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The Sociology of Howard S. BeckerTheory with a Wide Horizon$
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Alain Pessin

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226362717

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226362991.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 03 August 2021

People Who Get High and the Others

People Who Get High and the Others

(p.1) 1 People Who Get High and the Others
The Sociology of Howard S. Becker

Alain Pessin

, Steven Rendall
University of Chicago Press

In the first chapter, Pessin describes how the research environment at the University of Chicago was propitious for sociological innovation at the time Becker published his most famous work, Outsiders. He then summarizes Becker’s innovative sociological approach to deviancy: Becker views deviancy as part of a dynamic norm, and the product of a set of interactions in a social landscape. According to Becker, actors cooperate in the symbolic production of deviance. Pessin goes on to point out the inaccuracy of describing Becker’s work as a theory and then elaborates on Becker’s ideas about deviance, using the social process of becoming a marijuana user as an example to clarify these concepts.

Keywords:   Howard Becker, sociology, deviance, occupation, cooperation, interactions, marijuana

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