Abercrombie, Nicholas

Abercrombie, Nicholas

Bio: (1944-) British sociologist. Nicholas Abercrombie received his doctorate from the London School of Economics and later taught at the University of Lancaster. He dealt with the sociology of knowledge, popular culture, the relationship between the media and society, class theory, and urban sociology.

In his book Class, Structure and Knowledge (1980), Abercrombie argues that in modern capitalist societies, the ruling class does not need to impose its own ideology on society as a whole, but achieves its goals primarily through coercion and economic power. Members of the working class often actively reject the ideology of the ruling class.

Abercrombie and John Urry studied the middle class in Britain in the book Capital, Labor and the Middle Class (1983) and in their analysis concluded that there was a polarization of the middle class. Managers and experts are approaching the upper class, while most ordinary "white-collar workers" are approaching the working class. They believe that in the analysis of classes it is necessary to combine Marxist and Weberian class analysis because both have their advantages. Classes consist, at the same time, of individuals, but also of their class locations. These two authors believe that the middle class of experts and managers is more influential in the United States than in European countries. Abercrombie studied many aspects of British society in detail.


Main works

Class, Structure and Knowledge: Problems of Sociology of Knowing (1980);

The Dominant Ideology Thesis (1980);

Capital, Labour and the Middle Classes (1983);

Sovereign Individuals of Capitalism (1986);

Dominant Ideologies (1990);

Enterprise Culture (1991);

Social Change in Contemporary Britain (1992);

Stratification and Social Inequality: Studies in British Society (1994);

Television and Society (1996);

Family, Household, and Life-Course: Studies in British Society (1994);

The Authority of the Consumer (1994);

Audiences: A Sociological Theory of Performance and Imagination (1998);

The Contemporary British Society Reader (2001);

Commodification and Its Discontents (2020).

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