1. What distinguishes sociology from other social sciences?
When we say social sciences, it
shares common subject matters like social relationships, social systems, and
societies. Anthropology, Economics, Political Science, History, and Psychology
studies people in the society. In economics, it concerned with human activities
related to production, consumption, and distribution of goods. Political
science is concerned with the history of government; it examines political
processes and etc. History is interested in past events of human beings.
Anthropology studies the diversity of cultures and psychology is interested in
behaviours, personality, development and other more. By examining these definitions
on how they study, it makes sense why Sociology is called as the “Queen of
Social Sciences”. Sociology studies on how people interact with different
cultures, how these behaviours affect people in the society and the interaction
that exists in the distribution of goods, consumption and production. Sociology
also studies past events and how it affects people in the future. Sociology is
unique because it studies human interaction in a broad sense, it does not study
specifically whereas other social sciences are. It is unique in a sense that it
does not end. Sociology continues to study society even though it changes time
2. Why are the precursors of modern social science still
Auguste Comte, Karl Marx, Emile
Durkheim, Max Weber are just some of the people who made sociology as one of
the famous social science in this generation. Why are these people still
important? They are the people who gave us knowledge of what is Sociology all
about. Their ideas help us to understand what society is, how people interact,
how it can affect people and etc. How can we know these things if we disregard
these precursors? They serve as our inspirations to build up new ideas that can
be used by the generation to come.
3. Why is it enlightening to make one’s own implicit theories
We all use theories constantly but we
do this in an implicit way. It is
enlightening to make one’s own implicit theories explicit because it is more
expressed clearly without the implication, which will be better for others to
understand your own theory easily without confusion.
4. Why can the classical sociological theory be important to
contemporary social scientists?
The work of such classical
sociological theorists like Auguste Comte, Karl Marx, Herbert Spencer, Emile
Durkheim and much more was important in its time and played a central role in
the development of sociology. The ideas of these classical theorists continue
to be relevant to sociological theory today. They have become classics because
they have the wide range of application and deal with centrally important
issues. It would be a great help for contemporary sociologists in dealing with
social issues nowadays. By these theories, contemporary sociologists may come
up into ideas that can help for the betterment of the society.
5. What is the relationship between religious and scientific
knowledge, according to Comte?
We live today in a period where the
positivists and Comte mean that the scientific way of interpreting the world
around us, has become dominant. And that the theological, Comte means the
religious way of understanding the world, has become old-fashioned, outdated.
But you begin to think this is the view of an atheist thinker. Comte tries to
understand how scientific knowledge slowly but surely emerged out of
pre-existing religious knowledge, which implies that the religious imagination
is a necessary precondition for scientific knowledge to develop. Comte believes
that scientists do not develop their ideas in a fight against religious
delusions, but by extending and amending and thoroughly testing ideas that came
into the world as religious revelations.
6. What was Comte’s main motive to write his classic book
“The course on the Positive Philosophy”?
Comte published the book Positive
Philosophy, in which he summarized the stages of development of all knowledge
and humanity. He advocated the use of positivism or the empirical method for
studying and understanding society. His theory was that societies contain
social statistics, the study of the structure of society and the forces for
social order and stability, and social dynamics which refers to the forces of
conflict and change (Kendal 2000:9) (Panopio and Raymundo 2004:9). Comte
believed that social physics or positivism would be the key to humanity’s on-going
program. Positivism involves the study of a phenomenon by rigid observation and
experiments as used in the natural sciences. Through this method, laws on
social behaviour could be formulated. (Panopio and Raymundo 2004:9)