Alcohol Research: Joseph Gusfield

Gusfield’s book Symbolic Crusade: status politics and the American Temperance Movement Urbana University of Illinois Press (1963) was to set the tone for future research. It became more symbolic interactionist with time.

His article just five years after publication “Moral Passage: the symbolic process in public designations of deviance” in Social Problems (Autumn 1967, Vol.15 No.2 pp.175-188), expressed the view at the time that placed alcohol use in the context of deviancy theory. An internet pdf file provides a  summary:  https://halasocialdeviance.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/gusfield.pdf.

Gusfield died recently at the age of 91: “It is with sadness that we announce the death of Joseph Gusfield, internationally renowned sociologist and founding chair of the sociology department at UC San Diego.”

Oddly there is no English Wikipedia page on the life and work of Joseph Gusfield. But there is a German version with a brief list of references, all of which are in English: https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_R._Gusfield

It is easy to forget what a pioneer Gusfield was. His work goes back such a long way.

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