Was capitalism?

Was capitalism?

An electroencephalography of the German-speaking world (1800-2000)


As a informed observer of society, we are interested in applicable descriptions of the most important social developments. Thus, sacularization seems to us as a question of modern societies, and we are quite sensitive to contexts in which religion was never subordinated or come back. As harmoniously, the statement sounds that economy has gained importance for centuries and now dominated all social relationships. In addition, the 20th century is considered a political century; and recently we are also describing societies as mediocalized.

Another trend is that we have such rugged trend bodies so far more tradition than reflect (Kraemer, 2017). This uncritical attitude becomes critical if we extend from trendy social descriptions to concrete decision-making bases and thus run the risk of reacting with the right solutions to the wrong problem situations. Now, in the Internet age, such a risk must take into account, who wants to leave the coarse repayments. Nevertheless, with the BIG-DATA research trendy, the hope for the fact that this risk wants to calculate or assessment of art.

In this article we dare such an association. by providing an indeed rough record to the cohesence of the coarse repayments from sacularization, obonomisation, mediaization and politicization of society. We use the Google Ngram Viewer, With the help of which we are time series diagrams for combined frequencies of succinct tags in the world’s largest online body, the Google Books Corpus, Create and interpret. At the end of the investigation, the impression is that just trendy shareholdings run danger to argue past the trend. In this sense, theories in the age of Big Data become anything but obsolete; Only some over the pile are thrown. In the following, we illustrate that in the general place, after which we have lived or lived in a post- / capitalist society.

2. Time series over several hundred billion words: The Google Ngram Viewer as a research tool

In this research work we used the internet to watch the internet. This procedure is appropriate insofar as the Internet is the preferred starting point of Big-Data Research. Against the background of our question, however, this approach is first problematic, because the internet is much more young than it is accepted for the trends examined by us. Accordingly, our observation must be aimed at specific interfaces of Internet and aging distribution media such as letter printing or writing, as they are happy in the case of Google Books Project and Google Ngram Viewers.

Since the official investigation in 2004, the Google Books project has scanned and digitized more than 25 million of the world’s approximated 130 million per published books. In 2007, the research potential of the project was from a research team of the University Harvard (Michel et al., 2011) recognized, which soon the quality arance of the body took over and developed a prototype of the later Google Ngram Viewers, which today plots today’s rows of words in Google Book Corpus. The team also demonstrated the term Culturomics, defined as "The Application of High-Throughput Data Collection and Analysis to the Study of Human Culture" (EBD., 181).

Today, the consolidated body covers more than 8 million books and thus several hundred billion words in English, Spanish, Russian, French, German, Chinese, Italian and Hebra.2 pioneers developed the Google Ngram Viewer first of all for the humanities, especially the language, history and cultural science (Gibbs Cohen, 2011; Johnson, 2010; Nicholson, 2012; Ophir, 2010; Sparavigna Marazzato, 2015). In addition, the first attempts to anchor Culturomics in the social sciences, for example in the context of a retroactive big-data anal Arabic spring (LEETARU, 2011), first own work for verification of social megatrends (Roth, 2014; Roth, Clark, Berkel, 2017) or an unduly published study on the popularity of sociological theories, methods, investigations and authors (Chen Yan, 2016).

As in all these traps, we observe profitability as a simplest and impartial scale for the importance of a word (Kloumann, Danforth, Harris, Bliss, Dodds, 2012, P. 1) And so ultimately the designated objects, concepts or persons (Bohannon, 2011; Ophir, 2010). In this sense, the Google Ngram Viewer is indeed useful to recording conceptual and personal careers (cf. Illustration 1).

Was capitalism?

Figure 1: The career of Habermas and Luhmann in German-speaking countries (1800-2000)

Although Figure 1 is quite enlightening, we ame in this article that a key concept is too little too little to track the career of so multi-layered concepts such as religion or economy across two hundred years. A particular challenge therefore represents the selection of striking key figures, which is still increased by the fact that the isolated performance itself of a whole cluster of religious or economic key concepts alone does not allow no back to the relative importance of religion or economy in the voice space examined. In this sense, it is not enough that you are looking for religion or business when you want to find sacularization or revival.

3. -Easunization operationalized: functional differentiation and a Python program

As soon as we associate capitalism only remotely with increased social importance or even dominance of economic principles (brown Wolbring, 2013; Nassehi, 2013), we implicitly refer to functional differentiation (Roth, 2015; Schimank, 2009). This also applies if you are functional differentiation unlike a variety of authors (Beck, Bons, Lau, 2003; Mountain Schinko, 2011; Kjaer, 2010; Leydesdorff, 2002; Luhmann, 1977, 1997, 2017; Pahl, 2008) does not understand as the crucial form of social differentiation in modern societies.

Functional differentiation first is a meaningful answer to the question of how to distinguish religion of economics or politics of art and, if necessary, inadequate surpluses of function system boundaries – as in the case of corruption, where the boundaries of business and politics are disregarded – in view can. Functional differentiation is thus a necessary background acceptance if you want to observe the obkonomization as a process in or state description of modern societies3, at most local variations (BAUR, 2014). As stated above, isolated investigations of the development of business or religion but by no means to establish revival or sacularization as a true description of society.

For example, the observation of an increasing importance of economy in certain societies does not yet follow that these companies are intended by the economy. Likewise, societies can be described hard as sacular when they are still dominated by religion despite an increasing meaning loss of religion. Accordingly, the question of whether modern societies may be described as capitalist companies can only be reliably answered, if one relativizes the absolute change of meaning of the economy by putting it in the context of developing the other functional systems.

In this article we ame that there are currently ten functional systems (Roth Protection, 2015): Politics, Economics, Science, Art, Religion, Law, Sports, Health, Education and Mass Media. The methodological challenge therefore consists of all of these function systems allocating harmful search words that allow to understand the careers of the functional systems in the German-speaking countries between 1800 and 2000.4

Meanwhile, in the Google Ngram Viewer, not only individual, comma-separated NGRAMs can be entered, but also ngram combinations by means of brackets and plus signs. Nevertheless, the recording capacitance of the input mask of the viewer remains limited to under 30 NGRAMs. In order to make sufficiently meaningful charts, we restrict ourselves to the funny keywords per functional system.

The frequency with which the respective keywords appear in the investigation period can be determined in the first step with the help of a Python program developed by Jan Berkel gitlab.com / jberkel is available and time and speech space-specific word highlights from the Google Books Corpus extracted. This word list can be searched for terms in the next step, which clearly clearly point to and only one functional system. Money or God were examples of quite clear keywords, whereas we make concepts as universitat supreme because they point to education as well as science. As a result, the following list of search terms (cf. Table 1):

Functional system Combined search terms Frequency / Combination.
politics (Political + Government + States + Politics + State) 62414914
Law (Law + Law + Rights + Laws + Law) 40407209
science (Science + System + Theory + Philosophy + Truth) 40078241
religion (Church + God + God + Soul + Religion) 36619670
education (Education + School + Education + Schuler + Teacher) 25699368
business (Economy + Costs + Economic + Company + Money) 24474056
Mass media (Book + Verlag + Magazine + Hrsg. +Newspaper) 21346370
Arts (Art + poet + music + artist + beauty) 20451747
Sports (Success + won + games + game + sports) 13180185
Bless you (Disease + patients + sick + doctor + diseases) 10590675
Table 1: The fun search terms per functional system including combined words in Google Books Corpus (1800-2000).

By entering the search terms now combined into the Google Ngram Viewer, we do not track classic quantitative research program. Although love to commutures that the functional systems are undoubtedly inumable (Windolf, 2009, P. 13) and we can go out as a zero hypothesis accordingly from an equal distribution of the functional system keywords in the voice and period examined. Nevertheless, with regard to the charts present in the results part, we are well aware that these are as scientifically sound like interpretation requirements are like the visually similarly stored medical electroencephalograms, which will only be considered in interaction with medical experience. It is therefore not our claim to surprise alternative hypotheses such as the increasing insignificance of religion or increasing dominance of economy in the narrower sense strictly deductively deductively.

At this point, we merely expect that the importance of the individual functional systems is unevenly distributed and subject to change; and that the commonly amed meaning loss of religion and the change to the capitalist society must also be depressed in the German segment of the largest online body of the world.

4. Much politics, little economy. Functional encephalograms of the German-speaking world

For the 19. Century we observe an intensive interaction of religion, law, politics and science (cf. Fig. 2.1).5

Was capitalism?

Figure 2.1: Frequency distribution of the combined keywords for politics (blue), right (red), science (grun), religion (orange) and education (violet) in German-speaking countries (1800-2000)

Religion was first clearly dominant, in particular between 1830 and 1850, until the previously second-placed legal system from Spat at least 1880 to the First World War take over the guided. Politics is less significant at the beginning of the investigation period than the first third-placed science and at first at all below health (cf. Fig. 2.2), which sinks over time in relative meaninglessness.

Was capitalism?

Figure 2.2: frequency distribution of the combined keywords for business (blue), mass media (red), art (grun), sports (orange) and health (violet) in German-speaking countries (1800-2000)

To a take-off of politics, with the outbreak of the First World War, with only smaller randoms towards the end of the two world wars, which mainly also influences art of art. It’s going to be about a not only politics, but also the science farming second post-war period. Here, a level rash of about 15 years of two-placed religion is the eye. The common, although uneven intensive highlight of politics and science is reached against 1970. At the same time, the economy prior to the First World War appears for the first time under the first three functional systems.

Was capitalism?

Figure 3: Frequency distribution of the combined keywords for politics (blue), science (grun), religion (orange), economy (red) and mass media (violet) in German-speaking countries (1800-2000)

Towards the end of the investigation period, the economy has been sustainable for about 30 years behind science in 3rd place (cf. Fig. 3), followed by right (ABB. 2.1), Religion, Mass Media and Art. In 2000, sports and health have been the relatively unpopular functional systems in the beers of the German-speaking world for half a century.

5. Where is capitalism? Expectations meets surprising data

Our Google Ngram analysis shows that the functional systems in the German-speaking world are subject to significant differences differences and sometimes strong change in meaning. With regard to religion, there are also clear evidence of sacularization, with the loss of meaning of religion, according to the data, especially in the second half of the 19. Century has occurred.

In the 20th. The sacularity end of the century is already a moderate and one observed sometimes opposite as the dramatic increase between 1940 and 1955 (which in the mid-1960s is almost as dramatic in the opposite) and the flat but continuous attractment from religion after 1980. Nevertheless, the finding is that those in the first half of the 19. Century still clear religion to the millennium in the lower midfield of function systems has arrived. In this sense, one can designate the German-speaking world with some confidence as sacular.

With a view to the development of the importance of the economy, the data situation is also clear: the economy is not the most important functional system of the German-speaking world at any time between 1800 and 2000. Until the mid-1970s, the economy does not come out about those fifth place, which has previously been so confident about sacularization. In particular, the economy is present during the entire 19. Century and thus in the midst of the suspected blood time of capitalism as relatively meaningless.

Only wars seem to be increasingly absorbed by the economy: one recognizes a slight increase during the underlying time, and in particular between 1910 and 1950 falls up that economy reacts to the world wars. The next economic miracle seems to have not seemed to have a fleeing economy: after 1950, the curve extends almost flat.

The fact that the economy in 2000 is the third most important functional system to beech, is therefore more likely to be due to the intensified after 1960 meaning of religion and right. Against the background of this data from an obonomy of society is therefore dared: On the one hand, the economy was not dominant during the entire 200 years, and on the other hand, the undoubtedly perceptible trend to more economy compared to sacularization, politicization and even to the movements of science do not exaggerate strongly.

Even if the fact that the fact that the fact that in the case of the economy the performance of a previously almost meaningless functional system has tripled in the overall course, is difficult to hide,

  1. That the meaning increase of the economy apparently does not subordinate as common in 19. Century has occurred,
  2. That the meaning increase of politics with which the economy is in the same ratio and the latter in its absolute importance is far from surprised,
  3. That even in the times of a relative celebrity of the economy, the science and not the economy is the two-most-important functional system in the German-speaking world.

We conclude that the German-speaking world is not first and foremost as an obonomised, but rather must imagine as politicized. Strong definitions of capitalism as a society dominated by the economy can therefore not adaquat not adaquat. In addition, ideas seem from one as "political economy" intended capitalist society to do infringement in that the crucial role of science will be understood. In this sense, critical theory seems to argue with its indeed near the data as traditional economic and social theory, which emphasize the role of the first -placted and ultimately intellectual – the best-placed functional system.

In any case, the data should show that a science focused on politics and the economy only since the 1970s leads to an adjoining true description of the German-speaking countries. And even in this case, the main finding is that we also lived in this increasingly economic-oriented times in a primary politicized and secondary physicist and not in a primary-oconomic society.

This statement is all the more imputable than a view of the language of the language of the language boundaries shows that even the idea of a at least subordinate prominence of the economy in the German and in the French speaking space is only seen, while she has such a situation in the English, Spanish, Russian and Italian-speaking room does not watch, where the economy does not get over a fourth or fold place even towards the end of the investigation period.

Since this finding is clearly transverse to the familiar idea that we live in capitalist or other societies taken otherwise (bush, 2012) or at least (Kraemer, 2017), it will apply to criticize the examination method presented here. So justified this criticism will be, so she will have to deal with the question, why a method that succeeds, sacularization in the 19. Century as well as the emphasis of imperial constitutional state and politicized 20. Century, calculated at the determination of "true" Meaning of the economy should fail.

6. View: Big Data as a field for the next shareholder theories

It is not concerned of this text to prove anything in the strict sense. If you want to save capitalism, you can easily move the study period until 2008, the observation enjoys the fact that politics and economics will run significantly after 2000, and hopes that the two systems even swap the places as Luhmann in the further course and Habermas, who is ubooted after 2000 by Luhmann (cf. Fig. 4).

Was capitalism?

The career of Habermas and Luhmann in German-speaking countries (1800-2008)

One can therefore deliberately die the hope, but then it has to cope with the fact that such a meaning increase of the economy after 2000 lit only in the German-speaking world. From this one can draw different conclusions: For example, it can be amed that the German speech space is here to take a special way of the revival.

Or you can ame that the German-speaking world is the only one in which consciousness is so strongly impondered for the economy of society, that it is the only one among all other speech chambers, it is increasingly being considered to be ecological or capitalist. Or it is amed that there are a specific culture of economic criticism in Germany, which has increasingly succeeded in economic criticism since the 1970s, recovering the boundaries of business and growth and so ironicly increasing the importance of economics for the total society dramatically.

In any case, our research suggests that we can handle a more economical circumstant with terms such as capitalism and revival in the future: first, both concepts seem surprisingly little to describe the past of the German-speaking world. Second, both terms are even less suitable to describe about the German-speaking world. Third, it can be quite reasonable to ask to what extent the regular criticized dominance of the economy in fact only from the economics mainstream and its pro-capitalist stakeholdersperforming is (Callon, 2007), or not, and especially through the regularity of anticapital or okologically motivated criticism (Roth, 2015, Schimank, 2009).

In this sense, this article is a concern to establish capitalism as an object and not as a background amption of capitalism research. So that does not mean capitalism research that acts the existence of capitalism without further ado and then searches for regional varietatives and effects of global capitalism. Rather, there is a research that is interested in researching, whether and how to observe economisation and capitalism at all, and how the coherence of these social diagnosis is observed in a mabboat, which is appropriate to the size of the calculation. However, this proposal only takes place if one is indeed interested in the continued existence of capitalism as a research and criticism.

If you are indeed interested in capitalism for alternatives to capitalism, then you can understand the coarse database as a good reason to simply observe anything else in the future than just the significance growth of the economy. Especially if you think that obonomisation and capitalism are the problem, you may be aware of its right right in the future to pay attention to his good opinion. Not for fear of repression, but out of the insight that even the intellectually sharp problem focus can no longer be able to spend the problem (Roth, 2015), that even negative criticism is popularized the criticism and that well-meaning thus actually the opposite of well done is.

In fact, our big-data analysis does not hesitate the possibility that capitalism is an intellectual artifact without any significant resonance in the world of the world, and that this imaginary capitalism is excluded from those of the strongest support that has him strongest criticize.

In this sense, Big-Data research can also be understood as an invitation to more skeptical distance, theoretical self-assay and methodological game. In principle, if the basically in -VERSURABLE functional systems as on an equalizer presents, socio-criticism is now actually a little one-dimensional, if it focuses on the determination of the correct setting only the first two of the total of ten regulators (cf. Fig. 5).

Was capitalism?

Figure 5: The functional system equalizer (modified version of a screenshot of OS X Mountain Lion Equalizer Gadget by Apple Inc).

In fact, especially in the face of the coarse data record, there is no reasonable occasion to ame that it is always and above all the political-economic baseline, which deserves most attention in the concert of functional systems. Rather, conversely, the fact that ultimately, the ultimately arbitrary focus on politics and the economy is exactly those distortions that are then tried to balance with even strong concentration on politics and economics. That an ironic contradiction is an ironic contradiction shows that company theory in the age of Big Data is not obsolete, but is only required to provide information on its own performance and performance, and that’s exactly if you do not only coordinate societal trends, but Rather, describe correctly and also urge also.

Further reading:

Roth S. et al. (2017), Futures of a Distributed Memory. A Global Brain Wave Measurement (1800-2000), Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 118, 307-323

Roth S. et al. (2019), Big Data Insights Into Social Macro Trends (1800-2000): A Replication Study, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 149, 119759

Author BioGraphy:

Steffen Roth is Full Professor of Management at the La Rochelle Business School, France, and Adjunct Professor of Economic Sociology at the University of Turku, Finland. HE Holds A Habilitation in Economic and Environmental Sociology Awarded by the Italian Ministry of Education, University, and Research; A PhD in Sociology from the University of Geneva; And a phd in Management from the Chemnitz University of Technology. HE IS THE FIELD Editor for Social Systems Theory of Systems Research and behavioral science. The Journals His Research Has Been Published in Include Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Cleaner Production, Administration and Society, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Journal of Organizational Change Management, European Management Journal, and Futures. His Orcid Profile Is Available at Orcid.org / 0000-0002-8502-601X.

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