• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Offering a major challenge to established textbooks and pointing to inspiring new ways of approaching sociology, this book presents a notable shift in introductory sociology. Too often the subject is taught as a dry and detached system of thought and practice. Passion is regarded as something to avoid or to treat with inherent suspicion. By asking questions about sociology and its relation to passion, the authors seek to revitalize the subject. The book introduces and develops a number of themes such as: identity, knowledge, magic, desire, power and everyday life. It argues that students should analyze these themes through practices including: reading, writing, speaking, storytelling and organizing. The authors aim to intr


[to] arrive at an ever more precise and at the same time ever more passionate apprehension of the tangible world. (Breton, quoted in Nadeau 1973: 37)

The combination of passion and sociology can have an unsettling, almost vertiginous effect. Many professional sociologists have described the combination as a contradiction in terms, the immediate response to our title being one of shock or laughter – ‘you can't do that’. By asking questions about sociology and its relation to passion, we aim to destabilise forms of sociology that regard this juxtaposition as inappropriate. More importantly, we want to advocate and demonstrate a sociology that is intrigued and driven by this type of juxtaposition.

The term ‘sociology’ stands splendidly alone in many textbook and journal titles, as if its ...

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