With the support of the Heinrich Boell Foundation Yerevan Office-South Caucasus Region, the NGO Socioscope launches a new project called “The individual and the Public: Texts on the Relationship”.
Social science has regularly appeared on the contact line between maintaining order and social change, directing professional knowledge sometimes to the maintenance of the status quo for the rulers, and sometimes to the struggles of the ruled. This dialectical potential of social knowledge to enable and question public order has a longstanding history of being a subject of self-reflection and self-criticism in the schools of Western social thought. Today the debate on that potential is even more crystallized and reveals more subtle challenges of relations between contemporary social science knowledge and the society, the individual and the state (government), the private and the public.
Socioscope sees the formation of public knowledge as a creative process, actively involving the subject that internalizes, but also criticizes and questions that knowledge. From this perspective, the revaluation of the relationship between social science and society, social science and the individual, social science and social change is becoming an imperative, especially today, in the wake of global health and environmental crises, growing socio-economic inequalities, violence, conflicts and wars.
In these circumstances the translation of the rich Western tradition of knowledge, that has in turn translated the experience of the society into knowledge, becomes an opportunity to enrich the ground for reflecting on local, Armenian experience at both theoretical, methodological, and discursive levels, which inevitably opens new doors for intellectual inquiry. It opens the door to relating with the local tradition of previous translation experience, and, finally, to rediscovering the tradition of formulating a local life experience in one's own language.
The goal of the project is to promote critical discussions among Armenian researchers, social scientists, social science students, as well as civil society representatives on the prevailing collective knowledge, power, nation, culture, gender, and sexuality.
The collection will be structured as a chrestomathy, based on Socioscope’s thematic directions: Sex/Gender and Politics, Struggle and Power, Idea and Criticism, Media Discourse / Criticism. It will consist of 8 texts, as well as an extensive introductory translation text (Charles W. Mills, Sociological Imagination) representing Socioscope’s views on critical social science.
The project will be implemented from July 2022 to December 2023.