Ambivalentní odkaz Millsovy Sociologické imaginace

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Title:Ambivalentní odkaz Millsovy Sociologické imaginace
Creators:
Balon, Jan; janbalon at seznam dot cz; Filosofický ústav AV ČR, Praha, Jilská 1, Praha 1, 110 00, Czech Republic
Journal or Publication Title:
Czech Sociological Review, 45, 5, pp. 1055-1073
Uncontrolled Keywords:imagination, creativity, identification of problems, value-neutrality, morally committed social inquiry

Abstract

Charles Wright Mills wrote his renowned and bestselling The Sociological Imagination fifty years ago with the ambition of providing an alternative to the theoretically unsubstantial and methodologically inhibiting approaches that predominated at that time. His battle against the idea of a politically and morally neutral understanding of social inquiry was rhetorically compelling and anticipated the radical voices that would be heard in the late 1960s. It is argued in this article that probably the best lesson we can get from Mills has to do with his understanding of ‘sociology as a profession’. His argument addresses crucially important questions about the public relevance of social inquiry and the underlying themes of social-scientific reflexivity, creativity, and non-conformity. However, despite his rhetorical force and stylistic brilliance, Mills’ overall message is considered ambivalent. His concept of social inquiry based on identification of morally and politically relevant problems ultimately leads to the vaporisation of the very substance of social inquiry and to the institutional debilitation of the field as such. The resulting uncertainty concerning the basic means and ends of sociology, together with a hyper-tolerance towards the delineation of sociological research area, often leads to the identification of relevant problems on the basis of individual choice, inspiration, creativity, or imagination. It is suggested that this understanding of Mills’ legacy usually results in the trivialisation and parody of the overall message embodied in The Sociological Imagination.

Official URL: http://www.ceeol.com/aspx/issuedetails.aspx?issueid=9F4F5513-6ED6-45F2-82B3-778C5DAA0134&articleid=08076701-F636-4552-A026-643ED9013A94

Title:Ambivalentní odkaz Millsovy Sociologické imaginace
Translated title:The Ambivalent Legacy of Charles Wright Mills’ The Sociological Imagination
Creators:
Balon, Jan; janbalon at seznam dot cz; Filosofický ústav AV ČR, Praha, Jilská 1, Praha 1, 110 00, Czech Republic
Uncontrolled Keywords:imagination, creativity, identification of problems, value-neutrality, morally committed social inquiry
Subjects:H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions:Humanities and Social Sciences > 7. Section of Social and Economic Sciences > Institute of Sociology > Czech sociological review (Sociologický časopis)
Journal or Publication Title:Czech Sociological Review
Volume:45
Number:5
Page Range:pp. 1055-1073
ISSN:0038-0288
Publisher:Institute of Sociology of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
Related URLs:
URLURL Type
http://avi.lib.cas.cz/node/83Publisher
ID Code:4807
Item Type:Article
Deposited On:17 Dec 2009 17:38
Last Modified:22 Dec 2009 13:37

Citation

Balon, Jan (2009) Ambivalentní odkaz Millsovy Sociologické imaginace. Czech Sociological Review, 45 (5). pp. 1055-1073. ISSN 0038-0288

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