Theory, Epistemology and Critical Rural Sociology
Swanson, Louis E.
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This paper would like to provide an alternative to the Marx-Weber dichotomy which has recently emerged in rural sociological studies. It consists of the re-proposition of critical sociology as a mode of scientific investigation which, while remaining within the Marxian tradition, addresses many of the central concerns of Weberian scholarship. Though a merger between Marx and Weber is not proposed, it is assumed that a lack of knowledge of critical sociology has hampered further development of the theoretical debate in rural sociology. More importantly, this lack of knowledge has prevented the diffusion of the basic tenets of critical sociology among sociologists concerned with the study of agriculture and food, limiting their ability to inform empirical investigations and to instruct students.