Eliasian Perspectives on the Sociology of Knowledge
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This book brings together recent writings that clarify, develop, extend and utilise the author’s ‘post-philosophical’ sociological perspective, offering examinations of attempts by leading sociologists to diagnose and address the malaise of contemporary society arising from globalisation.
Advancing the position that Norbert Elias’s theoretical-empirical synthesis took the achievements and promise of the ‘sociological revolution’ of modern times further than any other sociologist to date has done, it presents and defends the ‘post-philosophical’ perspective, while offering a critique of the opposing critical theory paradigm. It thus supplements standard histories of sociology with new insights and challenges the orthodox limitation of the empirical scope of sociology to the recent period designated as ‘modernity’.
With attention to the destructive prevalence of ‘overcritique’ and the lack of an in-depth sociological psychology in much contemporary sociology, Post-Philosophical Sociology will appeal to scholars of sociology, social philosophy, social theory, cultural theory and psychoanalytical studies.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Greatness of Sociology
Part One – Figurational-Process Sociology: Synthesis and Vocation
Chapter 1 The Dawn of Detachment: Norbert Elias and Sociology’s Two Tracks
Chapter 2 Karl Marx: New Perspectives
Chapter 3 Norbert Elias’s Post-Philosophical Sociology: From "Critique"to Relative Detachment
Chapter 4 How Has a Post-Philosophical Sociology Become Possible?
Chapter 5 From Distance to Detachment: Knowledge and Self-knowledge in Elias’s Theory of Involvement and Detachment
Part Two – Overcritique or Social Diagnosis?
Chapter 6 Critique and Overcritique in Sociology
Chapter 7 Overcritique and Ambiguity in Zygmunt Bauman’s Sociology: A Long-Term Perspective
Chapter 8 Narcissism or Informalization? Christopher Lasch, Norbert Elias and Social Diagnosis
Chapter 9 Informalization, Sociological Theory and Social Diagnosis
Addendum: On The Process of Becoming a Sociologist
Richard Kilminster is Honorary Research Fellow in Sociology at the University of Leeds, UK, and the author of Praxis and Method, The Sociological Revolution and Norbert Elias: Post-Philosophical Sociology.