Category Archives: Culture and Identity

Mobile Phones and Digital Nomadism

Mobile phones seem to be having a profound impact on the way we interact with each other and on how we understand ourselves and our relation to place. Their increased usage has mean that many of us have moved away … Continue reading

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Why Fitness Instructors are Like Peasants

If you sign up to a gym this January, spare a thought for the personal trainers lurking around reception, they’re really just peasants, despite the nice pecs, at least according to some recent research by Geraint Harvey as summarised in … Continue reading

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Sociological Theories of Consumerism and Consumption

Many of us spend a lot of time thinking about the things we might consume, and how we might consume them, and we do this not only as individuals, but as friends, partners, and families, and so intensely do we … Continue reading

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Erving Goffman and Judith Butler’s Perspectives on Identity

A summary of one chapter from Steph Lawler’s Book – ‘Identity: Sociological Perspectives’ – Masquerading as ourselves: Self-Impersonation and Social Life In this chapter Lawler deals with the work of Erving Goffman and Judith Butler – for both identity is … Continue reading

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Nadiya Hussain’s Gift to A Level Sociology

The Chronicles of Nadiya, fronted by last year’s Bake-Off winner Nadiya Hussain, is  a surprisingly solid piece of sociological TV. (Episode 1 is available on iPlayer until Friday 23rd Sept 2016, or on eStream until Armageddon if yer one of … Continue reading

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Anthony Giddens’ Runaway World – A Summary

There has been a considerable amount of research and theorising into globalisation and its consequences over the past decade, yet little of this has filtered down to students of A level Sociology. This article aims to address this by summarizing … Continue reading

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Zygmunt Bauman’s Liquid Times – A Summary

Zygmunt Bauman is one of the world’s leading sociologists. He is particularly interested in how the west’s increasing obsession with ‘individualism’ actually prevents the individual from being free in any meaningful sense of the word. In  ‘Liquid Times (2007), Bauman … Continue reading

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Nature and Nurture Explanations of Human Behaviour

While not denying the role of biology in explaining some aspects of human behaviour, sociology very much emphasises the role of society (nurture) rather than nature in explaining human action. The material below forms part of lesson one of an … Continue reading

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Post and Late Modern Perspectives on Society and Identity

This is intended to be an uber-brief summary, for fuller accounts please see other relevant posts.  The postmodern view of society  Globalisation destablises social structures Consumer culture floats free from other institutions The media and hyperreality are important There is much … Continue reading

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Giddens: Modernity and Self-Identity – Introduction and Chapter One (A Summary)

Anthony Giddens is one of the world’s leading sociologists and one of the main critics of Postmodern thought – and should be taught as part of the second year A level Sociology module in Theory and Methods. Below is a … Continue reading

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