Paper Information

Journal:   JOURNAL OF APPLIED SOCIOLOGY   SPRING 2012 , Volume 23 , Number 1 (45); Page(s) 1 To 18.
 
Paper: 

INVESTIGATION OF METHODOLOGICAL INDIVIDUALISM AND ITS CHALLENGES IN SOCIAL SCIENCES

 
 
Author(s):  IMAN M.T., GHAFARINASAB E.
 
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Abstract: 

The aim of this paper is to investigate the view of methodological individualism towards explanation of social phenomena. This view explains social phenomena in terms of individual actions. Therefore, social institutions are reduced to individuals and their desires. In this view, psychology is so important. However, two interpretations are regarded in the methodological individualism. One is maximized and another is minimized interpretations. Most of social scientists tend to regard minimized interpretation. One of the theories which is regarded in the framework of the methodological individualism is the rational choice theory. According to this theory, society consists of individuals who behave based on rational action. Methodological individualism has always been challenged. For example, whether explanation must be presented based on individuals or individuals and relations among them. Moreover, there is not consensus on the meaning of methodological individualism while this concept is free from any political commitment.

 
Keyword(s): INDIVIDUALISM, TENDING TO PSYCHOLOGY, REDUCTION, RATIONAL CHOICE
 
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