interaction ritual chains princeton studies in cultural sociology

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Interaction Ritual Chains

Author : Randall Collins
ISBN : 9781400851744
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 21. 52 MB
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Sex, smoking, and social stratification are three very different social phenomena. And yet, argues sociologist Randall Collins, they and much else in our social lives are driven by a common force: interaction rituals. Interaction Ritual Chains is a major work of sociological theory that attempts to develop a "radical microsociology." It proposes that successful rituals create symbols of group membership and pump up individuals with emotional energy, while failed rituals drain emotional energy. Each person flows from situation to situation, drawn to those interactions where their cultural capital gives them the best emotional energy payoff. Thinking, too, can be explained by the internalization of conversations within the flow of situations; individual selves are thoroughly and continually social, constructed from the outside in. The first half of Interaction Ritual Chains is based on the classic analyses of Durkheim, Mead, and Goffman and draws on micro-sociological research on conversation, bodily rhythms, emotions, and intellectual creativity. The second half discusses how such activities as sex, smoking, and social stratification are shaped by interaction ritual chains. For example, the book addresses the emotional and symbolic nature of sexual exchanges of all sorts--from hand-holding to masturbation to sexual relationships with prostitutes--while describing the interaction rituals they involve. This book will appeal not only to psychologists, sociologists, and anthropologists, but to those in fields as diverse as human sexuality, religious studies, and literary theory.

Violence

Author : Randall Collins
ISBN : 9780691143224
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 61. 46 MB
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It is the popular misconception fostered by action movies and thrillers, not to mention social scientists, that violence is natural under certain conditions. Collins challenges this view, arguing that violent confrontation goes against human physiological hardwiring, regardless of the underlying conditions and motivations.

Macrohistory

Author : Randall Collins
ISBN : 0804736006
Genre : History
File Size : 26. 36 MB
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Explores the accomplishments of the golden age of "macrohistory," the sociologically informed analysis of long-term patterns of political, economic, and social change. The topics range from the Marxian-inspired theory of revolutions to the roots of the Holocaust.

Unanticipated Gains

Author : Mario Luis Small
ISBN : 9780199764099
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 81. 18 MB
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Social capital theorists have shown that some people do better than others in part because they enjoy larger, more supportive, or otherwise more useful networks. But why do some people have better networks than others? Unanticipated Gains argues that the practice and structure of the churches, colleges, firms, gyms, childcare centers, and schools in which people happen to participate routinely matter more than their deliberate "networking." Exploring the experiences of New York City mothers whose children were enrolled in childcare centers, this book examines why a great deal of these mothers, after enrolling their children, dramatically expanded both the size and usefulness of their personal networks. Whether, how, and how much the mother's networks were altered--and how useful these networks were--depended on the apparently trivial, but remarkably consequential, practices and regulations of the centers. The structure of parent-teacher organizations, the frequency of fieldtrips, and the rules regarding drop-off and pick-up times all affected the mothers' networks. Relying on scores of in-depth interviews with mothers, quantitative data on both mothers and centers, and detailed case studies of other routine organizations, Small shows that how much people gain from their connections depends substantially on institutional conditions they often do not control, and through everyday processes they may not even be aware of. Emphasizing not the connections that people make, but the context in which they are made, Unanticipated Gains presents a major new perspective on social capital and on the mechanisms producing social inequality.

Commitment And Community

Author : Rosabeth Moss Kanter
ISBN : 0674145763
Genre : Literary Criticism
File Size : 55. 24 MB
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Rosabeth Kanter offers a unique analysis of the nature and process of enduring commitment, basing her theory of commitment mechanisms on exhaustive research of nineteenth century utopias, sharpened by first hand knowledge of a variety of contemporary groups."

Laughing Saints And Righteous Heroes

Author : Erika Summers Effler
ISBN : 9780226188676
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 87. 9 MB
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Why do people keep fighting for social causes in the face of consistent failure? Why do they risk their physical, emotional, and financial safety on behalf of strangers? How do these groups survive high turnover and emotional burnout? To explore these questions, Erika Summers Effler undertook three years of ethnographic fieldwork with two groups: anti–death penalty activists STOP and the Catholic Workers, who strive to alleviate poverty. In both communities, members must contend with problems that range from the broad to the intimately personal. Adverse political conditions, internal conflict, and fluctuations in financial resources create a backdrop of daily frustration—but watching an addict relapse or an inmate’s execution are much more devastating setbacks. Summers Effler finds that overcoming these obstacles, recovering from failure, and maintaining the integrity of the group require a constant process of emotional fine-tuning, and she demonstrates how activists do this through thoughtful analysis and a lucid rendering of their deeply affecting stories.

Interaction Ritual

Author : Erving Goffman
ISBN : 9781351512077
Genre : Psychology
File Size : 90. 61 MB
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"Not then, men and their moments. Rather, moment and their men," writes Erving Goffman in the introduction to his groundbreaking 1967 Interaction Ritual, a study of face-to-face interaction in natural settings, that class of events which occurs during co-presence and by virtue of co-presence. The ultimate behavioral materials are the glances, gestures, positionings, and verbal statements that people continuously feed into situations, whether intended or not. A sociology of occasions is here advocated. Social organization is the central theme, but what is organized is the co-mingling of persons and the temporary interactional enterprises that can arise therefrom. A normatively stabilized structure is at issue, a "social gathering," but this is a shifting entity, necessarily evanescent, created by arrivals and killed by departures. The major section of the book is the essay "Where the Action Is," drawing on Goffman's last major ethnographic project observation of Nevada casinos. Tom Burns says of Goffman's work "The eleven books form a singularly compact body of writing. All his published work was devoted to topics and themes which were closely connected, and the methodology, angles of approach and of course style of writing remained characteristically his own throughout. Interaction Ritual in particular is an interesting account of daily social interaction viewed with a new perspective for the logic of our behavior in such ordinary circumstances as entering a crowded elevator or bus." In his new introduction, Joel Best considers Goffman's work in toto and places Interaction Ritual in that total context as one of Goffman's pivotal works: "His subject matter was unique. In sharp contrast to the natural tendency of many scholars to tackle big, important topics, Goffman was a minimalist, working on a small scale, and concentrating on the most mundane, ordinary social contacts, on everyday life.'"

Gangs Of Russia

Author : Svetlana Stephenson
ISBN : 9781501701672
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 39. 45 MB
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Since their spectacular rise in the 1990s, Russian gangs have remained entrenched in many parts of the country. Some gang members have perished in gang wars or ended up behind prison bars, while others have made spectacular careers off the streets and joined the Russian elite. But the rank and file of gangs remain substantially incorporated into their communities and society as a whole, with bonds and identities that bridge the worlds of illegal enterprise and legal respectability. In Gangs of Russia, Svetlana Stephenson explores the secretive world of the gangs. Using in-depth interviews with gang members, law enforcers, and residents in the city of Kazan, together with analyses of historical and sociological accounts from across Russia, she presents the history of gangs both before and after the arrival of market capitalism. Contrary to predominant notions of gangs as collections of maladjusted delinquents or illegal enterprises, Stephenson argues, Russian gangs should be seen as traditional, close-knit male groups with deep links to their communities. Stephenson shows that gangs have long been intricately involved with the police and other state structures in configurations that are both personal and economic. She also explains how the cultural orientations typical of gangs—emphasis on loyalty to one's own, showing toughness to outsiders, exacting revenge for perceived affronts and challenges—are not only found on the streets but are also present in the top echelons of today's Russian state.

Creating The Unequal City

Author : Talja Blokland
ISBN : 9781317158448
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 62. 57 MB
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Cities can be seen as geographical imaginaries: places have meanings attributed so that they are perceived, represented and interpreted in a particular way. We may therefore speak of cityness rather than 'the city': the city is always in the making. It cannot be grasped as a fixed structure in which people find their lives, and is never stable, through agents designing courses of interactions with geographical imaginations. This theoretical perspective on cities is currently reshaping the field of urban studies, requiring new forms of theory, comparisons and methods. Meanwhile, mainstream urban studies approaches neighbourhoods as fixed social-spatial units, producing effects on groups of residents. Yet they have not convincingly shown empirically that the neighbourhood is an entity generating effects, rather than being the statistical aggregate where effects can be measured. This book challenges this common understanding, and argues for an approach that sees neighbourhood effects as the outcome of processes of marginalisation and exclusion that find spatial expressions in the city elsewhere. It does so through a comparative study of an unusual kind: Sub-Saharan Africans, second generation Turkish and Lebanese girls, and alcohol and drug consumers, some of them homeless, arguably some of the most disadvantaged categories in the German capital, Berlin, in inner city neighbourhoods, and middle class families in owner-occupied housing. This book analyses urban inequalities through the lens of the city in the making, where neighbourhood comes to play a role, at some times, in some practices, and at some moments, but is not the point of departure.

Ritual Emotion Violence

Author : Elliott B. Weininger
ISBN : 1138614289
Genre : Microsociology
File Size : 27. 76 MB
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Microsociologists seek to capture social life as it is experienced, and in recent decades no one has championed the microsociological approach more fiercely than Randall Collins. The pieces in this exciting volume offer fresh and original insights into key aspects of Collins' thought, and of microsociology more generally. The introductory essay by Elliot B. Weininger and Omar Lizardo provides a lucid overview of the key premises this perspective. Ethnographic papers by Randol Contreras, using data from New York, and Philippe Bourgois and Laurie Kain Hart, using data from Philadelphia, examine the social logic of violence in street-level narcotics markets. Both draw on heavily on Collins' microsociological account of the features of social situations that tend to engender violence. In the second section of the book, a study by Paul DiMaggio, Clark Bernier, Charles Heckscher, and David Mimno tackles the question of whether electronically mediated interaction exhibits the ritualization which, according to Collins, is a common feature of face-to-face encounters. Their results suggest that, at least under certain circumstances, digitally mediated interaction may foster social solidarity in a manner similar to face-to-face interaction. A chapter by Simone Polillo picks up from Collins' work in the sociology of knowledge, examining multiple ways in which social network structures can engender intellectual creativity. The third section of the book contains papers that critically but sympathetically assess key tenets of microsociology. Jonathan H. Turner argues that the radically microsociological perspective developed by Collins will better serve the social scientific project if it is embedded in a more comprehensive paradigm, one that acknowledges the macro- and meso-levels of social and cultural life. A chapter by David Gibson presents empirical analyses of decisions by state leaders concerning whether or not to use force to deal with internal or external foes, suggesting that Collins' model of interaction ritual can only partially illuminate the dynamics of these highly consequential political moments. Work by Erika Summers-Effler and Justin Van Ness seeks to systematize and broaden the scope of Collins' theory of interaction, by including in it encounters that depart from the ritual model in important ways. In a final, reflective chapter, Randall Collins himself highlights the promise and future of microsociology. Clearly written, these pieces offer cutting-edge thinking on some of the crucial theoretical and empirical issues in sociology today.

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