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Social Theory


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Showing 1-12 of 59 items.

Interpreting Religion

Making Sense of Religious Lives

This collection brings together a diverse range of interpretivist perspectives to find fresh takes on the meanings of religion. Cutting across paradigms and traditions, experts from the UK, US and India apply different approaches to engagement with beliefs and themes, including identity, ritual and emotion.

Bristol Uni Press

Reclaiming Individualism

Perspectives on Public Policy

Reclaiming individualism reviews the scope of individualist approaches, and considers how they apply to issues of policy. It argues for a concept of individualism based on rights, human dignity, shared interests and social protection.

Policy Press

Trading Time

Can Exchange Lead to Social Change?

As time banking has received increased attention from policy makers as a means for promoting welfare reform in the wake of austerity, this book is the first to look at the concept of time within social policy to examine time banking theory and practice.

Policy Press

Erich Fromm and Global Public Sociology

As the rise of global right-wing populism and Trumpism creates new interest in psycho-social writing and popular sociology, this timely book tells the story of the rise, fall and contemporary revival of the theories of Erich Fromm, a 1930s influential and creative public intellectual.

Bristol Uni Press

The Political Economy of Fortune and Misfortune

Prospects for Prosperity in Our Times

Bringing together philosophical insights with social theory, this book develops a better understanding of the role luck plays in generating and reinforcing inequality. The author offers a political economy of life chances and an analysis of durable and demonstrable social inequalities, revealing how they are sustained and reproduced.

Bristol Uni Press

Politics of the Gift

Towards a Convivial Society

Drawing on French sociologist Marcel Mauss' influential theory of 'the gift', this book shows that trust is the only glue that holds societies together, and people are giving beings and they who can cooperate for the benefit of all when the logic of maximizing utility personal gain in capitalism is broken.

Bristol Uni Press

Liberty, equality, fraternity

Paul Spicker's new book takes the three founding principles of the French Revolution - Liberty, Equality, Fraternity - and examines how they relate to social policy today. The book considers the political and moral dimensions of a wide range of social policies, and offers a different way of thinking about each subject.

Policy Press


In search of a good life?

This book considers what makes us happy, using a new approach that directly addresses the circumstances under which highly subjective well-being is experienced, often with surprising results. 

Policy Press

Using Theory to Explore Health, Medicine and Society

This student-friendly textbook uses theoretical perspectives to bring to life social theories relating to health and illness. including binge drinking, obesity, the prominence of therapy and the search for happiness.

Policy Press

Harmful Societies

Understanding Social Harm

This book is the first to theorise and define the social harm concept beyond criminology and seeks to address these omissions and in doing so provide a platform for future debates, in this series and beyond.

Policy Press

Work, Labour and Cleaning

The Social Contexts of Outsourcing Housework

Outsourcing of domestic work in the UK has been steadily rising since the 1970s, but little research has considered White British women. This book argues that outsourced domestic cleaning can either be done as mental and manual skilled work or as manual and ‘natural’ emotional/affective labour, depending on the work conditions.

Bristol Uni Press

Thinking Collectively

Social Policy, Collective Action and the Common Good

In this book, well-respected author Paul Spicker lends a complementary voice to his Reclaiming individualism, reviewing collectivism as a dimension of political discourse. Taking a dispassionate and methodical approach, the author explores what collectivism means in social policy and what value it offers to the field.

Policy Press