Personal Networks as Contexts for Political BehaviorEdited by Alan S. Zuckerman
Using classic theories and methodologies, this collection maintains that individuals make political choices by taking into account the views, preferences, evaluations, and actions of other people who comprise their social networks. These include family members, friends, neighbors, and workmates, among others. The volume re-establishes the research of the Columbia School of Electoral Sociology from several decades ago, and contrasts it with rational choice theory and the Michigan School of Electoral Analysis. Written by political scientists with a range of interests, this volume returns the social logic of politics to the heart of political science.
"In the classic sociological tradition of the Columbia School, this impressive collection of studies explores the impact of families, friends, workplaces, and communities on our political choices and behavior. The imaginative research in this volume amply demonstrates that, despite the imposing presence of the mass media, we continue to be shaped in significant ways by the company we keep."
—Dennis Chong, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Professor, Northwestern University, Department of Political Science
"The Social Logic of Politics addresses the question of sociological influences on political behavior, and the essays in this volume do in fact succeed in this purpose, offering a significant contribution in this area. Zuckerman brings the original sociological themes and research of Lazarsfeld and his colleagues into the 21st century, and the scholarship here is state-of-the-art, showcasing a wide range of data and methodologies."
—Robert Shapiro, Columbia University
"Overall, this is an important collection of essays... an essential read."
—Perspectives on Politics
"(T)his book is very much needed and should be considered by all scholars and researchers engaged in the study of public opinion, political influence, and voting behavior... The Social Logic of Politics is a dazzling gift for all those that (still) think that politics is social. All at once, it sharpens core theoretical principles, updates the state of the art, and opens an intriguing research agenda.... the book retains an overall coherence."
"(O)f primary interest to political science graduate students. Recommended."
"Zuckerman’s book is a necessary addition to the collection of any scholar of public opinion and political participation, regardless of regional interest. The methods used throughout the articles are varied, and some are innovative...This book is a syllabus-worthy critique of the Michigan School, and should be considered by all students and scholars of political behavior."
—Journal of Politics
"(T)his cross-disciplinary work encouragingly demonstrates that sociological ideas have a home outside the formal bounds of the discipline...The Social Logic of Politics lays out a course for the application of sociological theory to formal political behavior."