Comte’s goal was to
– Explain the past
– Predict the future
He first named the new science “social physics.” He later changed this to “sociology.” The word comes from the Greek “soci” which means “society” and the Latin “ology” which means “study of.”
Like all science, Comte believed that this new science of society should be based on reasoning and observation.
Science attempted to explain all phenomena through theories based on natural laws. Sociology, Comte believed, should have the same goal: to discover the natural laws that determine social stability and change. Further, like the natural sciences, sociology should be used to create a better society.
For Comte, …show more content…
Once sociology discovers the laws governing social evolution, we can use this knowledge to make a better world. In order to change society for the better, we must first know how the various parts of society fit together and how they change.
Societies impose limits on human behavior. A science of society will help discover what these limits are so that we will know what is possible and what is not. Personal opinion without the discipline of study and science are as invalid in understanding society as they are in understanding the natural world.
“Ordinary men should hold no opinions about matters of scientific fact. The intellectual reorganization in the social sciences requires the renunciation by the greater number of their right of individual inquiry on subjects above their qualifications.”
Preferred Methods of Inquiry
The methodology of sociology is the same as it is for the natural sciences:
By observation Comte means the direct observation of human behavior, guided by a preliminary theory of what you expect to