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Theorising Welfare: Enlightenment and Modern Society

by O'Brien M and Penna S SAGE Publications Ltd
Pub Date:
03/1998
ISBN:
9780803989078
Format:
Pbk 256 pages
Price:
AU$142.00 NZ$144.35
Product Status: Available in Approx 14 days
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' Theorising Welfare is very well written and painstakingly clear. It is an accessible and original textbook on the welfare state and the idea of welfare. There is nothing available like it in terms of its scope and intellectual sweep' - Scott Lash, University of Lancaster Why theorise welfare? What are the advantages and disadvantages of different perspectives on welfare? How would you recognise a theory of welfare if you saw one? This accessible introductory text shows how debates about welfare systems and provision are about much more than the organisation of services or benefits; they are also about how societies do and should develop and change and how major social divisions - such as class, gender, ethnicity or sexuality - are affected by change.From conditions of employment to the regulation of family life, from the availabilty of shelter to rights over the environment and its resources, from the classification of social membership or personal need to the management of waste, social welfare is embedded in a wide range of political, economic and cultural relationships. To theorise welfare is to theorise public and private, institutional and communal networks of action and struggle.Seven important theoretical perspectives are clearly set out: liberalism, Marxism, neoliberalism, poststructuralism, political economy, political ecology and postmodernism. The authors show how understandings of welfare are connected to wider perspectives on social change and development, providing a guide to social theories of welfare at the same time as exploring some of the social and political contexts in which those theories have arisen and developed. Theorising Welfare will be essential reading for students of social policy, laying the conceptual foundations for every facet of their undergraduate work; it will also provide sociology students with a map of the major debates in contemporary social theory.`.... an accessible and original textbook on the welfare state and the idea of welfare. There is nothing available like it in terms of its scope and intellectual sweep' Scott Lash, Director of the Centre for Cultural Studies and Professor of Sociology, Goldsmiths College, University of London

Introduction PART ONE: ENLIGHTENMENT AND PROGRESS Liberalism Marxism PART TWO: AGAINST ENLIGHTENMENT: QUESTIONS ON POWER AND KNOWLEDGE Neo-Liberalism Poststructuralism PART THREE: POST-ENLIGHTENMENT PROBLEMATICS Political Economy Political Ecology Postmodernism Critiques and Conclusion

`Very well written and painstakingly clear. It is an accessible and original textbook on the welfare state and the idea of welfare. There is nothing available like it in terms of its scope and intellectual sweep' - Scott Lash, University of Lancaster