Analyzing the Professions: The Case for the Neo-Weberian Approach

Analyzing the Professions: The Case for the Neo-Weberian Approach © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2010 DOI: 10.1163/156913310X522624 Comparative Sociology 9 (2010) 887–915 brill.nl/coso C O M P A R A T I V E S O C I O L O G Y Analyzing the Professions: The Case for the Neo-Weberian Approach Professor Mike Saks Provost, University Campus Suffolk,Waterfront Building, Neptune Quay, Ipswich IP4 1QJ m.saks@ucs.ac.uk Abstract This paper makes the case for the neo-Weberian approach for analyzing the pro- fessions. It starts by reviewing the difficulties of other main approaches to the sociology of professions – including the trait approach, functionalism, interac- tionism, Marxism and Foucauldianism. It is argued that the issues they pose are largely addressed by the neo-Weberian approach, the key features of which are outlined and illustrated with reference to the pivotal case of health care. The neo- Weberian approach itself is then critically evaluated. The paper concludes that, despite the recent emergence of a broader approach to analyzing occupational groups centred on the discourse of professionalism, the neo-Weberian approach remains the most incisive and empirically fruitful perspective on the sociology of professions. Keywords neo-Weberian approach, professions As will be apparent from my previous work (see, for example, Saks 1983, 2003b), my preferred http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Comparative Sociology Brill

Analyzing the Professions: The Case for the Neo-Weberian Approach

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© 2010 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1569-1322
eISSN
1569-1330
D.O.I.
10.1163/156913310X522624
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2010 DOI: 10.1163/156913310X522624 Comparative Sociology 9 (2010) 887–915 brill.nl/coso C O M P A R A T I V E S O C I O L O G Y Analyzing the Professions: The Case for the Neo-Weberian Approach Professor Mike Saks Provost, University Campus Suffolk,Waterfront Building, Neptune Quay, Ipswich IP4 1QJ m.saks@ucs.ac.uk Abstract This paper makes the case for the neo-Weberian approach for analyzing the pro- fessions. It starts by reviewing the difficulties of other main approaches to the sociology of professions – including the trait approach, functionalism, interac- tionism, Marxism and Foucauldianism. It is argued that the issues they pose are largely addressed by the neo-Weberian approach, the key features of which are outlined and illustrated with reference to the pivotal case of health care. The neo- Weberian approach itself is then critically evaluated. The paper concludes that, despite the recent emergence of a broader approach to analyzing occupational groups centred on the discourse of professionalism, the neo-Weberian approach remains the most incisive and empirically fruitful perspective on the sociology of professions. Keywords neo-Weberian approach, professions As will be apparent from my previous work (see, for example, Saks 1983, 2003b), my preferred

Journal

Comparative SociologyBrill

Published: Jan 1, 2010

Keywords: neo-Weberian approach; professions

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