Knowledge Matters: The Structures of Knowledge and Crisis of the Modern World-System

Knowledge Matters: The Structures of Knowledge and Crisis of the Modern World-System

by Richard E. Lee

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Overview

Knowledge Matters: The Structures of Knowledge and Crisis of the Modern World-System by Richard E. Lee

Economic changes and political changes which emerged with the modern capitalist world-economy were accompanied in the sociocultural domain by changes in the structures of knowledge. These included the hierarchical separation of the realm of facts from that of values, institutionalied as a division between the sciences and the humanities. The social sciences responded to contradictions inherent in this structure over the nineteenth century in producing knowledge on which policy decisions could be based.

The problems of the contemporary period indicate we are in a long-term, structural crisis. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the theoretical frameworks and methodological approaches through which social analysts and observers alike seek to understand the world. Since the 1960s, developments in the field of knowledge, especially two movements—complexity studies in the natural sciences and cultural studies in the humanities—have contested the naturalied, essentialist boundaries separating the sciences, the social sciences and the humanities.

The primary rationale for this work is to recognie the inseparable whole composed of the material structures of the world and the structures of knowledge that govern what actions may be deemed legitimate and effective. Knowledge Matters discusses what actions will actually be undertaken by social agents, and what such an approach means for an analysis of the present situation in terms of imagining and evaluating possible futures.

Richard E. Lee is professor of sociology at Binghamton University where his teachings focus on historical social science, the cultural construction of inequalities, structures of knowledge, cultural studies and science studies, and World-Systems Analysis. In addition he is the director of the Fernand Braudel Center for the Study of Economies, Historical Systems and Civiliations.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781412811026
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 04/06/2011
Series: Creative Economy & Innovation Culture Series
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 176
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.30(d)

About the Author

Richard E. Lee is professor of sociology at Binghamton University where his teachings focus on historical social science, the cultural construction of inequalities, structures of knowledge, cultural studies and science studies, and World-Systems Analysis. In addition he is the director of the Fernand Braudel Center for the Study of Economies, Historical Systems and Civilizations.

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