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Contemporary theorist - Term Paper Example

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A Critical Comparison of Contemporary Theorists: Anthony Giddens and Jurgen Habermas Name Institution Date A Critical Comparison of Contemporary Theorists: Anthony Giddens and Jurgen Habermas Introduction Sociology theories have evolved greatly since the days of classical theorists Emile Durkheim and Karl Marx…
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Download file to see previous pages Antony Giddens He remains the most celebrated social theorist of his time. He one of is the most cited theorist in social works. Additionally, he is at the forefront of debates in modern sociology especially those involving the nature of modernity and globalization. Antony Giddens is a British sociologist born in Edmonton, London. He attended the University of Hull where he studied a B.A in Psychology and Sociology (Parker, 2000). Later, he went to the London School of Economics where he successfully completed his M.A. Afterwards, he became a lecturer at the University of Leicester and later a professor of Sociology at King’s College Cambridge at the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences. He was the Director of the London School of Economics where he is a professor to date. He is a fellow of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and the American Academy of Science. He has been awarded 15 honorary degrees from 15 universities. His famous books have been translated into almost forty languages. In May, 2004, he was awarded Life peerage and today, he sits in the House of Lords. Antony Giddens works cover a range of topics. He is renowned for his interdisciplinary approach that involves anthropology, psychology, archeology, philosophy, linguistics, history, sociology, economics and political science. He continues to bring many concepts and ideas into the sociology as a field. It is important to note that his main works have been globalization, structuration theory, the Third Way and reflexivity. Reflexivity This is the idea that individuals are defined not only by their own selves but also through their relations with each other (Parker, 2000). Therefore, in this respect, they should continue to define themselves with new information and in reaction to other individuals. In more ways than one ways, this is related to the structuration as shall be explained in detail in this paper. Globalization Giddens defines globalization as way beyond the scope of Economics (Parker, 2000). He says it is the intensifying of world-wide social relationships. In this way, local happenings are shaped by events that take place in distant places and vice versa. He argues that globalization is an obvious and natural result of modernization and shall eventually pilot the reconstruction of institutions in the modern world. The Third Way This is Gidden’s political philosophy which is aimed at redefining social democracy (Parker, 2000). The third way looks at the globalization and post-Cold war era politically. According to him, the ‘left’ and ‘right’ political concepts are no longer applicable due to many factors. He argues that the main reason for breakdown of these political concepts is the lack of an alternative to capitalism. He argues that there is a third way to deal with political matters known as the progressive centre-left. Structuration Theory This is probably his most famous theory in sociology (Elliott, 2009). It explains that social structure and human agency can be viewd as one and the same thing. In this case, they are not two distinct concepts but instead together they are ways to consider social action. In essence, he explains that there is duality of structure. The central concern in this theory is the inherent relationship between the society and the individual (Parker, 2000). Social structures are defined by the characteristics of the society as a whole while independent ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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