Philosophical Sociology of Peter Winch

Maciej Soin

The article contains a critical analysis of the main threads of philosophy and sociology concepts, as they are presented in Peter Winch’s “The Idea of a Social Science and its Relation to Philosophy”. Diffi culties identifi ed in his rule-thesis, the concept of meaningful behaviour and the concept of the internality of social relations are discussed. The main source of difficulties is founded in rejecting the idea of the philosophy conceived as therapy; this concept of philosophy Winch criticized as the ‘Underlabourer Conception of Philosophy”. The article concludes with a suggestion that the right use of Wittgenstein’s achievments in sociology requires a return to the idea of the philosophical grammar of speaking about society and social institutions.

Keywords: Winch · Wittgenstein · sociology

Maciej Soin — Associate Professor, Institute of Philosophy and Sociology PAN (Warsaw), University of Information Technology and Management (Rzeszow). Main publications: “The Philosophy of S.I. Witkiewicz” (1995), “Grammar and Metaphysics. Wittgenstein’s Problem” (2001), “Th e Question of Truth. Wittgenstein and Analytic Philosophy” (2008). His current research focuses on applications of linguistic philosophy to sociology and ethics.   »  

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