Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 03 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The concept of sociability was introduced as an analytic term by the German sociologist Georg Simmel. Sociability has figured prominently in recent histories of consumer society and material cultures. It has become increasingly clear to historians and social theorists that the places where consumption took place, or where consumer desires were stimulated, and the social milieux in which consumers were located, are just as important to understand as the actual acts of consumption. The German sociologist Norbert Elias introduced Freudian insights into human psychology into a ‘processual’, or what is sometimes called a ‘figurational’, framework for his historical sociology. His works have had a major impact on the history of sociability and knowledge formation. The history of ‘civil society’ has been a major growth industry in the last few decades, and much of this work has developed under the rubric of explaining and exploring the rise of a ‘public sphere’ in early modern Europe. Unlike Elias, the German philosopher Jürgen Habermas located the origins of modern sociability and civil society outside of the realm of court society.

Keywords: sociability, consumption, public sphere, knowledge, Georg Simmel, Norbert Elias, Jürgen Habermas, civil society, court society, consumer society

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.