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The Irrationality of the Rational : The Frankfurt School and Its Theory of Society in the 1940s

Title data

Ziege, Eva-Maria:
The Irrationality of the Rational : The Frankfurt School and Its Theory of Society in the 1940s.
In: Stoetzler, Marcel (ed.): Antisemitism and the constitution of sociology. - Lincoln : University of Nebraska Press , 2014 . - pp. 274-296
ISBN 978-0-8032-4864-9

Abstract in another language

Ziege compares two field studies on ethnocentrism, racism and antisemitism among American workers during the Second World War: ‘Antisemitism among American Labor’ (1945) by the Frankfurt Institute of Social Research (ISR) in exile and Wartime Shipyard (1947) by Katherine Archibald at the University of California at Berkeley. The former was a large-scale team project headed by Friedrich Pollock, Theodor W. Adorno and Paul Massing, who had at their disposal a large number of fieldworkers as well as the support of the trade unions. Archibald worked in complete isolation. Yet, in spite of this and major differences in design and theory, the European Marxists and the American liberal came to similar conclusions: hostility towards Jews at that time had to be analysed in connection with hostility towards other groups (including women, Blacks, labourers from the American South and other ethnic and social minorities) and within the context of the war and the Holocaust. While aware of the innovations achieved in research by means of public opinion polls, both studies were pioneering in their ambition to improve on quantitative research by means of non-quantitative procedures and qualitativeparticipatory observation. Ziege links these studies to a third study, The Authoritarian Personality (1950), conducted by the ISR, particularly Adorno, which poses the question of how relevant the ISR’s critical theory was for the innovations achieved in studies of prejudice, when Archibald’s study, which eschewed social theory, arrived at similar conclusions regarding antisemitism.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a book
Refereed: Yes
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Cultural Studies > Professor Political Sociology
Faculties > Faculty of Cultural Studies
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 300 Social sciences > 300 Social sciences, sociology and anthropology
Date Deposited: 27 Nov 2017 13:51
Last Modified: 27 Nov 2017 13:51