Sociology, Present and Future: Two Sociologies
Sociology is often used in a narrowly instrumental way to generate findings, such as in the statistically framed survey and demographic research that conventionally serves as a basis for some government and other official decisionmaking. During the 1960s, many activist students, including student leaders, in protest movements in France, Germany, and the United States were sociology undergraduate or graduate students. Liberation sociology is a major irritant for power elites, for it seeks to render very visible the oppressive structures and processes of a society. The liberation sociology authors propose shares with liberation theology its commitment to social justice and human rights and its taking sides with the socially oppressed. It also shares with it the rejection of the dualism that segregates the professional scientific and civic lives of its practitioners. Liberation sociologists assert the importance of openly proclaiming a human morality that supports the liberation of the socially oppressed.