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Contestation, care and the ‘temper of the country’
Gideon Calder

coming up with constructive visions for the common good. Combined, they amount to a suitably critical realism. I have tried to show that in making a serious fist of achieving a good society there is no avoiding penetrating, critical consideration of questions of value. There are, intriguingly, some who talk as if finding out facts will somehow sort these questions out for themselves. Of course, empirical work in that vein is absolutely vital to progressive causes. But it will never do the whole job, or even most of it. Carys Afoko makes a point reinforced by the recent

in Making social democrats
Nick Randall

imperatives may prompt reassessment of an existing ideological commitment but the substantive shaping of the new commitment may be better understood by reference to the institutional dynamics of the party. Secondly, the ontological foundations of an alternative model – its theory of reality – should be considered. Here critical realist theory overrides the rigid dualism between structure and agency, identified above. (A full account of this perspective cannot be offered here; see Archer 1995; Bhaskar 1997; Marsh et al. 1997). Suffice it to say that critical realism views

in Interpreting the Labour Party
Theory and methods
Alex Balch

critical realism, or ‘soft’ constructivism, effectively accepting that ‘reality’ exists independently of our knowledge of it, but emphasising that the social world is only understood through subjective interpretation. The methodological focus is, therefore, precisely on individual actors’ subjective understandings of immigration and immigration policy. Policy-making does not exist in a vacuum – it is a process that is carried out by individuals that exist within a political and social context. This implies an actor-centred approach, identifying the different types of

in Managing labour migration in Europe
Towards interpretive pluralism
Cerwyn Moore

. Notes 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 P. Mandaville and A. Williams (eds.), Meaning and International Relations (London: Routledge, 2003); S. Chan and P. Mandaville, ‘Introduction: Within International Relations Itself, a New Culture Rises up’, The Zen of International Relations (London: Palgrave, 2001), pp. 1–16. H. Patomäki and C. Wright, ‘After Postpositivism? The Promises of Critical Realism’, International Studies Quarterly, Vol. 44, No. 2 (2000), pp. 213–237. W.V. Quine, From A Logical Point Of View (New York: Harper and Row, 1961). H. Putnam, Realism with a Human

in Contemporary violence
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Robin Wilson

. There is, moreover, an epistemological critique here, informed by ‘critical realism’ (Benton and Craib, 2001; Sayer, 2000), which recognises that science is a social activity but that real objects are independent of it. Critical realism distinguishes the real world from interpretive schemata and scripts utilised by social actors to comprehend it. As Brubaker (2004: 81) argues, ‘race, ethnicity and

in The Northern Ireland experience of conflict and agreement
Heikki Patomäki

the basics of the critical realist alternative, see Heikki Patomäki, ‘How to Tell Better Stories About World Politics’, European Journal of International Relations , vol. 2, no. 1 (1996); and Heikki Patomäki and Colin Wight, ‘After Post-Positivism: The Promise of Critical Realism’, International Studies Quarterly , vol. 44, no. 2 (June 2000

in Mapping European security after Kosovo
Steven Griggs and David Howarth

– and how they are engaged with by social actors – depends on their position within particular symbolic frameworks. Poststructuralist policy analysis thus rejects essentialist accounts of policy-making which assume that objects, human subjects or social formations have underlying and fixed essences (evident, for example, in the economic determinism and class reductionism of explanations of social and political change in Marxism, and in some versions of critical realism). By contrast, it assumes that ‘social, AirportExpansion.indb 18 4/15/2013 10:09:21 PM Discourse

in The politics of airport expansion in the United Kingdom