Mark Bevir and Jason Blakely

Oct 15, 2020

Interpretive Social Science

An Anti-Naturalist Approach

Oxford University Press 2018

In Interpretive Social Science: An Anti-Naturalist Approach (Oxford University Press, 2018), Mark Bevir and Jason Blakely make a case for why interpretivism is the most philosophically cogent approach currently on offer in the social sciences, and for anti-naturalism as the best option among interpretivist alternatives. Part survey of existing approaches to social scientific inquiry and their philosophical roots, part argument for anti-naturalism, Interpretive Social Science is a concise, lucid and keenly argued account of the interpretivist agenda that at times chimes with other work featured to date on New Books in Interpretive Political and Social Science, and at others sounds an altogether different note about what interpretivists do, or ought to do, and why.

Listeners to this episode might also be interested in the symposium on Interpretive Social Science published in Critical Review (31:3-4), with contributions by Cornel Ban, Peregrine Schwartz-Shea and Lisa Wedeen.

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Nick Cheesman is a fellow in the Department of Political and Social Change, Australian National University, and a committee member of the Interpretive Methodologies and Methods group. He co-hosts the New Books in Southeast Asian Studies channel.

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