Analytic and Synthetic

Analytic and Synthetic Sociology Definition


The distinction between two categories of assertions, statements or propositions is analytic and synthetic. A semantic distinction used primarily in philosophy to distinguish between propositions is the analytic-synthetic distinction.

Analytic and Synthetic Explanation

Analytic truths are true just by virtue of their meaning, but synthetic truths are true both because of what they signify and because of the way the world is.

(a) Analytic truths, also known as logically essential truths, may be known to be true simply by the interpretations of the concepts they contain.

Example: “All priests are men.”

(b) Synthetic, contingent or merely “empirical” assertions are true or untrue based on their empirical content and not logically indicated by the interpretations of the concepts they contain.

For instance, the claim that “50% of priests prefer non-vegetarian meals” may or may not be true.

The difference between the two types of statements is frequently viewed as allowing no exceptions. However, philosophers, most notably Quine, have disputed this notion, contending that the distinction is based on erroneous notions of consistency in terms of meaning.

In reality, the development of knowledge in sociology, like in physical science, entails the formal definition of concepts, declarations of their logical relationships, and the empirical testing of these relationships. However, in sociology, theory and research alternate between the two, with conceptualizations changing as a consequence of “empirical” evidence and the framing and interpretation of that evidence changing as a result of conceptualization changes.

It is nonetheless crucial to make it obvious when any suggested knowledge additions come more from fresh empirical facts than they do from logical extensions of preexisting conceptual frameworks. However, it is necessary to acknowledge that both of these processes have the potential to be crucial in the advancement of knowledge, and a rigid division between the two areas cannot be upheld.


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