Alfred Schutz''s influence on American sociologists and sociology in the 1960s and 1970s is traced through the examination of the work of two of his students, Helmut Wagner and Peter Berger, and of Harold Garfinkel with whom he met and corresponded over a number of years. The circumstances of Schutz''s own academic situation, particularly the short period of his academic career in the United States and his location at the New School, are examined to consider how and in what ways (...) he was constrained from exerting an even wider influence. The two major areas of influence in American sociology that are examined are the sociology of knowledge and the early development of ethnomethodology. (shrink)
Th is paper considers the relation between Harold Garfinkel and Alfred Schutz. Reference will be made to their correspondence as well as to some of Garfinkel’s writing. Garfinkel, who was a graduate student at Harvard at the time, first met Schutz at the recommendation of Aron Gurwitsch. Their meeting led tofurther exchanges including papers that Garfinkel sent to Schutz. When his book, titled Studies in Ethnomethodology, appeared in 1967 he specifically cited Schutz as one to whom he was “heavily … (...) indebted” in his work. In later writings he no longer made such citations and moved away from his earlier position. (shrink)
A current set of concerns in ethnomethodology and conversation analysis includes the question of how conversation analysis (CA) can deal with studies of social structure or studies of talk in institutional settings.In this paper a focus is placed on how the accomplishment of "work" and "categorization" are interrelated. Two particular instances are examined: a ski school and a package delivery service. Membership categorization is shown to be a complex, on-going, interactive accomplishment. The parties act in ways that are "predicatively-bound" (i.e. (...) predicates of action, rights, obligations, etc.) which allow inferences to be made by each of the parties about the other based on these actions; these enable each to accept/confirm/validate the other's self-categorization and to produce, via their own actions, activities that are congruent with the other's self-categorization. Activities of the parties are category-relevant and category-generative. Thus, "work" or "the work of the organization", (e.g. for Choice, a package delivery service), is being accomplished in and through the talk and interaction of the parties. (shrink)
I have only begun to sketch out some of the differences between the work of Harold Garfinkel and Alfred Schutz. As the work of ethnomethodology accumulates and as other commentators begin to explore their similarities and differences, a clearer picture will, I am certain, emerge. For now, I shall only conclude with the following brief summary.As Natanson (1966, p. 152) has noted, “for Schutz, mundane existence is structured by the typifications of man in the natural standpoint. Common sense is then (...) an achievement rather than something simply given.” The main issues with which Schutz was concerned were how to investigate social reality and comprehend it (Natanson, 1966): …in terms which do not violate its character. How is warranted knowledge possible of the experiential world defined by the natural standpoint? The answer Schutz offers is by way of a reconstruction of the typifications of mundane life, but the underlying theme he is exploring is the intentional nature of consciousness in its abstractive and ideational modalities. Typification as such, rather than types and constructs, is the underlying concern. By tracing out the phenomenological genesis of typification from its prepredicative grounds to its self-conscious activity in generalization, he has provided an approach to an epistemology of the social world. [p. 154]Garfinkel, on the other hand, seeks to trace out the genesis of the perception, interpretation, and accomplishment of social occasions and their settings by members of society as they live and operate within the natural attitude in the world of everyday life. Their activities are taken without question as whatever social reality is for them. The processes whereby they accomplish these activities so as to make them recognizable become his main concern and it is the discovery and reconstruction of these processes, under the ethnomethodological reduction, of which his findings consist. By describing the methods used by members, he provides an approach to the methodology of the social world, that is, an ethno or members' methodology, for the construction, interpretation, and recognition of the social world. (shrink)
The fourteen authors in this collection used phenomenology and hermeneutics to conduct deep inquiry into perplexing and wondrous events in their work and personal lives. These seasoned scholar-practitioners gained remarkable insight into areas such as health care and illness, organ donation, intercultural communications, high-performance teams, artistic production, jazz improvisation, and the integration of Tai Chi into education. All authors were transformed by phenomenology's expanded ways of seeing and being.
This paper takes up the current discussion and disagreement among ethnomethodologists and conversation analysts concerning how conversation analysis should address questions of social structure. It also discusses the question of whether conversation analysis can address questions concerning the organisation of work as developed in the studies of work program of ethnomethodologists. Five different types of ethnomethodological and conversation analytic studies are delineated in order to show that, altough they differ in problem selection and formulation, methodological preference and foci, they are (...) not incompatible but complementary. (shrink)
By examining the activity of direction-giving and asking we can discover some of the sequential and other structures which characterize the activity. The insertion sequence, as a sequential structure, can be found to be used by interactants in more than one way to accomplish different results. We can therefore consider the insertion sequence as a sequential structure and, by attending to the activity in which the interactants are engaged, discover the relation between sequential and activity system structures. In this way (...) we can relate what persons are doing and how they are doing it (i.e. the activity being accomplished in and through their talk) to some of the basic structures of conversational interaction (e.g. insertion sequences). (shrink)
This is the first volume to present commentaries on the existential sociology of Kurt H. Wolff_including autobiographical, biographical, exegetic, and creative developmental articulation of his radical thought. The theme of the book connects Wolff to the sociological tradition while at the same time explicates his profound departure from the tradition.