FATHER OF SOCIOLOGY AUGUSTE COMTE

AUGUSTE COMTE
(1798-1857)

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INTRODUCTION:

  • French Sociologist
  • A Moralist
  • Father of Sociology
  • Established the relationship of Sociology with other fields of knowledge
  • HIS WORKS
  • The description of the scientific works required for the reorganization of the society
  • Positive Philosophy
  • System of positive politics
  • CONTRIBUTIONS OF COMTE
  • STAGES IN THE SOCIAL ORGANISATION AND PROGRESS
  • Three stages in the growth of Social organisation
  • Theological thinking is associated to the military or monarchical social organisation
  • God would be there as the supreme of the hierarchy as King of Kings and as mighty warriors
  • spiritual deterrent could hardly be challenged
  • entrenchment would overcome and its challengers would be punished
  • Metaphysical stage produced a government controlled by “DOCTRINES OF ABSTRACT RIGHTS
  • A legalistic Social institution
  • More official and structured society
  • In Europe Nation States came out during this stage
  • Third stage Positive thinking made a society controlled by industrialists
  • An Industrial society in which men inquire into the nature and utilisation of natural assets and forces
  • Transformation of the material assets on earth for human benefit
  • Mass Production of material inventions
    • LAW OF THREE STAGES:
    • Law of three stages of Human Thought (Law of Human Progress)
    • THE THEOLOGICAL STAGE
    • primal persons tend to think in Supernatural terms
    • All phenomenon are made by instant action of supernatural beings
    • No priesthood because the gods were individuals occupying in firm objects
    • Too many fetishes (Any object or idea obtaining unquestioning reverence or response, respect or devotion) produced much confusion
    • Fetishism was turned into polytheism, hence developed the concept of priesthood in the societies
    • rational contradictions led to the arrangement of gods in an hierarchical manner
    • Concept of monotheism
    • THE METAPHYSICAL STAGE:

    –Rationalization replaced imagination or creative power

    –God does not stand directly at the back of every phenomenon

    –Reasoning aided man to find some other order in the natural world

    –Principles and theories got domination over feelings and speculations

    –Scientific way of thinking and reasoning

    –A positive state

    –Origin and destination of the universe and the causes of occurrence and study of their laws

    –Observation and classification of the occurrence

    –Positive thinking suits the need of the industrial society

  • THE POSITIVE OR SCIENTIFIC STAGE:
    • COMTE’S CLASSIFICATION OF SCIENCES
    • Classified sciences according to growing complexity, independence and reducing generality
    • Any branch of knowledge reaches the positive stage early depending upon its simplicity and generality
    • Considered Mathematics as the basic tool of the mind
    • It is not a member of the group of sciences, it is their common basis
    • Education without mathematics is faulty, inexact and unreliable
    • Astronomy the most general and simple of all natural science developed first
    • Followed by other sciences such as Physics, Chemistry, Biology and finally Sociology
    • Social sciences are most complex and most dependent upon other sciences for their development
    • Hence they occupy the highest place in hierarchy
    • He further classified the sciences in Inorganic and Organic Sciences. Inorganic sciences (Physics, Astronomy and Chemistry) are easy to develop
    • Organic Sciences such as Biology are more complex. “It involves study of all life and the general laws pertaining to the individual units of life”
    • COMTE’s VIEWS ON SOCIOLGY
    • Sociology represents the culmination of the development of Science. It is based upon Mathematics and is dependent upon Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Astronomy. These Sciences have taken time to free from theological and metaphysical speculations and thinking. Hence Comte argued that Sociology too would require some time to attain the full status of Sciencencomms9960-f4
    • SOCIAL STATIC AND SOCIAL DYNAMIC
    • According to Comte there are two divisions in Sociology
    • SOCIAL STATIC:
    • It refers to the “Study of the Laws of action and reaction in the Social Order”. It deals with the major Institutions of the society such as family, religion, economic etc.
    • It inquires into the co existence of the social phenomenon
    • There is a spontaneous harmony between the whole and a part of the social system
    • The parts of the society cannot be studied separately
    • When the harmony between the parts is lacking a pathological situation may prevail
      • SOCIAL DYNAMIC:

      –If static inspects how the parts of the society are interrelated social dynamic focus on whole societies as the unit of study and reveals how they developed and changed through time

      –It inquires as to how human civilisations advances in different stages

      –Comte was convinced that all societies move through certain fixed stages of development and that they advances towards ever increasing perfect.

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