Working in No Man’s Land: Between Sociology and Chinese Studies

Norman Stockman

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Preview:  Having worked for my whole career in a department of sociology, and for the second half of that career primarily on aspects of Chinese society, I have continually reflected on the questions of what relationships there might be between sociology and Chinese studies, and how the study of Chinese society might relate to general theorising in sociology. I always thought of my own undergraduate course on Chinese society not just as an analysis of a specific society but as an exploration of the applicability (or otherwise) of sociological theories and concepts to a society other than those where sociological theory originally developed, but I discovered that this view was not widely accepted among my colleagues in sociology.