One of the brand new areas of historiography is analyzed. Availing of the research of historical conscience launched in Germany, the author explores the possibility of applying this new practice to the analysis of Lithuanians' historical conscience. The perspectives, theoretical-methodological objectives & tasks are analyzed. Special attention is drawn to the ideological aspect of a historical conscience & to the problem of "left" & "right" in the Lithuanians' mass conscience during the last decade. A relationship between the "left" & "right" identity & a specific version of the past being defended, an attempt by Lithuania's politicians to manipulate the historical perspectives, a tendency toward mythologization as evident in Lithuania's contemporary historical conscience is emphasized. Adapted from the source document.
The article explores positivism-postpositivism debate in social sciences that has been lasting already for many years. The author does not suppose this debate will end soon since it raises fundamental questions concerning the aims, tasks and methods of social sciences. Though representatives of these sciences differ significantly in views on these questions, the most of them and, in particular, evident majority of representatives of political science virtually holds positivist views. Such questions, which may be called conceptual, are essentially disputable, so they cannot be resolved by any empirical research. When examining positivism-postpositivism debate the author singles out, paying tribute to tradition, three aspects of debate: (1) ontological, (2) epistemological, and (3) methodological. Yet he presents the arguments to support his claim that because of its antimetaphysical character positivism can have no ontology at all. Therefore an ontological dispute between positivists and postpositivists is simply impossible. Postpositivists, in discussing epistemological questions, would be inclined to reject positivist viewpoint that our statements and theories about social life can be true (though according to modern positivists, we can never know it for sure). They also would reject the positivist distinction between facts and values, which likewise can be considered as epistemological. But the most serious dispute that is taking place in social sciences concerns methodological questions. The author, in analyzing it, pays most attention to two most influential forms of postpositivism, namely to critical theory and postmodernism. Having discussed genealogy and deconstruction which, though with serious reservations, may be considered as postpositivist methods, the author claims that postpositivism lacks the main part of methodology, i.e. rules of accepting scientific statements and theories. And that is why postpositivism cannot win the methodological debate over positivism which has such rules. Adapted from the source document.
The article presents the survey, comparison & evaluation of the concepts of individual & social well-being used in the contemporary social science, with the main attention paid to their value assumptions & problems of measurement. In the neoclassical economics, presently predominant in the economic science, individual well-being is identified with welfare & is defined as satisfaction of informed preferences of an actor. This "welfarist" idea of well-being, accepted also by liberal social philosophy, is consequently subjectivist & formalist. According to the critics of welfarism, this idea is erroneous because it neglects the influence exercised by the production & advertising upon the consumer's desires, & because of its minimalist idea of social welfare, reduced to the concept of Pareto optimum. According to anti-welfarists, the evaluation of well-being should take as its point of departure not individual's wants, but objective human needs, providing the foundation for the substantive (content-rich) concept of well-being as individual's or society's high quality life. However, according to welfarists, the enriching of the idea of "good life" with substance goes hand in hand with the increasing danger of its instrumentalization to legitimate the paternalist suppression of the experiments with the alternative projects of the good life. On the article author's opinion, the reformed welfarist concept of well-being is most acceptable. In this concept, well-being is defined as the satisfaction of agent's informed preferences, which are compatible with her metapreferences. In this definition, values are conceived as wants of wants or metapreferences. Normally, human beings prefer do not have many of those wants, which they have as a matter of fact; they prefer to have some other wants instead of them. Advertising & pop culture do harm for individual well-being inasmuch as they "pollute" agent's wants, "seducing" them to satisfy the wants which they (meta)want do not have. The article closes by advancing a hypothesis, how non-linear character of the relation between the objective & subjective aspects of well-being which was discovered by Ronald F. Inglehart in his research on the value change in the developed countries, could be explained, This hypothesis ex-plains "Inglehart's effect" by the differences in the temporal dynamics & risk of failure characteristic for the consumption & self-realization activities. Adapted from the source document.
Security studies have survived a lot of transformations. Like any other social theory, security studies have gone through a number of consecutive development stages: the dominance of traditional theories (realism/neorealism), the rise of critical & discourse approaches as well as the attempts to modify the traditional theories & methodological frameworks & to search for the synthetic or universal theoretic models. Author reviews how the security studies developed in the last few decades. Further attention is devoted to the attempts of Barry Buzan to provide for a compromised frameworks for security analysis in his works People, States and Fear: An Agenda for International Security Studies in the Post-Cold War Era (1991), & Security: A New Framework for Analysis (1998). The first work was an attempt to sum up the most valuable inputs for a widening security agenda; it includes the new aspects of security (economic, political, social & ecological), acknowledging that a state can be one of the many other subjects in the security studies. The greatest value of this work is a model of sectorization of security studies -- analytical proposition to classify threats by sectors. The second framework for analysis seeks to preserve the use of the security sectors' concept. However B. Buzan, 0. Waever & J. de Wilde propose to include a discursive theory of securitization into the framework. Authors suggest that security is not an objective condition -- it is about presenting issues as existential threats that require emergency measures. Some critiques (eg. J. Eriksson) argue, theories of securitization & sectonzation are incompatible in methodological meaning. The author of this article gives some suggestions that a model of sectorization of security studies should be supplemented by a new sector -- the communication sector. This expansion of the model could help fill some gaps left in the B. Buzan model -- i.e. the way threats emerge, the reason why one threat is considered differently from the other one as well as why they enjoy a specific influence on the other security sectors. 3 Schemas. Adapted from the source document.