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'The Politics of the Future'

An Unknown Text by Émile Durkheim

Jennifer Mergy

In April 1917, the daily newspaper La Dépêche de Toulouse – The Toulouse Wire – published Durkheim’s response to a survey entitled ‘The Politics of the Future’. Along with a number of politicians, economists and intellectuals, the sociologist was asked to give his opinion on party politics after the end of the war, and specifically on the country’s economic reconstruction.

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Alexander Riley

Jeffrey Alexander, Bernhard Giesen and Jason Mast (eds.), Social Performance: Symbolic Action, Cultural Pragmatics and Ritual, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006, 374 pp.

Ron Eyerman and Lisa McCormick (eds.), Myth, Meaning, and Performance: Toward a New Cultural Sociology of the Arts, Boulder: Paradigm Publishers, 2006, 166 pp.

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Keith Hart, Florence Weber, Nathan Schlanger, Gavin Flood, and Mike Gane

Marcel Mauss, Manual of Ethnography, edited by N. J. Allen, translated by D. Lussier, Oxford and New York: Durkheim Press/Berghahn Press, 2007, pp. 212.

Marcel Mauss, Techniques, Technology and Civilisation, edited and introduced by Nathan Schlanger, New York and Oxford, Durkheim Press/ Berghahn Books, 2006, pp. 178.

Marcel Mauss, Essai sur le don. Forme et raison de l’échange dans les sociétés archaïques, introduction de Florence Weber, Paris: Quadrige/ Presses Universitaires de France, [1925] 2007.

Louise Child, Tantric Buddhism and Altered States of Consciousness: Durkheim, Emotional Energy and Visions of the Consort, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2007, pp. vii, 197.

James Dingley, Nationalism, Social Theory and Durkheim, London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008, pp. 221.

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Massimo Borlandi

Marie-Claude Blais, La solidarité. Histoire d’une idée, Paris : Gallimard, 2007, pp. 352.

Serge Paugam (sous la direction de), Repenser la solidarité. L’apport des sciences sociales, Paris : Presses Universitaires de France, 2007, pp. 982.

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Guy van de Walle

Among the many theories of socialization, that of Durkheim stands out. While most analyses of socialization are individualistic, that of Durkheim is holistic. This singularity presents a challenge to the modern mind, which is dominated by individualism. Reading Durkheim's analysis of socialization, like the rest of his work, requires the difficult task of overcoming one's natural tendency to do so through an individualistic lens. This paper is an attempt to restore the original holistic meaning of this analysis. It aims to correct some of Durkheim's commentators' re-interpretations of his views and the everyday language that he uses in individualistic terms. Particular attention is given to Durkheim's distinction between authority and power. This distinction has huge implications for Durkheim's interpretation of socialization, which he sees as a process that primarily involves a particular relationship - one that he describes in terms of 'submission' - with the authority of society.

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'Durkheim et Cie'

A New Biography

Mike Hawkins

Marcel Fournier, Emile Durkheim (1858–1917), Paris: Fayard, 2007, pp. 940.

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Expliquer les régularités sociales

Durkheim critique et continuateur de Quetelet

Massimo Borlandi

Le premier chapitre du livre III du Suicide, ‘L’élément social du suicide’ (incontestablement le coeur de l’ouvrage selon son auteur), commence par le résumé de l’explication qu’Émile Durkheim vient de donner (dans le livre II) des régularités du phénomène dont il s’occupe. Ce résumé est suivi d’une digression sur Adolphe Quetelet et son oeuvre à laquelle le lecteur averti (contemporain de Durkheim) s’attend depuis déjà plusieurs pages.

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Jean-Paul Callède

L'œuvre de Durkheim permet de recenser différents ensembles d'activités cohérentes : le jeu au sens large, prédilection d'une longue tradition philosophique les jeux récréatifs, envisagés principalement dans les sociétés primitives ; les sports de compétition, notamment d'équipe ; l'éducation physique ; la participation associative, notamment estudiantine ou péri-scolaire. Des auteurs, qui sont identifiés comme appartenant à l'École durkheimienne, abordent eux aussi les thèmes liés du jeu et du sport. Il s'agit, d'une manière particulière, de Célestin Bouglé, Charles Lalo, Marcel Mauss et du 'médecin capitaine J. Escalier'. La présente étude porte sur cet intérêt, au demeurant mal connu, de Durkheim et de son groupe.

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The Response of Catholic and Protestant Thinkers to the Work of Emile Durkheim

With Special Reference to Les formes élémentaires

W. S. F. Pickering

This article attempts to record and examine the way that Catholic and Protestant thinkers reacted to Durkheim's work. The bulk, but by no means all, of their reflections relate to religion, especially after the publication of Les formes élémentaires. Surprisingly, there were some who praised Durkheim for his clarity and imagination. The specific aspects of his work dealt with here are: the nature of religion, its definition, the role of the social and individual, the nature of God, effervescent gatherings. In relation to these, and other topics, the writings of Catholics such as Besse, Bureau, Deploige, Lemonnyer, and Protestants, Boegner, Bois, Richard, Paul Sabatier, are considered. One conclusion is that, surprisingly or otherwise, the substantial criticisms of Durkheim are similar to both Catholics and Protestants. Another is that this kind of material is a necessary prelude to the study of the later development of the sociology of religion in France.

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The State of French Sociology through American Eyes

Minutes of the Society for Social Research, February 6, 1933

Herbert Blumer

The Society for Social Research held its regular meeting on the evening of 6 February, President Stuart Rice in the chair.

Mr. Herbert Blumer of the Department of Sociology, University of Chicago spoke to the group on ‘Some Impressions of Contemporary French Sociology’. The following is a digest of his paper.