1st Edition

Culture in Mind Toward a Sociology of Culture and Cognition

Edited By Karen A. Cerulo Copyright 2002
    318 Pages
    by Routledge

    288 Pages
    by Routledge

    What is thought and how does one come to study and understand it? How does the mind work? Does cognitive science explain all the mysteries of the brain? This collection of fourteen original essays from some of the top sociologists in the country, including Eviatar Zerubavel, Diane Vaughan, Paul Dimaggio and Gary Alan Fine, among others, opens a dialogue between cognitive science and cultural sociology, encouraging a new network of scientific collaboration and stimulating new lines of social scientific research.
    Rather than considering thought as just an individual act, Culture in Mind considers it in a social and cultural context. Provocatively, this suggests that our thoughts do not function in a vacuum: our minds are not alone. Covering such diverse topics as the nature of evil, the process of storytelling, defining mental illness, and the conceptualizing of the premature baby, these essays offer fresh insights into the functioning of the mind. Leaving the MRI behind, Culture in Mind will uncover the mysteries of how we think.

    Acknowledgements Dedication Chapter 1: Establishing a Sociology of Culture and Cognition, Karen A. Cerulo Section 1: Sensation and Attention Introduction Chapter 2: The Elephant in the Room: Notes on the Social Organization of Denial, Eviatar Zerubavel Chapter 3: Signals and Interpretive Work: The Role of Culture in a Theory of Practical Action, Diane Vaughan Section 2: Discrimination and Classification Introduction Chapter 4: Commensuration and Cognition, Wendy Nelson Espeland Chapter 5: Preterm Babies in the Mother Machine: Metaphoric Reasoning and Bureaucratic Rituals that Finish the Unfinished Infant, Nicole Isaacson Chapter 6: Cognition in Social Constructions: Market Rivalry Profile versus Cost Schedule, Harrison C. White Section 3: Representation and Integration Introduction Chapter 7: Moral Inquiry in Cultural Sociology, Robert Wuthnow Chapter 8: Individualism.'Pro tem': Reconsidering U.S. Social Relations, Karen A. Cerulo Chapter 9: Tracking Discourse, David Altheide Chapter 10: How Storytelling Can Be Empowering, William Gamson Section 4: Storage and Retrieval Introduction Chapter 11: Honor, Dignity, and Collective Memory: Judging the Past in Korea and the United States, Barry Schwartz and MiKyoung Park Chapter 12: Thinking About Evil: Adolf Hitler and the Dilemma of the Social Construction of Reputations, Gary Alan Fine Section 5: Building Bridges Introduction Chapter 13: Fixing a Foucault Sandwich: Cognitive Universals and Cultural Particulars in the Concept of Mental Disorders, Jerome C. Wakefield Chapter 14: Culture, Harmful Dysfunctions and the Sociology of Mental Illness, Allan V. Horowitz Chapter 15: Why Cognitive (and Cultural) Sociology Needs Cognitive Science, Paul Dimaggio Appendix: Mapping the Field, Karen A. Cerulo Contributor Notes Index


    Karen A. Cerulo is Associate Professor of Sociology at Rutgers University where she specializes in culture and cognition research. She is the author of Deciphering Violence: The Cognitive Structure of Right and Wrong (Routledge, 1998).

    "A spendid volume on cognitive sociology...Cerulo has done sociologists a great service." -- Judith R. Blau, University of NC at Chapel Hill
    "Social scientists can choose among three approaches to the lively field of cognitive science: they can dismiss it as irrelevant to social structure; they can try reducing all social processes to straightforward expressions of cognitive events; or they can undertake the difficult effort of integrating cognitive processes with social relations. Karen Cerulo and her collaborators have boldly and rightly chosen the third way. They display the rich promise of taking the intersection of cognitive and interpersonal processes seriously." -- Viviana Zelizer, author of The Social Meaning of Money
    "An outstanding collection..This volume makes a compelling case for the cultural and societal character of cognition. Culture in Mind speaks powerfully to the seamless relationship of individuals to culture and society. The volume is a fine read." -- Judith A. Howard, co-author of Gendered Situations, Gendered Selves
    "How very welcome is this splendid volume on cognitive sociology. Karen Cerulo has done sociologists a great service by bringing together the various strands of this field and providing readers with clear examples, conceptual clarity, and a broad framework that will stimulate interest and research." -- Judith R. Blau, author of The Shape of Culture