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Social Theory: Its Situation and Its Task
Social Theory: Its Situation and Its Task is an introduction both to Unger’s ideas and to the major debates of contemporary social, political and economic thought. Unger shows how the failures of social science and the criticism of such ambitious, deterministic theories as Marxism offer materials for an alternative practice of social understanding. This alternative severs, ...more
Paperback, 264 pages
Published November 17th 2004 by Verso
(first published August 28th 1987)
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unger's style is extremely methodical--outlining points before engaging them, numerically identifying themes and elements of theses, and repeatedly defining the crucial bits of his frankly idiosyncratic lexicon. this ensures that he veers into pedantry at points, and reading through some of the more complex sections (on functionalism, biological systems as analogies and counterpoints to social systems/formative contexts) can easily become exhausting. despite this, unger devises a unique and rigo ...more
"The disconnection between images of society that lacked an institutional interpretation released the imagination of the possible and desirable forms of human association from its traditional bounds. People could not match their received images of what their dealings of one another could and should look like in the different areas of social life with the practices and institutions they actually encountered. The combination of these anxieties ... made the third world countries at that time a priv ...more