chapter  2
11 Pages

The Frontiers of Political Analysis

The histories of the sciences-including the social sciences-have rarely run on a straight course or at an even speed. It has more often been the case that periods of intense and fruitful activity have been followed by others in which the sense of direction seems to have been lost, and in which the work that is done, is done out of a sense of academic conformity and propriety rather than from conviction. The reasons for this may lie in either of two facts. It may simply be the case that a formula once used with success has now exhausted its possibilities and is incapable of giving further original results. Or it may be that developments in the outside world-from which, whether we like it or not, the social sciences derive their justification and their inspiration-present new problems that the existing structure of the particular science is not equipped to take into account.