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Taking It Big
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Taking It Big
Developing Sociological Consciousness in Postmodern Times

  • Steven P. Dandaneau - Kansas State University, USA, University of Tennessee, USA, University of Dayton, USA

January 2001 | 288 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
For use as a primary or supplemental text for Introductory Sociology, Social Theory, and senior "capstone" courses. An unabashedly "critical" text for those who want to connect their students' personal experiences with what is happening at the societal, global level today. The emphasis is on teaching "the sociological imagination" (i.e., to instill in students a unique and radical form of consciousness that will allow them to conceptualize today's chief global and individual problems and the relations between them). Dandaneau adopts a perspective like that of C. Wright Mills and argues that the sociological imagination is the "most needed" type of consciousness in the world today. The author encourages students to think through a wide variety of topics - from ecological crises to panic disorder, from hyperreality to the sociology of disability, from Generation X to Generation Next. As Dandaneau says, "The point ... is not so much to learn the truth, but to learn how to think about essential issues and troubles as sociologists themselves try to do, to become a participant with others in facing down the challenges of our present epoch." "It is an elegant and profound meditation on thinking sociologically. Written with a rare panache one seldom finds in sociology... it's the product of a view of contemporary social life that is profoundly troubling... What this adds up to is a distinctive sociological and moral voice." - Peter Kivisto, Augustana College, Rock Island, Illinois

 
Sociology, or, Imaginative Reflections from Empirically Damaged Life
 
PART ONE: DEVELOPING AN ORIENTATION TO SELF AND SOCIETY
 
The Big Picture, or, a Brief Survey of Our Dying World
 
The Small Picture, or, Yesterday's Dystopias as Today's Everyday Life
 
Toward a Postmodern Sociological Imagination and a Sociological Imagination for Postmodern Times
 
PART TWO: APPLYING THE SOCIOLOGICAL IMAGINATION: THREE MODELS
 
A Wrong Child
Analyzing the Unanalyzable

 
 
Generation X
A Phantom Subject

 
 
Religion and Society
Of Gods and Demons

 
 
PART THREE: THE SOCIAL FORCES WORKING AGAINST THE SOCIOLOGICAL IMAGINATION
 
The Degradation of the Public Sphere
 
The End of History
 
Sociology without Society
 
PART FOUR: LOOKING BACK, LOOKING AHEAD
 
Epilogue
Sociology as Critical Theory of Society

 

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 5

Preface


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