chapter  11
11 Pages

Some Facts About Values

WithSola Pool Ithiel de

The issue is the role of value judgments in political science. The common error is the assertion that modern political science has been non-normative and value-free, or at least has aimed at being so. Many leading behavioral scientists have been quite explicit in their value concerns. If any one man is a symbol of behavioral political science it is Harold Lasswell, and if any social scientist’s work has been value-laden it is his. In the modern world it was Karl Marx who initiated that detachment from values among social scientists which has made it possible for them to stand off from values and look at them as social facts to be explained, rather than as part of the explanatory theory itself. Just as Marx had stood Hegel on his head, so Weber stood Marx on his head, and sought by partial incorporation to retain what he saw as the merits of Marxist analysis on behalf of liberal values.