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Cultural Sociology. Wiley Blackwell Readers in Sociology

  • ID: 2247703
  • Book
  • October 2001
  • 384 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
This book collects 31 path–breaking essays by classic and contemporary scholars to introduce cultural sociology to an emerging generation of students and to others unfamiliar with the field. A selection of foundational reflections and cutting–edge research is grouped into five core sections – key ideas, cultural repertoires, cultural production, cultural frameworks and social change. Essays cover a wide range of topics in such areas as work, inequality, political culture, and the arts, and treat many diverse aspects of contemporary culture, from television viewing to volunteering, from rock music to war memorials, from stories of violence to ideals of the public good.

The editor′s introduction provides an overview of the field, discussing the idea of culture, the development of cultural sociology in relation to other areas of sociology, and interdisciplinary influences from such fields as anthropology, literary criticism and cultural studies. Notes set each essay in a wider context and point to further reading. This is an essential resource and an important guide to this rapidly–expanding field.

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List of Contributors.



Introduction: Culture and Cultural Sociology: Lyn Spillman.

Part I: Analyzing Culture in Society: Key Ideas:.

1. The Diversity of Cultures: Ruth Benedict.

2. The Metropolis and Mental Life: Georg Simmel.

3. The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception: Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno.

4. Center and Periphery: Edward Shils.

5. Base and Superstructure: Raymond Williams.

6. Thick Description: Toward an Interpretive Theory of Culture: Clifford Geertz.

7. Cultural Power: Pierre Bourdieu.

Part II: Cultural Repertoires: Identities and Practices:.

8. Boundary Work: Sculpting Home and Work: Christena E. Nippert–Eng (Illinois Institute of Technology).

9. Corporate Culture: Gideon Kunda (Tel Aviv University).

10. Symbolic Boundaries and Status: Michèle Lamont (Princeton University).

11. Symbolic Exclusion and Musical Dislikes: Bethany Bryson (University of Virginia).

12. Raced Ways of Seeing: Darnell Hunt (University of Southern California).

13. "Close to Home": The Work of Avoiding Politics: Nina Eliasoph (University of Wisconsin–Madison).

14. How Culture Works: Perspectives from Media Studies on the Efficacy of Symbols: Michael Schudson (University of California, San Diego).

Part III: Cultural Production: Institutional Fields:.

15. Market Structure, the Creative Process, and Popular Culture: Toward an Organizational Reinterpretation of Mass–Culture Theory: Paul DiMaggio (Princeton University).

16. Why 1955? Explaining the Advent of Rock Music: Richard A. Peterson (Vanderbilt University).

17. Art Worlds: Howard S. Becker.

18. American Character and the American Novel: An Expansion of Reflection Theory in the Sociology of Literature: Wendy Griswold (Northwestern University).

19. Behind the Postmodern Façade: Architectural Change in Late Twentieth–Century America: Magali Sarfatti Larson (University of Urbino).

20. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial: Commemorating a Difficult Past: Robin Wagner–Pacifici (Swarthmore College) and Barry Schwartz (University of Georgia).

Part IV: Cultural Frameworks: Categories, Genre, and Narrative:.

21. The Fine Line: Making Distinctions in Everyday Life: Eviatar Zerubavel (Rutgers University).

22. The Discourse of American Civil Society: A New Proposal for Cultural Studies: Jeffrey C. Alexander (University of California, Los Angeles) and Philip Smith (University of Queensland).

23. Cultural Form and Political Meaning: State–Subsidized Theater, Ideology, and the Language of Style in Fascist Italy: Mabel Berezin (University of California, Los Angeles).

24. Deciphering Violence: The Cognitive Structure of Right and Wrong: Karen Cerulo (Rutgers University).

25. Civil Society and Crisis: Culture, Discourse, and the Rodney King Beating: Ronald N. Jacobs (University at Albany, State University of New York).

Part V: Social Change and Cultural Innovation:.

26. Constructing the Public Good: Social Movements and Cultural Resources: Rhys H. Williams (Southern Illinois University).

27. The Search for Political Community: American Activists Reinventing Commitment: Paul Lichterman (University of Wisconsin, Madison).

28. Cultural Power and Social Movements: Ann Swidler (University of California, Berkeley).

29. A Theory of Structure: Duality, Agency, and Transformation: William H. Sewell, Jr. (University of Chicago).

30. Communities of Discourse: Ideology and Social Structure in the Reformation, the Enlightenment, and European Socialism: Robert Wuthnow (Princeton University).

31. Postmodernism, or The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism: Fredric Jameson (Duke University).


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Lynette Spillman
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