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Understanding Contemporary Change. What is the

Author(s): Roland Benedikter

Journal: Transcience : a Journal of Global Studies
ISSN 2191-1150

Volume: 4;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 20;
Date: 2013;
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Keywords: Global systemic shift | globalization | methodology | complexity | interdisciplinarity | transdisciplinarity | multidisciplinarity | contextual political analysis | societal rationality types | differentiation of societal rationality spheres | integration of spheres | evolving images of stratification | system theory | action theory | pre-formal processes vs. formalization | phenomenology as related to language | descriptive vs. normative procediments | relation between practice | concept and theory | „intelligent naive realism“ (realpolitik) vs. “critical historicism” (political historicism) | „interpretativism“ (neohermeneutics | including deconstructive postmodern paradigmism) vs. „realism“ (constructive neopragmatism)

This piece, written as a question-answer dialogue in the (neo-)platonic tradition, investigates the current global systemic shift in an introductory and open manner. In order to identify the basic patterns of this shift, a seven-dimensional method of reconstruction, analysis and foresight is chosen. This method consists of the experimental inclusion of six basic discourse systems - or, in other terms, six macro-societal rationality types - which are those of 1) economics, 2) politics, 3) culture, 4) religion, 5) technology and 6) demography, into a multidisciplinary, complexely interwoven picture. The overall process of what is happening today is considered as the seventh, overarching dimension which is more than the sum of its parts and cannot thus be reduced to any of its constituent dimensions, nor to their specific interferences. In analyzing the interweavement of these basic logics of contemporary change by applying them to "symptomatic" cases, questions about the mechanisms and potential laws at work behind the curtains of the current phase of globalization are posited.
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