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Symmetrical twins: On the relationship between Actor-Network theory and the sociology of critical capacities

Guggenheim, Michael and Pottast, Joerg. 2012. Symmetrical twins: On the relationship between Actor-Network theory and the sociology of critical capacities. European Journal of Social Theory, 15(2), pp. 157-178. ISSN 1368-4310 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This article explores the elective affinities between Actor-Network Theory (ANT) and the sociology of critical capacities. It argues that these two research programmes can be understood as symmetrical twins. We show the extent to which the exchange between Bruno Latour and Luc Boltanski has influenced their respective theoretical developments. Three strong encounters between the twin research programmes may be distinguished. The first encounter concerns explanations for social change. The second encounter focuses on the status of objects and their relationship to locations. The third encounter is about the concept of critique. Drawing on their long-term mutual readings, we gain insight into how pleas for symmetrical analysis raised in response to Bourdieu’s theory of fields have evolved within both ANT and the sociology of critical capacity. We conclude by relating the development of the respective research programmes to the issue of disciplinary boundaries.

Item Type:

Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1177/1368431011423601

Keywords:

Boltanski, Latour, Actor Network Theory, Social Theory, Sociology of Critical Capacities

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Sociology

Dates:

DateEvent
May 2012Published

Item ID:

7001

Date Deposited:

28 May 2012 15:37

Last Modified:

14 Jul 2018 00:51

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/7001

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