Within a brief compass, Jon Elster covers a vast range of topics. Nuts and Bolts for the Social Sciences. Front Cover. Jon Elster. Cambridge University Press. acclaimed volume Nuts and Bolts for the Social Sciences. In twenty-six succinct chapters, Jon Elster provides an account of the nature of explanation in the. Book Reviews: Jon Elster, Nuts and Bolts for the Social Sciences. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, Pp. Viii, US$ (Cloth), US$ (Paper.

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Selected pages Title Page. It is essentially a work of exposition which offers a toolbox of mechanisms – nuts and bolts, cogs and wheels – that can be used to explain complex social phenomena. Jun 09, Alex Zakharov rated it it was amazing.

Inhe was awarded the 22nd Johan Skytte Prize in Political Science for his contributions to political science. It brought concepts from game theory to an area where they had not been applied before, and Elster went on to be crucial in making game theory ideas popular in political science.

How can rational choice theory help us understand our motivation and behaviour? It provides Elster’s most recent statement of his philosophy of the social sciences and his vision for how social science is to be done.


Lists with This Book. However, since many think that explanation in the physical sciences is often not about causation but instead about systematic unification, these alternative possibilities need to be taken seriously in the elstdr sciences as well, and obviously the issues require much more than the few sentences of analysis that Elster gives.

I found the philosophy of social science implausible and not well defended, but the book was full of material new to me and admirable in trying to put greater content in some vague ideas in Marx.


Nuts and Bolts for the Social Sciences. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Rios – – Philosophy of the Social Sciences 39 2: Robbert rated it it was amazing Jan 10, No keywords specified fix it.

elsster Shallow and lousy written. Evolutionary game theory is all about such processes where consequences explain the reproduction of strategies, is some of the more promising work in current social science, and is completely ignored by Elster.

Dimensions of Philosophy Series. More significantly, what happens when the theory breaks down but we still cleave to a belief in the power of the rational?

Nuts and Bolts for the Social Sciences – Jon Elster – Google Books

Elster Og Sirenenes Sang. Jilt Jorritsma rated it really liked it Jan 17, Pickel – – Philosophy of the Social Sciences 40 1: OK eslter you’re a full on positivist, but otherwise it’s pretty assumptive with no normative basis. Many cognitive scientists believe that most behavior is not best explained in these terms.

Elster’s book favors this kind of “evidence” while almost entirely ignoring the vast body of social and cognitive science evidence accumulated on the explanation of behavior.

Explaining Social Behavior: More Nuts and Bolts for the Social Sciences

Explaining Social Behaviour is a very erudite, very intelligent scholar’s attempt to translate the mind boggling boltx of social interaction, myriad of behaviours and infinite motivations dlster a logical structure with mathematical underpinnings, a sort of sociological calculus.

One tends to approach the foundational concept of rational behaviourism like a Jesuit monk, who accepting as an act of faith the existence of God, goes on to propose the number of angels that are able to dance on the head of a pin.


Similarly functional explanations that show why some practice persists because of a feedback loop from its effects to its reproduction are common and powerful social explanations Nits Jan 05, Alexander Anderson rated it really liked it. This is a remarkably lucid and comprehensive introduction to the social sciences for students of political science, philosophy, sociology and economics. History of Western Philosophy.

Nuts and Bolts for the Social Sciences. More significantly, what happens when the theory breaks down but we still cleave to a belief in the power of the rational? Jon Elster Explaining Social Behavior: Part of me feels like it’s mostly just a chance for Elster to show off his erudition: Books by Jon Elster. Sarah Hailey rated it really liked it Feb eleter, This book is intended as an introductory survey of the philosophy of the social sciences. Contents Preface and Acknowledgments.

Much cognitive science is about things like navigation, clock-keeping, and microscale reward valuation that is regarded as implicit and not proposition-like even though it involves representation.

However, I must give credit to any author who is willing to write a tome with his name on it promising that he will explain it. Mar 23, Nick Nuuts rated it it was amazing Shelves: He shows how these issues bear directly on our lives in such concrete situations as wage bargaining, economic cartels, political strikes, voting in elections, and court decisions involving child custody.

May 12, Jen rated it it was ok Shelves: Natural and Social Selection.