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Cultural Trauma and Collective Identity - California Scholarship Online
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Cultural Trauma and Collective Identity

Jeffrey Alexander


In this collaboratively authored work, five sociologists develop an ambitious theoretical model of “cultural trauma” and on this basis build a new understanding of how social groups interact with emotion to create new and binding understandings of social responsibility. Looking at the “meaning making process” as an open-ended social dialogue in which strikingly different social narratives vie for influence, the chapters outline a strongly constructivist approach to trauma and apply this theoretical model in a series of extensive case studies, including the Nazi Holocaust, slavery in the United ... More

Keywords: social trauma, social responsibility, Nazi Holocaust, slavery, September 11th, social narratives, meaning making, social groups, constructivism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2004 Print ISBN-13: 9780520235946
Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1525/california/9780520235946.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jeffrey Alexander, author