SOCIOLOGY AS A SCIENCE
What is science and what is not? This question has often been the subject of debate, perhaps because ‘science’ is a matter of degree.
Sociology does make use of scientific methods in the study of its subject-matter. The definition of science is a mass of knowledge concerning a particular subject acquired by systematic observation, experience and experiment. Sociology is a scientific discipline which obeys the demands of validity implied by the word ‘science’.
Sociology frames laws and attempts to predict. It Endeavour’s to discover laws that are generally applicable regardless of variations in culture. No other science can boast of making infallible predictions and many theories established by other sciences have to be modified with the change of time.
All physical sciences do not employ laboratory experimentation, for example-astronomy cannot experiment with its materials. Sociology also deals with society and cannot experiment with men directly in a laboratory. In spite of its inability to experiment with its subject in laboratory, sociology is also a science. In short sociology to some extend has the following characteristics of science –
- It is empirical; that is, it is based on observation and reasoning.
- It is theoretical; that is, it attempts to summarize complex observation in abstract, logically related proposition which purport to explain causal relationship in the subject matter.
- It is cumulative; that is, sociological theories build upon one another, new theories correcting, extending and refining the older once.
- It is non-ethical; that is, sociologists do not ask whether particular social actions are good or bad; they seek merely to explain them.
So at last we can say sociology is a science. But, progress is being steadily made.
Dr. Chaya Dubey M.A., Ph.D
Give your answer about 200 words.
Q .1 Explain the relationship between sociology and common
Q.2 Can sociology be value free science?