(noun) The doctrine that society is ordered and can be empirically understood and measured; that empirical knowledge gained through science is the best method to understand the world and all metaphysical explanations should be dismissed.
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- Coined by Auguste Comte (1798–1857) who also coined the term sociology (originally called social physics).
- Positivism was an attempt by Comte to study society scientifically.
- Positivists use the hypthetico-deductive method and stands in constrast to constructionism.
- The basic assumption of positivism is it possible that science can provide a framework through empirical observation to understand society. Postmodernism challenges this basic assumption of positivism.
- Antipositivism is contrasted to positivism.
- A type of reductionism.
- Also called logical positivism
- A (noun) positivist eschews metaphysical explanations to create a (adjective) positivistic or (adjective) positivistical conclusions (adverb) positivistically.