My decision to proactively retire from the university to conduct this research was not merely to find more time and ... series of my writings in terms of exercises in liberating sociology, beginning from my own personal here-and-now.
Author: Mohammad H. Tamdgidi
Publisher: Ahead Publishing House (imprint: Okcir Press)
In this major new study in the sociology of scientific knowledge, social theorist Mohammad H. Tamdgidi reports having unriddled the so-called ‘quantum enigma.’ This book opens the lid of the Schrödinger’s Cat box of the ‘quantum enigma’ after decades and finds something both odd and familiar: Not only the cat is both alive and dead, it has morphed into an elephant in the room in whose interpretation Einstein, Bohr, Bohm, and others were each both right and wrong because the enigma has acquired both localized and spread-out features whose unriddling requires both physics and sociology amid both transdisciplinary and transcultural contexts. The book offers, in a transdisciplinary and transcultural sociology of self-knowledge framework, a relativistic interpretation to advance a liberating quantum sociology. Deeper methodological grounding to further advance the sociological imagination requires investigating whether and how relativistic and quantum scientific revolutions can induce a liberating reinvention of sociology in favor of creative research and a just global society. This, however, necessarily leads us to confront an elephant in the room, the ‘quantum enigma.’ In Unriddling the Quantum Enigma, the first volume of the series commonly titled Liberating Sociology: From Newtonian toward Quantum Imaginations, sociologist Mohammad H. Tamdgidi argues that unriddling the ‘quantum enigma’ depends on whether and how we succeed in dehabituating ourselves in favor of unified relativistic and quantum visions from the historically and ideologically inherited, classical Newtonian modes of imagining reality that have subconsciously persisted in the ways we have gone about posing and interpreting (or not) the enigma itself for more than a century. Once this veil is lifted and the enigma unriddled, he argues, it becomes possible to reinterpret the relativistic and quantum ways of imagining reality (including social reality) in terms of a unified, nonreductive, creative dialectic of part and whole that fosters quantum sociological imaginations, methods, theories, and practices favoring liberating and just social outcomes. The essays in this volume develop a set of relativistic interpretive solutions to the quantum enigma. Following a survey of relevant studies, and an introduction to the transdisciplinary and transcultural sociology of self-knowledge framing the study, overviews of Newtonianism, relativity and quantum scientific revolutions, the quantum enigma, and its main interpretations to date are offered. They are followed by a study of the notion of the “wave-particle duality of light” and the various experiments associated with the quantum enigma in order to arrive at a relativistic interpretation of the enigma, one that is shown to be capable of critically cohering other offered interpretations. The book concludes with a heuristic presentation of the ontology, epistemology, and methodology of what Tamdgidi calls the creative dialectics of reality. The volume essays involve critical, comparative/integrative reflections on the relevant works of founding and contemporary scientists and scholars in the field. This study is the first in the monograph series “Tayyebeh Series in East-West Research and Translation” of Human Architecture: Journal of the Sociology of Self-Knowledge (XIII, 2020), published by OKCIR: Omar Khayyam Center for Integrative Research in Utopia, Mysticism, and Science (Utopystics). OKCIR is dedicated to exploring, in a simultaneously world-historical and self-reflective framework, the human search for a just global society. It aims to develop new conceptual (methodological, theoretical, historical), practical, pedagogical, inspirational and disseminative structures of knowledge whereby the individual can radically understand and determine how world-history and her/his selves constitute one another. Reviews “Mohammad H. Tamdgidi’s Liberating Sociology: From Newtonian Toward Quantum Imaginations, Volume 1, Unriddling the Quantum Enigma hits the proverbial nail on the head of an ongoing problem not only in sociology but also much social science—namely, many practitioners’ allegiance, consciously or otherwise, to persisting conceptions of ‘science’ that get in the way of scientific and other forms of theoretical advancement. Newtonianism has achieved the status of an idol and its methodology a fetish, the consequence of which is an ongoing failure to think through important problems of uncertainty, indeterminacy, multivariation, multidisciplinarity, and false dilemmas of individual agency versus structure, among many others. Tamdgidi has done great service to social thought by bringing to the fore this problem of disciplinary decadence and offering, in effect, a call for its teleological suspension—thinking beyond disciplinarity—through drawing upon and communicating with the resources of quantum theory not as a fetish but instead as an opening for other possibilities of social, including human, understanding. The implications are far-reaching as they offer, as the main title attests, liberating sociology from persistent epistemic shackles and thus many disciplines and fields connected to things ‘social.’ This is exciting work. A triumph! The reader is left with enthusiasm for the second volume and theorists of many kinds with proverbial work to be done.” — Professor Lewis R. Gordon, Honorary President of the Global Center for Advanced Studies and author of Disciplinary Decadence: Living Thought in Trying Times (Routledge/Paradigm, 2006), and Freedom, Justice, and Decolonization (Routledge, forthcoming 2020) "Social sciences are still using metatheoretical models of science based on 19th century newtonian concepts of "time and space". Mohammad H. Tamdgidi has produced a 'tour de force' in social theory leaving behind the old newtonian worldview that still informs the social sciences towards a 21st century non-dualistic, non-reductionist, transcultural, transdisciplinary, post-Einsteinian quantum concept of TimeSpace. Tamdgidi goes beyond previous efforts done by titans of social theory such as Immanuel Wallerstein and Kyriakos Kontopoulos. This book is a quantum leap in the social sciences at large. Tamdgidi decolonizes the social sciences away from its Eurocentric colonial foundations bringing it closer not only to contemporary natural sciences but also to its convergence with the old Eastern philosophical and mystical worldviews. This book is a masterpiece in social theory for a 21st century decolonial social science. A must read!" — Professor Ramon Grosfoguel, University of California at Berkeley "Tamdgidi’s Liberating Sociology succeeds in adding physical structures to the breadth of the world-changing vision of C. Wright Mills, the man who mentored me at Columbia. Relativity theory and quantum mechanics can help us to understand the human universe no less than the physical universe. Just as my Creating Life Before Death challenges bureaucracy’s conformist orientation, so does Liberating Sociology“liberate the infinite possibilities inherent in us.” Given our isolation in the Coronavirus era, we have time to follow Tamdgidi in his journey into the depth of inner space, where few men have gone before. It is there that we can gain emotional strength, just as Churchill, Roosevelt and Mandela empowered themselves. That personal development was needed to address not only their own personal problems, but also the mammoth problems of their societies. We must learn to do the same." — Bernard Phillips, Emeritus Sociology Professor, Boston University