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Charles Crothers

In: The SAGE Handbook of Sociology

Chapter 5: The Diversity and Insularity of Sociological Traditions

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The Diversity and Insularity of Sociological Traditions
The diversity and insularity of sociological traditions
The Importance of Traditions

Sociologists should make the choices at each of the stages of a research or writing project – conceptual approach, methodology, presentational style, etc. – in terms of what is most appropriate for that particular topic. However, almost inevitably, sociologists are strongly, albeit often unconsciously, intellectually influenced at each point in their projects by received or developing traditions, paradigms, lines of thought, and socially influenced by the ‘social embedding’ of such cognitive structures in ‘schools’, ‘theory-groups’, ‘research networks’ and other forms of intellectual social organization. Such influences and pre-structurings of approaches are, more often than not, complex rather than simple, with different sociological traditions influencing different aspects of the project, ...

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