Sociology: Tension between Science and Militant Activism?


  • Sandro Serpa Department of Sociology, Faculty of Social and Human Sciences, University of the Azores; Interdisciplinary Centre of Social Sciences - CICS.UAc/CICS.NOVA. UAc; Interdisciplinary Centre for Childhood and Adolescence - NICA - UAc, Portugal
  • Carlos Miguel Ferreira Interdisciplinary Centre of Social Sciences - CICS.NOVA, Portugal



This position paper is based on the assumption that there is an appreciation of Sociology as a justification for certain representations and practices of social and political intervention. In Sociology: Tension between science and militant activism?, the authors aim at justifying, on a reasoned basis, the relevance of Sociology as a specific form of scientific knowledge in current times, without, however, confusing the role of Sociology with the direct resolution of inequalities and injustices. At the methodological level, a bibliographic search on this subject has been carried out in scientific literature databases, such as Scopus, Web of Knowledge, SCILIT and institutional repositories, supplemented by the experience of the authors as sociologists, both in the teaching and research dimensions. Sociology focuses on sociological problems and not directly on social problems, and, as a science, it can contribute greatly to the understanding of the social world. Furthermore, the results from sociological research can potentially be applied in society in the most diverse political senses (in the broadest sense of this term). In conclusion, and as an implication, if this militant activist tendency is accentuated, Sociology may paradoxically lose recognition and scientific, academic and social legitimacy, contributing to its des-institutionalisation and consequent difficulty in having its knowledge applied to the resolution of social problems.


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How to Cite

Serpa, S., & Ferreira, C. M. . (2020). Sociology: Tension between Science and Militant Activism?. Journal of Educational and Social Research, 10(6), 1.

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