Posts Tagged ‘cultural anthropology’

Value of a Reseach Strategy

July 30, 2009

The following quote is taken from Marvin Harris’, Cultural Materialism: The Struggle for a Science of Culture (p. 77).

“The value of a research strategy does not reside in the profundity of its epistemological viewpoint or the luminosity of its abstract theoretical principles; it lies in the cogency of its substantive theories. Only the capacity of a research strategy’s theories to penetrate beneath the surface of phenomena, to reveal new and unsuspected relationships, to tell us why and how things are what they are, can justify its existence. Furthermore, what we want from a strategy is not just a list of disjointed, isolated, and mutually irrelevant or contradictory theories, but and organized set of consistent and concise theories; not the definitive answer to every conceivable question, but tentative answers to important questions over broad and continuously expanding frontiers of knowledge.”


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