Economic Sociology

SOC 315

The discipline of economics generally treats the economy as separate from social relations. In contrast, economic sociology “unbounds” the economy by considering it as integrally related to culture and politics rather than as a separate “non-social” sphere. In the first part of the course, we develop intellectual foundations for economic sociology by contrasting economic and sociological views of the economy. We then proceed to “unbound” the economy by taking a series of institutions conventionally understood to be “economic” in nature — money, markets, firms, production, consumption, etc. — and analyzing these institutions in sociological terms. In the third and final part of the course, we introduce the notion of economic citizenship through a detailed examination of taxation. This seemingly dry topic is actually rife with sociological significance, and we use taxation to raise questions about gender relations, social inequality, the welfare state, and contemporary politics in U.S. society.

Literature, Science, & Arts » Sociology
Winter 2018
Fall 2016
Winter 2016