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Contemporary Sociological Theory : An Integrated Multi-Level Approach - Doyle Paul Johnson

Contemporary Sociological Theory

An Integrated Multi-Level Approach

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The overall organizing framework employed in this textbook is based primarily on the distinctions among different levels of social reality. Theorists routinely distinguish between micro and macro levels of analysis. The micro level involves a focus on human agency and choice and the dynamics of personal relationships and small-scale social systems of various types, particularly those involving face-to-face encounters. The macro level, in contrast, is concerned with larger-scale social systems, typically at the level of total societies.

In addition to micro and macro levels, various intermediate (or "meso") levels of analysis may also be identified. This book is distinctive as a theory text in giving explicit attention to organizations, communities, markets, and socioeconomic classes as meso-level social formations that can be identified between the micro level of face-to-face relations and the macro-level institutional structures of the overall society.

Contemporary Sociological Theory is divided into three sections: the first section introduces contemporary sociological theory and includes the historical development, the early European sources, and the development of American sociology. Section two presents the various major theoretical perspectives that have long been considered the core of contemporary sociological theory and includes the three levels of social interaction - macro, micro and meso. The last section covers contemporary perspectives that reflect multiple levels of analysis such as feminist theory, structuration theory and systems theory, the sociobiological perspective and cultural systems.

With its unique focus on multiple levels of analysis, this graduate-level text will be of interest to sociologists and those they teach.

Setting the Stagep. 1
Introduction: From Implicit to Explicit Theoriesp. 3
Everyday Life Theories and Facts of Lifep. 3
Moving from Implicit to Explicit Theoriesp. 5
Multiple Levels of Social Reality and Contrasting Theoretical Perspectivesp. 8
Agency and Structurep. 12
National Variations in the Origins of Sociological Theoryp. 13
Postrevolutionary French Positivismp. 14
German Historicismp. 14
English-Scottish Laissez-Faire Political Economy and British Utilitarianismp. 15
American Pragmatism and Micro-Level Interactionp. 17
Summaryp. 19
Classical Stage European Sources of Sociological Theoryp. 23
Social and Intellectual Backgroundp. 24
Science, Social Evolution, and the Dream of a More Rational Societyp. 25
Confronting the Nonrational Dimensions of Social Lifep. 27
Dominant Figures in the Establishment of Sociologyp. 29
Emile Durkheim: Sociology as the Science of Social Integrationp. 29
Karl Marx: Human Needs, Class Conflict, and Social Changep. 32
Max Weber: Social Action as the Foundation of Societyp. 34
Georg Simmel: Interaction Processesp. 39
Other Important Pioneersp. 42
Harriet Martineau: Discovering the Discrepancy Between Morals and Mannersp. 42
Alexis de Tocqueville: An Analysis of American Democracyp. 44
Vilfredo Pareto: Logical Versus Nonlogical Actionp. 44
Ferdinand Tonnies: Contrasting Community and Societyp. 46
Marianne Weber: Exposing the Subordination of Women at Home and Workp. 46
Summaryp. 49
Development of American Sociology: A Brief Historical Overviewp. 53
Chicago School Beginnings: Social Interaction and Social Reformp. 54
George Herbert Mead and Social Behaviorismp. 54
Jane Addams: Applying Sociology Through Social Work and Social Reformp. 59
W. I. Thomas and the "Definition of the Situation"p. 61
Robert Ezra Park: Observing and Analyzing the Social Life of the Cityp. 62
Other Significant Pioneers in Early American Sociologyp. 64
Charles Horton Cooley: Primary Groups and the Looking-Glass Selfp. 64
W. E. B. Du Bois: African Americans' Double Consciousness "Within the Veil"p. 65
Charlotte Perkins Gilman: Sexual Relations Related to Home and Workp. 69
Development of Functional Theory for Analyzing Society's Institutional Structuresp. 73
Talcott Parsons and the Development of Structural/Functional Theoryp. 75
Alternative Perspectives Within Functionalismp. 76
Merton's Middle-Range Functionalismp. 76
Coser's Conflict Functionalismp. 76
Alternatives to Functionalismp. 76
Blumer and Symbolic Interactionismp. 76
Mills and Critical Sociologyp. 76
Homans and Exchange Behaviorismp. 77
Summaryp. 77
Formal Theory Construction: Developing Sociological Theory as Part of a Scientific Enterprisep. 81
Linking Theoretical Analysis and Empirical Researchp. 82
Objective Versus Subjective Dimensions of Social Realityp. 83
Prediction versus Interpretationp. 85
Strategies of Formal Theory Constructionp. 86
Concepts and Variablesp. 87
Classification Systemsp. 89
Propositionsp. 90
Causes and Consequencesp. 92
Interdependent Relationsp. 93
Thresholds and Limitsp. 94
The Challenge of Causal Explanationp. 96
Theory: A Set of Propositionsp. 98
The Challenge of Multiple Paradigms: Underlying Assumptions, Beliefs, and Values that Influence Theory Constructionp. 100
Summaryp. 103
Moving from Micro to Meso to Macro Levelsp. 107
Symbolic Interaction: Constructing the Social World-and its Participants' Identitiesp. 109
Symbolic Interaction-Process Versus Structurep. 110
Roles and Identitiesp. 114
Staging Performances: The Dramaturgic Approach to Interactionp. 120
Teams and Audiencesp. 122
The Precariousness of the Social Worldp. 123
Interaction Challenges of the Stigmatizedp. 125
The Context of Interactionp. 126
Language, Social Reality, and the Cultural Worldp. 129
Summaryp. 133
Phenomenological Sociology and Ethnomethodology: The Everyday Life World of Common Sensep. 137
Phenomenological Sociology: Alfred Schutz's Contributionsp. 138
Personal Versus Intersubjective Consciousnessp. 139
Meanings, Motives, and Accountsp. 141
Mutual Understanding in Personal Versus Impersonal Relationsp. 143
Contemporaries, Predecessors, and Successorsp. 145
Phenomenological Perspective on Sociological Knowledgep. 146
Ethnomethodologyp. 148
Reciprocity of Perspectivesp. 149
Context and Meaningp. 152
The Social Construction of Reality: Berger and Luckmannp. 155
Mutual Interdependence of Social Institutions and Subjective Consciousnessp. 156
Cultural Homelessness in the Modern and Late Modern Worldp. 159
Summaryp. 160
Social Exchange and Rational Choice at the Micro Level: Looking Out for #1p. 165
Historical Background: Individualistic Versus Collectivist Theories of Social Exchangep. 167
A Behavioral Approach to Elementary Exchangesp. 169
Behavioral Dynamics of Groupsp. 169
Psychological Foundations of Social Relationsp. 170
Applications of Exchange Theory to Elementary Social Behaviorp. 173
Elementary Social Exchanges and the Emergence of Power Structures: Peter Blau's Micro-Level Exchange Theoryp. 175
Intrinsic Versus Extrinsic Rewardsp. 177
Dilemmas of Attractionp. 178
How Power Structures Develop from Imbalanced Exchangesp. 179
Acquiring Power or Avoiding Subordination Through Strategic Exchangesp. 180
Individual Interests and Group Dynamicsp. 182
Individual Interests, Rights, and Resources: James Coleman's Perspective on Exchanges Between Rational Actorsp. 185
The Risk of Perverse Effectsp. 188
Summaryp. 191
Networking and Belonging: Opportunity Structures, Rational Choice Exchanges, and the Sociology of Emotionsp. 195
Opportunities and Limitations: Peter Blau's Structural Approachp. 196
Networks, Groups, and Personal Relationshipsp. 201
Network Analysisp. 201
Exchange Processes in Networks, Groups, and Personal Relationshipsp. 204
Social Bonding and the Sociology of Emotionsp. 206
Gender Differences in Emotional Bonding Versus Pursuit of Self-Interestsp. 209
Emotional Labor in Organizational Settingsp. 214
Cyberspace Markets, Networks, and Personal Relationshipsp. 218
Summaryp. 220
From Micro-Level Exchanges to Meso- and Macro-Level Structuresp. 223
Emergence of Macro Structures from Imbalanced Exchangesp. 224
Micro-Level Competition for Status and Powerp. 224
Stabilization of Power Structures Through Norms and Valuesp. 226
From Power Structures to Meso and Macro Structuresp. 227
Legitimation Versus Opposition of Power Structuresp. 230
Institutionalization in Macro-Structuresp. 232
Social Capital and Corporate Actors from a Rational Choice Perspectivep. 235
Normative and Legal Regulation of People's Behaviorp. 236
Promoting Normative Conformity and Deterring Deviancep. 239
Social Capital and Public Goodsp. 241
Establishment of Corporate Actors and Authority Relationsp. 242
Corporate Actors Versus Natural Personsp. 247
Summaryp. 248
Meso-Level Structures: Communities and Organizationsp. 253
Communities: Actual, Potential, and Idealp. 255
Geographical Communitiesp. 257
Ecology and Community in Urban Environmentsp. 258
Communities of Shared Interests and Values and Socioemotional Bondsp. 265
Formal Organizations and Individual Versus Collective Goalsp. 267
Primary Beneficiaries of Organizational Goalsp. 269
Organizational Control and Compliance Structuresp. 270
Bureaucrats Versus Professionals in Organizational Settingsp. 271
Formal Organizations as Open Systemsp. 272
Variations in Interdependencep. 273
Variations in Boundary Permeabilityp. 274
Organizational Relationsp. 276
Summaryp. 277
Meso-Level Structures: Markets and Socioeconomic Classesp. 281
Markets and Individual Versus Collective Interestsp. 283
Economic Market Instability and Government Regulationp. 284
Economic Versus Socioemotional Marketsp. 285
Socioeconomic Classesp. 288
Economic Resources as the Foundation for Socioeconomic Stratificationp. 288
Economic Classes in American Societyp. 290
Education, Socioeconomic Status Groups, and Lifestylep. 293
Occupational Authority Structures and Socioeconomic Class Culturesp. 295
Reproduction of Class Cultures: Material Conditions and Symbolic Definitionsp. 300
Summaryp. 306
Integration and Social Order at the Macro Level: Parsons' Structural-Functional Perspectivep. 309
From Social Action to Social Systems: Introducing Parsons' Structural/Functional Theoryp. 310
The Voluntaristic Theory of Social Actionp. 312
The Pattern Variables: Variations in Subjective Orientationsp. 313
The Strategy of Structural-Functional Analysisp. 317
Functional Requirements and Institutional Structures of Societiesp. 318
The AGIL Frameworkp. 320
Subsystem (Institutional) Interchangesp. 325
Hierarchy of Cultural Controlp. 327
Structural Differentiation in the Evolution of Modern Societyp. 328
Human Life, Social Action, and Ultimate Realityp. 333
Summaryp. 335
Middle-Range Functionalism and Neofunctionalismp. 339
Robert Merton and Middle-Range Functionalismp. 341
Middle-Range Functional Analysisp. 341
Latent Dysfunctions, Social Problems, and Social Changep. 344
Examples of Middle-Range Functional Theoriesp. 347
Social Structure and Anomiep. 347
The Bureaucratic Personalityp. 348
Reference Group Theoryp. 348
From Functionalism to Neofunctionalismp. 349
Social Action and Social Order: Jeffrey Alexander's Multidimensional Perspectivep. 350
Social Action and Social Order: Environmental Versus Normative Influencesp. 351
Alexander's Critique of Earlier Theoriesp. 355
Contrasting Dimensions of Action in Richard Munch's Neofunctional Perspectivep. 359
AGIL Dimensions of Actionp. 359
Contrasting Theoretical Perspectives Related to the AGIL Frameworkp. 361
Summaryp. 364
Conflict and Competition: Analytical Conflict Theories at the Macro Levelp. 367
Functional Analysis of Conflict: Lewis Coser's Contributionsp. 368
Conflict Between Groups and In-Group Solidarityp. 369
Conflict and Group Solidarityp. 370
Realistic Versus Unrealistic Conflictp. 371
Conflict as a Stimulus for Cooperation Between Groupsp. 372
Authority Relations and Conflicting Interests: Ralf Dahrendorf's Contributionsp. 373
Conflict Group Formationp. 375
Intensity and Violence of Conflictp. 377
Consequences of Conflictp. 378
Conflict Model Versus Functional Modelp. 380
Stratification and Conflict in Interpersonal and Institutional Settings: Randall Collins' Theoretical Synthesisp. 380
Interaction Rituals and Social Stratificationp. 383
Occupation, Authority Relations, and Socioeconomic Statusp. 384
Applications of the Modelp. 386
World Systems Theory and International Exploitation: Immanuel Wallerstein's Contributionsp. 387
Summaryp. 392
Critical Theory: Social System Requirements Versus Human Needsp. 397
C. Wright Mills: The Sociological Imagination and Critical Analysisp. 399
Historical Development of the American Power Structurep. 400
Mass Media and Mass Societyp. 402
The American Power Structure and the "Iron Law of Oligarchy"p. 403
Theoretical Developments Within Marxismp. 404
Development of American Critical Theoryp. 407
Lifeworld Versus System: The Critical Perspective of Jurgen Habermasp. 409
The Legitimation Crisis in the Political Organization of Capitalismp. 409
Alternative Forms of Communication and Rationalityp. 412
Knowledge and Power in Michel Foucault's Perspectivep. 415
Surveillance and Social Controlp. 417
Professional Expertise and Social Controlp. 418
Summaryp. 422
Exploring Multi-Level Theoretical Perspectivesp. 427
Feminist Theory at Multiple Levels: Analytical and Criticalp. 429
Feminist Critique of Sociology: Dorothy Smith's Standpoint Theoryp. 431
Exploring Differences Among Women in Multiple Hierarchies of Domination in Patricia Hill Collins' Perspectivep. 434
Micro-Level Analyses of Gender Differencesp. 436
Biological Sex and Gender Differencesp. 437
Male-Female Differences in Socioemotional Bonds with Parentsp. 439
Matters of Life and Deathp. 440
Wives Versus Husbands in Family Lifep. 441
Macro-Level Critique of Male Dominationp. 443
Institutional Differentiation and the Organized Control of Violencep. 444
Evolutionary Progress from a Feminist Functionalist Perspectivep. 446
Explaining Gender Inequality: Janet Saltzman Chafetz's Theory of Gender Stratificationp. 447
Mechanisms of Macro-Level Domination Through Impersonal Textsp. 451
Summaryp. 454
Human Agency, the Structuration Process, and Social Systems: Linking Micro, Meso, and Macro Levels of Analysisp. 459
Structuration Theory: Reproduction and Transformation of the Social Worldp. 460
Agencyp. 462
Social Structures and Systemsp. 465
Sociological Analysis and Public Discoursep. 468
The Dynamics of Open Systemsp. 469
Walter Buckley's "Morphogenic Process" Model of Social Systemsp. 470
Variations in Social System Dynamicsp. 473
Feedback Cycles in Goal-Oriented Systemsp. 474
Morphogenesis, Morphostasis, and Entropyp. 476
From Unorganized to Organized Complexity: Niklas Luhmann's Perspective on the Self-Creation of Social Systemsp. 477
Self-Organization and Boundary Formationp. 478
Social Systems Versus Psychic Systemsp. 479
Managing Complexityp. 482
Interaction Versus Organization Versus Society as Systemsp. 484
Summaryp. 487
The Sociobiological Perspective: Biological Versus Cultural Influences on Human Behaviorp. 491
The Historical Background of Social Darwinismp. 492
Exploring the Biological and Genetic Foundations of Social Behaviorp. 495
Sex Roles and Reproductive Behaviorp. 498
Parenting Behaviorp. 502
Altruism and Cooperation Within Groupsp. 506
Competition and Conflictp. 508
Status Competition and Dominance Hierarchies Within Groupsp. 509
War and Peace in Intergroup Relationsp. 511
Religion and Sociobiological Evolutionp. 512
Sociobiology and Cultural Evolutionp. 515
Summaryp. 516
The Dynamics of Cultural Systemsp. 519
Cultural Learning and Human Survivalp. 520
Cultural Morphogenesis: Consistencies and Contradictions in Knowledge and Beliefs in Margaret Archer's Perspectivep. 521
Civilized Behavior, Centralization of Power, and Functional Interdependence in Norbert Elias's Theoryp. 526
Self-Control and Civilized Mannersp. 527
Political Centralization and Expansion of Functional Interdependencep. 529
The Struggle Between Good and Evil: Jeffrey Alexander's Cultural Sociologyp. 535
Summaryp. 539
Postmodern Social and Cultural Fragmentationp. 543
Postmodernity or Late Modernity?p. 544
Skepticism Regarding Knowledge and Authorityp. 548
Globalization and its Impact on Nation-States and Local Settingsp. 550
Mass Media and the Representation Versus the Simulation of Realityp. 553
Popular Culture and Experiments in Identity Constructionp. 556
Enchanted Consumption as a Source of Identity and Statusp. 558
Sociology of the Body: Body Shaping and Decorating as Expressive Reactions to Individual Anonymityp. 560
Summaryp. 563
Conclusionp. 567
Preliminary Stage Settingp. 567
From Micro to Meso to Macro Levelsp. 569
Toward Theoretical Integration: Strategies and Challengesp. 578
Glossaryp. 585
Referencesp. 601
Indexp. 615
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780387765211
ISBN-10: 0387765212
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 630
Published: 1st May 2008
Publisher: Springer-Verlag New York Inc.
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.5  x 3.81
Weight (kg): 1.14