HISTORY AND EXPERIENCE
Hegel helps to challenge a Cartesian tradition in his recognition that consciousness does not exist separately and independently of social life, but that we come to consciousness through the processes of social life. As I have already argued, social reality was not assumed to be rational so that we do not have to accept it as defining the terms of rationality. This is the mistake that a positivist tradition makes in identifying the ‘real’ with the ‘rational’.
This is a limiting vision that narrows the focus of social theory to an exploration of society as it exists now and the laws which might help explain the shape it has taken as well as how it can be sustained. This is part of a conservative bias ...