Sociology and Ethics in the Morphogenic Society: a Relational Interpretation of Their Links

Journal title SOCIOLOGIA E POLITICHE SOCIALI
Author/s Pierpaolo Donati
Publishing Year 2016 Issue 2016/1 Language Italian
Pages 29 P. 37-65 File size 239 KB
DOI 10.3280/SP2016-001003
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Today the issue of the relations between sociology and ethics is emerging anew as a consequence of the crisis of neo-positivism and, in parallel, the sweeping changes of social morality in postmodern societies. Divisionist theories (going back to Hume’s guillotine) seem to become untenable for many reasons. Not only sociological researches reveal themselves necessarily related to moral values, but the question "knowledge for what?" places new requests on sociology to give practical orientations. The issue takes on a new face with the advent of the morphogenetic society. The Author claims that: (i) as a matter of fact, every sociological research is necessarily connected to moral choices; (ii) ethical references can be classified in four ideal-types; (iii) the moral values that the researcher necessarily adopts (either explicitly or implicitly) depend on a meta-theory of moral norms that supports the epistemic values of the researcher; (iv) meta-theories can be individualist, holist or relational. The paper argues that the individualist and holist paradigms do not explain the moral changes that emerge in a morphogenetic society. It becomes indispensable to appeal to the relational paradigm. In conclusion, the paper offers a "compass" useful to understand how sociological research is connected to different forms of ethics

Keywords: Sociological Research; Ethics; Morality; Relational Sociology; Social Morphogenesis

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Pierpaolo Donati, Sociologia ed etica nella società morfogenetica: un’interpretazione relazionale delle loro connessioni in "SOCIOLOGIA E POLITICHE SOCIALI" 1/2016, pp 37-65, DOI: 10.3280/SP2016-001003