Chapter

Public Sociology and the End of Society

Alain Touraine

in Public Sociology

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2007 | ISBN: 9780520251373
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520940758 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520251373.003.0003
Public Sociology and the End of Society

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Writing from the perspective of French sociology, this chapter holds that public sociology is in no sense peripheral to the sociological enterprise but is central to the theoretical and practical restoration of agency within the discipline. It approaches public sociology from the standpoint of an outsider to American sociology but accepts Michael Burawoy's main arguments. The chapter argues that the main task of public sociology is to study the “actors who try to link the global economy with specific cultures.” As a result, public sociology occupies the central place in sociology in its search for actors. Public sociology, is in fact reshaping professional sociology, pushing it in the direction of studying institutions in order to defend individuals and groups against dominant forces.

Keywords: French sociology; public sociology; Michael Burawoy; American sociology; professional sociology

Chapter.  4641 words. 

Subjects: Comparative and Historical Sociology

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