Inequality and process
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In this paper, I consider the concept of inequality. I begin with the ambiguity of this concept as customarily deployed in American sociology, arguing that when we say “inequality,” we usually mean “injustice.” I then outline some problems in sociological thinking about injustice, first considering measurement issues, then ontological ones. Since the social theories of the Enlightenment prove to be too limited for the second of these discussions, I invoke a processual social ontology that emphasizes certain particular problematics for sociological concepts of injustice. In conclusion, I present a simple American example that effectively captures these problematics, offering that example as a puzzle for further reflection.
KeywordsLabor Force Social World Clerical Work Social Ontology Ontological Issue
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