Contemporary articles citing Meyer J (1997) Am J Sociol
global, cultural, institutional, processes, state, globalization, forms, society, out, historical
- Major, Aaron. 2013. "Transnational State Formation and the Global Politics of Austerity." Sociological Theory. 31:1 24-48.
- A perennial concern among scholars of globalization is the relationship between global social formations and national and subnational political and economic developments. While sociological understanding of ``the global'' has become increasingly rich, stressing the complex relationship between material and cultural pressures, an undertheorized nation state often sits on the receiving end of the sociologist's model of globalization. The goal of this article is to help move the sociology of globalization out of the analytical trap of global-national dualism by developing an account of the transnationalization of political authority. Building on neo-Marxist and Weberian theories of the transnational, or global state, which explicate the macro-structural dynamics that have led to the transnationalization of the state as such, I look at the process of the transnationalization of political authority from an institutional perspective, one that focuses on processes of transnationalization within, and across, specific state agencies. These theoretical points are empirically motivated through an historical investigation of the transnationalization of monetary authority and its relationship to the international diffusion of policies of austerity from the era of the classical gold standard through the economic crisis of 2008.
- Beckert, Jens. 2010. "Institutional Isomorphism Revisited: Convergence and Divergence in Institutional Change." Sociological Theory. 28:2 150-166.
- Under the influence of groundbreaking work by John Meyer and Brian Bowen, as well as Paul DiMaggio and Walter Powell, over the last 30 years research in the new sociological institutionalism has focused on processes of isomorphism. I argue that this is a one-sided focus that leaves out many insights from other institutional and macrosociological approaches and does not do justice to actual social change because it overlooks the role played by divergent institutional development. While the suggestion of divergent trends is not new, there have been Jew attempts to integrate divergence into the theoretical premises of the new sociological institutionalism. Based on the typology proposed by DiMaggio and Powell, I show that the mechanisms identified by them as sources of isomorphic change can support processes of divergent change as well. The theoretical challenge is to identify conditions under which these mechanisms push institutional change toward homogenization or divergence.
- Go, Julian. 2008. "Global Fields and Imperial Forms: Field Theory and the British and American Empires." Sociological Theory. 26:3 201-229.
- This article develops a global fields approach for conceptualizing the global arena. The approach builds upon existing approaches to the world system and world society while articulating them with the field theory of Bourdieu and organizational sociology. It highlights particular structural configurations (''spaces of relations'') and the specific cultural content (''rules of the game'' and ``symbolic capital'') of global systems. The utility of the approach is demonstrated through an analysis of the different forms of the two hegemonic empires of the past centuries, Great Britain and the United States. The British state tended toward formal imperialism in the 19th century, characterized by direct territorial rule, while the United States since WWII has tended toward informal imperialism. The essay shows that the difference can be best explained by considering the different historical global fields in which the two empires operated.
- Schneiberg, Marc & Elisabeth Clemens. 2006. "The Typical Tools for the Job: Research Strategies in Institutional Analysis." Sociological Theory. 24:3 195-227.
- Institutional theory rests on a rejection of reductionism. Instead of reducing higher-order phenomena to aggregates of behavior, institutional theory reverses this causal imagery. It attributes the behavior of organizations and nation-states to contextual factors, notably organizational fields, national institutional systems, or the emerging global polity, Institutionalists, particularly within sociology, also emphasize specifically cultural mechanisms for these higher-order effects. This article develops the methodological foundations for these claims. It surveys and elaborates research designs for documenting higher-order effects and for differentiating the cultural mechanisms of institutional influence. It also presents new strategies for assessing multiple logics and the coherence of institutional orders, moving beyond adoption and diffusion studies to analyze the dynamic and contested processes of institutionalization and institutional change.
- Shamir, R. 2005. "Without Borders? Notes on Globalization as a Mobility Regime." Sociological Theory. 23:2 197-217.
- While globalization is largely theorized in terms of trans-border flows, this article suggests an exploratory sociological framework for analyzing globalization as consisting of systemic processes of closure and containment. The suggested framework points at the emergence of a global mobility regime that actively seeks to contain social movement both within and across borders. The mobility regime is theorized as premised upon a pervasive ``paradigm of suspicion'' that conflates the perceived threats of crime, immigration, and terrorism, thus constituting a conceptual blueprint for the organization of global risk-management strategies. The article draws on multiple examples, singling out some elementary forms of the mobility regime, emphasizing the sociological affinity between guarded borders on the one hand and gated communities on the other. In particular, the article aims at theorizing the translation of the paradigm of suspicion into actual technologies of social screening designed to police the mobility of those social elements that are deemed to belong to suspect social categories. Specifically, the article points at biosocial profiling as an increasingly dominant technology of intervention. Biosocial profiling, in turn, is theorized in juxtaposition to other modalities of power, namely, legal and disciplinary measures.
- Bergesen, AJ & O Lizardo. 2004. "International Terrorism and the World-system." Sociological Theory. 22:1 38-52.
- Theories of international terrorism are reviewed. It then is noted that waves of terrorism appear in semiperipheral zones of the world-system during pulsations of globalization when the dominant state is in decline. Finally, how these and other factors might combine to suggest a model of terrorism's role in the cyclical undulations of the world-system is suggested.
- Jepperson, RL. 2002. "Political Modernities: Disentangling Two Underlying Dimensions of Institutional Differentiation." Sociological Theory. 20:1 61-85.
- This article recommends that we recover two old contrasts from the history of social thought in order to facilitate the recently renewed discussion of multiple variants of European political modernity. Recovering them greatly aids in clarifying the different ``modernizing'' paths that the European-system polities took during the state-consolidation and nation-building periods of the ``long nineteenth century.'' Specifically, the basic polity forms delineated in this article capture strikingly well the distinctive ``institutional logics'' and political cultures of the Anglo, Nordic, Germanic, and French orbits, legacies enduring through the 1960s and beyond. Clarifying these polity forms also helps in isolating underlying institutional changes occurring in the contemporary (post-World War II) period (current institutional convergence, for example).
- Frank, DJ & JW Meyer. 2002. "The Profusion of Individual Roles and Identities in the Postwar Period." Sociological Theory. 20:1 86-105.
- In recent decades, the individual has become more and more central in both national and world cultural accounts of the operation of society. This continues a long, historical process, intensified by the consolidation of a more global polity and the weakening of the primordial sovereignty of the national state. Increasingly, society is culturally rooted in the natural, historical, and spiritual worlds through the individual, rather than through corporate entities or groups. The shift has produced a proliferation and specification of individual roles, accounting for what individuals do in society. It has also produced an expansion in recognized indivdual personhood, accounting for who individuals are in the extrasocial cosmos and fueling elaborated personal tastes and preferences. Where it has been contested, the shift to the individual has also produced a rise in specializing identities (e.g., in such domains as ethnicity or gender). These offer accounts of individuals' distinctive linkages to the cosmos, and they serve to bolster individual claims to standard roles and personhood. Over time, specializing identities tend to get absorbed into roles and personhood. And in turn, expanded roles and personhood provide further bases for specializing identity claims. Because many theorists mischaracterize the relationship of specializing identities to roles and personhood, the literature often overemphasizes the anomic character of the identity explosion and the closeness of the coupling between social roles and identity claims. Oil the contrary, specializing identities tend to be edited to remain within general rules of individual personhood and to be disconnected from the obligations involved in institutionalized roles.
- Meyer, JW & RL Jepperson. 2000. "The ``actors'' of Modern Society: the Cultural Construction of Social Agency." Sociological Theory. 18:1 100-120.
- Much social theory takes for gr anted the core conceit of modern culture, chat modern actors-individuals, organizations, nation states-are authochthonous and natural entities, no longer really embedded ill culture. Accordingly while there is much abstract metatheory about ``actors `` and their ``agency, `` there is arguably little theory about the topic. This article offers direct arguments about how the modern (European, now global) cultural system constructs the modern actor as an authorized agent for various interests via an ongoing relocation into society of agency originally located in transcendental authority or in natural forces environing the social system. We see this authorized agentic capability as an essential feature of what modern theory and culture call an ``actor,'' and one that, when analyzed, helps greatly in explaining a number of otherwise anomalous ol little analyzed features of modern individuals, organizations, and slates. These features include their isomorphism and standardization, their internal decoupling, their extraordinarily complex structuration, and their capacity for prolific collective action.