In Understanding Sleep: An Introduction to the Sociology of Sleep, Eric L. Hsu provides a clear and critical analysis of the new sociological study of sleep. Once a much-neglected topic for social researchers, sleep has increasingly become an important issue within the discipline of sociology since the turn of the new Millennium. This newfound interest has coincided with the heightened cultural concern and awareness in contemporary Western societies of all things sleep-related.
Timely and cogent, Understanding Sleep offers a comprehensive and up-to-date assessment of how sleep is studied from a sociological perspective. By surveying various lines of research in the emerging sociology of sleep, Hsu explains how the field introduces and works with a new, insightful source of empirical data. Hsu also describes how the sociology of sleep entails a considerable amount of conceptual and methodological innovation and refinement.
Further, Hsu’s appraisal of the emerging sociology of sleep considers how the field can be further developed and expanded. Hsu proposes ways of thinking about sleep that foster new lines of sociological inquiry and addresses how the sociological study of sleep relates to other types of sleep research such as those in the biological and medical sciences.
Written in a stimulating and accessible style, Understanding Sleep will strongly appeal to students and researchers who aim to understand why sleep is a valuable and interesting focus for sociological research.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The sociological implications of sleep Part I: Sleep In the Stream of Sociology 1. The Emergence of the Sociology of Sleep: Historical context and recent developments 2. Pioneering Sleep Research: Methods and theory 3. Sleep as a Sociological Prism: Understanding Time through the Study of Sleep Part II: Remaining Challenges and New Directions 4. Sleep and the Body: Intersections between Sociology and Biology 5. The Social Significance of Sleep: Beyond passivity 6. Organizations and Objects that Sleep: Sleep as metaphor and process Conclusion: On the Complexities of Studying Sleep