Group cultures and subcultures

Authored by: Gary Alan Fine

Routledge Handbook of Cultural Sociology

Print publication date:  October  2018
Online publication date:  November  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138288621
eBook ISBN: 9781315267784
Adobe ISBN:


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Although it had once been conventional to treat culture as a “characteristic” or “feature” of societies, many cultural sociologists now emphasize the importance of examining cultures as actively constructed. This chapter explores the theoretical stakes of the shift to analyzing culture from a micro- or meso-level of analysis. Culture can be conceptualized as actions, material objects, performances, and forms of discourse used by groups. In this view, culture is a tool situated in local communities, shaping the contours of civic life. As a result, culture is tied to shared pasts and prospective futures.

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