Too Many Webers for Small Sociology; or, How Critically Sociologists Should Consider Their Canon
Review of the book: K. Allen. Weber: Sociologist of the Empire (London: Pluto Press, 2017).
The author presents a review of the book «The Economic Institutions of the Old Believers». The study is at the crossroads of economic history, economic sociology, economic theory (in the first place, the new institutionalism) and maybe even religious studies. The author tries to understand the mysterious phenomenon of Old Believe entrepreneurship, played a very important role in the economic development of Russia in the late XVIII-early XX centuries.
The book is dedicated to the great German sociologist Max Weber. This volume contains eleven papers originating from a symposium organized by Aleksanteri Institute in 2007. The scholars from Russia, Finland and other countries discuss various aspects of Weber's heritage and its relationship to Russia.
The article discusses several approaches to the study of Soviet society drawing on Max Weber’s theoretical models or following a broadly-understood Weberian tradition in historical sociology. Weberian perspectives have been used for the analysis of the Russian Revolution of 1917 and its aftermath. The early Bolshevik Party has been characterized as a community of “ideological virtuosi” while its further development has been described either as “incomplete rationalization” or as a re-traditionalization. In the article, it is argued that employing the post-Weberian multiple modernities approach allows us to overcome some of the difficulties that have emerged in this case. In particular, the article focuses on Johann Arnason’s analysis of the Soviet model of modernity. For Arnason, the Soviet model incorporated both the legacy of imperial transformation from above and the revolutionary vision of a new society. He claims that communism represented a distinctive version of modernity rather than a deviation from the modernizing mainstream. In recent historical studies of the Soviet period, two approaches have been formed stressing the modernity of the Soviet regime or its neo-traditionalist aspects. The distinction between these approaches has been discussed by Michael David-Fox. The article considers the parallels between the new historical studies of Soviet society, on the one hand, and both Weberian and post-Weberian sociological perspectives, on the other.
Leo Tolstoy and Max Weber on value neutrality of university research The problem of value neutrality of science is considered on the basis of works by Leo Tolstoy and Max Weber. In the first part of the article, the statements on the value neutrality of scientific knowledge and university teaching by Weber and Tolstoy are made explicit and analyzed in a comparative perspective. In the second part, the central problem of Tolstoy and Weber, that is, a rational choice of the value paradigm, is studied systematically. Differences in their assumptions and conclusions are shown. In the third part, a historical commentary to the context of Tolstoys and Webers works is given. The works are treated as episodes in a wider modern history of the value neutralization of the scientific knowledge and university teaching. The specifics of this process are tightly connected with the fundamental principles of the modern research university (the Humboldtian model of university).
The first volume contains articles devoted to the problems of sociology of space, as well as the theory and the history of sociology. The main issues considered here are the theoretical analysis of the phenomena of empire, the theoretical problems of mobility and globalization and the perspectives of sociological theory in Russia. The are followed by the articles on the value of the classical works of J.-J. Rousseau, F. Toennies, M. Weber et al. The conluding chapters are devoted to the German conservative sociology of intellectuals.
The collective monograph contributes to theoretical understanding of the mutual influences and reconfigurations of scientific and lay knowledge about society. This book summarizes the results of theoretical, historical and sociological studies of varying conceptualizations of social knowledge in different disciplinary fields of social sciences, carried out on the basis of an analysis of a representative corpus of classical and contemporary works. The contributors to this volume make use of conceptual tools of the sociology of knowledge, theoretical sociology, as well as modern methodological approaches of cognitive social science in order to attain generalizations about inner mechanisms of reciprocal influences of ordinary social knowledge and social sciences and to make first steps toward closing the lacunae in our understanding of the processes of reflective reconfiguration of scientific and common-sense knowledge about society. These processes are illustrated with examples taken from a broad range of disciplinary areas: sociology of science and social studies of professions, social ecology and bioethics, social epistemology,modern social theory and conceptions of “folk sociology”. The book is supposed to be useful to readers in many different fields of social sciences and humanities, including those studying sociology at advanced level. It also will make an immediate appeal to the general reader familiar with contemporary social theory.
It is argued that Weberian concepts such as 'charisma of reason' and 'patrimonial bureaucracy' can be applied to the Soviet system at different stages of its evolution. Neo-Weberian theories which are not based directly on Weber's ideas can also be relevant for the study of Soviet society. But theoretical approaches of historical sociology should be complemented with more empirically oriented social history of the Soviet period.
Several approaches to the concept of fatherhood present in Western sociological tradition are analyzed and compared: biological determinism, social constructivism and biosocial theory. The problematics of fatherhood and men’s parental practices is marginalized in modern Russian social research devoted to family and this fact makes the traditional inequality in family relations, when the father’s role is considered secondary compared to that of mother, even stronger. However, in Western critical men’s studies several stages can be outlined: the development of “sex roles” paradigm (biological determinism), the emergence of the hegemonic masculinity concept, inter-disciplinary stage (biosocial theory). According to the approach of biological determinism, the role of a father is that of the patriarch, he continues the family line and serves as a model for his ascendants. Social constructivism looks into man’s functions in the family from the point of view of masculine pressure and establishing hegemony over a woman and children. Biosocial theory aims to unite the biological determinacy of fatherhood with social, cultural and personal context. It is shown that these approaches are directly connected with the level of the society development, marriage and family perceptions, the level of egality of gender order.
This article is talking about state management and cultural policy, their nature and content in term of the new tendency - development of postindustrial society. It mentioned here, that at the moment cultural policy is the base of regional political activity and that regions can get strong competitive advantage if they are able to implement cultural policy successfully. All these trends can produce elements of new economic development.