Durkheim theory in 7 minutes video

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PhD Course: Modern Sociological Theory, at Copenhagen University

The course focuses on sociological theory during the period between roughly 1945 and 2000. It will discuss what is considered to be central theoretical developments and problems and also open up for discussions on what has been seen as more peripheral theoretical perspectives. The course aims both at orienting participants in different theoretical areas and traditions, and make possible in-depth studies of particular fields. The course aims at enriching participants ability to relate the development of sociological theory to relevant social, cultural and political contexts. The course will be based on mandatory readings and discussion seminars as well as on readings chosen by the participants according to their interest and in accordance with teachers.

The course is offered in cooperation by the Departments of Sociology in Copenhagen, Lund and Gothenburg. The instruction language is English.

Hegel`s theory of recognition: in order to be a full subject, each needs to be recognized by the other

In Hegel you have essentially two actors encountering one another and each is a subject, but in order to be a full subject, each needs to be recognized by the other. Each affirms the other as a subject in its own right that is simultaneously equal and different from me. If both people can affirm that, then you have a reciprocal egalitarian, symmetrical process of recognition. But, famously, in the master-slave dialectic, they encounter one another on highly asymmetrical, unequal terms, terms of domination or subordination. Then you get non-reciprocal recognition.

Nancy Fraser (2016)

Organic system: between quantum physics and sociology (In Spanish)

Xaquin Pérez-Sindín

Me hago eco de esta reflexión sobre sistemas de Max Neef, economista chileno. Afirma que la física cuántica ya habla del carácter orgánico de todo sistema en tanto que no tiene partes sino participantes, las cuales no son separables. Lo hace en oposición a la concepción mecánica, donde, en efecto, si se distinguen las partes. Me parece interesante esa analogía que hace para explicar el sistema económico. No obstante, no estoy de acuerdo en que esta forma de entender el sistema social haya llegado tarde a las ciencias sociales. Emile Durkheim, ya en el siglo XIX, hacía referencia al carácter orgánico de las sociedades industrializadas, precisamente, en oposición a las mecánicas. Para ello utilizaba los conceptos de solidaridad orgánica y mecánica.

Sobre este punto explicó que “la economía convencional –que es la hija de la economía neoclásica– desde una visión ontológica, se sustenta en una visión mecánica, newtoniana: el humano, la…

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Sistemas orgánicos: entre la física cuántica y la sociología

Me hago eco de esta reflexión sobre sistemas de Max Neef, economista chileno. Afirma que la física cuántica ya habla del carácter orgánico de todo sistema en tanto que no tiene partes sino participantes, las cuales no son separables. Lo hace en oposición a la concepción mecánica, donde, en efecto, si se distinguen las partes. Me parece interesante esa analogía que hace para explicar el sistema económico. No obstante, no estoy de acuerdo en que esta forma de entender el sistema social haya llegado tarde a las ciencias sociales. Emile Durkheim, ya en el siglo XIX, hacía referencia al carácter orgánico de las sociedades industrializadas, precisamente, en oposición a las mecánicas. Para ello utilizaba los conceptos de solidaridad orgánica y mecánica.

Sobre este punto explicó que “la economía convencional –que es la hija de la economía neoclásica– desde una visión ontológica, se sustenta en una visión mecánica, newtoniana: el humano, la economía y el mundo son mecánicos. Y en un mundo mecánico tú tienes sistemas que tienen partes. Partes que descompones, analizas y vuelves a armar. Del otro lado, la economía ecológica se sustenta en una visión orgánica. Los sistemas no tienen partes, sino que participantes, los cuales no son separables. Lo cual significa que todo está intrínsecamente unido y relacionado. Esto por lo demás ya es un mensaje que hace más de 90 años nos viene dando la física cuántica, pero ese mensaje ha tardado en llegar a las ciencias sociales”.

Great video overview of Weber and the Protestant Work Ethic (and difference between Northern and Southern Europe.

Rational choice and spatial based solidarity problems

“Strategies that are rational at the level of the individual can lead to unintended consequences or suboptimal outcomes at group or society level, thereby creating solidarity and inequality problems”

Source

 

I would also add, strategies that are rational at local level can lead to unintended consequences at national or international level, thereby creating territorial based solidarity and inequality problems. Well, I am right now thinking in my abstract for the nex midterm conference of the European Sociological Association research network “energy and society”:

Since the oil crisis and continuing until the mid-eighties, many projects to exploit natural resources on a large scale were carried out in the United States and Europe. Due to the demographic and economic boom, the phenomenon became known as energy boomtown, having received the attention of many sociologists up to date, but mainly from the American environmental sociologist William Freudenburg. His legacy is now essential to understand the social impact of large scale energy projects, but also suggests how regional factors play a crucial role in the configuration of energy national strategies. By mean a case study, this paper aims to test and further develop the William Freudenburg theory on the addictive character of the economies that someday harboured a large scale energy project, that is, boomtowns. After having performed seventeen semi-structure interviews, the discourse analysis reveals the existence of both political and trade union forces that struggle to keep the old power plant opened while hoping to live a new boom effect by attracting new large scale projects. The formers know about the electoral benefits and the latter would have more difficult its action in a more dispersed labor market. Results suggest that the implementation of energy transition national strategies is also subjected to the influence power of certain local and regional forces on the central government.

Both solidarity and inequality problems are solved as far as there exist concessions from individuals by mean the creation of norms, a important dimension of social capital.