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Social Theory Re-Wired: New Connections to Classical and Contemporary Perspectives



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This social theory text combines the structure of a print reader with the flexibility of an interactive website. The reader includes original texts from classical and contemporary theorists as well as short synopses of key ideas and brief biographies of each theorist. The website will contain a wide variety of innovative material that the instructor can use to tailor his or her social theory course, including videos and animations; discussion forums with webcam capabilities; commentaries and summaries of key concepts, including extended historical content; exams and quizzes; annotated selections from key readings; classroom activities; and links to supplemental texts. The combination of a print reader and a modular online component will appeal to instructors looking to move parts of their course online or instructors already teaching in an online setting.

Author Biography

Wesley Longhofer is an Assistant Professor in the Goizueta Business School at Emory University. He teaches courses in corporate social responsibility and conducts research on philanthropy, globalization, and civic engagement. Daniel Winchester is a PhD candidate at the University of Minnesota. His research and teaching interests are in social and cultural theory, religion, morality, and the sociology of the self. Both Wesley and Daniel were Graduate Editors for Contexts, a publication of the ASA that makes sociology interesting and relevant to a non-academic, public audience.

Table of Contents

Series forewordp. xiii
Prefacep. xiv
Acknowledgmentsp. xxi
Emergence Through Convergence: The Puzzles of Social Orderp. 1
Introductory Essay: This Deserted Island Is Out of Order
The classic novel The Lord of the Flies helps us see that social order is both a product of our own making and something much more powerful than the sum of its parts. We move from the social facts of Durkheim to more contemporary takes on the enigma of social order.
Classical Connections: Emile Durkheimp. 7
The Rules of Sociological Methodp. 7
The Division of Labor in Societyp. 14
Suicidep. 38
Elementary Forms of Religious Lifep. 50
Contemporary Extensions: Social Order Re-Wiredp. 66
Categories of the Orientation and Organization of Actionp. 66
Studies in Ethnomethodologyp. 82
The Social Construction of Realityp. 93
Networks of Capital: Dimensions of Global Capitalismp. 107
Introductory Essay: Salvaging What Wall Street Left Behind
Today's global financial crisis reminds us that economic troubles have profound consequences for social relationships. Marx sets the stage for a lively discussion of the role the economy plays in our global age, and Wallerstein, Castells, and Bourdieu provide contemporary visions of the many links between the economic and the social.
Classical Connections: Karl Marxp. 115
The German Ideologyp. 115
Manifesto of the Communist Partyp. 120
Capitalp. 129
Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844p. 136
Contemporary Extensions: Capital Re-Wiredp. 143
The Rise and Future Demise of the World Capitalist Systemp. 143
Materials for an Exploratory Theory of the Network Societyp. 153
The Forms of Capitalp. 168
Distinctionp. 182
Pathway to Meltdown: Theorizing the Dark Side of Modernity 201
Introductory Essay: Your Smart Phone Might Be an Evil Genius
Smart phones are but one example of how our social world is becoming more and more shaped by technology. From the pious Puritans of Weber to the one-dimensional men of the Frankfurt School, we explore the pitfalls and promises of a rationalized, modern society.
Classical Connections: Max Weberp. 209
The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalismp. 209
Basic Sociological Termsp. 237
The Types of Legitimate Dominationp. 250
Bureaucracyp. 267
Class, Status, Partyp. 273
Contemporary Extensions: The Rational Society Re-Wiredp. 283
One-Dimensional Manp. 283
Toward a Rational Societyp. 292
Discipline and Punishp. 299
The Consequences of Modernityp. 310
Shifting the Paradigm: Excluded Standpoints, Alternative Knowledgesp. 323
Introductory Essay: Webs of Knowledge in the Digital Divide
The production of knowledge on the Internet is not as democratic as we might think. Du Bois, Beauvoir, and more contemporary voices within critical race, postcolonial, and feminist thought remind us the same is true in social theory.
Classical Connections: W.E.B. Du Bois and Simone de Beauvoirp. 331
The Souls of Black Folkp. 331
The Second Sexp. 337
Contemporary Extensions: Paradigms Re-Wiredp. 348
Racial Formation in the United Statesp. 348
Black Skin, White Masksp. 364
Orientalismp. 372
The Conceptual Practices of Powerp. 388
Black Feminist Thoughtp. 395
Rise of the Avatar: Connecting Self and Societyp. 415
Introductory Essay: Through the Looking-Glass of Facebook
Our Facebook profiles provide a glimpse of the collective foundations of our individual selves. Mead and Simmel lay the foundations for thinking about the social origins of the self, and Goffman, Foucault, and others provide provocative takes on what identity means in today's complicated world.
Classical Connections: George Herbert Mead and Georg Simmelp. 423
The Selfp. 423
The Metropolis and Mental Lifep. 439
The Strangerp. 448
Contemporary Extensions: Identity Re-Wiredp. 452
The Presentation of Self in Everyday Lifep. 452
The History of Sexualityp. 454
Gender Troublep. 471
From Pilgrim to Tourist: or a Short History of Identityp. 482
Glossary Indexp. 497
Creditsp. 516
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