Address correspondence to: Neil Fligstein, Department of Sociology, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720. Tel.: 510-642-6567. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. We would like to thank the reviewers of the article for insightful and useful comments.
Toward a General Theory of Strategic Action Fields*
Article first published online: 21 FEB 2011
© 2011 American Sociological Association
Volume 29, Issue 1, pages 1–26, March 2011
How to Cite
Fligstein, N. and McAdam, D. (2011), Toward a General Theory of Strategic Action Fields. Sociological Theory, 29: 1–26. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9558.2010.01385.x
- Issue published online: 21 FEB 2011
- Article first published online: 21 FEB 2011
In recent years there has been an outpouring of work at the intersection of social movement studies and organizational theory. While we are generally in sympathy with this work, we think it implies a far more radical rethinking of structure and agency in modern society than has been realized to date. In this article, we offer a brief sketch of a general theory of strategic action fields (SAFs). We begin with a discussion of the main elements of the theory, describe the broader environment in which any SAF is embedded, consider the dynamics of stability and change in SAFs, and end with a respectful critique of other contemporary perspectives on social structure and agency.