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Critical Social Theory: An Introduction and Critique Author(s): John P. Scott Source: The British Journal of Sociology, Vol.

29, No. 1 (Mar., 1978), pp. 1-21 Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of The London School of Economics and Political Science Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/589216 . Accessed: 01/08/2011 08:06
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I978 I 29 Volume J%umberMarch of jtournal Sociolog): British

John P. Scott

Criticalsocialtheory:an introduction and critique


introductionto the majorthemesof This paper gives a systematic of formulation criticalsocialtheory.A discussion JurgenHabermas' cognitiveinterests,and scientificmethod of his viewson knowledge, is followedby an account of his social theory and his attempt to combine Marxism with mainstreamsociology. In criticism it is argued that Habermashas not yet solved all the problemsof a 'realist'approachto sociologyand that his synthesisis incomplete. througha criticaldialogue It is arguedthat sociologycan progress work. with Habermas' The aim of this paperl is to give an introductionto the thought of in in JurgenHabermas sucha way that thosewho areinterested understandinghis ideasyet do not have the staminato read all his available work will possessa 'sketchmap' of his versionof critical sociology. Hopefully,this will encouragereadersto consultthe originalworks. advancebe made. can discussion scientific Onlyon the basisof informed The fate of complexwritersis to be rejectedratherthan refuted that rather and becauseof theircomplexity obscurity is, they aredisregarded than becauseof theirlack of scientificrigour,validity,etc. The aim of to this paper, then, is to initiate fruitfuldiscussion, give a systematic account of Habermas'ideas, and to suggestsome importantlines of
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The work of Habermashas developed,along with that of his colfromthe earlierworkin criticaltheory leaguesWellmerand Schmidt,2 of and by Adorno,Horkheimer othermembers the Institutefor Social Schoolrelatesto the The at Research Frankfurt.3 workof the Frankfurt to approaches Marxism,and debatesover 'scientific'and 'historicist' over the 'Young'and the 'Old' Marx. The criticalapproachbecame debates in Germansociology, involved in philosophical increasingly resulting in the now-famousconfrontationbetween Adorno and Popper.4Habermashas continued this line of argument and has for to attempted developa methodology criticalsocialtheorythrougha

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systematicreconstruction the works of Hegel and Marx, and a of critiqueof 'positivist' 'hermeneutic' and interpretations science. of I shall begin by considering Habermas'theory of knowledgeand then turn to his substantive social theory.Having discussed fullest his and mostsystematic versions epistemology socialtheory,I shall of and turn to his more recent considerations methodology. on ThereafterI shall outlinesomecriticisms.

Habermas'theory of knowledgeattemptsto establisha connection between methodological rules and 'knowledge-constitutive interests', and to root thesein a theoryof socialevolution.This is the basisof his argument epistemology that todayappears socialtheory.Specifically, as he positsthe notionof knowledge-constitutive interests a linkbetween as scientificmethodology and social action. Criticalsocial theory,which embodiesboth a social philosophyand an empiricalsociology,is the standpointfrom which these interestscan be analysed.Knowledgeconstitutive interests,or cognitiveinterests,are transcendental: are they fundamental orientations knowledge actionwhichare rootedin to and the underlying conditions the evolutionof the humanspecies.Since of they are necessaryconditions for particular types of knowledge, Habermassees his typologiesof cognitiveinterestsand types of knowledge as logicallyexhaustive. This analysisis basedon a philosophical anthropology which relates the diffierent types of knowledgeto the deep structureof human experience.Cognitiveinterestsrefer to the linkbetweenthe origin,application,and validityof knowledge,a link whichis broughtaboutthroughthe necessary embedding knowledge of in experience and action.5 Habermasidentifies three cognitive interests: the technical, the practical,and the emancipatory. technicalinterestrefersto those The aspectsof knowledge actionwhich are concerned and with manipulating the environment ensuring and successful action;it involvesgaining and expandingcontrolover naturalobjectsand events.The practical interest refersto those aspects of knowledgeand action which are concernedwith attainingand extendingunderstanding consensus and in intersubjective relationsso as to achievecommunityand mutuality. At a more abstractlevel, the emancipatory interestinvolvesliberating men fromhistorically contingent constraints througha process 'selfof reflection'.Whereasthe technicaland practicalinterestsare 'primary formsof cognitiveworld constitution',the emancipatory interestis a derivative, 'meta-interest'.6 is derivativein the sense that it is It linkedwith derivativetypesof action: exploitation and systematically distortedcommunication;that is, it relatesto situationswhere the varioussub-systems a societyare structured ways which cannot of in berationally grounded.7 technical practical The and interests aspects are

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of the process of social evolution, where evolution is seen as the They must be comprestruggleof the human species.8 emancipatory reasonitself. of hendedas aspectsof the meta-interest emancipatory as the characterizes cognitiveinterests In his latestworks,Habermas deep structure'rules'in the specificsense that Chomskyhas given to and that term.Such rulesare to be seen as invariantsocialuniversals, As to for this reasonare transcendental immediateexperience. aspects of of the deep structure socialevolutionthey makepossiblethe surface arguesthat they are 'rules Habermas of features actionand knowledge. and accordingto which we constitutethe worldof experience',9 since they given to consciousness can only be disthey are not immediately The epistecovered reflexivelythrougha processof reconstruction. mologist reflectson knowledgeand action and so gives a rational to ruleswhich are presumed generate of reconstruction the underlying and action. that knowledge Habermasrecognizesthree types of knowledgebased on the three and criticalhistorical-hermeneutic, interests: analytical-empirical, knowledgeis that which is embodied dialectical.Analytical-empirical in the natural sciences. Theorizing consists of the constructionof theorieswhich 'fit' data derivedfrom observadeductive-nomological knowledge yields 'information'and is tion.l Analytical-empirical knowutilizable is . Information technically into structured 'explanations' can, in principle,expandhuman ledge in the sensethat its application makestwo powersof technicalcontroland manipulation.llHabermas knowledge:he criticizesthe major points about analytical-empirical of interpretation it, and he arguesthat it is too restrictive 'positivistic' for social phenomena.He arguesthat the dominantapproachto the viewof analytical-empirical of philosophy sciencehastreateda distorted knowledgeas the paradigmfor all knowledge,and he termsthis apis Habermas criticalof the 'positivistic or proach'positivism' 'scientism'. knowledge,which fails to of self-understanding' analytical-empirical recognizeits underlyingtechnicalinterest.l2But he arguesthat this orthodoxyhas come into questiondue to the worksof Kuhn, Feyeraphilosophy and bend,Lakatos, Toulmin,and by worksin the analytical of language.l3Additionally,he claims that Popperhimselfhas been critical of elementsof positivism,althoughhe has never consistently criticism to taken these criticisms their logical conclusion.Habermas' in approach socialscienceis thatit is unduly of the analytical-empirical restrictive.Specifically,he criticizesits empiricismin favour of a that position,accordingto which it is necessary realistor essentialist of theorygraspsthe real structure the socialtotality.l4 of knowledge the culturalsciencesworks The historical-hermeneutic circle) in which (the hermeneutic througha 'cycle of interpretation' of alwaysdependsupon a priorunderstanding the objectof theorizing to and utterances socialproducts It knowledge. aimsto relateordinary This is the method in sociallife-world which they are constituted. the

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of Verstehen.l 5 Historical-hermeneutic knowledge yields'interpretations' and is structured processes 'understanding'. into of Interpretations are practicallyrelevant knowledge,in the sense that they aid 'mutual understanding the conductof life'.l6 in Critical-dialectical knowledgeis specificto social scienceand combinesthe othertwo formsof knowledge recognizing by theirlimitations and the need to reconcilethem in a higher synthesis.Examplesof criticalsciencesgiven by Habermasare psychoanalysis Marxism, and althoughhe claimsthat both Freudand Marxtendedto interpret their workspositivistically. Criticalsocial theory has both a philosophical and a sociologicalcomponent.Its philosophical componenttakesthe connectionbetween knowledgeand interestsas it object, whilst the sociological componentexaminesthe structures the variousformsof of societywhichhave existedin humanhistory.The two components are linked,in as much as evolutionis seen as a processof historical'selfformation'.l7 Criticaltheory aims to restoreto men an awareness of their positionas active,yet historically limitedsubjects.In so far as it discovers which formsof constrainton human freedomare necessary and whichare historically specific,it generates critiqueof society:the a institutionsof a society are comparedwith the objectivepossibilities of humandevelopment, with the idealof a rationalsociety.In thisway, actorscan achievea historically conditionedautonomyand so engage in rationalsocialchange.Therefore, criticalsocialtheorygoes beyond the nomologicalknowledgeof the analytical-empirical approachin orderto discover when theoretical statements grasp'invariant regularities of social action as such' and when they express 'ideologically frozenrelationsof dependence'.l8 The resultis a 'criticallymediated knowledge laws'.l9In achieving it combines understanding of this the of subjectively intendedmeanings withrealcausalmechanisms. Habermas arguesthat 'By linkingthe methodof Verstehen manner in this with the objectivating procedures causal-analytical of scienceand by permitting the realizationof both througha mutuallytranscending critique,the dialectical approach overcomes separation theoryand history.'20 the of In so far as it embodiesboth information interpretation, and critical knowledge structured an 'explanatory is as understanding'. Habermas remarks-and this may surprise many of his critics-that much sociology,recent Germansociologyin particular,comes very closeto his notionof criticalsocialtheory.He goesso faras to arguethat more attentionshouldbe paid to acquiringanalytical-empirical knowledgeof social regularities. Sociologists 'ought to devote all effortsto acquiring moreand betterinformation thiskind'.2lGerman of sociology unlikeeconomics and politicalscience-has continuedto place such nomological information the contextof a historically in orientedtheory ofsocietywhich furthers self-understanding the actingsubjects. the of Hisreasonfor enteringinto 'the Positivist dispute'was that he wished to criticize the positivisticinterpretationof social science, and so

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technocratic just frombecoming one morespecialized preventsociology reality. Criticalsocialtheoryis not an ideal,it is an endangered science. to aims not to rejectpreviousapproaches sociology,but to Habermas point out their limitations and to incorporatethem in a broader synthesis.

for socialtheory,and therefore his analysis The contextfor Habermas' Hegeliannotionof the evolutionof the is of knowledge, an essentially argues Habermas or of humanspeciesas a process formation, education. that this formationprocessoperatesthroughsocial 'media',i.e. basic which underly differentaspectsof the processof social mechanisms evolution.Habermas'thought on the social media has undergonea Hegel'searly It numberof modifications. was not until he re-examined that he succeededin arrivingat a coherentanalysisof the philosophy His three social media of human evolution.22 solutionwas to present as language,labour,and interaction threesocialmedia,with 'domination' as a category referringto the specific historicaldistortionsof labour and interactionwhich arise in the course of social evolution. In his analysisof Hegel'searly philosophyof mind, Habermasshows that, for Hegel, the evolutionaryformation of self-consciousness spirit'whichHabermas of aspects 'Absolute involvedthreefundamental action, (or representation language),instrumental identiSesas symbolic action. Together,these define the two concrete and communicative formsof 'Actualspirit':sociallabour(orwork)and socialinteraction.23 actionappears In the concreteformsof humansociety,instrumental action appearsas social interas social labour, and communicative action. Whilst the abstracttypes of action are each separatelyconstituted through language, the concrete types of social action are dependentupon one another.Both the technicalrules employedin social labour and the norms of social interactionare formulatedin language,and the two typesof actionthen enterinto an interdependent relationshipwith one another. On the one hand, the cooperation for necessary sociallabourmust be backedup by socialnorms;on the other hand, mutual recognitionin interaction depends upon the arisesfromthe labour and of recognition rightsof possession, possession of Thus, the interdependence sociallabourand socialinterprocess.24 musttake account actionin humanevolutionshowsthat emancipation of the interconnectionbetweenthem.Andit is on thisbasisthat Habermas justifies his argumentthat a critical social theory, oriented by an of interest,involvesthe synthesis the typesof knowledge emancipatory generatedthroughthe technicaland practicalinterests. It is the types of action and social action which constitutethe in work, and each must be discussed more of scaffiolding Habermas' detail.

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s. Instrumental andthesocial actions labour process Habermassees instrumentalaction (tweckrationalitat) terms of a in strictmeans-end relationship strategic and choice.The strategic element involvesanalyticalknowledge derivedfromformalcalculations the on basis of preference rules and decisionrules; the means-endelement involvesempiricalknowledgederivedfromconditionalpredictions on the basis of technical rules and observations.Instrumentalaction involvesthe assessment alternative of choicesin termsof the effective control of external reality, although such actions may or may not achieve the desiredend. Contraryto what Habermasoften implies, thistype of actionis not definedin termsof the employment accurate of analytical-empirical scientific knowledge. Rather,the actionis defined fromthepointofviewofthe actorin terms Parsons' of pattern variables.25 Instrumental action involvesneutrality,specificity,universalism, and performance. Habermasarguesthat the learningprocessinvolvedin instrumental action concernsthe acquisition problem-solving of skills, and that the failureof an action indicatesthe actor'sincompetence. The paradigmfor instrumental actionis the labourprocess,sinceit is here that instrumentalactions are most clearly and systematically manifested. Labouris seen as the processwhich regulates material the interchange, metabolism, or betweenman and nature:it is the process of transforming material basis throughwhich the survivaland the reproduction the speciesis ensured.26 of 2. Communicative andsocial actions interaction Communicative action is governedby consensual normswhich define reciprocalbehavioural expectations. Such normsmust be understood and recognized bindingby the actors,and they are enforced as through the use of sanctions. It is this intersubjective understandingand recognition whichvalidates norms.Thistypeof actionis not defined the as irrational,or even non-rational Habermasclaims that it follows 'the rationalityof language games'. Like instrumentalaction, it is definedfromthe actor's pointof viewin termsofthe patternvariablesthis time, affectivity,diffuseness, particularism, and quality.27The learning process involvedin communicative actionis the internalization of motivations,and failureis indicativeof deviance.28 paradigm The for communicative action is the reciprocityand mutualityof social interaction:the processthroughwhich the speciesconstructs cona sciousness itselfas a subject. of Each type of socialactioncan be analysed termsof the particular in social systemswith which it is associated. Socialinteraction generates an 'institutionalframework' 'socio-cultural (or life-world')which is particularly realizedin systems such as familwr kinship,althoughit and permeates whole of society.The sub-system instrumental the of actiorl comprisesthe economyand the state apparatus,both of which are

Critical social theory

framework. has alreadybeenargued, As 'embedded' the institutional in labour and interaction are interdependent.However, Habermas framework a certain 'priority'in has recognizesthat the institutional can the constitutionof society: 'Of course, only institutionalization action will in fact follow definite guaranteethat such [instrumental] technical rules and expectedstrategieswith adequateprobability.'29 Technical rules must be backed-upby the binding power of social norms. of Politicaleconomyhas as its objectthe socialsystems instrumental actionand Habermas believesthat Marx'scritiqueof politicaleconomy is the exemplarfor criticalsocialsciencein this area. Fromthe standelementof point of Habermas' Marxism,sociallabouris the universal all social life throughwhich man seeks to satisfyhis basic needs. It betweenman and his environment. consistsof the naturalinterchange for This 'material' relationof man to natureis a conditionof existence the individual,and is the dynamicof social evolution.Labouroccurs It underdefinitehistorical forms,definitemodesof production. is in the action (the mode of productionthat the techniquesof instrumental in aspectof the instituforcesof production) embedded a particular are to of Marx'scontribution tionalframework relations production). (the criticalsocialsciencewasto showthatin all knownmodesof production labourwas performed under conditionsof an alienationfromits true is 'Exploitation' any structure natureas an expression species-being. of of the relationsof productionwhich generatesalienatedlabour. The is aim of the critiqueof politicaleconomyis to showthat exploitation a within a whichcan be dispensed historically specific formof domination fully rationalsociety.30 But Marx'scritiqueof politicaleconomywas not a completecritical social science. Whilst he criticizedthe form of dominationfound in Marxdid littleto criticize systemsof instrumental action(exploitation), action.He of the formof domination foundin systems communicative for preconditions a rational examinedthe materialand instrumental characteristic the society,but he did not discuss formsof communication sets of such a society.This is the taskwhichHabermas for himself.His a aim is to constructan 'ideology-critique', critiqueof systematically Only in this way can Marx'scriticalsocial distortedcommunication. a has sciencebe completed.To this end Habermas begunto construct as theoryof communication such. of hermeneutic understanding Habermas arguesthat the traditional competence', communication relies on the notion of 'communicative approachcan be employed and that for this reason,the hermeneutic of Thisleadshim to the problem defining onlyif actorsare 'competent'. He Chomsky's modelof language communicative competence. criticizes Comfromactual 'performance'. for separating abstract'competence' systemof rulesbasedon an innatelanguage petencerefers an abstract to refersto the use of apparatusof linguisticuniversals;performance

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languagein actual speech and is determinedby peripheralpsychological and sociologicalconditionswhich restrictthe applicationof linguistic competence.3lChomsky'smodel requires that phonetics, grammar, semantics rigidlyseparated and be frompragmatics. Habermas startsout by criticizingthe applicationof this idea to semantics, arguingthat not all universalmeaningsneed be regardedas innateeven thoughthey are 'universal', they may nevertheless culturally be determined. Universalmeaningelements(for example,kinshipterms) may derivefromfeatures specific to culture,but which are common to all cultures.Habermas attemptsto showthat communicative competence dependsuponbothinnatelanguagecapacityand certainsocio-cultural conditions. arguesthat 'in orderto participate normaldiscourse, He in the speakermust have in addition to his linguistic competencebasic qualificationsof speech and of symbolic interaction (rolebehaviour)at his disposal, whichwe may call communicative competence'.32Communicative competenceis a set of abstractrules which generate what Habermasterms an 'ideal speech community'.His analysis relatesto the intersubjective institutional and conditions which make mutual understanding possible. People are not competent if these conditionsdo not exist, and if people are not competent,their communicative actions are systematically distorted. Traditional hermeneutics needsto be modifiedso as to take accountof this notion of communicative competence. Wherecommunication organized is on the basisof socialdomination, ratherthan on the basisof a free communityof speakers, hermeneutics givesway to 'ideology-critique'. Habermas'next task is to give a more specificdefinitionof systematicallydistortedcommunication. arguesthat it can fairlyeasily He be recognized the individuallevel, if, for example,thereis a speech on disturbance due to a failureof the speakerto followthe normalconventionsof his society. However,it can also exist where the normal conventions themselves at fault: 'Pseudo-communication are produces a systemof reciprocal misunderstandings, which are not recognized as such,due to the pretenceof pseudo-consensus. a neutralobserver Only noticesthat the participants not understand another.'33 do one Habermas takesFreud'spsychoanalysis his startingpoint for an analysis as of thisphenomenon attempts relatethisto his notionof the ideal and to speechcommunity. Thisidealrarelyexistsin actualsocialsituations and Habermas wouldarguethat all knownsocieties be analysedas patcan ternsof systematically distorted communication. is worthquotinghim It at lengthon the conditions whichmust be met forfreecommunication: An unlimitedinterchangeability dialogueroles demandsthat no of side be privilegedin the performance these roles: pure intersubof jectivityexistsonly when thereis completesymmetry the distribuin tion of assertion disputation, and revelation hiding,prescription and awnd followingamong the partnersof communicationAs long as

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will exist, communication not be hinderedby conthesesymmetries arisingfromits own structure:(I) in the case of unrestricted straints discussion(in which no prejudicedopinion can continuallyavoid being made thematicand being criticized)it is possibleto develop consensus;(2) based on the strategiesfor reachingunconstrained (which includes the mutuality of unimpairedself-representation of of acknowledgment the self-representation the Other as well), it is possibleto achievesubtlenearnessalong with inviolabledistance underconditions and amongthe partners thatmeanscommunication of of extremeindividuation;(3) in the case of full complementation expectations(which excludesone-sidedobligingnorms), the claim of existsas well as the necessity universaunderstanding of universal by represent, theway,a linguistic Thesethreesymmetries lizednorms. apprehendas the for conceptualization that which we traditionally ideasof truth,freedom,andjustice.34 conditionsof symbolicinteraction(roleWhere the intersubjective playing) are not basedon truth, freedomandjustice, communicative is in Socialinteraction real situations distorted. actionis systematically by controlled motiveswhichcoincidewith the intentions not primarily of the actor the greater the importanceof those underlyingneeds the which cannot freely be convertedinto public communications, is (i.e. distortion the less'competent' the greaterthe degreeof systematic increaseswith the general distortion actor). The degreeof systematic in in domination a society,the latterbeingdependent, levelof repressive forcesand political stageof the productive turn, on the developmental power. My main aim in this paper is to outline the main features of approachto sociology,but some accountmust be given of Habermas' in orientation studyingactualprocesses how he employshis particular sociology,as of change.In broadterms,the mainproblemof historical to fromtraditional rationalsociety. sees Habermas it, is the transition is Capitalism seen as the form of societywhich makesthe first break in with traditionalism the name of rationality.Habermasarguesthat of can this process be fulfilledonly throughthe supersession capitalism: the full developmentof the principleof rationalityis incompatible The with the capitalistformin which it was nurtured.35 fully rational of societyis the culmination humanevolution.To this end, Habermas accountof the materialist the to seesit as necessary reconstruct historical of A stagesof social development. classification stages must be based Perhapsthe upon the formstaken by both labour and interaction.36 most important aspect of this scheme of social developmentis his argumentthat it is importantto distinguish'liberalcapitalism'from 'late capitalism'. Each of the societaltypes which he identifiesis definedby a particular 'organizationalprinciple' which determinesthe patterns of


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In distortedcommunication. liberal exploitationand systematically principlewas that of the market,which the capitalism, organizational gave rise to a class polarizedsociety and to endemiceconomiccrisis tendencies.The system as a whole was legitimatedin terms of the the whichobscured realexploitative of apparent'exchange equivalents' of relationsof the appropriation surplusvalue. The developmentof oligopoly and state interventiondestroysthis system and creates a qualitativelynew form of capitalist society in which many of the the ideasno longerhold. In late capitalism, economic originalMarxian can crisistendencies be resolved,but only at the expenseof displacing themto the politicallevel. The statecan regulatethe crisesof a market and fiscal economy, but only by creating persistentadministrative crisesfor itself.At the sametime, the end of the freemarketmeansthe function.The advancedcapitaliststate faces a end of its legitimating legitimationcrisiswhich can only be resolvedthroughchangesin the must actions.The principleof 'rationality' of structure communicative action to that of combe extendedfrom the sphereof instrumental generatedin an ideal municativeaction: but the type of legitimation speech community would be incompatible with the exploitative The capitalistsystemfaces a dilemma:it tries of structure capitalism. to continue without rational legitimation,or it bringsinto being a it. whichundermines At this pointwe reachthe systemof legitimation problem and work.Thisis the empirical practical of frontiers Habermas' are to His to whichall hisworkhasbeendirected. solutions thisproblem only now emerging.37

in Habermas'latest developments the area of the analysisof comof munication have required a reconstruction his epistemology.I and of his arguments to takethese to propose examinethe mainthemes on as a startingpoint for a criticalcommentary his work. His recent developmentsin epistemologyhave centred around a distinction between everyday communicationand discursive communication. knowledge involvesa body of common-sense communication Everyday and contextfor experience action.Both whichis the taken-for-granted actionare sociallabourand socialinteraction rootedin thisimmediate Habermasarguesthat this body knowledge. contextof common-sense of interpretations experience'.38 generates'action-related of knowledge takesnothingfor grantedand is discourse, communication, Discursive 'argumentativereasoning'.Discourse involves a phenomenological reductionin which everydaybelief is suspendedso that a thorough of investigation knowledgecan take place. Only throughsuch a disbe coursecan a rational,true, consensus achieved.39

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knowledgewhich is relevant to instrumental The common-sense action involves sensoryexperienceon the basis of observation.The when of experiencing thingsand eventsinvolvesno shiftin orientation we move from the level of perceptionitself to the level of statements of about perception:both involve the description sensoryexperience. The to us enables to proceed a causalexplanation. commonDescription action involves sense knowledgewhich is relevantto communicative The on experience the basisof understanding. expericommunicative encing of personsand utterancesdoes involve a shift in orientation first-ordermeanings between first- and second-orderconstructs:40 whilstsecondrelationships, in derivefromparticipation interpersonal into a 'narraof order meaningsinvolve the objectivation experience The theoretical interpretation. tion', which is the basisof a narrative are which are formulatedin discursivecommunication propositions developmentsof second-orderconstructs,and it can be seen that science and historicalHabermas'discussionof analytical-empirical hermeneuticscience relates to the differentialrooting of these two sciences in everyday knowledge. The notion of cognitive interest and everydiscourse the expresses conceptuallink betweentheoretical day actlonorlentatlons: Statementsabout the object domain of things and happenings(or about deeper structures manifesting themselves in things and into orientationsgoverning happenings)can only be retranslated and strategies).Likerationalaction (i.e. technologies purposively wise statementsabout the object domainof personsand utterances of (or the deeperstructures socialsystems)can only be retranslated action.4l governingcommunicative into orientations interest.This, too, links We may now returnto the emancipatory knowledge.At the experiential the levels of everydayand discursive relatedto actionswhichare aimedat the removalof level is knowledge at unnecessaryconstraints('self-reflection'); the discursivelevel is of understanding social aimedat the explanatory knowledge systematic Criticalsocial theory, which is evolution ('rationalreconstruction'). interest, expressesthe relation between based on the emancipatory the that and self-reflection rationalreconstruction: is, it comprehends experiences and communicative betweeninstrumental interdependence and in termsof a theoryof societyin which analytical-empirical histoknowledgeare synthesized.Self-reflection formsof rical-hermeneutic relates to individual experienceand development.It analyses the it impact of ideology and dominationon personalawareness, makes and levelsof experience, it aids in obscured the transparent previously constraints. the direct liberationof the individualfrom quasi-natural and is illustratedin It is attachedto individuallearningexperiences context where the patient graduallycomes to accept the therapeutic of the 'correct'interpretation his experience.Rationalreconstruction
< . . -

1lncovers deeplyrooted the mechanisms dual requiresin orderto regulatory whicheveryindiviengagein any kind of cognitive discloses setsof 'rules'(suchas the activity. thoseof logic and linguistics) It can universallybe which of communicative mastered-thus, Habermasformulates 'rules' the competenceas Marx formulatedthe real labourprocess. 'rules'of the The least developedpart of discussion the connection Habermas'theoryof knowledgeis his of betweentheory and practice. point of his argumentis that The main of theory is not sufficient:the an assessment the validity of social 'therapeutic'applicationof theory practice a processof is to enlightenment which involvesthe 'authentication'of tlle theoryby social actors.In its connection with an emancipatoryinterest,critical social theory aims to show particular groups the theorycan give that them self-knowledge that social and acceptable it is an reconstruction theirsituation.42 of The important of course,is that of which social question, into dialoguewith in orderto groupsthe criticaltheoristis to enter his was doubtthatit wastheauthenticate theory.For Marx,there little proletariat, Habermas but late arguesthat capitalism capitalistclass the relationsare no longeractualizedin real socialgroups.These relations in the surfacethere is a pluralityof are latent within the society,but on actual social groupingsin relationsconsensus, of varying competition, conflict.The and tariat no longer the is traditional appropriatesubject for critical proleHabermas' theory.43 conclusion seemsto be that the empirical on criticalsocialsciencewill discoveries based themselves pointto the groupswhichoffer the possibility agents most as of socialchange. Habermas further arguesthat criticalsocialtheory itselfcannotyield strategic tactical and knowledge:no science can replace processes of will-formation practical and decision-making. The achievement authenticated of knowledge produces socialgroupwithin which conditions an ideal an enlightened the of are and is the conditionfor speechcommunity approximated, this the achievement a of rationalconsensus over strategies tactics.Critical and tions which appropriate socialtheoryestablishes condiunder the strategies arise,but it cannot can judge outcome of the prepracticaldiscourse.The success should in progress of a strategy result towardsa rational progress broadensthe social grouping society.Each stagein this within which exists,the end resultis the and recreation the classicalenlightenment of onlevel of societyas a the 'publicsphere' whole. Far frombeing merely cized characteristic the depolitisphere of one in which open, practicallate capitalism,a true public sphereis discourseleads to a meaningful opinion.44 The societyaimedat by criticalsocialtheoryis one in public rationality realized;a is fully which determines futurein a societyin which the public as a whole its own social aimsat a society rationaland autonomous way. Critical theory in whichmen a full consciousness their capabilities maketheirown historyin of and limitations.


John P. Scott

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Clearly,the plausibilityof Habermas'remarkson the problemof uponhismoregeneralepistemology linkingtheoryandpracticedepends and social theory. In so far as the cognitiveinterestsare the 'deep knowstructurerules'which connect everydayknowledge,discursive itself,it mightseemthat they are at ledge, and the theoryof knowledge the core of criticalsocialtheory.In a sensethisis true,for the interests are the threadswhich hold his argumentstogether.But in another is His importance. argument sensethe interestsare of quite secondary implies a particular that the logicof particularforms of knowledge relationshipbetween that knowledgeand social life. As Habermas' and disrecent discussionof the connectionbetween common-sense in rooting everyday havea differential courseshows,formsof knowledge experience.Scientificdiscoursereflectsupon problemsgeneratedin Sincesocial examination. themto systematic everydaylife and subjects ways, correspondingdistinctions actions are structuredin certain within the sphereof knowledgewill also be possible.The concept of 'interest'merely makes this connectionclear. For this reason, any or of criticism the natureof the interests of theirnumber,mustdepend of Habermas'conceptionsof knowledgeand upon a prior criticism mustbe seenas an aspectof argues:epistemology society.As Habermas humanevolution;and the cognitive explains socialtheory;socialtheory My critical comments, interestsrelate to the media of evolution.45 on his analysesof knowledgeand society,since concentrate therefore, these are the real core of criticalsocial theory. In particular,I shall in first,his view of knowledge general two investigate centralproblems: sociologicalknowledgein particular;second, his attempted and of to of synthesis approaches socialtheory. view of the methohas wishto arguethat Habermas an inadequate I of the naturalsciences,and that this createsproblemsfor his dology sees the naturalsciencesas knowledge.Habermas view of sociological knowledgeand his sole criticismconanalytical-empirical generating to Whilsthe makesreference the interpretation. cernsits 'positivistic' criticismsof positivismby Kuhn, Feyerabendand others,he fails to recognizethat these criticismsare linked with those of other writers who reject the 'empiricism'of the orthodox philosophyof natural on science.Basingthemselves the workof Harre,a numberof writers of have formulateda 'realist' interpretation natural science which in corresponds all essentialsto Habermas'realist interpretationof social science.46The realist position holds that analytical-empirical for grounds expecting betweenproviding failsto distinguish knowledge of and cognoscendi) giving a causalexplanation an event to occur (ratio facts are and essendi), that observational why the event occurred(ratio ratherthan 'given'.Thus, an attackis made againstboth 'constructed' of components analytical-empirical and the 'analytical' the 'empirical' knowledge.Accordingto the realist,science attemptsto uncoverthe which generateevents in the world, and so real causal mechanisms


jeohn Scott P.

attemptsto order this knowledgein terms of a conceptualscheme. Scientifictheoryaims to represent structure real factorswhich the of operate with causal force. Habermasrecognizesthe importanceof arguments such as thesefor the socialsciences,but failsto undertake a sufficiently radicalexamination the naturalsciences.47 view of of His naturalsciencetakesover the very nominalism whichmanypeopleare now reJectlng. At the sametimehis view of the historical-hermeneutic knowledge of the culturalsciencestakes over a relativistic,and hence nominalist, view of knowledge. if Habermas But wishesto arguethat the interpretation of meaningis a crucialpart of criticalsocial theory,he cannot rejectthe idea that structures meaningare real. It is difficultto see of how Habermascould synthesize two nominalistic formsof knowledge and obtaina bodyof knowledge concerning structures. real However,if it is acceptedthat the naturalsciencesand the culturalsciences mustbe interpreted a realistway, then a realistsocialscienceis once morea in possibility. WhilstHabermas' derivationof a realistsociologymay be at fault,it may still be that his projectis feasible.If thesequalifications are accepted,it is possibleto assess viewson the critical-dialectical his knowledge the socialsciences. of Habermas' viewof sociological knowledge impliesthat the sociologist constructs theoretical modelswhichrepresent realsocialstructuring the of action which resultsfrom the operationof both natural,material forcesand culturalideas.The basicproblemof this argument concerns the realitystatusof thesemodels:is Habermas takinga materialist an or idealistposition?If he were to adopt a materialist view of theoretical modelshe wouldhave to arguethat socialstructures, suchas the mode of production, a materialexistence the socialworld.But, it was had in preciselyto avoid this kind of materialism that Habermas,and the earliermembersof the Frankfurt School, attemptedto draw on the arguments Germanidealism.48 of However,the idealistpositionitself can be no moreacceptable than the materialist. socialstructure an If is ideal entity which is not the arbitraryconstruction an individual of theoristthen it mustbe immanentin socialaction,thoughnot present in a material sense.Habermas triesto avoidthe dilemmaof materialism versusidealismby basinghis argumenton structural linguistics. Just as the linguistgives a rationalreconstruction the rulesof grammar of which are inherent in speech, though they may not necessarilybe consciously apprehended the speaker,so the criticalsocial theorist by attemptsa reconstruction the rules of social grammarwhich are of inherent socialaction.I have alreadyshownthat Habermas in aimsto reconstruct 'rules'of communicative the competence of the labour and process.49 Whilst this argumentcertainlyclarifiesthe nature of the problemn by no meansconstitutes solution.It is still necessary it a to knowthe reality of the 'grammar' 'rules'identified.They cannot or havea nominaliststatusas simpleconstructions the theorist,since by
* .

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But neither can they be seen as they are held to be real structures. principlesof the human mind, since Habermashas already necessary and rejectedthis possibility it wouldin any caseprecludethe discovery relatingto the specificstagesof humanhistory grammars of particular Habermas has failed to solve the which Habermas recognizes.50 realism. problemof sociological Habermasis not alone in this failure.The problemis at the very writers.5l by and of frontiers knowledge is beinginvestigated numerous Whilstwe must hope for and expect a solutionin the near future,it that thereis no obvioussolutionat present.Habermustbe recognized mas' problemis the problemof all realist positionsand it is to be expectedthat any attemptto resolvethis problemwill reflectupon the has issueswhich Habermas opened. The synthesisof substantiveapproachesto social theory which Habermashas attempted to produce is perhaps the most striking to contributions the featureof hiswork,andis one of his mostimportant scene. Habermas'attemptat an integrated sociological contemporary to social sciencehas drawnon many approaches sociologywhich are He generallyseen as incommensurable. considersthe issuesraisedin and Luhmann,the 'phenomenological' the systemstheoriesof Parsons of the worksof Schutz and the ethnomethodologists,52 hermeneutics All and Gadamer,53 the philosophyand sociologyof language.54 this to in workis discussed the contextof the debatesbequeathed sociology by the classicalworksof Marx and Weber. It is this integratedand coherentview of sociology,if nothing else, which should force us to to In work.55 view of thisfactit is essential examine Habermas' consider Such a tendencies. of the successof his synthesis divergentsociological here, and I proposeto examinetwo huge taskcan only be introduced the has whetherHabermas reconciled 'material' problems: interrelated focusof Marx'soriginaltheorywith the cultural,symbolicfocuswhich and systemstheory,56and he has taken over from phenomenology whetherhe has broughttogetherthe levels of social action and social These problemscan system,or, more broadly,atomismand holism.57 conceptof the of througha consideration Habermas' best be discussed 'institutionalframework'.Habermas argues that the economy is which of framework socialnorms,through in embedded an institutional 'guarantees' culturalvalues and meaningsare structuredand which that instrumentalactions will follow technical rules. This will be recognizedas a versionof Durkheim'sclassicalargumentabout the elementin contract.However,Habermasgives no 'non-contractual' it framework; is usedas an unproblematic analysisof this institutional category.WhereasMarx took the three volumesof Catitalto give a detailed, but unfinished,analysisof what Habermascalls the 'subinvestigivesno comparable action',Habermas systemof instrumental action. His of gation of the institutionalmechanisms communicative and of discussion communication interactionis pitchedat the level of


jtohnP. Scott

individual action processesand he does not considerthe structural featuresof communicationsystems.Whilst the latter is central to Parsons' sociology,58 Habermas does not followhim into this area. All that Habermas providesare variousscatteredremarks. At a numberof pointsin his writings Habermas suggests, although he does not explicitlydevelopthe idea, that role theorycan be re-interpretedin the light of his modelof distorted communication.59 Modern sociological analysis and he is presumably referring the debateover to Dahrendorf's classicpaper60-seessymbolic interaction termsof role in behaviour,but the concept of role is not seen as being historically specific.It is necessary approachrole theoryin the same way that to Marx approached theoryof the market both 'role'and 'market' the are historically specificformsof actionwhich are not applicableto all stagesof socialdevelopment.6l Sociologytendsto reify'socialrole'and so losesthe historical, dynamicdimension. orderto relatethis to his In communication theory,Habermas would have to arguethat roles are associatedwith particularvocabulariesof motive, that actors are constrained expressthemselves termsof these vocabularies, to in and that they mayinternalize themand acceptthemas theirown. In sucha situation any consensuswill be 'false' owing to the absence of the conditions the idealspeechcommunity: of communication structured is throughthe dominance one classover another.However,Habermas of has, so far, spentlittle time in attemptingto build such a bridgewith orthodoxsociology.Habermas must continueto developsuch themes. He must recognizethat the institutionalframework a structureof is objectiverelationsbetweensocial positions,a structure which is constructedon the basis of cultural meaningsand which providesthe context within which individualactions take place. Instead of concentrating individual on actionsthemselves mustinvestigate ways he the in whichthey produceand reproduce objectivesocialstructure an and the ways in which this structure, its turn, producesand reproduces in individual actions.62Habermasfails to integrate the 'action' and 'system' levelsand therebyfailsto integrateMarxianpoliticaleconomy with a theoryof the institutional framework. orderto achievesucha In synthesisHabermasmust not merely examinethese problemsat the generaltheoretical level, he mustalsoinvestigate structure partithe of cular social institutionsand the mechanismsthrough which they operate.63 This would requirethat he extend his analysisof 'systematicallydistortedcommunication' 'communicative and competence' to a full analysis the normative of structures the institutional of framework.

I have arguedthat Habermas,lik-emany other writers,is grappling with the very difficultepistemological problemsof a 'realist'social

socialtheory Crztical


science. To the extent that the problemsof this positionhave been clarified, Habermashas made an important contributionto their solution. Equally, his attempted synthesisof social theories points theorizsociological in towardssomefruitfuldevelopments substantive ing, altllough it cannot yet be regardedas a completed synthesis Habermas'work cannot be accepted as it stands, since it involves However,his visionof an integrated manyseriousflawsand omissions. of to social scienceand of its contribution the achievement a rational seriouslyand attempt to society require that we considerhis work correct it and develop it. Sociology can progressthrough critically The aim of this paper the assessing workof a writersuch as Habermas. and to suggestsomeareasin whichour has been to introducehis ideas critical attention should be concentrated.Habermas is a difficult writer to understand,but this should not result in his work being ignored.
B.SC.(SOC.), PH.D. P. jrohn Scott, Lecturer Sociolog)s in of University Leicester

I. A much earlierdraft of sectionsof this paper was delivered to David Martin's Graduate Seminar on Sociological Theory at the London Schoolof Economicsin I972. The present paper a incorporates more detailed discussion later works.I am grateful of Habermas' in to my colleagues the TuesdayEvening Seminar at Leicester University, and particularly to ChristopherDandeker, for commentson a previousdraft. The worksof Habermasare cited according to their title; full details of publication are given in the appendedbibliography. . For Habermas' work see biblioof graphy. A. Wellmer, CriticalTheory New York, Herder and Herder, Society, of I97I; A, Schmidt, fhe Concept Nature in Marx,London,New LeftBooks,I 97 I . 3. For an accountof the historyof the Institute and the ideas of its leading thinkers see M. Jay, The Dialectical London, Heinemann, I 972; Imagination, of and P. Slater, Origins Development the School,London, Routledge & Frankfurt Kegan Paul, I977. Diset 4. T. AcIorno al., ThePositivist London, HeineSociology, putein German mann, I976.

5. Habermas,'KnowledgeandHuman of For Interests'. a generaldiscussion the cognitive interests see N. Lobkowicz, 'Interestand Objectivity',and F. Dallmayr, 'CriticalTheory Criticized',both vol. Sciences, , of in Philosophy theSocial no. 3 (I972) 6. C. Lenhardt,'The Rise and Fall of Philosophy Anthropology', Transcendental vol. Sciences, 2, no. 3 (I972), of theSocial
p. 239s

7. Habermas,'A Postscriptto KnowInterests'. ledge Human and 8. T. Schroyer, 'The Politics of ffournalof Epistemology', International vol. Sociolog)t, 2, no. I (WinterI97I-2). Schroyerwrites that the technical and practical interestsare 'momentsin the dialecticof social evolution',but little is gained from this formulation.See also of T. Schroyer,Ehe Critique Domination, New York,GeorgeBraziller,I973. 9. Cited in Lenhardt,op. cit., p. 242. See also Habermas 'A Postscript to Interests'. and Knowledge Human IO. Habermas has in mincI the socalled 'covering law' paradigm of exwith writerssuch as planationassociated Popper,Hempel, and Nagel.

XohnP. Scott
Philosophyof Mind' eontainsthe final of I I. A usefuldiscussion this can be found in B. Fay, Social Theoryand version. here with the 23. I am not eoncerned London, GeorgeAllen PoliticalPractice, of interpretation aceuraeyof Habermas' & Unwin, I 975, pp 29-47 Bi- Hegel. I merelywish to presenthis own I2. Habermas,'A Positivistically viewsof the natureof the soeialmedia. sectedRationalism'. 24. Comparethe analysisof morality of I 3. T. S. Kuhn, rhe Structure Chicago University and propertyin A. \V. Gouldner, 7Che Revolutions, Scientifiic London, Sociology, of and Crisis Western Press,I962; I. Lakatos A. Musgrave Coming I 97I n pp. 304- I 3. of and (eds), Criticism the Growth Know- . _ elnemann, betweendefiningthe 25. This eontrast UniversityPress,I 970; Cambridge ledge, S. Toulmin, The Uses of Argument, rationalityof action from the point of Cambridge University Press, I 964; J. viessof the actorand definingit in terms Acts, CambridgeUniver- of valid scientifieknowledgehas freSearle, Speech quently arisen in modern sociological sity Press,I 969. thought.The main issuesare coveredin: I 4. Habermas,'AnalyticalTheory of Oxford,Basil Science and Dialectics'.It is interesting B. Wilson(ed.), Rationality, to note that Albert sees Habermas' Blackwell,I970; J. D. Y. Peel, 'Underargument as a 'blatant' example of standing Alien Belief Systems', British vol. of 'social-scientificessentialism': see H. Xournal Sociolog)t, 20, no. I (I969). 26. Habermas,'Technologyand SciAlbert, 'The Myth of Total Reason',in Adorno,etal., op. cit., p. I 69 n. Keat and ence as "Ideology"', p. 93 for a general of Urry see it as an argumentfor realism, discussion the two typesof action. 27. Ibid., p. 9I. For a veryinteresting although they criticise him, as does Lobkowicz, for failing to extend this comparisonof decision rules and social and Choice realismto the naturalsciences.R. Keat norms,see A. Heath, Rational Cambridge University and J. Urry, Social Theoryas Science, Social Exchange, Press,I976. London,Routledge& ReganPaul, I975; of sociology motivation 28. Habermas' op. Lobkowicz, cit. is relatively undeveloped, but an apI5. A useful general account of the tradition of hermeneuticsand of the proachwhich would seem to correspond can method of Verstehe be found in W. to his argument is Mills' notion of of Social Life, 'vocabularies motive': C. \V. Mills, Outhwaite, Understanding 'Situated Actions and Vocabulariesof London,GeorgeAllen & Unrin, I975. vol. Review, Sociological 'Knowledge and Motive',American I 6. Habermas, Human Interests', p. 3 I I . Habermas 5, no. 6 ( I 940); H. Gerth and C. W. and Social Structure, relates this tradition to the works of Mills, Character Dilthey, Husserl, and Schutz. Botil London,Routledge& KeganPaul, I954, analytical-empirical knowledge and ChapterV, 'The Sociology of Motivaknowledge are tion'. historical-hermeneutic op. cit., p. 94. termed 29. Habermas, aspectsof what Max Horkheimer 30. This seetion is based on: Habertheory'. 'traditional and Seieneeas "Ideomas, 'Teehnology I7. The Germanterm is 'Bildung'. logy" '; idem.,'Beyond Philosophyand op. cit., p. 3I0. I8. Habermas, Seienee: Marxism as Critique'; idem., I 9. Ibid. Part Interests, I. and Knowledge Human 20. Habermas,'AnalyticalTheory of A 3I . Habermas,'Towards Theoryof Scienceand Dialectics',p. I40. Communieative Competenee'; idem., 2 I . Habermas, 'A PostivisticallyBiBemerkungenzu einer 'Vorbereitende p. sectedRationalism', 22I. Kompe'Knowledge and Theorie der kommunikativen 22. Habermas, on Human Interests' contains his first tenz'. Restrictions the applicationof in are formulation; idem., 'Technology and hermeneutics diseussed Habermas, der Science as "Ideology"' contains his 'DerUniversalitatanspruch Hermensecond discussion;idem., 'Labour and eutik'.For a generaloverviewsee T. A. 'A Interaction:Remarkson Hegel's Jena A1eCarthy, Theoryof Communicative

theory social Critical


of Competence', Philosophy the Social Routledge& KeganPaul, I976, Chapter 3. A useful discussionis contained in vol. Sciences, 3, no. 2 (I973). of Social A 'Towards Theoryof R. J. Bernstein,TheRestructuring 32. Habermas, Oxford,Basil BlackandPoliticalTheory, p. Competence', I38. Communicative 33. Habermas, 'On Systematically well, I 976, pp. 2 I 3-I 9. Crisis,pp. 43. Habermas,Legitimation p. DistortedCommunication', I I 7. An exampleof the kindof sociologyto which 37-4I; idem.,'Technologyand Science this might lead is C. Mueller,'Noteson as Ideology , pp. I 0 7-I O . 44. The nature of the public sphere Repressive Communication', in P. Number2, was the subjectof Habermas'firstbook, Sociology, Dreitzel(ed.), Recent and der London, Collier-Macmillan,I 970. See Strakturwandel Offientlichkeit, his worksincethencan be seenas an exploraof C. Mueller,ThePolitics Communicaalso tion of preciselyhow a rational public tion,OxfordUniversityPress, I973. A 'Towards Theoryof sphereis to be attained. 34. Habermas, and 45. Habermas,Knowledge Human p. Competence', I44. Communicative Interests. 35. Habermas,'Tecllnologyand Scito ence as "Ideology"', idem.,Legitimation 46. R. Harre, An Introduction the London,Macmillan, Logicof theSciences, Part III. Crisis, of Crisis,pp. I 960; idem., The Principles Scientific 36. Habermas,Legitimation A 'Towards Reconstruction Thinking,London, Macmillan, I 970; I 7-3 I; idem., of of Historical Materialism'; idem., gur R. Bhaskar,A RealistTheory Science, AIaterial- Leeds Books, I 975; Keat and Urry, des Rekonstnxktion Historischen op. as SocialTheory Science, cit. Part III. ismus, 47. I(eat and Urry, op. cit., p. 227; 37. The major sources on this are: Crisis;idem.,gur Habermas, gur Logik der SozialwissenHabermas,Legitimation AIaterial- schaften. des Rekonstraktion Historischen to AIarx Hegel, From 48. G. Lichtheim, ismus,Part IV. Empirical studies on advanced capitalism influenced by London, Orbach and Chambers,I97I. are Habermas beginningto emerge.The It is for the same reason that another work of Claus Offe is particularlyim- Marxist heretic, Louis Althusser,has and portant. See in particular: C. OSe, drawnon the rationalist structuralist of 'PoliticalAuthorityand ClassStructure' arguments Frenchphilosophy. to in P. Connerton (ed.), Critical 49. Habermas,'A Postscript Know(I969), Interests'. and Sociology, Harmondsworth, Penguin, ledge Human A 50. Habermas,'Towards Theoryof und C. OSe, Leistungsprinzip indusI976; Principle Communicative Competence'; idem., (The Achievement Arbeit trielle Chapter3. Crisis, and IndustrialWork) ( I 970), translated Legitimation of the Althusser 5I. The contortions London,Edward and asIndustry Inequality, school can be seen in this light: L. Arnold, I976. London,AllenLane, For to 38. Habermas,'A Postscript Know- Althusser, Marx, I 969; idem. and E. Balibar, Reading p. Interests', I68. and ledge Human London,New Left Books, I 970; 39. Comparethe notion of a 'Third Capital, in knowledge' K. R. B. Hindess and P. Hirst, Pre-Capitalist World'of 'objective London,Routledge& of Popper, ObjectiueKnowledge,Oxford Modes Production, Kegan Paul, I 975; B. Hindess and P. UniversityPress,I972. and Social to refers A. V. Cicourel, Hirst, Mode of Production 40. Habermas London,Macmillan,I977. in Method and Measurement Sociology, Formation, der 52. Habermas, gur LogSk SozialGlencoe,Free Press,I964. idem., wissenschaften; 'Theorieder Gesellop. cit., p. I75. 4I. Habermas, schaftoder Sozialtecilnologie'. 42. Habermas, 'Some Difficultiesin 'DerUniversitalitatan53. Habermas, the Attemptto LinkTheoryand Praxis', this Baumandiscusses but unfor- spruch der Hermeneutik'; idem., gur p. 32 ffW. der tunately conflates the practical and Logik Sozialwissenschaften. A 54. Habermas,'Towards Theoryof emancipatory interests: Z. Bauman, Competence'. London, Communicative Towardsa Critical Sociology,


jtohnP. Scott
& KeganPaul, I968. See also,H. Popitz, 'The Conceptof Role as an Elementof in J. A. Sociological Theory' (I967), UniverJackson (ed.), Role,Cambridge sity Press,I972. 6 I . For a similar argument from a differentpoint of view see T. Shanin, Analysis',Sociology, 'Units of Sociological

55. The claim that Habermas is merelyan eclecticis arguedin G. TherA born, 'Habermas: New Eclectic',New no. LeftReview, 67 (I97I). 56. Still the most relevant discussion of this is D. Lockwood,'Some Remarks ournal on "The SocialSystem"', British vol. of Sociolog):, 7, no. 2 (I956). 'Social Integration 57. D. Lockwood, and System Integration', in G. K. Zollschanand W. Hirsch (eds), ExploraLondon,Routledge Change, tionsin Social & Kegan Paul, I964; P. S. Cohen, Social fheory, London, HeineModern mann, I968. see T. Parsons,rhe 58. In particular Glencoe,Free Press,I95I. System, Social 'TowardsA Theoryof 59. Habermas, Communicative Competence'. Also, and Science: 'BetweenPhilosophy idem., Marxismas Critique'. 60. R. Dahrendorf, 'Homo Sociologicus' ( I958); idem., 'Sociology and Hllman Nature' (I963); both in Essays London,Routledge of in theTheory Society,

discussion 62. The most sophisticated d'une of these is P. Bourdieu, Esquisse ( de thetorie la pratique I972), translated Camof as Outline a fAeoryof Practice, bridgeUniversityPress,I977. 63. It is interesting to note that has Althusser attemptedsuch an analysis of the family,the school,and the church of as components the 'ideologicalapparatus'.Althusser,however,commitsthe oppositeerrorto Habermasand focuses to on 'structures' the completeexclusion of 'actors'. See L. Althusser,'Ideology and Ideological State Apparatus', in London, New Left LeninandPhilosophy, Books,I97I.

socialtheory Critical

by of Bibliography MajorWorks Habermas

togetherwith otherimportant lists This bibliography all the workscited in footnotes, but booksand articles.The date given is that of the originalpublication, publication There detailsare given for the most accessibleEnglisheditionswhere appropriate. are two majorcollectionsof articleswhich have been publishedin English: foward London, HeineLondon, Heinemann, I970; fheoryandPractice, Society, A Rational articleswhich appearin thesecollections mann, I973. In the followingbibliography, fRS and fP. are followedby the abbreviations


(StructuralChange in the Public Sphere), I962, der Strakturwandel bffientlichkeit Neuwid, Luchterhand. and Science:Marxismas Critique',I963, fP. 'BetweenPhilosophy Reasonand Decision',I963, fP. 'Dogmatism, Doctrineof Politicsin Relationto Social Philosophy',I963, fP. 'The Classical 'NaturalLaw and Revolution',I963, fP. 'Hegel'sCritiqueof the FrenchRevolution',I963, fP. Theoryof Scienceand Dialectics',I963, in T. Adornoetal., fhePositivist 'Analytical London,Heinemann,I976. Sociology, in Dispute German BisectedRationalism',I963, in T. Adornoet al., op. cit. 'A Positivistically of 'The Scientization Politicsand PublicOpinion', I964, f2S. and 'Knowledgeand Human Interests',I965, reprintedas Appendixto Knowledge Interests. Human 'Technologyand Scienceas "Ideology"', I965, 2S. and 'TechnicalProgress the SocialLife World', I966, f2S. 'On Hegel'sPoliticalWritings',I966, fP. of 'Labourand Interaction:Remarkson Hegel'sJena Philosophy Mind', I967, fP. (On der gur Logik Sozialwissenschaften the Logicof the SocialSciences),I967, Revised Surhkamp,I970. edition,Frankfurt, der 'Der Universitalitatanspruch Hermeneutik'(The UniversalityClaims of HerFrankfurt, und meneutics),I967, in K. O. Apel (ed.), Hermeneutik Ideologiekritik, Suhrkamp,I97I. London,Heinemann,I97I. I968, Interests, and Knowledge Human 'The Universityin a Democracy',I969, fRS. 'StudentProtestin the FederalRepublicof Germany',I969, fRS. 'The Movementin Germany:A CriticalAnalysis',I969, f2S. 'On SystematicallyDistorted Communication',I970, in H. P. Dreitzel, Recent I970. No. Sociology, 2, London,Collier-Macmillan, in H. P. Dreitzel,op. cit. I970, Competence', A 'Towards Theoryof Communicative Kompetenz' zu Bemerkungen einer Theorie der Kommunikativen 'Vorbereitende Competence),I97I, in Remarksfor a Theoryof Communicative (Preparatory oder J. Habermasand N. Luhmann, fheoriederGesellschaft Sozialtechnologie.?, Suhrkamp,I97I. Frankfurt, (Theory of Society or Social 'Theorie der Gesellschaftoder Sozialtechnologie?' Technology),I97I, in J. Habermasand N. Luhmann,op. cit. Unpublishedlecturenotes. I97I, fheory fowardsa Communication of Society, in 'SomeDifficulties the Attemptto Link Theoryand Praxis',I97I, fP. no. Research, 40 (I974). 'Why Still Do Philosophy?',I97I, Social of Philosophy theSocialSciences, I973, and to 'A Postscript Knowledge HumanInterests', vol. 3, no. 2 (I973). Crisis,I973, London,Heinemann,I976. Legitimation vol. Talking:An Interview',I974, fheoryandSociety, I, no. I (I974). 'Habermas vol. 'TowardsAReconstructionofHistoricalMaterialism',I975, fheoryandSociety, of (On Materialismus the Reconstruction Historieal des gur RekonstraktionHistorischen Suhrkamp. Materialism),I976, Frankfurt,