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Models and Interpretations: Selected Essays

Models and Interpretations: Selected Essays

by J. A. Barnes


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John Barnes' collection of essays, published over the past forty years, covers a variety of topics in sociology and anthropology, including lineage systems, social networks, colonialism, underlying assumptions of social science, and the significance of time in social analysis. Together they identify the author's particular view of social science as being primarily about what really happens. Rather than revamp articles written with a distinctive set of assumptions to bring them into line with current intellectual fashions, Professor Barnes has chosen to let them stand as they are, products of identifiable theoretical stances and modes of exposition. But introductory notes to each chapter explain the context in which the piece was originally written and draw attention to later publications and events that bear on it. A new introduction discusses in detail the author's view of social science as the construction of models rather than a search for social laws, while the final chapter presents a model of the modeling process itself.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780521024938
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 03/16/2006
Pages: 284
Product dimensions: 6.02(w) x 9.09(h) x 0.75(d)

Table of Contents

Preface; Acknowledgements; Introduction: social science in practice; Part I. Models Of The Real Social World: 1. Genetrix: genitor: nature: culture? (1973g); 2. African models in the New Guinea highlands (1962a); 3. Agnatic taxonomies and stochastic variation (1971n); 4. Class and committees in a Norwegian island parish (1954a); 5. The righthand and lefthand kingdoms of God: a dilemma of Pietist politics (1971k); 6. Indigenous politics and colonial administration, with special reference to Australia (1960a); 7. The perception of history in a plural society: a study of an Ngoni group in Northern Rhodesia (1951c); Part II. Models of Social Science: 8. Feedback and real time in social inquiry (1967b); 9. Time flies like an arrow (1971f); 10. Kinship studies: some impressions of the current state of play (1980c); 11. Sociology in Cambridge: an inaugural lecture (1970m); 12. Social science in India: colonial import, indigenous product or universal truth? (1982c); Part III. A Model of Modelling: 13. Modelling: for real or for fun? (1983b); Postscript: structural amnesia (1947: 52–3); Bibliography; Index.

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