Bisaillon, Richard (2001) "Liberal democracy as a Kuhnian paradigm : applying a model confronted by irreconcilable accumulated anomaly as a normative prescription for the organisation of global society". Masters thesis, Concordia University.
Thomas S. Kuhn has argued in "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions" that progress in the natural sciences is not cumulatively incremental, but occurs in leaps following extended developmental periods that are governed by certain theoretical world views that limit and define understanding within any specific discipline in the sciences. Kuhn argues that these "paradigms" impose a certain organisational order that permits scientists to go about the work of explaining the operations of physical reality. The paradigm will continue in place until such time as it can no longer solve the "puzzles" associated with that discipline. The present thesis of this work is that Kuhn's model can be extended to the social sciences in such a way as to admit liberal democracy to qualify as a paradigm in social and political theory. The argument maintains that the problems of economic and social inequality under liberal democracy are threatening its continued role as a paradigm at the same time, after the failure of socialism, that it is being considered the only acceptable model for the organisation of advanced societies. The argument demonstrates how most social and political theorists are bound within the presumptions of liberalism in seeking solutions to the problems confronting the model. An examination of the similarities and differences between social and scientific revolutions is conducted. The thesis concludes by arguing that only those theorists whose arguments originate outside of liberalism, specifically those socialist theorists who retain the concept of class conflict, can offer a potential new paradigm that can solve the problems that have plagued all previous models up to and including liberal democracy.
|Divisions:||Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Political Science|
|Item Type:||Thesis (Masters)|
|Pagination:||vi, 104 leaves ; 29 cm.|
|Degree Name:||Theses (M.A.)|
|Thesis Supervisor(s):||Tremblay, Reeta C|
|Deposited By:||Concordia University Libraries|
|Deposited On:||27 Aug 2009 13:18|
|Last Modified:||08 Dec 2010 10:20|
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