Sociology has long concentrated on the study of vertical social mobility, that is the movement of persons up or down the social hierarchy. I wish to point out here that the approach to this subject has so far been unduly limited. For reasons of a profound nature, which probably only the sociology of knowledge could fully clarify, these studies have up to this date unduly restricted themselves to mobility patterns among the living. Yet as recent Russian events have made clear, so undue a narrowing of our field of attention leads only to a distortion of vision.
What have the recent revelations of Khrushchev and subsequent decisions in Moscow shown if not that a man’s social mobility cannot be considered terminated by death? Me...
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