Article/Publication Details

Naturalistic Causal Explanation in Social Sciences

(Original title: Naturalistické kauzálne vysvetlenie v sociálnych vedách)
Organon F, 2001, vol. 8, No 3, pp. 266-286.
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This paper, based on ideas of a cognitive anthropologist Dan Sperber, provides a concise introduction to how to construct a naturalistic causal explanation in social sciences. Its author starts with critical remarks concerning the philosophy of social sciences as presented in the previously published article by Tatiana Sedova. The author provides argumets in favor of a view that all the plausible explanations in social sciences should be based on the naturalistic, material processes. Furthermore the author presents a set of examples showing how to build a naturalistic explanation in cognitive anthropology. The conclusion is that the reconceptualization of all too abstract concepts of social sciences is urgently needed so that the ontology of social sciences could become consequently materialistic. Abstract properties of social phenomena are likely to be explained as either effects of or epistemological constructions derived from the material processes.

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