The Sociology Post
The Relevance of Talcott Parsons
30th May 2022
Talcott Parsons is often derided as irrelevant to contemporary sociology. Criticised for his jargon and obscurity, his work is left unread. However, a number of sociologists are re-emphasising his importance for the development of the discipline. In this posting, I set out my own encounters with Parsons's work and why I see him as an essential contemporary figure.
Objectivity and Truth in Facts and Values
7th May 2021
Science, morality, and politics are all highly contested areas and there has been a constant attempt to establish objectively valid statements about how the world is and how it ought to be. The idea of an objective social science, however, has often been linked with a view of value freedom that stresses the irreconcilable character of moral and political disputes. How, if at all, can there be objectivity in such disputes?
The Hidden History of British Sociology
23rd November 2020
The history of British sociology is an underdeveloped area of research, though recent work has begun the task of reconstructing this largely unknown history. Work underway aims to build a history of the numerous Departments of Sociology that have made, and continue to comprise a vibrant sociological community. To help build this history I need the help of the readers of this post.
Risk and Moral Panic: A Sociological View of Covid-19
27th July 2020
Should face masks become the new normal, an evidence-based response to the threat of Covid-19 infection? Evidence actually suggests that the policy mandating face coverings is a response to a moral panic and climate of fear aroused by inadequate government messaging. Sociology rather than medical science may provide the best guide.
Coronavirus (Covid-19) and social networks
17th March 2020
Covid-19, the Coronavirus, has rightly concerned us all, and governments worldwide have been forced to listen to the medical and scientific experts. What has not been recognised, however, is how much of the argument depends on sociological ideas, and on ideas from social network analysis in particular.