Historical Social Research

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Carsten Kaven, Max Webers „Die sozialen Gründe des Untergangs der antiken Kultur“ – Eine mechanismische Rekonstruktion in Petrinetzen [Abstract]

Analyzing long term historical processes is not what social scientists mostly do. Nevertheless there exist interesting exceptions, e.g. a small text of Max Weber in which he deals systematically with the decline of the roman empire. This text shall be linked to two strands of contemporary discussions in social sciences. First with socionics which explores possibilities to analyse social phenomena by use of informatic modelling. This approach stimulates transforming an argumentation written in natural language into petri nets. Second to discussions about social mechanisms which seek to find new ways of process analysis and explanations in social sciences. Those mechanisms will be derived from Weber’s text which can be considered the driving forces of the decline. In this way we aim at reviving Weber’s old text as an example of a quite modern approach of processes analysis.