1941: The Sample Survey and the Modern Rational Nation

Mike Savage

in Identities and Social Change in Britain since 1940

Published in print May 2010 | ISBN: 9780199587650
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191740626 | DOI:
1941: The Sample Survey and the Modern Rational Nation

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This chapter discusses the remarkable proliferation of social survey research in Great Britain from the 1950s and shows how it created a distinctive politics of the abstracted individual articulated as member of a modern rational nation. It explores the dramatic rise of the sample survey as an instrument of modern rational governance, highlighting its central role in producing knowledge fit for governance, and also suggests that this form of research eliminated women as major subjects of social research, even though they had been highly visible in earlier periods.

Keywords: social survey; Great Britain; sample survey; rational governance; knowledge; women; social research

Chapter.  13145 words. 

Subjects: Comparative and Historical Sociology

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