Essay on Yes Its Good

Submitted By entz1106
Words: 569
Pages: 3

Auguste Comte

His Background * 1798-1857 * Very intelligent, ambitious, poor * No college degree, couldn’t get a permanent academic position * Worked with Saint-Simon, but split * Married for 17 years; later platonic love * Emotionally unstable, attempted suicide * Influenced by the “conservative back lash”
How does this background factor into his views? * Key Ideas: 1. Positivism (loosely as we know it today)
- There is a “real” world to be discovered
- Real world is shaped by invariant laws
- Laws can be discovered through theory and research
(Examples: laws of gravity, Speed of light… * Usually associated with scientific method and empirical research * Apply methods of “hard” sciences to social * Positivism and research: Three ways to do research for sociology 1. Observation, be cautious 2. Experiment, often not useful 3. Comparison a. Human to animals b. Societies around the world c. ** Different stages through time - Became historical comparative method 2. Positivism Gone Awry * Positivism as historical stage * Highest of three evolutionary stages in which people give up their search for the divine and focus on understanding and appreciating what’s really here. a. Positivism as individual development Child is irrational, adult = positivism b. Positivism as morality
Overcome individualistic chaos created from the French Revolution and enlightenment and focus on “positive” creation of social order and community c. Positivism as religion and political order
“Love, Order, Progress”; Philosophers in charge, working class supply labor and community, women supply morality. Worship of human society and social order. * Conflates scientific process of positivism with philosophy, theology, morality, etc… Rather than a scientific method, positivism becomes a way of thinking and form of morality/religion * Actually never engages in positivism; Never does any scientific research to back up his claims 3. Law of Three Stages * Positive: Idea of social change, drawing on evolution (necessarily progress from one to the other) and dialectic (one stage contains both the seeds of its own destruction and the seeds of the next state) * Criticisms: Stages Applied to Everything; no empirical evidence, moralistic not scientific, just became weird…. 4. Social Structure and the Individual * Individual as egoistic problem to be regulated and controlled; Society (functioned) to provide regulation, inspire altruism, develop morality (Different from Enlightenment) * Sociology studied “society”, which was more than an aggregation of individuals * Analogy to body: evolved over time, composed of different parts that work together, parts each