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    STUDIA SOCIOLOGIA - Issue no. 1 / 2010  
         
  Article:   CORRUPT KNOWLEDGE AND THE QUEST FOR OBJECTIVITY: A CRITIQUE OF THE ROMANIAN POSITIVIST SOCIOLOGY.

Authors:  NORBERT PETROVICI.
 
       
         
  Abstract:  The paper engages the case of the Romanian resurgent positivism after 1970s in the line of criticism opened by postmodernist, Marxist and feminist thinking. I situate Romanian positivism in the wider world system transformations as a plausible and pertinent strategy of doing science in particular fields of power with a certain historicity. I do not deconstruct science as a corrupt endeavour or reject science altogether, but I engage positivism critically through an alternative way of imagining objectivity as a process of creating falsifiable theories. Data has meaning only in relation to some theory, in relation to the effort of disproving some theoretical statement by accommodating anomalies in a continual effort to reconstruct some analytical framework. This is not just an alternative way of doing science, which can assist and counterbalance the specific weaknesses of positivism. In fact, these are two competing perspective for envisioning objectivity in social sciences, with hegemonic claims, coded in institutions, individual careers, and intelligibility maps with policy effects.

Keywords: positivism, Romanian sociology, critical social science, representativity, generalizable explanations
 
         
     
         
         
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