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Professional Powers

A Study of the Institutionalization of Formal Knowledge

"This is an immensely useful book for sociologists working in a wide range of sub-fields. It confirms Freidson’s status among the leading exponents of the old Chicago tradition. This book is catholic in its reading, sophisticated in its arguments and cautious in its judgements."—Robert Dingwall, Sociology

"As an attempt to provide a complex, wide-ranging account this book should be essential reading for specialist students, and it should act as a stimulus for the extension of both empirical research and theory."—Alex Faulkner, Sociological Review

"Freidson’s book is a concise introduction to the professions, challenging specialists with its puncturing of theoretically induced misconceptions and offering general readers a clear but critical entrée to the theoretical literature concerning this central aspect of modern society."—Andrew Abbott, Science

"This is a stimulating and well-written book which opens up a new perspective on the professions as well as contributing to existing debates."—David Podmore, Times Higher Education Supplement

260 pages | 5.5 x 8.5 | © 1986

Sociology: Occupations, Professions, Work, Theory and Sociology of Knowledge

Table of Contents

1. Formal Knowledge, Power, and the Professions
2. Identifying Professions
3. The Category Profession
4. Establishing Professional Positions: The Credential System
5. The Position of Professionals in the Courts
6. The Question of Professional Decline
7. The Special Position of Professional Employees
8. Professional Powers in Work Organizations
9. Professions in the Political Economy
10. The Institutional Transformation of Formal Knowledge

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