Sociology of Social Intercourse and Sociology of Communication: Distinction and Vistas for the Theoretical Expansion


  • Andrei V. REZAEV St. Petersburg State University
  • Natalia D. TREGUBOVA St. Petersburg State University



sociology of intercourse, sociology of communication, contemporary sociological theory


The authors prove the idea to distinguish sociology of communication and sociology of social intercourse. The latter should not be considered separately but as one of the most perspective trends of contemporary theoretical sociology. The basic questions posed by the authors are beyond the scope of research of Russian sociologists and are as follows: Which models, concepts and tools help capturing the social intercourse of people in contemporary sociology? How the empirical studies regarding social intercourse should evolve? Whether the communication is capable of measuring? The authors propose to compare two concepts - sociology of communication and sociology of social intercourse. Describing sociological analysis of intercourse in terms of communication is insufficient and refracts the intercourse phenomenon; its theoretical basis should be extended. The methodology involves the following aspects: 1) distinguishing between domestic and foreign schools; 2) distinguishing between phenomenon, problem and notion of intercourse in social sciences. The specifics of the former is high level of analytical abstraction presented in social philosophy and social psychology. The specifics of the latter is narrow focus on certain disciplines and describing different aspects and problems of social intercourse in different terms (“interaction ritual”, “order of interaction”, “social performance”, “communicative action” et cet.). The authors explore possibilities to bring together the traditions of Russian school and the achievements of the foreign sociological theory. To conclude, the authors provide examples of the translation of the notions “intercourse” and “sociology of intercourse” into English language and address one of the most important problems of contemporary sociology – terminology authenticity of the conceptual constructs in different sociological traditions.






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