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War in Social ThoughtHobbes to the Present$
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Hans Joas and Wolfgang Knöbl

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691150840

Published to University Press Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691150840.001.0001

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date: 26 February 2020

The Classical Figures of Sociology and the Great Seminal Catastrophe of the Twentieth Century

The Classical Figures of Sociology and the Great Seminal Catastrophe of the Twentieth Century

Chapter:
(p.116) 4 The Classical Figures of Sociology and the Great Seminal Catastrophe of the Twentieth Century
Source:
War in Social Thought
Author(s):

Hans Joas

Wolfgang Knöbl

, Alex Skinner
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691150840.003.0004

This chapter examines the intellectual prehistory and history of the First World War. Toward the end of the nineteenth and in the early twentieth centuries, German social scientists in particular had already attempted to theorize the connection between war and capitalism, or war and democracy, with authors such as Werner Sombart and Otto Hintze leading the way. Many European and American intellectuals, including most of the classical figures of sociology, did feel called to give their views on the question of war. In many cases, however, their writings did them little credit. How easily social theory can be led astray is plain for all to see in many of the statements made at the time, in that the bellicist arguments already to be found in the nineteenth century were often shamelessly deployed to denounce the enemy.

Keywords:   war, First World War, capitalism, democracy, Werner Sombart, Otto Hintze, intellectuals, sociology, social theory

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