The era of postpositivism brings our history of positivism up to the present day. Rather than leading to an idyllic, storybook finish, however, the final footpath along positivism’s journey ultimately spirals off somewhat chaotically in a myriad of directions. For this reason, it is helpful to organize the discussion of postpositivism around three distinct groups. The first group-referred to here as the late logical positivists-consists of a committed cadre of thinkers in the 1940s and 1950s who attempted to resolve some of the brewing contradictions within logical positivism. In contrast to the earlier logical positivists, whose primary focus had been the physical sciences, the late logical positivists extended their analysis to historical and social explanations. Harking back to the nineteenthcentury aspirations of Comte and Mill, they labored to apply the lawlike nature of deductive reasoning within the physical sciences to the social sciences. Much effort went toward devising sound procedures for testing and confirming a theory in the social sciences. Over time it became evident that the standards demanded by the logical positivists for a precise and exact language of scientific inquiry were more an ideal than a realistic goal. The goal, in turn, shifted. Discovering approximate truth, rather than absolute truth, was now the task of scientific inquiry.