The paper reviews recent publications in ethnomethodology (EM) from sympathetic but critical perspective. It is agreed that EM has made major contributions to sociological theory and to the empirical investigation of everyday life. A number of major reservations are made, however. The author suggests that some contemporary versions of EM—conversation analysis in particular—have an unduly restricted perspective. They give rise to a sociology which is behaviorist and empiricist, and which does not reflect the interpretative origins that inspired EM. Far from being a coherent and homogenous movement, the author suggests, EM is marked by inconsistency.

Keyword(s): ethnomethodology

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  • Article Type: Review Article
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