John Urry has been at the centre of these debates and he draws upon an extensive array of new research and material to develop what he calls the new mobilities paradigm for the social sciences. He shows how this paradigm makes comprehensible social phenomena which were previously opaque. He examines how mobilities each presuppose a system that permits predictable and relatively risk–free repetition. The book outlines various such systems and then analyses their intersecting implications for social inequality, for social networks and meetings, for the nature of places and for alternative mobility futures.
Mobilities is thus both an analysis of different mobilities historically and in the present and an argument that the social world will be analysed quite differently once peoples lives, organisations, states and global institutions are seen to be dealing with extensive and hugely contested mobility processes. This book rewrites social science through a mobilities paradigm.
Part 1 Mobile worlds.
1. Mobilizing social life.
2. Mobile theories and methods.
3. The mobilities paradigm.
Part 2 Moving and communicating.
4. Pavements and Paths.
5. Public trains.
6. Inhabiting cars and roads.
7. Flying around.
8. Connecting and imagining.
Part 3 Societies and systems on the move.
9. Gates to heaven and hell.
13. Systems and dark futures.
–– Ulrich Beck, University of Munich
"John Urry has made the study of mobility into the key to the study of modern life. Using this key, in this book he not only casts fresh light on various aspects of modernity but also massively extends the reach of sociological and cultural analysis as he does so. A seminal contribution."
–– Nigel Thrift, University of Warwick
"This is both an important book and a great book. It′s an important book because individualized mobility is becoming the most important social trend of the developed world. It is a great book because it deals smartly, comprehensively, and systematically with how this mobility takes place."
–– Barry Wellman, University of Toronto