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Time Maps


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About the Author

Eviatar Zerubavel is a professor of sociology at Rutgers University. He is the author of seven other books, including Social Mindscapes: An Invitation to Cognitive Sociology, The Seven-Day Circle: The History and Meaning of the Week, and The Fine Line: Making Distinctions in Everyday Life.


"[Time Maps] makes scores of powerful points about the ways collectivities classify the passage of time, documented by appropriate, usually persuasive, and delightfully unpredictable illustrations. In the best tradition of symbolic interactionism it makes an accessible and convincing case for the pragmatic character of processes of social construction, in this instance of collective self-understandings and identities mediated through temporal classification."

--Alan Warde "Sociology"
"Best Books"

"This is a major contribution to the study of the social shape of memory." --Eric Hobsbawm "BBC History Magazine"

[Zerubavel's] erudition and insight are dazzling. . . . Here is a book for historians, educators, and social scientists alike. I cannot imagine it not appealing . . . to graduate students and liberal arts undergraduates. No work better captures the generic forms of collective memory; no investigator defines more clearly the objects of collective memory scholarship. Time Maps embodies the research tradition that Eviatar Zerubavel has done so much to advance.--Barry Schwartz "American Journal of Sociology"
[Zerubavel] argues for a 'sociomental topography of the past' as a framework for understanding how time and cognition interact. His conception, therefore, is at once sociological, mental, and topographical--it combines influences of social patterns, cognitive processes, and visual organization. . . . Zerubavel shows that divisions of time are neither natural nor consensual; rather, they have particular histories and, more importantly, particular cultural roles. . . . The point is clear and has a pedigree reaching back to Durkheim and Mauss: culture's job is classification, and without classification we have no access to meaning, whether individual or shared.

--Andrew J. Perrin "Social Forces"

The quest for a universal framework for the study of social time is certainly audacious. . . . Zerubavel's preliminary exploration confirms the daunting challenges to such a venture, but he also draws attention to the many benefits that will accrue to a sociology that, at long last, takes seriously the centrality of time in social life.
--Joseph M. Bryant "Contemporary Sociology"

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