Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

American Sociological Association Theory Section Mini- Conference Paper Session,


theory, Gabriel Abend, Richard Swedberg


This paper responds to Richard's Swedberg's call for analysis of the craft of theorizing and to Gabriel Abend's work on the meanings of theory. Their work is applied to a retrospective case study of the theoretical content of the introduction to the author's dissertation. The case study includes lessons drawn from several sections of that chapter: the choice of a research topic; identifying originating, specifying and subsidiary questions; distinguishing between the object and the subject of the research; reviewing the social policy and social science relevance; identifying the relevant research tradition; presenting a general conceptual framework and a specific conceptual problem, and specifying the empirical problem addressed by the research design. In addition, ontological, epistemological, and methodological assumptions are discussed. Conclusions are drawn about the meanings of theory employed as well as implications for empirical examination work of the process of sociological theorizing. 2