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Cultures of Inquiry

Cultures of Inquiry
From Epistemology to Discourse in Sociohistorical Research


  • Date Published: July 1999
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521659888


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About the Authors
  • Cultures of Inquiry provides an overview of research methodologies in social science, historical and cultural studies. Facing Kant's proposition that pure reason cannot contain social inquiry, John R. Hall uses a method of hermeneutic deconstruction to produce a 'critique of impure reason', thereby charting a 'third path' to knowledge. Inquiries conventionally allocated to science or interpretation, modern or postmodern, he argues, depend upon interconnected methodologies that transcend present-day disciplinary and interdisciplinary boundaries. He identifies four formative discourses and eight methodological practices of inquiry, and explores new possibilities for translation between different types of knowledge. Cultures of Inquiry neither exoticizes academic subcultures nor essentializes Culture as the spirit of academe. Instead, it addresses workaday issues of research via a sociology of knowledge that speaks to controversies concerning how inquiry is and ought to be practiced under conditions of epistemological disjuncture.

    • Up-to-date 'cultural' consideration of research methodology across social sciences and history
    • Addresses enduring problem of 'translation' between different types of knowledge
    • Useful for courses on historical and comparative research, philosophy of the social sciences, sociological theory
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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 1999
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521659888
    • length: 330 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 19 mm
    • weight: 0.49kg
    • contains: 11 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    Part I. Formative Discourses:
    2. Value discourse and the object of inquiry
    3. Narrative cultures and inquiry
    4. The conceptual possibilities of social theoretical discourse
    5. The core of explanation and interpretation as formative discourse
    Part II. Practices of Inquiry:
    6. Discursive hybrids of practice: an introductory schema
    7. Generalizing practices of inquiry
    8. Particularizing practices of inquiry
    9. The prospects of inquiry.

  • Author

    John R. Hall, University of California, Davis

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