Komparation i kritisk realistisk perspektiv

  • Peter Wad


Comparison in a critical realist perspective With the rise of critical realist social science, time has come to ask whether this approach can enhance comparative methodology in sociology. This article contends that although critical realist sociologists argue in favour of comparative studies, they are yet to formulate a genuine comparative methodology (paradox 1). They refer to the comparative tradition without scrutinizing it from a critical realist perspective. When such an assessment is made of core comparative methodologies, the conclusion is that postwar comparative sociology has serious methodological flaws which are rooted in Mill’s inductive logic from 1843 and modern empirical-analytical science philosophy (paradox 2). However, a closer examination of Charles Ragin’s quali-tative comparative analysis and Thomas Janoski & Alexander M. Hicks’ new comparative political economy indicates that it is possible to develop a substantial and complex comparative methodology from these contri-butions and even to address the enhanced ’Dalton Problem’ of our time: globalisation. The conclusion is that a pertinent and critical realist comparative methodology can emerge from the contemporary stream of comparative sociology.