By Henry Kozicki
Collections of essays surveying the historic self-discipline on the finish of the Nineteen Seventies heralded the hot approached being built, techniques that promised a wealthy variety and cosmopolitan pluralism within the face of the uncertainty of old fact. The essayists during this successor quantity, surveying the paintings of the Nineteen Eighties, reveals that those new methods haven't introduced passable effects, and argues that conventional practices, reassessed and correctly understood, represent the genuine clinical grounding of the self-discipline. target truth is accessible, the historian's subjectivity may be understood rationally, historic resources and causal options could be controlled objectively. in short, a honest account of the prior is feasible, however it has to be either aim and subjective.
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1984); and Paul Feyerabend. Against Method. rev. edn (London, 1988). , Aufklitrung und Geschichte: Studien zur deutschen Geschichtswissenschaft im 18. lahrhundert (GOttingen, 1986); Peter Hanns Reill, The German Enlightenment and the Rise of Historicism (Berkeley, 1975). 38 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. II. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. George G. Iggers Wilhelm Dilthey, Leben Schleiermachers (Berlin, 1922-26); Die Jugendgeschichte Hegels (Berlin, 1905). Jiirgen Habermas, The Theory of Communicative Action 2 vols (Boston, 1984-87).
The place devoted to cultural factors differed within the social-science traditions. We can establish a spectrum ranging from a position which emphasized such material factors as the economy, biology, climate, demography, and social strata defined by quantifiable variables, to olle which stressed much more strongly cultural factors. At the one end of the spectrum stood the logical, positivistic conception of a "covering law" -model proposed by Carl Hempel and Karl Popper which stressed the unity of logical inquiry in all areas of knowledge,23 and at the other end Clifford Geertz' "Thick Description" (3-30).
25 Nor have they broken with traditional modes of scholarly inquiry in critically dealing with sources, which primarily remain written sources, although their interest now shifts from price data and hard demographic information, to documents such as court proceedings, diaries, letters, but also records of oral history, which reflect human opinion, behavior, and emotions. The new work reflects both the "linguistic tum" and the skepticism regarding grand theory which this tum implies. 26 The primary focus is still on collective behavior.