Certain Steps Toward Understanding Ambivalence
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Andrew J. Weigert is Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Notre Dame. He is the author of several books, including The Sociology of Everyday Life; Social Psychology; and Society and Identity.
"The author has written a unique volume taking the concept of ambivalence to its central place in the understanding of modernity. By showing that religion provides both the site and the resolution of ambivalence, the author has addressed a major issue of our time in a new and exciting way.
"The concern with religion is rising in American social and academic thought. The author's innovative synthesis of the social psychology of ambivalence with the homilectics of religion provides an extraordinary addition to this central issue. The author shows a number of unexpected relationships between ambivalence and religion and provides numerous insights about that phenomenon. " — Stanford M. Lyman, Robert J. Morrow Eminent Scholar, Florida Atlantic University
"This is a creative, insightful review of a very significant and timely topic. It brings to bear a range of insights, illustrations, and ideas centering on ambivalence, which it treats as a pivotal concept for understanding modernity. I most like the fact that its exploration of this broad topic provokes me to think further and in new ways about it.
"Weigert doesn't get hung up on the constructionist versus positivist issue, but opens new territory to explore. Furthermore, by making ambivalence a key concept in understanding modernity, he introduces 'social structure' into the analysis in a new way. To link the sociology of emotions to the broader questions of social structure and social change we raise under the rubric of modernity is important and exciting. " — John P. Hewitt,University of Massachusetts at Amherst