The Sociological Technoimagination

Tomáš Dvořák



The article introduces the concept of “sociological technoimagination” and delineates the field of visualizations used in the social sciences: the various forms of graphs, schemes, and diagrams. It surveys the uses and functions of visualizations in sciences generally and places their development in the wider context of the modernization of vision of the 19th century; examining the pioneering uses of visualization methods by Etienne-Jules Marey, Francis Galton, or Otto Neurath. Gabriel Tarde’s account of statistics (from his Laws of Imitation, 1890) is reinterpreted in regard to both the nature and social roles of the sociological technoimagination.


scientific visualization; technoimagination; modernization of vision; sociology;

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TEORIE VĚDY / THEORY OF SCIENCE – journal for interdisciplinary studies of science is published twice a year by the Institute of Philosophy of the Czech Academy of Sciences (Centre for Science, Technology, and Society Studies). ISSN 1210-0250 (Print) ISSN 1804-6347 (Online) MK ČR E 18677 web: /// email: