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Theories of Practice

  • By: Theodore R. Schatzki
  • In: Encyclopedia of Consumer Culture
  • Edited by: Dale Southerton
  • Subject:Sociology of Consumption, Consumer Psychology, Consumer Culture

Practice theory is a collection of contemporary theories about the constitution and workings of social life that center on the notion of practices.

The Intellectual and Disciplinary Context

Practice theory is a family of theories in contemporary Western social thought. These theories tend to be resolutely multidisciplinary in nature, drawing on ideas developed in disparate disciplinary contexts. They also tend to be as philosophically informed, as are any theories in social thought. The disciplines that have most prominently contributed to practice theory are philosophy, sociology, anthropology, and science and technology studies. Theories of practice have come to be increasingly applied to understanding consumption, as consolidated in Alan Warde's article “Consumption and Theories of Practice.” Of particular significance is the recognition that consumption occurs in the course ...

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