Pub. date: 2007 | Online Pub. Date: March 15, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939645 | Print ISBN: 9781412916080 | Online ISBN: 9781412939645| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this handbook
Chapter 72: The Sociology of Friendship
GRAHAM ALLAN & REBECCA G. ADAMS
The sociology of friendship Traditionally, friendship has received little systematic attention from sociologists. The issue of social integration has of course been central to the discipline since its origins in the nineteenth century, but until recently friendship itself was rarely seen as anything but peripheral to the major issues that defined the subject. Indeed, in this regard, a concern for friendship lapsed far behind a focus on family and community organization. It was these twin concerns that from an early phase of the discipline's history shaped the ways in which sociologists addressed the topic of informal solidarities. Communities and families were understood to have significance as sustained forms of social institutions. Even though their patterning was subject to the transformative processes of nineteenthand twentieth-century industrialization, they were understood to be of greater structural consequence than the far more individualized and prosaic ties of friendship. In the absence of any explicit ...