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Mobility - flows, movement and migration in social life - has emerged as a central area of sociological debate, yet one of its most dominant forms, automobility, has remained largely ignored. Edited by three leading social analysts, Automobilities presents one of the first and most wide-ranging examinations of the car and its promise of autonomy and mobility. Drawing on rich empirical detail, from ethnographies of office work on the motorway to the important of the car in French cultural theory, the contributions demonstrate just how significant have been the economic, technological, social and political consequences of a pervasive and accelerating culture of the car. A broad array of theories are put to work to illuminate this vast and yet neglected topic: strategy and tactics, complexity theory, performativity, actor network theory, film theory, material culture, theories of non-places, embodiment, sensuous geography/sociology, ethnomethodology and non-representational theory. This book will firmly establish automobilities as a key topic for theory and research. Automobilities represents a landmark text that will contribute to and provide a significant impetus for the emerging analysis of mobilities in contemporary societies.

Three Ages of the Automobile: The Cultural Logics of the Car
Three ages of the automobile: The cultural logics of the car
DavidGartman

JOHN URRY (2000: 57–64) has recently changed the way we think about automobiles with his idea of automobility. With this concept focused on movement and process, he suggests that sociologists abandon their idea of the car as a thing, a simple object of production and consumption, and look at it as a system of interlocking social and technical practices that has reconfigured civil society. Among the dimensions of this system of automobility Urry includes the car as manufactured object, item of individual consumption, machinic (economic) complex, environmental agent, form of mobility and dominant cultural discourse. These dimensions have interacted to produce mobile civil societies ...

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