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Network Persistence and the Axis of Hierarchy

Network Persistence and the Axis of Hierarchy

How Orderly Stratification is Implicit in Sticky Struggles

By Steven Rytina

“Network Persistence and the Axis of Hierarchy” shows how networks, modestly redefined as a strong, yet imperfect tendency for pairings to recur day after day, that is, stickiness, imply a singular axis of stratification. This is contrary to the nearly universal insistence that stratification is multidimensional. Reanalysis of three central mobility data sets sustains the novel claim.

Hardback, 250 Pages

ISBN:9781785271960

November 2019

£120.00, $195.00

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About This Book

“Network Persistence and the Axis of Hierarchy” reimagines the very nature of social life starting from quite ordinary, even banal considerations, culminating in conclusions that challenge central, universally held tenets. The main argument shows how networks, modestly redefined as a strong, yet imperfect tendency for pairings to recur day after day, that is, stickiness, imply a singular axis of stratification. This is contrary to the nearly universal insistence that stratification is multidimensional. Reanalysis of three central mobility data sets strongly sustains the novel claim. Network concepts provide a supple base for analysis whereby order and regularity are firmly enforced in network neighborhoods by repetitive, often collective, action and mutual regulation but are not necessarily uniform or universal across locales. This provides new takes, often quite radical, on accounts of structure and order by authors such as Bourdieu, Collins and Parsons. The new formulation local rules but not necessarily global rules allows for a plural reality where varied theoretical ideals are possible and could occur but are not inevitable or universal. This tames the otherwise inevitable cacophony of competing foundational accounts whose claims to universality exclude some to much of what is claimed by rivals. Meanwhile, the potential lability of plural possibilities is sharply constrained by the overarching principal axis of stratification which is the joint condition of social life.

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Author Information

Steven Rytina is retired from McGill University where he was associate professor of sociology.

Series

Key Issues in Modern Sociology

Table of Contents

1. Sticky Struggles: The Unified Pattern of Social Ranks Inherent in Networks; 2. Foundations of Cacophony; 3. Knots of Regularity; 4. Hierarchy – Inevitable but Inevitably Messy; 5. The Inevitable Emergence of Stratification; 6. Scaling Intergenerational Continuity: Is Occupational Inheritance Ascriptive After All?; 7. Taming the Mobility Table; 8. Is Occupational Mobility Declining in the United States?; 9. The Continuum of Class over Time: Deconstructing Imposed Class to Uncover Empirical Classes; 10. Concluding Reflections; Appendix: Why Robust Attraction Is (Effectively) Inevitable for Mobility Data; Index.

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