ENSAE Paris - École d'ingénieurs pour l'économie, la data science, la finance et l'actuariat




Department: Sociology


The course is designed as an introduction to sociology, presenting the principal stages in the history of sociological thought and a few major themes in contemporary social science research. Its purpose is to set out and discuss theories, analysis methods and empirical results, with a particular emphasis on work that calls for quantitative techniques. Each session will be devoted to a specific theme. The first part of the session will lay out the main theoretical reference points and the findings of empirical research in the given domain, and a group of students will be invited in the second part to give an oral presentation lasting about twenty minutes on a more specific subject. Each student must participate in a presentation during the semester for the course to be validated. The presentation subjects will generally take the form of a critical discussion of texts and research results based on a documentation file handed out at the beginning of the year. Evaluation of the course will be based on thegrouppresentations and anindividualreview of a book or set of texts, a list of which will be handed out during the first session of the course, when the presentations in later sessions will be planned and definitive registrations will be taken.



  1. General introduction -Course presentation. The different research formulae in sociology. Allocation of presentations.
  2. Stratification and social classes -Presentation: The end of social class?
  3. Social mobility -Presentation: Social justice and meritocracy
  4. School and inequalities -Presentation: The massification of education and democratisation of teaching
  5. The sociology of voting and political behaviour -Presentation: Metamorphoses in class voting
  6. Sociology of immigration and integration -Presentation: Spatial segregation questions
  7. Culture, norms and values -Presentation: The post-materialism controversy
  8. Culture and lifestyles -Presentation: Is the distinction model still relevant?



1. (Groupe 1) Muriel Darmon « The School Form of the Hospital: How
Does Social Class Affect Post-Stroke Patients in Rehabilitation Units? »,
Qualitative Sociology, 2020, vol. 43, n° 2, p. 235?254.
2. (Groupe 2) Kevin Kiley et Stephen Vaisey « Measuring Stability and
Change in Personal Culture Using Panel Data », American Sociological
Review, p. 30.
3. (Groupe 3) Martin Hand, Elizabeth Shove, et Dale Southerton « Explain-
ing Showering: A Discussion of the Material, Conventional, and Temporal
Dimensions of Practice », Sociological Research Online, 2005, vol. 10, n° 2,
p. 101?113.
4. (Groupe 1) Laura Silvia Lungu « Bling-Bling Politics: Exposure to Status-
Goods Consumption Shapes the Social Policy Preferences of the Less Af-
fuent », Socio-Economic Review, 2023, vol. 21, n° 2, p. 1057?1082.
5. (Groupe 2) Natasha Dow Schull « Digital Gambling: The Coincidence of
Desire and Design », The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political
and Social Science, 2005, vol. 597, n° 1, p. 65?81.
6. (Groupe 3) Lauren A. Rivera « Hiring as Cultural Matching », American
Sociological Review, 2012, vol. 77, n° 6, p. 999?1022.
27. (Groupe 1) Austin C. Kozlowski, Matt Taddy, et James A. Evans « The
Geometry of Culture: Analyzing the Meanings of Class through Word Em-
beddings », American Sociological Review, 2019, vol. 84, n° 5, p. 905?949.
8. (Groupe 2) Colin Jerolmack et Edward T. Walker « Please in My Back-
yard: Quiet Mobilization in Support of Fracking in an Appalachian Com-
munity », American Journal of Sociology, 2018, vol. 124, n° 2, p. 479?516.
9. (Groupe 3) Roza Meuleman et Mads Meier Jæger « Cultural Talk or Cul-
tural Walk? Highbrow Tastes and Network Quality », Social Science
Research, 2023, vol. 111, p. 102855.
10. (Rattrapage) Michael Sauder « A Sociology of Luck », Sociological Theory,
2020, p. 073527512094117