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Chasing Political Sociology

  • Fabio de NardisEmail author
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Abstract

Political sociology has been consolidated mainly since the first half of the twentieth century but some authors laid the foundation for a sociological analysis of politics during the nineteenth century. In particular, Tocqueville and Marx, from antithetical positions, posed the problem of conflict between social interests. Both stressed the dimension of solidarity between social groups, even if Tocqueville identified it especially in local communities and associations. Marx instead identified it in the class relations within a conflictual frame as part of the socio-economic structure and the relations of production. While Tocqueville started from the analysis of conflict to address the problem of social unity that would ensure both political struggle and political consensus in a shared institutional framework, Marx became the theorist of revolution against a non-reformable system of domination within the legal framework of the liberal state. Other authors, such as Durkheim and Weber, tried instead to delineate the role of politics as a means of social integration within the parameters of a complex society. Durkheim identified the social links as part of a radical social differentiation and division of labour, and Weber tried to include it in a theory of power and its rational bureaucratic institutionalisation within the boundaries of the modern state.

Keywords

Civil society Alienation Historical materialism Differentiation Anomy Rationalisation 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of History, Society, and Human StudiesUniversity of SalentoLecceItaly

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