Introduction: Approaches to Quantifying Bourdieu
This volume is the result of a conversation between the two editors about the importance of linking theory and methods. It may seem obvious to all social scientists that this is of upmost importance and indeed the foundation of the discipline of sociology (as sociologists, we can only speak of our discipline with any degree of certainty). In undergraduate and postgraduate teaching, however, the discourses of theory and methods are often rather disparate, with little direct communication between the two. There are ‘theorists’ and there are ‘methodologists’. One group often claims that the other does a job that they cannot do, which is actually rather preposterous, as anyone schooled in the discipline up to the level of a Ph.D. should be able to muster up a few facts about research design as well as the key features of the theories of Marx, Weber and Durkheim — at the very least.
After investigating the availability of ‘recent’ books and articles specifically addressing the linkage between theory and methods, we were surprised by the paucity of materials in the area. Indeed, any good peer-reviewed journal publication can, and often does, demonstrate the operationalization of a theory, but the readership of these articles is assumed to be rather specialized. It leaves the less seasoned without much detail on the actual steps involved in the process and the possibility that there might be more than one way of measuring a concept, and hence any serious discussion around such topics.
KeywordsEurope Stratification Posit Arena Nash
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