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Economic Sociology:
A Systematic Inquiry
Alejandro Portes

Book Description | Table of Contents
Chapter 1 [in PDF format]


"Portes boldly expands the repertoire of economic sociology, bringing in a diverse selection of both classical and contemporary writers who address issues such as power, the informal economy, and transnational communities in innovative and eye-opening ways. Economic Sociology illustrates many of the unique insights provided by sociologists in a field still struggling to liberate itself from the limiting assumptions of neoclassical economics."--Gary Gereffi, Duke University

"The title of this volume may be misleading: political sociologists and sociologists of development, as well as economic sociologists, will turn to this book for clear and insightful expositions of major theoretical debates by one of the discipline's leading figures. Portes shows how his theoretical claims play out in the informal sector, ethnic enclaves, and transnational communities, illustrating his arguments with vivid examples drawn from contemporary scholarship."--Gay Seidman, University of Wisconsin-Madison

"In this carefully crafted book, Portes brings to bear his sophisticated use of sociological theory and his vast empirical knowledge about the multiple intersections between economy and society in the contemporary world. He sheds light on such topics as economic reforms, immigration, social inequality, household consumption, and the informal economy, demonstrating the importance of social capital, institutions, and social class when it comes to understanding socially oriented economic action."--Mauro F. Guillén, University of Pennsylvania

"Compelling and lucid. Portes richly deserves his place as a leader in this field, and this book shows both the breadth and depth of his thinking. One of the book's great strengths is its use of myriad examples to bring concepts to life. Portes's encyclopedic knowledge of the field helps him to make a compelling case for the importance of the sociological perspective."--Frank Dobbin, Harvard University

"This book develops an accessible, eclectic, and contextually rooted approach to economic sociology that offers a viable alternative to neoclassical economics and has a wide range of applications to the broader field of sociology and the social sciences. While it is theoretically refined, at the same time it is not dogmatic, and emphasizes the fact that real-world situations seldom conform to abstract conceptualizations."--Steven J. Gold, Michigan State University

"Portes argues that our understanding of economic activity and our capacity to predict it will be substantially limited if we confine ourselves to key foci of the economics literature, namely individual self-interest as the main motivator of economic action. He consolidates the sociological contribution by focusing on and clarifying its major assumptions, and systematically develops a sociological counter position."--Bryan R. Roberts, University of Texas, Austin

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File created: 4/21/2017

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