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Elias, Norbert

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By: Nina Baur, Stefanie Ernst, Jannis Hergesell & Maria Norkus | Edited by: Paul Atkinson, Sara Delamont, Alexandru Cernat, Joseph W. Sakshaug & Richard A. Williams Published: 2019 | Length: 5 | DOI: |
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Norbert Elias (1897–1990) is well known for his process or figurational sociology, which focuses on the dynamic development of social structures and the interactions between individuals and society. In contrast, his methods are rarely discussed, although social research was in fact very important to him because in Elias’s opinion sociological theory had to be empirically grounded. Elias (2009d [1983]) conceived of himself as a “theoretically and empirically orientated” scholar (Elias, 2009d [1983], p. 99). In consequence, methods of social research were also important to him. Nevertheless, only very few explicit comments on explicit methodology and methods can be found in his work, the most important in this regard being: The Established and the Outsiders (Elias & Scotson, 2008 [1965]), “The Retreat of Sociologists into the ...

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