Towards a New Sociology of Genetics and Human Identity

Tim Owen

Abstract


The intention here is to contribute towards metatheoretical development as part of the post-Postmodern ‘return to’ sociological theory and method associated with Sibeon [2004, 2007], Layder [2004, 2007], Mouzelis [1991, 1993, 1995, 2007], Archer [1995, 1998] and Owen [2006a, 2006b, 2007a, 2007b, 2009, 2012], in tandem with an attempt to build bridges between the social and biological sciences in the form of an ontologically-flexible, Genetic-Social framework with which to study issues pertaining to genetics and identity. This involves marrying aspects of anti-reductionist sociological theory with selected insights from evolutionary psychology and behavioural genetics in a similar fashion to Owen’s [2012] recent attempt to do so in relation to crime and criminal behaviour. Selected meta-constructs from the framework are applied to selected examples from the literature on genetics and identity in order to demonstrate the explanatory potential. The term, Genetic-Social is favoured here in order to distance the conceptual toolkit’s approach from that of hardline Sociobiology.

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International Journal of Criminology and Sociological Theory | ISSN : 1916-2782