By Stjepan Mestrovic
Anthony Giddens is arguably the world's top sociologist. during this debatable contribution to the Giddens debate, Stjepan Mestrovic takes up and criticizes the most important issues of his paintings - relatively the concept that of 'high modernity' rather than 'postmodernity' and his tried building of a 'synthetic' culture in keeping with human enterprise and constitution. checking out Giddens' theories opposed to what's occurring within the actual international from genocide in Africa to close secession in Quebec, Mestrovic discerns within the building of man-made traditions no longer the promise of freedom held out through Giddens yet quite the ominous power for brand spanking new varieties of totalitarian keep watch over.
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Extra info for Anthony Giddens: The Last Modernist
The anthropologist would be a sort of curator of an historical past. (1995:273–4; my emphasis). Giddens does not explain or justify his attitude, in this or his other works, that sociology is the study of the modern while anthropology is a study of the traditional. It is an assumption that animates all of his work. But in this volume, I will dissect and challenge Giddens on this point and counter him with the obverse assumption: modernity cannot be understood adequately if one does not take into account its continuities with the past and its relationship with traditional societies that persist in the present, not to mention traditions within modern societies.
Finally, he does not acknowledge the importance of Wilhelm Wundt, whose Völkerpsychologie was really an effort in what today passes as cultural studies, and who influenced anthropologists such as Franz Boas and sociologists such as Émile Durkheim. Let me repeat that with regard to all of these assumption, Giddens merely reflects the dominant assumptions of most contemporary sociologists. 22 ANTHONY GIDDENS: THE LAST MODERNIST Furthermore, those who cling to the stereotypes of how scientific sociology was conducted in the nineteenth-century conducted vis-à-vis the model of the natural sciences may be engaging in a form of historical revisionism, or what I call postemotionalism (Meštrović 1997).
Giddens notes that Durkheim reviewed Wundt’s Ethics, but does not comment on how Durkheim might have incorporated Wundt’s views into his version of sociology. : 68). Moreover, Giddens writes: “It is difficult to assess precisely how far Durkheim was directly influenced by their [German] writings, and how far alternatively these simply reinforced conclusions which he had already reached from other sources” (1971:71). And that is all that Giddens has to say about this subject! Elsewhere in his writings, Giddens works tendentiously to force Durkheim into the role of Comte’s disciple.