'Once in a while a manuscript stops you in your tracks...What we are offered here is no recovering of old ground but a step change in perspectives on "body matters" that is both innovative and of fundamental importance to anyone working on this sociological terrain...This text is groundbreaking and simply has to be read' - Acta Sociologica 'This is Shilling at his creative best!these are seminal observations of the classical theories drawn together as never before. Moreover, as a framework [this monograph] provides a genuinely new and fertile way of reconsidering not just classical sociology but contemporary forms as well' - Sport, Education & Society 'This is a comprehensive, theoretically sophisticated, and ambitious treatise on the body that draws from, and applies, both classical and contemporary sociological theory in a manner that is innovative and thought-provoking. This book is engaging and thought-provoking, but Shilling's greatest achievement is his ability to illustrate the importance and continued relevance of classical and contemporary sociological theory to real world concerns. It is a book worthy of widespread attention.
It reinvigorated my interest in the sociological classics and contained countless nuggets of interesting information that led me to conclude that it would be a worthy book to recommend to a broad sociological audience' - Teaching Sociology 'Shilling's book (like his earlier The Body and Social Theory) is crucial reading!a further valuable contribution in a field where he has provided so much' - Theory & Psychology 'This is an impressive book by one of the leading social theorists working in the field of body studies. It provides a critical summation of theoretical and substantive work in the field to date, while also presenting a powerful argument for a corporeal realism in which the body is both generative of the emergent properties of social structure and a location of their effects.
Its scope and originality make it a key point of reference for students and academics in body studies and in the social and cultural sciences more generally' - Ian Burkitt, Reader in Social Science, University of Bradford 'Chris Shilling is as always a lucid guide through the dense thickets of the "sociology of the body", and his chapters on the fields of work, sport, eating, music and technology brilliantly show how abstract theoretical debates relate to the real world of people's lives' - Professor Stephen Mennell, University College Dublin This is a milestone in the sociology of the body. The book offers the most comprehensive overview of the field to date and an innovative framework for the analysis of embodiment. It is founded on a revised view of the relation of classical works to the body. It argues that the body should be read as a multi-dimensional medium for the constitution of society. Upon this foundation, the author constructs a series of analyses of the body and the economy, culture, sociality, work, sport, music, food and technology.
Chris Shilling is Professor of Sociology in SSPSSR at the University of Kent at Canterbury, UK. Having completed a BA in Politics and an MA in Social and Political Thought at the University of Sussex, he was awarded his PhD in the Sociology of Education at The Open University. Growing increasingly dissatisfied with cognitive conceptions of agency and disembodied theories of social and cultural processes, his research and writing from the late 1980s has sought to contribute to the embodiment of sociology and sociological theory and to promote the interdisciplinary field of 'body studies.' He has lectured widely in Europe and North America, has written on embodiment in relation to a wide range of substantive issues (from religion, archaeology, sport, music and health and illness, to work, survival, technology and consumer culture) and his publicationshave been translated into a number of different languages. Chris Shilling's major books include Changing Bodies: Habit, Crisis and Creativity (Sage, 2008), Embodying Sociology: Retrospect, Progress and Prospects (editor, Blackwells, 2007), The Body in Culture, Technology and Society (Sage, 2005) and, with Philip A. Mellor, The Sociological Ambition (Sage, 2001) and Re-forming the Body. Religion, Community and Modernity (Sage, 1997). He is currently editor of The Sociological Review Monograph Series and is continuing to research and write on embodiment as a foundational grounding for social thought and social research.