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Outsiders: Studies in Sociology of Deviance [Paperback]

Howard S. Becker
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
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Book Description

4 Aug 1997
This sociological text on deviance and difference provides an exploration into unconventional individuals and their place in normal society.

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Outsiders: Studies in Sociology of Deviance + Folk Devils and Moral Panics (Routledge Classics)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Ltd; New edition edition (4 Aug 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684836351
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684836355
  • Product Dimensions: 20.9 x 14.1 x 1.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 110,009 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
ALL social groups make rules and attempt, at some times and under some circumstances, to enforce them. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There will always be outsiders 6 Feb 2012
By Don
Format:Paperback
As someone involved in a subculture that revolved around drug use when I eventually tore myself away through an education portal this book was the one that helped me make sense of what I'd been through: both in terms of the experience of being involved in the subculture and of being the 'subject' of the moral and legal sanction of the authorities.

Of course, the out-groups have changed, of course the notion of the label being 'fixed' is flawed. But most of the claimed problems with the book stem from academics more concerned with selling a 'textbook' or bashing a 'theory'. How someone can claim a symbolic interactionist is 'deterministic' defies common sense.

This book still has a lot to offer because the issues may change but people remain the same - social beings likely to engage in some form of activity that draws them together and sets them apart. Forget Hebdige, look beyond the label, and it all makes sense.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very Interesting 8 April 2013
By Steph
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great bit of theory. I am a criminology student and this bit of research lends well to many areas and disciplines and I found myself always referencing it s decided to purchase it instead of keep borrowing. Its quite short so it can be read as a whole with ease.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Harm Reduction 11 Dec 2010
By Dr. Delvis Memphistopheles TOP 100 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Howard Becker wrote a seminal book, focusing on deviance creation, a big criminological industry. He looks at its formation, maintenance and the effects. As a member of an outsider subculture, he has formulated a view from insight not from the outside. This irks academia because they like to gaze though the telescope rather than the subjects themselves writing out their lives. It puts the "academic" out of business. This opus is derived from an outre scene participation of musicians, drawn from the late 50's/60's, the beatniks. Becker waited until the McCarthy witch trials had ran out of steam, before detailing his lifestyle. Ask Rocky Erikson what happens to someone caught with one reefer in Texas in the liberated 60's?

Second hand accounts abound of his Marijuana initiation picture abound. In the straight worlds of Bilton et al 80's college life, we were informed incorrectly Becker showed Dope Smoking effects were wholly socially constructed. No effect existed, apart from what the group defined as being stoned. Having imbibed on the weed prior to being given this piece of priceless information I quickly made up my mind, Becker was another straight speeling nonsense.

This is a complete misconception of Becker. In reading the original version, the chapter on Dope Smoking is the ultimate in harm reduction. He describes the initial effects of the drug, ranging from initially mild drunkeness to incapacitation. The inability to mix the correct amount of air to THC and holding the brew in the lungs creates consumption errors. When large amounts are undertaken the effect of being completely stoned, paralysis, coupled with the feeling of ever-present dread of space, time, distortion replete with nausea is pure horror.
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