Neil J. Smelser is University Professor of Sociology Emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of numerous books, including The Social Edges of Psychoanalysis, Problematics of Sociology, and Social Paralysis and Social Change, all from UC Press.
First appearing in 1971 as a monograph drawn from his undergraduate class on sociological theory, Dr. Smelser's how-to book is now presented in modern format and with his timeless examples and explanations. Featuring a new Preface by the author, as well as a 2011 Foreword by Arlie Russell Hochschild, this book makes understanding the insides of a theoretical framework as clear as such a daunting feat can credibly be accomplished. Useful for students and researchers learning the tools to read all sorts of theory in a critical manner, its republication and new presentation bring Dr. Smelser's legendary course on social theory to a new generation.
Quality ebook formatting includes active Table of Contents, linked footnotes, legible graphics, and linked Index of Sections. The original page numbers are embedded for continuity of citation and syllabi. Part of the Classics of the Social Sciences Series from Quid Pro Books. Available in digital and new paperback edition.
"You will not read a more important book about America this year."—The Economist
"A riveting book."—The Wall Street Journal
"Essential reading."—David Brooks, New York Times
Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of white working-class Americans. The disintegration of this group, a process that has been slowly occurring now for more than forty years, has been reported with growing frequency and alarm, but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hung around your neck.
The Vance family story begins hopefully in postwar America. J. D.’s grandparents were “dirt poor and in love,” and moved north from Kentucky’s Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. They raised a middle-class family, and eventually one of their grandchildren would graduate from Yale Law School, a conventional marker of success in achieving generational upward mobility. But as the family saga of Hillbilly Elegy plays out, we learn that J.D.'s grandparents, aunt, uncle, sister, and, most of all, his mother struggled profoundly with the demands of their new middle-class life, never fully escaping the legacy of abuse, alcoholism, poverty, and trauma so characteristic of their part of America. With piercing honesty, Vance shows how he himself still carries around the demons of his chaotic family history.
A deeply moving memoir, with its share of humor and vividly colorful figures, Hillbilly Elegy is the story of how upward mobility really feels. And it is an urgent and troubling meditation on the loss of the American dream for a large segment of this country.
An authorized and quality edition--not just scanned and forgotten like most such reprints today--this book is part of the Classics of the Social Sciences Series by Quid Pro Books. Quality ebook formatting includes linked notes, legible tables, and active TOC. The book's original page numbers from its first printing are embedded for continuity of citations and a class syllabus.