Rethinking Theories and Methods

Overview

Creative Social Research calls for a fundamental reconceptualization and transformation of contemporary research methods in the social sciences. Leading scholars from a variety of disciplines and geographies establish the ways in which the traditions of non-Western societies and contemporary global developments can be incorporated into current social science discourse, greatly enriching it beyond most of the existing paradigms and approaches. Creative Social Research sheds new light on social theory and calls for...
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Overview

Creative Social Research calls for a fundamental reconceptualization and transformation of contemporary research methods in the social sciences. Leading scholars from a variety of disciplines and geographies establish the ways in which the traditions of non-Western societies and contemporary global developments can be incorporated into current social science discourse, greatly enriching it beyond most of the existing paradigms and approaches. Creative Social Research sheds new light on social theory and calls for a new articulation of the practice and ideal of understanding at the level of self, culture, and society.
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Editorial Reviews

Jean Dreze
There has been an unprecedented flourishing of new social movements around the world in recent years. This revival has opened our eyes to wider horizons, and strengthened our confidence in the fact that "another world is possible". Ananta Kumar Giri's book gives inspiring glimpses of this process.
John Clammer
A book that gives voice to the unsung heroes of the world-wide struggle for social justice, a values based society and a transformed humanity, and which identifies the huge reservoir of creativity that resides in contemporary social movements.
Fred Dallmayr
In the midst of social changes can social science remain immune? Given major transformations of the "modern project" — globalization, the rise of new social movements, and the ambivalent resurgence of religion — can social scientists blithely adhere to "business as usual"? With verve and astute insight, the authors of this volume plead for a "rethinking" of prevailing theories and methods and in favor of a creative social inquiry inspired by cross-cultural dialogue and attentive to the "acknowledged dependence" or social embeddedness of human life.
Piet Strydom
Here, at last, is a book that records the challenges facing the humanities and social sciences, both theoretically and methodologically, in the wake of the transformation of modernity and the emergence of the world society of the twenty-first century. Both the postnational and the transdisciplinary thrust of the work are particularly notable. Straddling the divides between East and West and North and South, as he does, Ananta Kumar Giri was just the right person to bring together such a range of exiting essays by an impressive cast of international and Indian authors.
James D. Faubion
Creative social research contains a persistent current of both moral and political anxiety, the prodct of lingering inequalities but also of more immediate wars and modalities of imperialism.
Jan Nederveen Pieterse
This fascinating collection brings together work from scholars in South Asia and Europe and covers a wide range from philosophy of history to critical reflection on social science and methodology, economics and development studies. The probing articles combine multiple dimensions of analysis and the conjunction of diverse perspectives from different geographies and cultural settings leads to innovative findings.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780739107836
  • Publisher: Lexington Books
  • Publication date: 7/15/2004
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 6.25 (w) x 9.22 (h) x 1.45 (d)

Meet the Author

Ananta Kumar Giri is Associate Professor at the Madras Institute of Development Studies.
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Table of Contents

1 Foreword: Some Observations on New Directions in Creative Social Research 2 Introduction: The Calling of Creative Social Research: Rethinking Theories and Methods 3 Part One: Rethinking Theories 4 Articulating the World: Social Movements, the Self-Transcendence of Society and the Question of Culture 5 Towards Liberative Social Sciences: A Dialogue with Liberation Theology 6 Caring for Economics 7 Rethinking Modernist Historiography 8 Rethinking Comparative Politics: Towards a Critique of NeoStatism in Third World Studies 9 Reconceptualizing Rural Development and Peasantry 10 Part Two: Rethinking Methods 11 The Irrelevance of Methodology and the Art of the Possible: Reading Sen and Hirschman 12 Gandhian Economic Method and the Challenge of Expediency 13 Experiments in Creative Research: Efforts to combine Participatory with Conventional Methodology 14 Studying Up: Some Thoughts on Method 15 Moral Premises and Theoretical Musings: The Ontology of a Journey 16 Part Three: New Formulations 17 Humanities and Social Sciences in the New Millennium: Theorization in / for Society as Play 18 Creative Reconstructions of Methods of Social Research: Insights from the Philosophical Traditions of Buddhism and Vedanta 19 Second-Order Creativity in Research: Exploring an Action-Oriented Perspective 20 Building Bridges: Nurturing a Complex Ecology of Ideas 21 The Calling of a Creative Transdisciplinarity
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