With the ‘cultural turn’, the concept of culture has assumed enormous importance in our understanding of the interrelations between social, political, and economic structures, patterns of everyday interaction, and systems of meaning-making. In The SAGE Handbook of Cultural Analysis, the leading figures in their fields explore the implications of this paradigm shift. Addressed to academics and advanced students in all fields of the social sciences and humanities, this Handbook is at once a synthesis of advances in the field, with a comprehensive coverage of the scholarly literature, and a collection of original and provocative essays by some of the brightest intellectuals of our time.
Chapter 4: Sociology and Culture
Sociology and Culture
Two general questions need to be answered in order to define a manageable way of addressing a topic as forbiddingly large as the relations between sociology and cultural analysis. The first is whether to define these relations as the province of a particular and specialized area of work within sociology, or whether to consider them as pointing to a more general field of problems and issues that have broader implications for the pursuit of sociology more generally. According to the former conception, attention would focus on the sociology of culture as a specialist sub-branch of sociology concerned with the analysis of those practices and institutions which comprise culture as (the terms vary) a distinctive level, field or subsystem of society: ...