Being Sociological

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Sociology throws new light on the world we think we know. It can challenge long-held assumptions and it offers a spectrum of possibilities to extend our understandings of everyday life, politics, culture and relationships. It opens our eyes to alternatives for tackling social problems and connects every one of us to each other.

Being Sociological is an entertaining, inspiring, intelligent introduction to this vast and illuminating subject. Each chapter follows a clear path through a core sociological process – from working and consuming to believing and communicating. With intriguing examples, clear definitions of essential jargon and stimulating theoretical explanation, the book focuses on the most important issues and ideas that inform sociology. The new edition:

• Expands the international range of examples and voices represented
• Draws on expertise of leading academic contributors from across seven countries
• Includes even more coverage of hot topics in new chapters on globalization and the environment
• Uses a clear structure throughout each chapter to ease the reading experience
• Aids understanding and learning with new features, including discussion points, annotated suggestions for further reading, an expanded glossary, and enhanced web support at

This is the resource all students new to the subject need in order to start their sociological journey with understanding, knowledge, imagination and confidence.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

'I generally find introductory texts rather bland and uninspiring, but not in this instance. Overall I think the editors and their contributors have succeeded in delivering a text that offers an original and interesting approach to the difficult task of introducing sociology to students' - Professor Barry Smart, School of Social, Historical and Literary Studies, University of Portsmouth, UK

'The writing is remarkably coherent for a multi-authored book [and] the style is accessible to students new to sociology. I like it. The book is interesting to read - never boring.' - Professor Kenneth Roberts, School of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Liverpool, UK

'This is a refreshing 'take' on the subject and provides the strongest claim to originality competitive market.' - David Pearson, Reader in Sociology, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230005235
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 4/3/2007
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 384
  • Product dimensions: 6.12 (w) x 9.32 (h) x 1.06 (d)

Meet the Author

STEVE MATTHEWMAN is Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Department of Sociology, University of Auckland, New Zealand. He is an established writer and co-editor, and has over 9 years' experience teaching introductory level sociology courses across various institutions in the UK and New Zealand.

CATHERINE LANE WEST-NEWMAN is Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Department of Sociology, University of Auckland, New Zealand. She has over 17 years' experience of co-ordinating and delivering first year sociology courses and has enjoyed Visiting Professorships at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She is the author of a number of book chapters and articles in the field of sociological studies.

BRUCE CURTIS is Senior Lecturer and Head of Department in Sociology at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. He has more that 12 years' experience of running and teaching a range of sociology and interdisciplinary undergraduate courses. He is Past President of the Sociological Association of Aotearoa New Zealand.

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Table of Contents

Preface: How to Read This Book; S.Matthewman & C.L.West-Newman
Being Sociological; C.L.West-Newman & S.Matthewman
Researching; B.Curtis
Modernizing; R.Kilminster
Controlling: Power; C.L.West-Newman & S.Matthewman
Stratifying: Inequality; D.Mayeda
Becoming: Identities; M.Sullivan & C.L.West-Newman
Gendering; M. Holmes
Sexualizing; M.Stevens
Racializing; C.L.West-Newman & I.Vodanovich
Relating: Families; R.Shaw
Feeling: Emotions; C.L.West-Newman
Believing: Religions; T.McIntosh
Educating; Oliveira
Straying: Deviance; S. Pfhol & K. Bachechi
Globalizing; M. Steger & E.Wilson
Working; B.Curtis
Consuming; C. Rojek
Sustaining: The Environment; B. Smart
Connecting: Technology; S.Matthewman
Communicating: Media; W. Wood
Finishing; S.Matthewman

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