The Focus on Everyday Life As a Turn to the Human Dimension of Social Structures

Thursday, July 17, 2014: 4:15 PM
Room: 304
Distributed Paper
Vladimir ILIN , Sociology, St.-Petersburg state university, St.-Petersburg, Russia
The focus on everyday life as a turn to the human dimension of social structures

If to use the metaphor of construction, we can say that the classical sociology mainly interested in architecture, leaving on the periphery of his attention  the problem of the nature of the materials. This was reflected in the priority of macro sociology. Theories focusing attention to the logic of behavior not the masses and groups, but individual, emerged but they always, first of all, were in the background, secondly, do not exert any noticeable influence on the theory of macro-level.

At the end of the twentieth century, the visible turn of social science to everyday life had acquired a paradigmatic character (P.Sztompka). If to you use the construction metaphor, we can say that the sociology came to understanding that the ‘’architectural forms’ are unthinkable without careful study of the molecular structure of materials from which they are implemented . This means that  the traditional division of macro and micro sociology has lost the meaning.  Social system predetermines the quality of used elements, and the characteristics of the latter depends the fate of the system. In other words, the social structure is no longer regarded as something external to the people. Firstly, the social structure is understood as sustainable forms of social behavior  (the theory of structuration by E. Giddens). Secondly, the social structure is regarded as socially programmed behavior of individuals (the concept of habitus by P.Bourdieu). Third, the interaction of individuals generates external emergent quality in form of social and cultural fields (situational approach by K.Lewin). Fourthly, situations of daily interaction acquire stable and predictable forms in the context of the action of macro-level institutions (Performance Theory).