Social Change in Western Europe

Social Change in Western Europe

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What do European societies look like, at the end of a turbulent millennium which saw western Europe slowly rise to global domination, and then rapidly decline to its present position, prosperous but clearly behind the USA in world influence? This is the only book by a single sociologist to make a systematic and up to date comparison of virtually all west European countries across a wide range of social institutions. These include: work and occupations, the structure of the economy, the family, education, religion, nationality and ethnicity, and the mechanism of citizenship in the welfare state. Particular emphasis is placed on the place of gender and social class. By including basic details on Japan and the United States throughout, the author is able to draw attention to any shared west European specificities. The book also develops a theory of change in contemporary societies. Starting from a model of a mid-century social compromise based on certain balances between industrialism, capitalism, traditional community institutions, and community it traces its subsequent destabilization and places particular importance on the resurgence of capitalism in shaping a new social order. This important new study of the social structure of western Europe will be essential reading for all students of comparative sociology and European more

Product details

  • Paperback | 568 pages
  • 156 x 230 x 34mm | 920.81g
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • figures, tables, maps
  • 0198780680
  • 9780198780687
  • 1,580,154

About Colin Crouch

Colin Crouch is Professor of Sociology at the European University Institute, Florence. He is the author or editor of numerous publications including Reinventing Collective Action (edited with David Marquand), Political Economy of Modern Capitalism: Mapping Convergence and Diversity (edited with W. Streeck), and Industrial Relations and European State Traditions, which won the Political Studies Association W.J.M. MacKenzie Prize for more

Table of contents

Introduction ; Prologue: The End of the European Millennium ; 1. The Making of Contemporary Europe ; PART I: THE FATE OF INDUSTRIALISM: INDUSTRIALIZING, INDUSTRIAL OR POST-INDUSTRIAL SOCIETIES? ; 2. Work, Households and Occupations ; 3. The Organization of Working Life: Between Stability and Flexibility ; 4. The Sectors of Employment ; PART II: CHANGES AND DIVERSITY IN THE CHARACTER OF CAPITALISM ; 5. Capitalism and Inequality in Work ; 6. The Institutions of Modern Capitalism ; PART III: SOCIOLOGICAL LIBERALISM AND THE INSTITUTIONS OF TRADITIONAL COMMUNITY ; 7. The Family ; 8. Families, Education, and Social Mobility ; 9. The Paradox of Religion ; 10. Nations, Cultures and Ethnicities ; PART IV: CITIZENSHIP ; 11. Democracy and Mass Participation ; 12. The Organization of Social Interests ; 13. Mass Citizenship and Welfare States ; CONCLUSIONS ; 14. Is There a Western European Society? ; 15. What Type of Society are We Now Inhabiting?show more

Review quote

This is a very impressive book. a major source of wide ranging information on the social contours of Western Europe. The style is clear and the argumentation lucid. Richard Hyman, LSE 'The clearly structured presentation is founded on a broad empirical base. ... It also includes references to the major theories. The author is successful in pointing out the fundamental structures of European changes since the middle of the past century and examines the relevant concepts in a thoughtful way. The wealth of information and the style of writing make the work an ideal study book.' European Journal of Social Workshow more