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Social Problems: An Introduction to Critical Constructionism Paperback – March 27, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-0195380231 ISBN-10: 0195380231 Edition: 3rd

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 3 edition (March 27, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195380231
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195380231
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 6.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #59,634 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review


"This impressive and accessible volume uses a unique theoretical framework to discuss and analyze some of the most important social problems at the dawn of the twenty-first century. It is packed with insightful information that will be useful to students, scholars, and educated laymen alike."--William Julius Wilson, Harvard University


"From the opening words, I found the book to be exciting, vibrant, and engaging. As I was reading, I found that I could not put the book down. I have NEVER had that experience with any other textbook. I have previously used "standard" social problems texts for the course, and would characterize Heiner's book as different from (and superior to) those so-called standard texts. Heiner has managed to skillfully and successfully integrate a variety of material into the current configuration of chapters. I will absolutely adopt this new edition."--Kathy Zawicki, St. Bonaventure University


"I have yet to find a book that does a better job in taking a critical examination of the major social problems facing America. I would like to thank Oxford for not copying the typical format of Social Problems textbooks."--Herbert Ziegler, Chesapeake College


About the Author

Robert Heiner is Professor and Assistant Department Chair of Sociology at Plymouth State College. He is editor of Deviance Across Cultures (O.U.P., 2007), Social Problems and Social Solutions: A Cross-Cultural Perspective (1998), and Criminology: A Cross-Cultural Perspective (1995).

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Mark A. Foster on February 22, 2003
Format: Paperback
I will always be grateful to Oxford University Press for publishing Robert Heiner's book. Since I already use an anthology, Race, Class, and Gender (Margaret L. Anderson and Patricia Hill Collins), as the primary text for the Social Problems course I teach, I was looking for a short book (no more than around 200 pages) to serve as an introduction to the field.

Heiner's text, which combines an approach to social constructionism with critical theory, is precisely what I needed. There is, to the best of my knowledge, nothing else like it, and I have questioned just about every publisher's representative who has come by to visit my office!

I have been using this book since its first edition and will be adopting the third edition for fall of 2009. I would recommend it to anyone who would prefer a short textbook for a Social Problems course.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ask any of my former students what they remember about my Social Problems class and they will say without hesitation: "Heiner's Square!"

An excellent introduction to Social Constructionism and critical thinking. I cannot recommend this book more highly.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I want to start off by saying that I am a very open-minded individual. By open-minded, I mean that I have strong beliefs, and if I am presented with logical and proper explanations and evidence that effectively refute my beliefs, I will reconsider and re-evaluate what I think I know. I am a scientist, and I am all for looking at things from alternate perspectives.
Unfortunately, Heiner does not. In this book, there is the pretense of being an open-minded individual willing to look at social situations with a constructive attitude, considering multiple angles, and seeing most issues as multifaceted as opposed to one or two sided. Heiner fails to do so in many instances.

As a specific example, Heiner points out the higher rate of crime in the United States as opposed to Japan. He immediately says that this is a direct result of gun control. Now, wherever you stand on that issue, I am sure you will have opinions. However, putting those opinions aside, consider the other facets of this complicated issue. First of all, the society in Japan is one of collectivism, rather than the United States being one of individualism. This means that in Japan, people generally inherently have a desire/thought pattern that relates to how their actions will affect everyone around them, as opposed to the United States where people generally think of how their actions will affect themselves. Another facet of this same issue would be the fact that Japanese police are highly trained in unarmed combat, US law enforcement is trained in hand to hand, but no where near to the same level as Japan's police force. Japan also has a higher emphasis on pride and honor than the United States does, which would in of itself be a major deterrent to a life of crime, where there is very little honor in committing crime.
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By MrVascony on December 27, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really like the way the author presented the problems in this book. I got the book for a class and ending liked. I did not always agreed with the Author opinikon, but the book is easy to read and understand.
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