Social science: city centre or leafy suburb
Philosophy of the Social Sciences
This article argues, in opposition to a common interpretation of Wittgenstein deriving from Winch, that there is nothing especially problematic about the social sciences. Familiar Wittgensteinian theses about language, notably on the open-endedness of linguistic rules and on the importance of family resemblance concepts, do have great relevance to the social sciences, but also to much of the natural sciences. The differences between scientific and ordinary language are much less sharp than Winch, and probably Wittgenstein, supposed.
The research leading to this paper has received funding from the European Research Council under the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) ERC grant agreement n° 324186.
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