Primary Source Archives
Gale Primary Sources contains full-text social sciences journals that present academic researchers with firsthand content, including historical documents, printed works, and news articles.
Investigate the discipline of social sciences, which is the scientific study of human society and social relationships. This broad discipline links multiple academic fields, including sociology, anthropology, archaeology, geography, political science, psychology, and economics, with some arguing that history and linguistics should also be included. While social sciences uses the scientific method to examine human behavior, the lack of predictability and universal laws in human behavior differs from the application of the scientific method to the natural, or so-called “hard sciences,” leading some to refer to the social sciences as the “soft sciences.”
The social sciences sprang from the Age of Enlightenment, an intellectual and philosophical movement prevalent in Europe during the 18th century that emphasized rationality, logic, and methodology as applied to the empirical world. The philosophical system of positivism, which holds that every rationally justifiable assertion can be scientifically verified, spurred an interest in describing, explaining, and predicting human behavior.
While social sciences attempts an objective evaluation of human and social behavior, by its very nature it must grapple with questions of equality, fairness, cohesion, and happiness, and thus, with moral issues. It’s this ethical and moral dimension that, to a degree, sets apart the social sciences from the natural sciences.
From trending social issues to classic literature, Gale resources have you covered. Explore overviews, statistics, essay topics, and more or log in through your library to find even more content.