The Master’s course in Social Theory is centred around critical scientific engagement with the emergence, stasis and dynamics of societal formations. Society’s institutions are examined in terms of the extent to which they are capable of delivering the fundamental conditions for social cooperation.
This research-based course weaves a socio-philosophical thread between sociological theory, practical philosophy, political theory and applied ethics. Problems associated with the management and organization of societies, identified as being specific to present-day conditions, are studied with a view to highlighting practicable alternatives.
A special feature of this course lies in the range of methods it applies and in the multi-perspectival approach to the structures of present-day society adopted by the subject areas involved. While studying on the course, you will address issues and problems associated with social change, the transformation of the gender order, the phenomena of social differentiation, the legitimacy and normativity of societal order(s) and the structural patterns of social inequality in a theoretically well-grounded way. This approach ensures a balance between social theory and normative ethical concerns and constitutes a particularly outstanding feature of the course.
Through comparative critical engagement with topics relevant to social theory conducted in a detailed, historically nuanced and systematic way, you will develop a self-reflective understanding of the debates and findings of specialized academic research. In the course of doing so, you will acquire the capability to formulate and study your own interests and questions in an academically sound way. You will be enabled to transfer knowledge by applying the subject and method-based insights you have acquired in new learning situations. Above all, you will acquire the competence to identify the connections between social theoretical insights, topics and problems on the one hand and practice-related knowledge or other kinds of disciplinary knowledge on the other.
You will be well-equipped to undertake social scientific and social philosophical research (as part of the corresponding doctoral courses, for example) as well as to do social theory- and social philosophy-led strategy development work in politics, administration and civil society organizations.