The New Evolutionary Sociology

Recent and Revitalized Theoretical and Methodological Approaches
Author: Jonathan H. Turner,Richard S. Machalek
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351173863
Category: Social Science
Page: 470
View: 3545

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For decades, evolutionary analysis was overlooked or altogether ignored by sociologists. Fears and biases persisted nearly a century after Auguste Comte gave the discipline its name, as did concerns that its effect would only reduce sociology to another discipline – whether biology, psychology, or economics. Worse, apprehension that the application of evolutionary theory would encourage heightened perceptions of racism, sexism, ethnocentrism and reductionism pervaded. Turner and Machalek argue instead for a new embrace of biology and evolutionary analysis. Sociology, from its very beginnings in the early 19th century, has always been concerned with the study of evolution, particularly the transformation of societies from simple to ever-more complex forms. By comprehensively reviewing the original ways that sociologists applied evolutionary theory and examining the recent renewal and expansion of these early approaches, the authors confront the challenges posed by biology, neuroscience, and psychology to distinct evolutionary approaches within sociology. They emerge with key theoretical and methodological discoveries that demonstrate the critical – and compelling – case for a dramatically enriched sociology that incorporates all forms of comparative evolutionary analysis to its canon and study of sociocultural phenomena.

Handbook on Evolution and Society

Toward an Evolutionary Social Science
Author: Alexandra Maryanski,Richard Machalek,Jonathan H. Turner
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317258339
Category: Political Science
Page: 580
View: 562

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"Handbook on Evolution and Society" brings together original chapters by prominent scholars who have been instrumental in the revival of evolutionary theorizing and research in the social sciences over the last twenty-five years. Previously unpublished essays provide up-to-date, critical surveys of recent research and key debates. The contributors discuss early challenges posed by sociobiology, the rise of evolutionary psychology, the more conflicted response of evolutionary sociology to sociobiology, and evolutionary psychology. Chapters address the application and limitations of Darwinian ideas in the social sciences. Prominent authors come from a variety of disciplines in ecology, biology, primatology, psychology, sociology, and the humanities. The most comprehensive resource available, this vital collection demonstrates to scholars and students the new ways in which evolutionary approaches, ultimately derived from biology, are influencing the diverse social sciences and humanities.

Handbook of Contemporary Sociological Theory


Author: Seth Abrutyn
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319322508
Category: Social Science
Page: 578
View: 1873

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This Handbook provides the hidden common threads that tie sociological inquiry together and featuring eminent scholars, it separates itself from its predecessors in substance and organization. Rather than rehashing old debates or longingly gazing at the past, this book presents sociologists with new ways of conceptualizing the organization and presentation of sociological theory. At the heart of this Handbook’s vision is the twin goals of making theory a viable enterprise by reconceptualizing how we teach theory and keeping theory closely tied to its empirical applications. Three strategies are offered: (1) Elucidating how classic issues like integration or interaction are interrogated today; (2) Presenting a coherent vision of the social levels of reality that theorists work on such as communities, groups, and the self as well as how the coherence of these levels speaks to the macro-micro link; and, (3) Theorizing the social world rather than celebrating theorists or theories; that is, one can look at how theory is used holistically to understand the constraints the social world places on our lived experience or the dynamics of social change. Hence, in the second decade of the 21st century, it has become clear that sociology is at a crossroads as the number of theorists and amount of theory available is increasingly unmanageable and unknowable by the vast majority of professionals and students. As such, this Handbook of Contemporary Sociological Theory presents the novice and the expert with the a roadmap for traversing this crossroad and building a more coherent, robust, and cumulative sociology.

Forschungsprogramme. Beiträge zur Vereinheitlichung der soziologischen Theoriebildung


Author: Michael Schmid
Publisher: Springer-Verlag
ISBN: 3658176113
Category: Social Science
Page: 632
View: 7513

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Der Band führt in die „Methodologie der wissenschaftlichen Forschungsprogramme“ ein und diskutiert hernach das Luhmannsche Programm der „soziologischen Aufklärung“, die forschungsleitenden Vorschläge der soziologisch gewendeten Evolutionstheorie, der soziobiologisch mikrofundierenden Konflikttheorie von Stephan Sanderson, der integrativen Handlungs- und Systemtheorie von Walter Bühl, des Neofunktionalismus von Jeffrey Alexander (und seiner Schule), der mikrofundierenden Solidaritätstheorie von Randall Collins und der Ulrich Beck‘schen Theorie der Reflexiven Modernisierung. Sodann untersucht der Band die (in einer Münchener Projektgruppe entwickelte) „Theorie der alltäglichen Lebensführung“ und das handlungstheoretisch fundierte Erklärungsprogramm von Andreas Balog; hernach wendet er sich der Habitus- und Gesellschaftstheorie Pierre Bourdieus und den Grundzügen der von Peter Hedström mitbegründeten „Analytischen Soziologie“ zu und thematisiert anschließend das sogenannte „weberianischen Forschungsprogramms“, wie es im Heidelberger Umkreis von M.R. Lepsius- und W. Schluchter entstanden ist. Am Ende steht eine vergleichende Untersuchung der „ökonomischen“ und „soziologischen“ Beiträge zur Korruptionstheorie.

The Oxford Handbook of Evolution, Biology, and Society


Author: Dr. Rosemary Hopcroft
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190299339
Category: Social Science
Page: 752
View: 9540

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Evolution, biology, and society is a catch-all phrase encompassing any scholarly work that utilizes evolutionary theory and/or biological or behavioral genetic methods in the study of the human social group, and The Oxford Handbook of Evolution, Biology, and Society contains an much needed overview of research in the area by sociologists and other social scientists. The examined topics cover a wide variety of issues, including the origins of social solidarity; religious beliefs; sex differences; gender inequality; determinants of human happiness; the nature of social stratification and inequality and its effects; identity, status, and other group processes; race, ethnicity, and race discrimination; fertility and family processes; crime and deviance; and cultural and social change. The scholars whose work is presented in this volume come from a variety of disciplines in addition to sociology, including psychology, political science, and criminology. Yet, as the essays in this volume demonstrate, the potential of theory and methods from biology for illuminating social phenomena is clear, and sociologists stand to gain from learning more about them and using them in their own work. The theory focuses on evolution by natural selection, the primary paradigm of the biological sciences, while the methods include the statistical analyses sociologists are familiar with, as well as other methods that they may not be familiar with, such as behavioral genetic methods, methods for including genetic factors in statistical analyses, gene-wide association studies, candidate gene studies, and methods for testing levels of hormones and other biochemicals in blood and saliva and including these factors in analyses. This work will be of interest to any sociologist with an interest in exploring the interaction of biological and sociological processes. As an introduction to the field it is useful for teaching upper-level or graduate students in sociology or a related social science.

New Evolutionary Social Science

Human Nature, Social Behavior, and Social Change
Author: Heinz-Jurgen Niedenzu,Tamas Meleghy,Peter Meyer
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 131725547X
Category: Social Science
Page: 270
View: 1815

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Social scientists have long declared their autonomy from the natural sciences, and in doing so have tended to neglect important biological constraints on human nature. Many sociological theories have suggested a nearly complete malleability of patterns of social life. The New Evolutionary Social Science challenges this view by building on Stephen K. Sanderson's 'Darwinian conflict theory' which sets out to synthesise sociological theories with key findings from biology into an overarching scientific paradigm. Configuring and expanding this groundbreaking theory, the contributors to this volume are well-known European and American experts in evolutionary science. The New Evolutionary Social Science develops a new basis for understanding social change and the world's future through a better integration of the natural and social sciences.

Social Neuroscience


Author: Russell K. Schutt,Larry J. Seidman,Matcheri S. Keshavan
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674728971
Category: Medical
Page: 436
View: 4636

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Human beings evolved in the company of others. Mutually reinforcing connections between brains, minds, and societies have profound implications for physical and emotional health. Social Neuroscience offers a comprehensive new framework for studying human brain development and human behavior in their social context.

On the Origins of Human Emotions

A Sociological Inquiry Into the Evolution of Human Affect
Author: Jonathan Turner
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 0804764360
Category: Psychology
Page: 208
View: 4175

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Language and culture are often seen as unique characteristics of human beings. In this book the author argues that our ability to use a wide array of emotions evolved long before spoken language and, in fact, constituted a preadaptation for the speech and culture that developed among later hominids. Long before humans could speak with words, they communicated through body language their emotional dispositions; and it is the neurological wiring of the brain for these emotional languages that represented the key evolutionary breakthrough for our species. How did natural selection work on the basic ape anatomy and neuroanatomy to create the hominid line? The author suggests that what distinguished our ancestors from other apes was the development of an increased capacity for sociality and organization, crucial for survival on the African savanna. All apes display a propensity for weak ties, individualism, mobility, and autonomy that was, and is today, useful in arboreal and woodland habitats but served them poorly when our ancestors began to move onto the African plain during the late Miocene. The challenge for natural selection was to enhance traits in the species that would foster the social ties necessary for survival in the new environment. The author suggests that the result was a development of certain areas of the primate brain that encouraged strong emotional ties, allowing our ancestors to build higher levels of social solidarity. Our basic neurological wiring continues to reflect this adaptive development. From a sociological perspective that is informed by evolutionary biology, primatology, and neurology, the book examines the current neurological bases of our emotional repertoire and their implications for our social actions.

Evolutionäre Psychologie


Author: David M. Buss
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9783827370945
Category: Evolution
Page: 599
View: 9732

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In den verschiedenen Verhaltenswissenschaften hat sich ein Ansatz etabliert, der als "Neodarwinische Renaissance" angesehen werden kann. Dieser evolutionäre Ansatz breitet sich in jüngster Zeit auch in der Psychologie zunehmend aus. David Buss gilt als einer der Pioniere der evolutionären Psychologie. Die inhaltlichen Schwerpunkte in dem Standardwerk von Buss liegen auf Fragen zu Liebe und Partnerschaft sowie zur Persönlichkeit. Es orientiert sich an den grundlegenden Anpassungsproblemen der Psychologie. Die verschiedenen Teilbereiche der Psychologie werden aus einer evolutionären Perspektive betrachtet.

Revisiting Institutionalism in Sociology

Putting the “Institution” Back in Institutional Analysis
Author: Seth Abrutyn
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134463499
Category: Social Science
Page: 228
View: 3320

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There may not be a concept so central to sociology, yet so vaguely defined in its contemporary usages, than institution. In Revisiting Institutionalism in Sociology, Abrutyn takes an in-depth look at what institutions are by returning to some of the insights of classical theorists like Max Weber and Herbert Spencer, the functionalisms of Talcott Parsons and S.N. Eisenstadt, and the more recent evolutionary institutionalisms of Gerhard Lenski and Jonathan Turner. Returning to the idea that various levels of social reality shape societies, Abrutyn argues that institutions are macro-level structural and cultural spheres of action, exchange, and communication. They have emergent properties and dynamics that are not reducible to other levels of social reality. Rather than fall back on old functionalist solutions, Abrutyn offers an original and synthetic theory of institutions like religion or economy; the process by which they become autonomous, or distinct cultural spaces that shape the color and texture of action, exchange, and communication embedded within them; and how they gain or lose autonomy by theorizing about institutional entrepreneurship. Finally, Abrutyn lays bare the inner workings of institutions, including their ecology, the way structure and culture shape lower-levels of social reality, and how they develop unique patterns of stratification and inequality founded on their ecology, structure, and culture. Ultimately, Abrutyn offers a refreshing take on macrosociology that brings functionalist, conflict, and cultural sociologies together, while painting a new picture of how the seemingly invisible macro-world influences the choices humans make and the goals we set.

Handbook of Sociological Theory


Author: Jonathan H. Turner
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 0387324585
Category: Political Science
Page: 745
View: 7392

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This wide-ranging handbook presents in-depth discussions on the array of subspecialties that comprise the field of sociological theory. Prominent theorists working in a variety of traditions discuss methodologies and strategies; the cultural turn in sociological theorizing; interaction processes; theorizing from the systemic and macro level; new directions in evolutionary theorizing; power, conflict, and change; and theorizing from assumptions of rationality.

Natural Resource Use and Global Change

New Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Social Ecology
Author: K. Bruckmeier
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 1137303158
Category: Political Science
Page: 290
View: 2574

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Building on recent developments in social ecology, this book advances a new critical theory of society and nature, exploring social metabolism and global resource flows in contemporary society. Barriers to global sustainability are identified and conditions for transforming industrial economies towards new sustainable resource use are described.

The Emergence and Evolution of Religion

By Means of Natural Selection
Author: Jonathan H. Turner,Alexandra Maryanski,Anders Klostergaard Petersen,Armin W. Geertz
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 135162069X
Category: Social Science
Page: 286
View: 6579

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Written by leading theorists and empirical researchers, this book presents new ways of addressing the old question: Why did religion first emerge and then continue to evolve in all human societies? The authors of the book—each with a different background across the social sciences and humanities—assimilate conceptual leads and empirical findings from anthropology, evolutionary biology, evolutionary sociology, neurology, primate behavioral studies, explanations of human interaction and group dynamics, and a wide range of religious scholarship to construct a deeper and more powerful explanation of the origins and subsequent evolutionary development of religions than can currently be found in what is now vast literature. While explaining religion has been a central question in many disciplines for a long time, this book draws upon a much wider array of literature to develop a robust and cross-disciplinary analysis of religion. The book remains true to its subtitle by emphasizing an array of both biological and sociocultural forms of selection dynamics that are fundamental to explaining religion as a universal institution in human societies. In addition to Darwinian selection, which can explain the biology and neurology of religion, the book outlines a set of four additional types of sociocultural natural selection that can fill out the explanation of why religion first emerged as an institutional system in human societies, and why it has continued to evolve over the last 300,000 years of societal evolution. These sociocultural forms of natural selection are labeled by the names of the early sociologists who first emphasized them, and they can be seen as a necessary supplement to the type of natural selection theorized by Charles Darwin. Explanations of religion that remain in the shadow cast by Darwin’s great insights will, it is argued, remain narrow and incomplete when explaining a robust sociocultural phenomenon like religion.

Schumpeter's Evolutionary Economics

A Theoretical, Historical and Statistical Analysis of the Engine of Capitalism
Author: Esben Sloth Andersen
Publisher: Anthem Press
ISBN: 9781843313359
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 500
View: 1734

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Joseph Schumpeter’s views on innovation, entrepreneurship and creative destruction are widely cited in many fields of the social sciences, and are influential in policy and decision making, yet they have often been misinterpreted and misunderstood. ‘Schumpeter’s Evolutionary Economics’ fills this void of analysis by introducing novel interpretations of Schumpeter’s five major works, and tracing the development of his intellectual theory and framework. In so doing it places our understanding of Schumpeter on a new and firmer footing. Esben Sloth Andersen was awarded the Gunnar Myrdal Prize for 2010 for ‘Schumpeter’s Evolutionary Economics’. The Myrdal Prize is awarded annually for the best monograph on a theme broadly in accord with the research perspectives of the European Association for Evolutionary Political Economy.

Market Relations and the Competitive Process


Author: J. Stanley Metcalfe,Alan Warde
Publisher: Manchester University Press
ISBN: 9780719064685
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 214
View: 5849

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There has been increasing interest and debate in recent years on the nature of economic processes in general and the related ideas of the market, in particular the competitive process. This study lies at the interface between two largely independent disciplines, economics and sociology, and reflects an attempt to bring the two fields of discourse more closely together. It explores this interface in a number of ways, looking at the competitive process and market relations from a number of different perspectives. A wide range of contributors are included, most of whom are leading writers and thinkers in the field.

Crisis in Sociology

The Need for Darwin
Author: Joseph Lopreato,Timothy Crippen
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351320181
Category: Social Science
Page: 344
View: 5967

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Crisis in Sociology presents a compelling portrait of sociology's current troubles and proposes a controversial remedy. In the authors' view, sociology's crisis has deep roots, traceable to the over-ambitious sweep of the discipline's founders. Generations of sociologists have failed to focus effectively on the tasks necessary to build a social science. The authors see sociology's most disabling flaw in the failure to discover even a single general law or principle. This makes it impossible to systematically organize empirical observations, guide inquiry by suggesting falsifiable hypotheses, or form the core of a genuinely cumulative body of knowledge. Absent such a theoretical tool, sociology can aspire to little more than an amorphous mass of hunches and disconnected facts. The condition engenders confusion and unproductive debate. It invites fragmentation and predation by applied social disciplines, such as business administration, criminal justice, social work, and urban studies. Even more dangerous are incursions by prestigious social sciences and by branches of evolutionary biology that constitute the frontier of the current revolution in behavioral science. Lopreato and Crippen argue that unless sociology takes into account central developments in evolutionary science, it will not survive as an academic discipline. Crisis in Sociology argues that participation in the "new social science," exemplified by thriving new fields such as evolutionary psychology, will help to build a vigorous, scientific sociology. The authors analyze research on such subjects as sex roles, social stratification, and ethnic conflict, showing how otherwise disconnected features of the sociological landscape can in fact contribute to a theoretically coherent and cumulative body of knowledge.

The New Sociological Imagination


Author: Steve Fuller
Publisher: SAGE
ISBN: 1847877354
Category: Social Science
Page: 240
View: 5310

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C. Wright Mills' classic The Sociological Imagination has inspired generations of students to study Sociology. However, the book is nearly half a century old. What would a book address, aiming to attract and inform students in the 21st century? This is the task that Steve Fuller sets himself in this major new invitation to study Sociology. The book: Critically examines the history of the social sciences to discover what the key contributions of sociology have been and how relevant they remain. Demonstrates how biological and sociological themes have been intertwined from the beginning of both disciplines, from the 19th century to the present day. Covers virtually all of sociology's classic theorists and themes. Provides a glossary of key thinkers and concepts. This book sets the agenda for imagining sociology in the 21st century and will attract students and professionals alike.