Political Epistemology, Synergetic Methodology: New Opportunities...

Political epistemology

Synergetic methodology: new opportunities for understanding the world of politics

As a result of studying this chapter, the student must:

know about the main problems of political epistemology as the philosophy of political cognition of the world, the synergetic paradigm and its role in modern scientific methodology, synergetic rationality as nonlinear thinking;

know how operate with the concepts "political epistemology", "synergetics", "scientific paradigm", "non-linear thinking", "bifurcation point";

own representations of modern political epistemology.

Whatever the activity of the mind, it will always be essentially its own understanding, and apart from this understanding, nothing else can have its goal.

Vasily Rozanov

Synergetic rationality as nonlinear thinking

The transition to postclassical methods of research in political philosophy is closely connected with the emergence of non-traditional subjects of politics and the formation of a new picture of the political world at the turn of the 20th and 21st centuries. Strategic instability, nonlinearity, virtuality and conflictuality of the postclassical picture of the world required the use of fundamentally new methodological methods of political research. Classical methods, such as institutional analysis, systemic, structural-functional and behaviourist approaches, in the new postclassical political methodology have been termed "hard" for their uniqueness, concreteness, consistent methodological determinism and structuralism.

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The study of post-traditional political actors with non-standard forms of political behavior implies the transition to soft political thinking, flexible political technologies , calculated on the multidimensionality and plasticity of objects. Militants, kamikaze, telekillers & quot ;, illegal migrants and mafia godfathers They do not lend themselves to systematic analysis, since they relate to extra-systemic opposition. They are very difficult to describe with the help of behaviourist methods, because they do not like to give interviews and participate in sociological surveys, have almost no analogues in political history, are poorly institutionalized and do not aspire to it, and are not connected with the country's cultural traditions.

Thus, the main problem of postclassical methodology was the search for new mechanisms for investigating the process of self-organization of complex, nonlinear, stochastic processes of the postclassical world of politics. A special place among the postclassical methods of research is the synergistic approach.

is the science of the self-organization of complex systems, so the use of the synergistic method in political science implies a primary focus on the study of complex mechanisms of self-organization of political life.

The heuristic significance of synergetics lies in the fact that this methodology makes it possible to explain the bifurcational, explosive, unstable character of modern political development.

The foundations of synergetics are developed by the Belgian scientist of United States descent Ilya Prigozhin. In a joint work with Isabella Stengers, he argued that the modern scientific picture of the world undergoes "radical changes in the direction of multiplicity, temporality and complexity." By its nature, the Universe is "pluralistic, complex," the structures in it "may disappear, but may arise", while some processes "with the existing level of knowledge allow description with deterministic levels, others require the involvement of probabilistic considerations."

Curriculum Vitae

Ilya Prigogine (1917-2003), Belgian physicochemist, author of works on philosophical and methodological problems of science, winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1977), is the creator of the largest scientific school of researchers in the field physical chemistry and statistical mechanics. He was a member of the Belgian Royal Academy, a professor at the Free University of Brussels, director of the Solvay Institute, the Center for Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics at the University of Texas, and a foreign member of the USSR Academy of Sciences (since 1982). In addition to special studies for him was characterized by a deep interest in the philosophical aspects of the development of modern science and its history. He paid special attention to the problem of time in physics, where for more than 300 years the view was held that time, in fact, is geometric parameter, does not have qualitative differences from spatial coordinates. In the second half of XX century. scientific knowledge re-opens the time for itself, which entails a fundamental revision of views on science, scientific rationality, the role and place of science in the system of human culture. A new science emerging on the threshold of the third millennium is a science oriented towards a dialogue between man and nature, and not confrontation with it. Prigogine was convinced that science is internally pluralistic, multidisciplinary, democratic and does not impose one single model of understanding reality. Thus, science acquires a new human dimension, leads to a new dialogue in the system "man-man," whose goal is to ensure the prerequisite for the survival of society as a whole. Among the main works of Prigogine are such works as "From the existing to the emerging." Time and complexity in the physical sciences (1980), "Order from chaos." A new dialogue between man and nature (1984), etc.

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From the point of view of synergetics, the diversity of the world is an important condition for its development, therefore, when analyzing political phenomena, it is necessary to take into account the diversity of factors influencing politics from other spheres of life: economy, ecology, culture, social sphere, geography, and demography. In this regard, the synergetic methodology considers any simplification or reduction of diversity as a serious distortion in the picture of scientific research, which in practice can lead to serious political mistakes. In other words, the synergetic approach obliges the researcher to proceed not only from an analysis of his political components while studying the political process, but it is necessary to take into account the complex indirect effects on politics on the part of others - non-political factors.

Synergetic methodology is based on a fundamentally new type of rationality - non-linear thinking, or synergistic rationality. Synergetic theory considers self-developing systems as open, being in interaction with the environment and possessing sources and sinks of energy. In this case, self-developing systems are characterized by nonlinear feedbacks, ie. Strict causal relationships in such systems usually do not appear.

Political development in the framework of synergetics is a nonlinear process in which periods of stable development - attractors - are replaced by zones of bifurcation or crises, after which a whole range of alternatives for political development arises.

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