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A Brief History of Knowledge for Social Science Researchers: Before Method


How can we think about research? A gallery of heroesNicolaus Copernicus 1473-1543, PolandGalileo Galilei 1554-1643, ItalyMarie Curie 1867-1934, Poland, FranceJohn Dewey, 1859-1952, United StatesMichael Polanyi, 1891-1976, Hungary, EnglandRachel Carson, 1907-1964, United StatesPaulo Freire, 1921-1997, BrazilNotesReferencesEpistemology and its relevance to researchKnowledge and truthEpistemology: theories of knowledgeNotesReferencesA historical sketch of knowledge in the Western world: the Greeks through the Middle AgesHarmony in ancient Greek cultureThe practical technology of empire building in ancient RomeThe spread of Christianity: faith as a central value in the early Middle AgesGradual loosening of the strictures of religion, and the awakening of scientific inquiry in the later Middle AgesNotesReferencesA historical sketch of knowledge in the Western world: from the Middle Ages to the EnlightenmentThe scientific revolution, the Renaissance and the rise of humanismHow paper and the printing press changed the spread of knowledge in EuropeThe Protestant Reformation: opening the doors to freer thinkingRevolutions, human rights and free agencyThe EnlightenmentNotesReferencesA historical sketch of knowledge in the Western world: from the Enlightenment onwardThe industrial revolutionThe development of general educationNotesReferencesAre we there yet? The birth and development of the social sciencesPhilosophy and her childrenRoots of the social sciencesFrom positivism to post-positivismNon-positivist sociology, anthropology and the interpretive paradigmBut really, what is a paradigm?Whither the paradigm wars?NotesReferencesHow can we think about theory? A gallery of heroesWhat is theory?Karl Popper 1902-1994Thomas Kuhn 1922-1996Imre Lakatos 1922-1974Theory in the social sciences: continuing the gallery of heroesJean Piaget 1896-1980Margaret Mead 1901-1978Erik Erikson 1902-1994Pierre Bourdieu 1930-2002Patricia Hill Collins 1948-So, what is theory?NotesReferencesA brief history of knowledge, and the vistas beyond
 
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