- 文教大学国際学部紀要 (ISSN:09173072)
- vol.26, no.1, pp.17-32, 2015-07
Historical Institutionalist explanations / Comparative Historical Analysis approaches are inferences about the causes of specific outcomes in particular cases. They are intended to explain outcomes that have already happened, either in the distant past or in the recent past. The goal of the analysis is precisely to explain the specific past occurrences (Mahoney, Kimball, and Koivu 2009: 116). In Historical Institutionalist explanations, political institutions are seen as the developing products of struggle among unequal actors, and are mainly focused on the long-term processes of institutional building, change and thus divergence. In Comparative Historical Analysis approaches, this view is expanded into the one focused on various events including political institutions. While these approaches are developing in comparative politics after the middle of 1990s based on the qualitative methodology, some scholars emphasized on the methodological differences between the qualitative one and the quantitative one, and thus pursued their ontological foundations of philosophy of science (especially biology and complexity science); especially, without proposing empirical and useful methods, they have seen these differences of methodologies as ones of paradigms and scientific views. Recently, however, other scholars have avoided these pedantic arguments of the philosophy of science and thus attempted to propose the logical (but not biological) foundations based on the set theory. In this article, I argue the ontological development of the literature of Historical Institutionalism / Comparative Historical Analysis and focus on the conceptual and terminological change of "contexts". Especially, I compare the usage of "contexts" in the five approaches; critical junctures, institutional evolutions, multiple contexts, critical antecedents, and permissive / productive conditions.