Towards Global Social Theory
Journal of International Relations and Development, Vol. 2, No. 4. pp. 358-368, 1999
20 Pages Posted: 22 Feb 2014
Date Written: 1999
Our purpose is to take stock of some current trends in the rethinking of development theory, but above all to transcend the development discourse and move towards a comprehensive social science theory, here called ‘global social theory’, meaning a unified historical and critical social science that moves beyond the pitfalls of state-centrism and an obsession with ‘national development’. In a turbulent and ‘globalised’ world, the nation-state no longer constitutes the dominant framework for understanding society, and social processes must be analysed delinked from national space. It is argued that certain strands of international political economy (IPE) theory and certain strands of development theory, in conjunction with a new emphasis on cultural studies as well as the new development-related conflicts, together constitute possible building blocks of a reconstruction of development theory, as a step towards global social theory.
Keywords: social theory, globalization, developent theory, IPE
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