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Outline And Explain Two Criticisms Of The Claim That Sociologists Can Keep Values Out Of Their Research Sociology Essay

358 words - 2 pages

Because sociologists are humans (with values), studying other humans (with values), it is impossible to keep values out of research. Max Weber was an anti-positivist who claimed you cannot derive morality and obligation from just fact, which is the purpose of sociological research. For example, Divorcee’s are more likely to commit suicide, but that does not mean divorce should be harder to obtain. He also makes a point that social reality is made up of a ‘meaningless infinity’ of facts that make it impossible to study completely. Therefore, facts are only selected in regards to the researcher's own idea of what is important, known as value relevance. This confirms that values are essential. Values are again important for concluding how a person will interpret their findings. For example, Feminists who find that over 50% of rape victims are female would interpret that as evidence that women are the victims of male force and the patriarchy.

Some sociologists believe that the subject can never and should never be value free. Instead they believe that as a subject it should have values guiding the research....

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