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This accessible introductory text offers an engaging and thought-provoking discussion of class in relation to several cultural, sociological and political schools of thought and draws upon the works of a broad range of key theorists as well as contemporary thinkers to restate the ongoing importance of class as a sociological concept.
Class has long been a key focus of sociological and political studies. This book explores what it might mean today in a 21st century context. Is class really disappearing? Is class morally justifiable? What impact has globalisation and neoliberalism had on the restructuring of class-based social relationships? These questions and others are explored in this short but lively book. Stevenson reviews a number of normative traditions including anarchist, Marxist, social democratic and citizenship-based forms of understanding of class in order to shed light on the themes of class-based experiences, health and inequality, work, class struggle, social movements and the possibility of developing more egalitarian and just societies in the future.
This short book will be invaluable to general readers and students in the humanities and social sciences seeking an accessible introduction to the central problems raised by discussions of class in the 21st century.
Table of Contents
1. Class as a Key Sociological Concept
2. Class Struggles
3. Class, Culture and Morality
4. Class Politics
5. Class and the Commons
6. Class, Work and the Labour Movement
7. Concluding Thoughts
Nick Stevenson is Reader in Cultural Sociology at the University of Nottingham, UK. His intellectual interests are mainly located in the fields of class, capitalism, ecology, citizenship, education and popular media. He is the author of several books, including Freedom (Routledge, 2012) and Human Rights and the Reinvention of Freedom (Routledge, 2016), as well as numerous chapters and journal articles.