The Internet and Social Inequalities: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Internet and Social Inequalities

1st Edition

By James C. Witte, Susan E. Mannon


182 pages | 7 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9780415963190
pub: 2009-12-21
Hardback: 9780415963206
pub: 2009-12-21
eBook (VitalSource) : 9780203861639
pub: 2010-02-01
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Ideal for use as a core or secondary text in lower division social inequalities or social problems courses, this book explains how the changing nature and uses of the Internet not only mirror today’s social inequalities, but also are at the heart of how stratification is now taking place.  A pioneering work, both intellectually, and pedagogically.


"The Internet and Social Inequalities provides a useful overview of theories relevant to understanding inequality in access to and use of the new digital inequalities. By placing research on the digital divide into the context of major theoretical traditions, the authors provide a rich framework for understanding this critical form of inequality."—Paul DiMaggio, Sociology, Princeton University

"Jim Witte and Susan Mannon did not just write another book about the empirical facts on internet users, but rather innovatively put the numbers they provide in an array of sociological perspectives. Moreover they provide a wealth of statistical facts and figures making the book an important standard text for students and researchers."—Gert Wagner, Economics, Berlin University of Technology

"In sum, the text is well written and clearly organized. The introductory chapter offers an interesting overview of the phenomenon of the digital divide, and the three central chapters are excellent and stimulatingly insightful in combining the classical sociological theories with recent empirical data. The final chapter presents an integration of the three chapters, explaining why they collectively provide a better understand of the phenomenon of the digital divide than any of the chapters alone. At the same time, the final chapter provides a view toward the future, introducing some relevant and critical aspects such as digital privacy. From a teaching perspective, this text could be used in both undergraduate and graduate courses, as it potentially offers different levels of reading in accordance with different levels of knowledge."—Teaching Sociology, Volume 39, Number 3, Massimo Ragnedda, University of Sassari, Sardinia, Italy

Table of Contents

1. A Sociology of the Internet 2. Internet Use Among American Adults 3. Internet Inequality From a Conflict Perspective 4. Internet Inequality From a Cultural Perspective 5. Internet Inequality From a Functionalist Perspective 6. Patterns of Inequality and the Future of the Internet

About the Authors

James C. Witte (Ph.D., Harvard University) is Professor of Sociology and Director of the Center for Social Science Research at George Mason University.Witte was previously Chair of the Communication and Information Technology Section of the American Sociological Association.

Susan E. Mannon (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) is an Adjunct Professor of Sociology at Utah State University.She teaches and does research in the areas of social inequality and international development. Her work has appeared in Gender & Society, Human Organization, and Sociological Spectrum.

About the Series

Sociology Re-Wired

This innovative series is for all readers interested in books that provide frameworks for making sense of the complexities of contemporary social life. Each of the books in this series uses a sociological lens to provide current critical and analytical perspectives on significant social issues, patterns and trends. The series consists of books that integrate the best ideas in sociological thought with an aim toward public education and engagement. These books are designed for use in the classroom as well as for scholars and socially curious general readers.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General