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American Anthropology and Political Realism
American Anthropology and Political Realism
The German ‘World’ View

We have seen that Durkheim distrusted Wilhelm Wundt’s dissociation of the ideal from the social in his study of ethics. This distrust corresponded with his opposition to the autonomization of political philosophy and science which Paul Janet was identifying and advocating as the hallmark of the modern situation. Instead of pursuing a sociological critique of the political beyond the observations made in his Latin thesis on Montesquieu, Durkheim analysed religious life as a methodological entry into an understanding of the genetic function of social life in relation to all cultural forms. In doing so, he avoided consideration of whether these forms have separate ideal existences or whether they are all contingent social constructs directly referable to contingent social conditions.

Kant had established a function ...

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