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Social sciences portal

Social science is a category of academic disciplines, concerned with society and the relationships among individuals within a society. Social science as a whole has many branches, each of which is considered a social science. The social sciences include, but are not limited to: anthropology, archaeology, communication studies, economics, history, human geography, jurisprudence, linguistics, political science, psychology, public health, and sociology. The term is also sometimes used to refer specifically to the field of sociology, the original "science of society", established in the 19th century. For a more detailed list of sub-disciplines within the social sciences see: Outline of social science.

Positivist social scientists use methods resembling those of the natural sciences as tools for understanding society, and so define science in its stricter modern sense. Interpretivist social scientists, by contrast, may use social critique or symbolic interpretation rather than constructing empirically falsifiable theories, and thus treat science in its broader sense. In modern academic practice, researchers are often eclectic, using multiple methodologies (for instance, by combining both quantitative and qualitative research). The term "social research" has also acquired a degree of autonomy as practitioners from various disciplines share in its aims and methods.

Selected biography

Michel Foucault (French pronunciation: ​[miʃɛl fuko]) (October 15, 1926–June 25, 1984) was a French philosopher, historian, critic and sociologist. He held a chair at the Collège de France, giving it the title "History of Systems of Thought," and taught at the University of California, Berkeley.

Michel Foucault is best known for his critical studies of social institutions, most notably psychiatry, medicine, the human sciences, and the prison system, as well as for his work on the history of human sexuality. Foucault's work on power, and the relationships among power, knowledge, and discourse, has been widely discussed and applied. Sometimes described as postmodernist or post-structuralist, in the 1960s he was more often associated with the structuralist movement. Foucault later distanced himself from structuralism and always rejected the post-structuralist and postmodernist labels.

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Outline of social science

General
Society · Culture · Structure and agency · Humanities (human science)
Methods
Historical method · Empiricism · Representation theory · Scientific method · Statistical hypothesis testing · Regression · Correlation · Terminology
Areas
Political sciences · Natural sciences · Behavioural sciences · Geographic information science
History 
History of science · History of technology
Lists
Fields of science · Outline of academic disciplines
People
Émile Durkheim · Max Weber · Karl Marx · Herbert Spencer · Sir John Lubbock · Alfred Schutz
Other
Behaviour · Ethology and Ethnology · Game theory · Gulbenkian commission · Labelling · "Periodic table of human sciences" (Tinbergen's four questions· Social action · Philosophy of social sciences

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