanrgehas already taken place: the emergence


o f C h i n a e rs a ce n te r i n its ol' ,tr r ight ( not necessar lly in th e
c o n v e n ti cn a l se n se o f " b ig por ,ver r r ,but as the negation of bei n3
i n t h e p e ri p h e ry) h a s l e d to a r icher spectr um of political
i . - l e o l o gi e s, e n ri ch i n g th e total spectr um - in gener al and m arx j - s n
i n p a r ti cu l a r w i th l " l a o Tse- t' an6 thought ( tnis ter m being cr e fer r eC
t o t h e i 'i e ste rn e xp re ssi o n r r maoism r t) .
t,. l hi s sh o u l d . a ctu a i l ;' be sees as a gener al social lav;
t r i t h a h i g h l e ve 1 o f i n tuitive llausibillt;' . ilocieff, or anj r
s o c i a l syste m r,'ri th a mi nimum 1eve1 of integr ation, has a high
absorptlon capacitl'; an input that goes on and on can be
absclrbed seemingly '*rlthout a:ry impact. But then, all of a
s u d d e n , tn e i mp a ct co me s and then as a bur str &s an event.
I x a m p l e: o p i n i o n p re ssu re or other types of political pr essur e
c n t h e p o w e r e sta b l i sh me nt of a society. Year s, even power
g e n e r a ti o n s ma y p a ss w i thout any effect - and th.en it com es,
l r o m t i re p o i n t o f vi e w of tlie pov.r er - holder s this is ex;or ess ec l
i n t e r ms o f 'rn o t b e i n g ready befor e, now the tim e 1s r i- pe' r .
A s a m eta D n o r .b h i s ma y stand par tly for the slow wor king of
c o g n i t i vr p ro ce sse s (th e lar adlgms could not accom m odate the
n e v , ri d e a s a n d re stru ctu ri n g of the par adigns took tlme) and of the
political p ro ce sse s (tn e or gaxtization of pr essur e gr oups clos er
t o t h e to p to o k ti me , so me people h.ad to leave and other s tc
;oin ). A n d co me sponaingfy for politlcal initiatives
frcn tlie top: many ooliticians may start manipulating one
soci-al r"'ariable under the u,"rongassumption that soci.al change
is usual-i,y of the mechanical varietyrmeaning that they will
q u i c k l y re a p th e b e n e fi ts on some dependent var iable. Thos e
b e n e f i t s n a y co me , b u t a fter an agonizingly long per iod. wher e
t h e s y ste n sh o w s i ts re silience or absor ption capacity - and
l o n g a f te r th e p o l i ti cl a n s who star ted it all ar e long sj- nce
d . e a d . ,po i i ti ca l l y o r b i o logi.cally.

5, i f h y sh o u l d n o t ma rxism have posltivist elem ents' ? After


aal, the;' both emerged at about the same time, fu11 of faith
1 n i d a t urg e se tzl i ch ke i t, which inm ar xism took the for m of some
22-

I r i no o f eco nonic determinism. A ls o , t h is d e t e rmin is m s e rv e d


c - L e a r po liti cal goals: to indic a t e t o t h e c a p it a lis t s that
t : r ey vr e r e doomed as a class a n d t o t ire p ro le t a ria t tnat
salvation was bound. to come at least in the longer run,
a : r d r e g a r d le ss of f'third variab le s il. r' \ . s o c ia l s c ie n c e d e c 1 a ri. n 5 .
man to be free with oppression a n d e rp lo lt a t io n o f t h e in Cu s -
trj.al proletariat being vrhat 1t was in the mid.dle of the nine-
t e e n ti r . ce n tury, would tip the b a la n c e o f h is t o ry in f a v o r o f
the dominant groupsl what l,iarx d"id was to enlist l{istor;' on
t h e sid e of the oppressed..

6. I'b cou 1d, of course, be a r. q u e d . t h a t d ia le c t ic s e n c o mp a s s e s


i h i s: the r e is no assumption o f c o n t i-n u o u s d is c o n t in u -it ie s ,
vrhich would be meanlngless anyhow, There is quiet before the
s t or m , r vith contrad"ietions ma t u rin g , s I o wly a t f irs t , t h e n n o re
r a pi dly. ft may be sai.d, howe v e r, t h a t t h e d " ia le c t ic a l p e rs p e c -
t i v e sp e cia lizes 1n the stormsr a n d p o s it iv ls m in t h e q u ie t
n e ri od s i n- between; either of t h e m h a v in g re la t lv e ly lit t le
to say about ihe speciality of the other. One strong arp3-r-ment
i n favo r of i;he positivst pers p e c t iv e , t h e n , wo u ld b e t h a t t ire
qr,:"iet periods probably are nore typical, in the sense covering;
a la r g e r fr action of the life b u d g e t s o f h u ma ; l b e in g s , d e a d .
a n c l a1 ive . To neglect them is t o s h o t * d is re s p e c t f o r o rd in a ry
r ' , un a n l- ife; to focus onhr sn t h e m is t o s h o w d . is re s p e c t f o r
i , - L stor y. T ne rrul.canologist will t e n d t o d e v e lo p o v e rd . ra ma t ic
v r e,r IS o f na turel to neelect v u l-c a n o e s (f o r t h a t re a s o n ) rv o u ld
be a na,ior mistake. A goocl theory uoulcl have to enc'ompass both.

7, liliis d o es not mean the the rrZ e it g e is t il h a s t o ' o e in t e rn re t e d


a s a ge ist, or as aJl id"ea for t h a t ma t t e r. f n c h a p t e r 1 ' f o r, t ; :
mocleT-s"frTthe social order are given, a:rd. the idea 1s that thetr
are founri not only at the nracro level, but also at the micro
l - c v el- r a n d eveti in the walrs the o rie s a re c o n s t n rc t e d . . \/hat
t . l e se thr e e phenomena have in c o rrmo n is t h e ir e o mmo n s t ru c t u re ,
t i i e iso m o r p hism - and i}:at con mo n s t ru c t u re is t ire rt Z e it g e is t t t .
' l n er e
it co mes from, how it a f f e c t s t h in g s a n d h o w it c h a n q e s
i s an o the r matter - a key tire me 1 n t h e n T re n d s in iie s t e rn Civ ili-
' Dr ' 4g 1 .g p rf
Za tiO t , .

B" This l :ras one peculiar con s e q u e n c e : t h a t s o c ia lls t s o c ie iie s


i::" iiaster:n .:)urope and in tire Soviet Union become remarkable
l o o r i n self-understanding. lLs s o c ia lis t s o c ie t ie s lib e ra l
a.::al;rsis should not apply; ani marxist analysis is mostly a
( c r iti cal) analysis of capitalis t s o c j. e t ie s .
{}. i/e ha ve not used. the term t ra c t io n re s e a rc h rr, ir. o we v e r,
i n th js b o o k not wanting to t ie t h e t y p e o f e p is t e n o lo g y
d eve lo p e d here to that particula r t e rm wh ic h is e r. l-s ou s e d .
f o :' :i gily ncn-transcending s o c ia l n ra c t ic e ,

1 0, i ,e e the end of 2,5 for r e f le c t io n s o n re d e f in it io n s of


tre co n ce p t of "objectivityfr,

1 1 . ,r i nci the academic structures l. / e re t o o j. n c o n s e q r-re n t ia l t o


s c ive a:; ca usal nuclei jn the t o -b a l- s o c ia l o rd e r, rir Mo d , e l lT 1
i n s ti- b u 'fe as the Interrrationa l i)e a c e P . e s e a rc h I n r: t it u t e
i n 0 s1 o v/a ii striving to,,,rards in t h e e a rly 1 9 7 0 rs , f o r in s t a . n c e
c a ji ve r y e asily be isolated f ro m b h e re s t o f s o c ie t y .
r : "Ii od e l Illvray of organizin;: f a n ily lif e , schoo\ o r: / a n d r, ' ro rlc
places tvould have rnuch more effect vii.thout ]:aving
a::y flrin stand- on r*hich of the three vrould be most consequential
2 t-

1 2 . An d ye t i t i s ve ry har d to discover any under stand.ing


o f t h i s i :" 'r.typ l ca l te xts clealing vith pir ilosophy of scier :ce,
c e n t e r :e d a s th e y'o na re o n the actor s f,i16nr go1r r a. r nA +
{ 1r elitist
isoiation, and th e content of the id;;;:""'
13. -4.gl-ance at about one thousand BDA dia3ra*ns frcn countrles
i n p r o ce sse s o f d .e ve l o pment over per iods of two or thr ee ge ne-
r a t i o n s i n d i ca te s th a t at most a few per cent of the tr ajecto-
r i e s ca r' b e sa rd to b e r ectilinear ( ' lbr 1d Indicator s Pr 6gr am ,
f nr*1. nnm \
I vI V^-vUl tLrt5 "'-^ a
- /

14. llee Plerre I,. van den Berghe, ttDialectic and F\rnctionalisn:
T o w a r d a syn th e si g rr, i ri Deper ath and. Peter son, op.elt,, pp.z 95- r o6.
We agree $tith his poigt, that there Ls room forffitiresis, but
feel that nelther cllalectics, nor fwrctionalism are stated wftfi
uu.ch clari.ty ln his presentation.

1 5 . Th e re i s a n i mp o rtant sema:r tical ambiclulty her e. I.,ibe r al


f u n c t i on a l i sm a l so r-l se s the ter m r r str uctur er t but in the sen s e
o f , r r s trl ctu ra l e l e me n trr sinee 11ber a1 functionali.sm does not
think in terms of the total stmcture changing'. Thusy it na;r
l o o k as 1 f th e a n a l ysi s takes the total str ,.r ctur e into acco unt.
i a d i c a l fu n cti o n a l i sm w ou1d use the ter m in both senses,
f o c u - s s i n g o n th e to ta l str u- ctur e and^the condltions for ba s i c
c h a n g e.
1 6 . l h e d o g ma ti sm o f S oviet m ar xi.sm vs, the r elative onenn es s
o f C h i n a l e i d e o l o g y i s pr obably r elated to differ ent cogniti v e
c u l t u r e - th e R u ssi a n b eing mor e bogonoily the chinese ber ng
m o r e f le xi b l e ,