53 found
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  1. Cultural Pragmatics: Social Performance Between Ritual and Strategy.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2004 - Sociological Theory 22 (4):527-573.
    From its very beginnings, the social study of culture has been polarized between structuralist theories that treat meaning as a text and investigate the patterning that provides relative autonomy and pragmatist theories that treat meaning as emerging from the contingencies of individual and collective action-so-called practices-and that analyze cultural patterns as reflections of power and material interest. In this article, I present a theory of cultural pragmatics that transcends this division, bringing meaning structures, contingency, power, and materiality together in a (...)
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  2. The Discourse of American Civil Society: A New Proposal for Cultural Studies.Jeffrey C. Alexander & Philip Smith - 1993 - Theory and Society 22 (2):151-207.
  3.  38
    Theoretical Logic in Sociology: Positivism, Presuppositions, and Current Controversies.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1982 - University of California Press, C1982-1982.
  4. Fin de Siáecle Social Theory Relativism, Reduction, and the Problem of Reason.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1995 - Verso.
    In four closely interwoven studies, Jeffrey Alexander identifies the central dilemma that provokes contemporary social theory and proposes a new way to resolve it. The dream of reason that marked the previous fin de siècle foundered in the face of the cataclysms of the twentieth century, when war, revolution, and totalitarianism came to be seen as themselves products of reason. In response there emerged the profound skepticism about rationality that has so starkly defined the present fin de siècle. From Wittgenstein (...)
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  5. After Neofunctionalism: Action, Culture, and Civil Society.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1998 - In Neofunctionalism and After. Blackwell. pp. 210--33.
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  6. Neofunctionalism and After: Collected Readings.Jeffrey C. Alexander (ed.) - 1998 - Blackwell.
    "Neofunctionalism and After" brings together for the first time in one volume all of Alexander's writings on neofunctionalism, the present volume also contains ...
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  7.  3
    The Dark Side of Modernity.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2013 - Polity Press.
    Social theory between progress and apocalypse -- Autonomy and domination: Weber's cage -- Barbarism and modernity: Eisenstadt's regret -- Integration and justice: Parsons' utopia -- Despising others: Simmel's stranger -- Meaning evil -- De-civilizing the civil sphere -- Psychotherapy as central institution -- The frictions of modernity and their possible repair.
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  8.  53
    Iconic Consciousness: The Material Feeling of Meaning.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2010 - Thesis Eleven 103 (1):10-25.
    This article suggests an iconic turn in cultural sociology. Icons can be seen, it is argued, as symbolic condensations that root social meanings in material form, allowing the abstractions of cognition and morality to be subsumed, to be made invisible, by aesthetic shape. Meaning is made iconically visible, in other words, by the beautiful, sublime, ugly, or simply by the mundane materiality of everyday life. But it is via the senses that iconic power is made. This new approach to meaning (...)
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  9. Theorizing the “Modes of Incorporation”: Assimilation, Hyphenation, and Multiculturalism as Varieties of Civil Participation.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2001 - Sociological Theory 19 (3):237-249.
  10.  94
    From the Depths of Despair: Performance, Counterperformance, and “September 11”.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2004 - Sociological Theory 22 (1):88-105.
    After introducing a perspective on terrorism as postpolitical and after establishing the criteria for success that are immanent in this form of antipolitical action, this essay interprets September 11, 2001, and its aftermath inside a cultural-sociological perspective. After introducing a macro-model of social performance that combines structural and semiotic with pragmatic and power-oriented dimensions, I show how the terrorist attack on New York City and the counterattacks that immediately occurred in response can be viewed as an iteration of the performance/counterperformance (...)
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  11.  24
    Critical Reflections on `Reflexive Modernization'.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1996 - Theory, Culture and Society 13 (4):133-138.
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  12. On the Social Construction of Moral Universals: The `Holocaust' From War Crime to Trauma Drama.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2002 - European Journal of Social Theory 5 (1):5-85.
    The following is simultaneously an essay in sociological theory, in cultural sociology, and in the empirical reconstruction of postwar Western history. Per theory, it introduces and specifies a model of cultural trauma - a model that combines a strong cultural program with concern for institutional and power effects - and applies it to large-scale collectivities over extended periods of time. Per cultural sociology, the essay demonstrates that even the most calamitous and biological of social facts - the prototypical evil of (...)
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  13. Three Models of Culture and Society Relations: Toward an Analysis of Watergate.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1984 - Sociological Theory 2:290-314.
    One of the most important contributions of the Parsonian tradition has been its conceptualization of the relative autonomy and mutual interpenetration of culture and social systems. The first part of this chapter defines three ideal types of empirical relationships between culture and society: specification, refraction, and columnization. Each is related to different configurations of social structure and culture and, in turn, to different degrees of social conflict. The second part of the chapter uses this typology to illuminate critical aspects of (...)
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  14.  26
    Iconic Experience in Art and Life.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2008 - Theory, Culture and Society 25 (5):1-19.
    This article examines a key question emerging from the strong program in cultural sociology — can art provide a window into social life? An examination of Giacometti's Standing Woman shows that art attempts to express cultural structures via immersion into and through the material surfaces of aesthetic form. Through an analysis of the iconic significance of family photos, furniture and celebrities, the article goes on to suggest that such iconic experience remains at the basis of contemporary social life. It explains (...)
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  15.  87
    The Long and Winding Road: Civil Repair of Intimate Injustice.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2001 - Sociological Theory 19 (3):371-400.
  16.  4
    Positivism, Presuppositions, and Current Controversies.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1982 - Routledge.
    This volume begins by challenging the bases of the recent scientization of sociology. Then it challenges some of the ambitious claims of recent theoretical debate. The author not only reinterprets the most important classical and modern sociological theories but extracts from the debates the elements of a more satisfactory, inclusive approach to these general theoretical points.
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  17.  4
    The Antinomies of Classical Thought: Marx and Durkheim (Theoretical Logic in Sociology).Lillian Chavenson Saden PrOfessor of Sociology Jeffrey C. Alexander & Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1982 - Theoretical Logic in Sociology.
    This volume challenges prevailing understanding of the two great founders of sociological thought. In a detailed and systematic way the author demonstrates how Marx and Durkheim gradually developed the fundamental frameworks for sociological materialism and idealism. While most recent interpreters of Marx have placed alienation and subjectivity at the centre of his work, Professor Alexander suggests that it was the later Marx¿s very emphasis on alienation that allowed him to avoid conceptualizing subjectivity altogether. In Durkheim¿s case, by contrast, the author (...)
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  18. Fact-Signs and Cultural Sociology: How Meaning-Making Liberates the Social Imagination.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2011 - Thesis Eleven 104 (1):87-93.
  19.  33
    Culture Trauma, Morality and Solidarity: The Social Construction of 'Holocaust and Other Mass Murders'.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2016 - Thesis Eleven 132 (1):3-16.
    Cultural trauma occurs when members of a collectivity feel they have been subjected to a horrendous event that leaves indelible marks upon their group consciousness, marking their memories forever and changing their future identity in fundamental and irrevocable ways. While this new scientific concept clarifies causal relationships between previously unrelated events, structures, perceptions, and actions, it also illuminates a neglected domain of social responsibility and political action. By constructing cultural traumas, social groups, national societies, and sometimes even entire civilizations, not (...)
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  20.  54
    Analytical Debates: Understanding the Relative Autonomy of Culture.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1995 - ProtoSociology 7:35-53.
    This essay analyzes the principal approaches to culture which are available in the social sciences today and places these debates within the framework of broader theoretical controversies. On the one hand, it is a critical comparison. On the other hand, it has a systematic dimension that casts these arguments in a cumulative form. While the ambition of this essay is to prepare the way for a critical synthesis, such a task will not be attempted here. Far from being aimed at (...)
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  21.  6
    Theoretical Logic in Sociology. Volume 1: Positivism, Presuppositions, and Current Controversies.Jonathan M. Wiener & Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1985 - History and Theory 24 (1):87.
  22. Toward Neo-Functionalism.Jeffrey C. Alexander & Paul Colomy - 1985 - Sociological Theory 3 (2):11-23.
  23.  1
    The Prescience and Paradox of Erich Fromm: A Note on the Performative Contradictions of Critical Theory.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2021 - Thesis Eleven 165 (1):3-9.
    As social theorists seek to understand the contemporary challenges of radical populism, we would do well to reconsider the febrile insights of the psychoanalytic social theorist Erich Fromm. It was Fromm who, at the beginning of the 1930s, conceptualized the emotional and sociological roots of a new ‘authoritarian character’ who was meek in the face of great power above and ruthless to the powerless below. It was Fromm, in the 1950s, who argued that societies, not only individuals, could be sick. (...)
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  24. On Choosing One's Intellectual Predecessors: The Reductionism of Camic's Treatment of Parsons and the Institutionalists.Jeffrey C. Alexander & Giuseppe Sciortino - 1996 - Sociological Theory 14 (2):154-171.
  25. The Modern Reconstruction of Classical Thought -- Talcott Parsons.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1983 - University of California Press.
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  26.  28
    The Parsons Revival in German Sociology.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1984 - Sociological Theory 2:394-412.
  27. Sociological Theory and the Claim to Reason: Why the End is Not in Sight.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1991 - Sociological Theory 9 (2):147-153.
  28.  85
    Rethinking Strangeness: From Structures in Space to Discourses in Civil Society.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2004 - Thesis Eleven 79 (1):87-104.
    Simmel develops his concept of the stranger in an overly structural and reductionist manner. Contrary to Simmel’s suggestion, there is an indeterminate relation between structural exclusion and the attribution of strangeness. After showing that ‘the stranger’ must be rethought in a cultural-sociological way, this essay demonstrates an alternative approach. Articulating a ‘discourse’ that structures Western projections of strangeness, I explore its relation to colonialism, racial and class domination, and national conflict in modern Western history. This approach suggests an alternative, not (...)
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  29.  95
    Shaky Foundations.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1992 - Theory and Society 21 (2):203-217.
  30. Self, Social Structure, and Beliefs: Explorations in Sociology.Jeffrey C. Alexander, Gary T. Marx & Christine L. Williams - 2004 - Univ of California Press.
    This is an exploration of the creative work done by leading sociologists who were inspired by the scholarship of Neil Smelser.
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  31. Social Subjectivity: Psychotherapy as Central Institution.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2009 - Thesis Eleven 96 (1):128-134.
  32. The Arc of Civil Liberation: Obama–Tahrir–Occupy.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2013 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 39 (4-5):341-347.
    Despite anxieties about the growing power of neo-liberalism, the crisis of the EU and the upsurge of right-wing political movements, it is important to recognize that utopian movements on the left have also in recent years been symbolically revitalized and organizationally sustained. This article analyses three recent social upheavals as utopian civil society movements, placing the 2008 US presidential campaign of Barack Obama, the Egyptian uprising in Tahrir Square and the Occupy Movement in the USA inside the narrative arc that (...)
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  33. The 'Marxism Project' in The History of Its Times.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2010 - Thesis Eleven 100 (1):81-83.
  34. Marxism and the Spirit of Socialism: Cultural Origins of Anti-Capitalism (1982).Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2010 - Thesis Eleven 100 (1):84-105.
  35. Why We Might All Be Able to Live Together: An Immanent Critique of Alain Touraine's Pourrons-Nous Vivre Ensemble?Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1999 - Thesis Eleven 58 (1):99-105.
  36. Must We Choose Between Criticism and Faith? Reflections on the Later Work of Bernard Barber.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1991 - Sociological Theory 9 (1):124-128.
  37. The Social Requisites for Altruism and Voluntarism: Some Notes on What Makes a Sector Independent.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1987 - Sociological Theory 5 (2):165-171.
  38.  9
    Why Cultural Sociology Is Not ‘Idealist’.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2005 - Theory, Culture and Society 22 (6):19-29.
    I make use of this reply to McLennan to offer an overall perspective on the development of my work, normatively, empirically and theoretically, and in its earlier neofunctionalist and later cultural-sociological phase. I argue that, despite periodic suggestions that my cultural sociology seeks to push sociology towards an absolute subjectivity, the social-epistemological framework of ‘multidimensionality’ around which I organized my first work, Theoretical Logic in Sociology, still holds. Cultural sociology introduces a method and theory for understanding a dimension of social (...)
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  39.  3
    Mainstream and Critical Social Theory: Classical, Modern and Contemporary.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2001 - Sage Publications.
    Unrivalled in scope and depth, and prepared by one of the acknowledged giants of contemporary social theory, this boxed set provides a magisterial review of the central canons, discourses and research programs in social theory. The reader is provided with a route-map through the complex terrain of social theory from classical to contemporary times. Alexander distils an amazingly rich set of resources into eight exceptional volumes. For the specialist who does not have all of these materials to hand, the set (...)
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  40.  9
    The Classical Tradition in Sociology: The European Tradition.Raymond Boudon, Mohammed Cherkaoui & Jeffrey C. Alexander (eds.) - 1997 - Sage Publications.
    This four-volume set presents an unrivalled collection of the key literature in European sociology. The prestigious texts range across the European tradition from enlightenment to contemporary theory. The collection explodes the myth that the European tradition in sociology is a debate with the ghosts of Karl Marx and Max Weber, demonstrating that the tradition is far more deeply rooted and broadly based. Volume 1 is devoted to the emergence of European sociology. The contribution of classical political economy and the Enlightenment (...)
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  41. Emile Durkheim, Contributi Ad Una Rilettura Critica.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2002 - Meltemi Editore Srl.
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  42.  26
    Progress and Disillusion: Civil Repair and its Discontents.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2016 - Thesis Eleven 137 (1):72-82.
    Civil Sphere Theory provides a more dynamic, cultural, and democratically oriented model of contemporary society than either conflict or modernization theory. Civil spheres expand and contract in contradictory ways. Utopian periods of utopian repair trigger defensive efforts that primordialize and exclude. Late 20th century civil repair generated new relations of economic production and more multicultural modes of integration. Early 21rst century reactions have highlighted dangers, demanding more cultural homogeneity amidst rising concerns about inequality. There is increasing disillusionment about the possibility (...)
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  43.  21
    Looking for Theory.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1981 - Theory and Society 10 (2):279-292.
  44.  38
    Parsons' "Structure" in American Sociology.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1988 - Sociological Theory 6 (1):96-102.
  45.  21
    Global Civil Society.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2006 - Theory, Culture and Society 23 (2-3):521-524.
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  46.  16
    Looking for Theory: "Facts" and "Values" as the Intellectual Legacy of the 1970s.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1981 - Theory and Society 10 (2):279.
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  47. Las paradojas de la sociedad civil.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1994 - Revista Internacional de Filosofía Política 4:73-89.
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  48.  62
    Civil Societies Between Difference and Solidarity.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1998 - Theoria 45 (92):1-14.
  49. The Classical Attempt at Theoretical Synthesis Max Weber.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 1983
    In this volume the author maintains that sociology must learn to combine the insights of both Durkheim and Marx and that it can only do so on the presuppositional ground that Weber set forth. Alexander maintains that the idealist and materialist traditions must be transformed into analytic dimensions of multidimensional and synthetic theory. This volume focusses on the writing of Talcott Parsons, the only modern thinker who can be considered a true peer of the classical founders, and examines his own (...)
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  50.  9
    The Fate of the Dramatic in Modern Society: Social Theory and the Theatrical Avant-Garde.Jeffrey C. Alexander - 2014 - Theory, Culture and Society 31 (1):3-24.
    Avant-garde theatre is often invoked as the bellwether for a society that has become postdramatic – fragmented, alienated, and critical of efforts to create collectively shared meanings. A theatre whose sequenced actions have no narrative mirrors a social world where the most conflictual situations no longer appear as drama but merely as spectacle: a society where audiences look on without any feeling or connection. Because only half right, these theses about postdramatic theatre and society are fundamentally wrong. As modern societies (...)
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