Epigenetics and sociology: A critical note

I recently read an interesting article by Michel Dubois, Catherine Guaspare and Séverine Louvel entitled “De la génétique à l’épigénétique: une révolution ‘post-génomique’ à l’usage des sociologies”, which appeared in the Revue française de sociologie, 59(1), 71-98 (2018). Dubois et al.’s ‘critical note’ is intended to introduce French readers to English works that explore the boundaries between …

Biology and sociology: estrangement and entanglement

Ever since my PhD, I have been fascinated by the interplay, interrelations, mutual inspirations, struggle and strife between various disciplines that began to establish themselves during the 19th century, such as linguistics (which became the focus of my research), sociology, biology and so on. In recent years, a little flood of literature has emerged that …

Biosocial: A brief conceptual history

I have recently come across the word ‘biosocial’ in various social science debates about epigenetics and other advances in the life- and bio-sciences. A chapter in a book on ‘social epigenetics’ (and the ‘biosocial’) says for example: “Epigenetics has considerable potential to transform social science by embedding mutually regulative reciprocal connections between biological and social …