Outflanking Platitudes rss

An introduction to analytical sociology

One of the most intellectually vibrant movements in contemporary social theory is analytical sociology. This is how the International Network of Analytical Sociologists describe it on their (shiny) website: Analytical sociology is a strategy for understanding the social world. It is concerned with explaining… Read More ›

Žižek as a player of paradoxes

Thanks to Colin Wight for pointing out this great analysis of the formulaic tendencies in Žižek’s writing style:  Žižek arranges his book like a piece of music with different movements, with chapter subheadings such as “allegro moderato”. This is fitting, because Žižek is something of… Read More ›

Social Theory as Optometry

The notion of philosophical under-labouring has been integral to the development of critical realism. It is, as Roy Bhaskar puts it, what critical realist philosophy most characteristically does. The metaphor comes from John Locke but it is deployed in a way that criticises Locke’s philosophical… Read More ›

The Bullshit Machine

The digital management guru Umair Haque seems to be having something of a nihilistic turn. At least until you get to the end of this essay, posted on his medium blog, which somewhat undermines the effect of a piece of writing I actually rather… Read More ›