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Identities and Social Change in Britain since 1940The Politics of Method$
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Mike Savage

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199587650

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199587650.001.0001

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1956: The End of Community: The Quest for the English Middletown

1956: The End of Community: The Quest for the English Middletown

Chapter:
(p.137) 6 1956: The End of Community: The Quest for the English Middletown
Source:
Identities and Social Change in Britain since 1940
Author(s):

Mike Savage

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199587650.003.0007

This chapter examines how a new breed of social scientists in Great Britain during the 1950s sought to define an ordinary, average, national society. It suggests that outside influences were to be vital in allowing established and assumed national characteristics to be understood in a new, apparently social light, and argues that social anthropology was effective in developing a demoralised social science. The chapter also shows how the relations between sociology and social anthropology fractured in the early 1960s over the issue of change, as sociology seized the banner of the new as a means of justifying its distinctive expertise, thus consigning anthropology a subordinate role.

Keywords:   social scientists, Great Britain, national society, social anthropology, change, subordinate role

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