Anthony Giddens and structuration theory

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The relationship between individual action and social structure has been the subject of considerable discussion and debate in social theory. This chapter presents Anthony Giddens’ proposal to reconcile the opposition between structure and agency. His structuration theory proposes to see structure and agency as mutually constitutive, as a duality: as inseparable as the two sides of a coin. Anthony Giddens was born on January 18, 1938 in Edmonton, north London. He was the first member of his family to go to college and, in 1974, obtained his doctorate from the University of Cambridge. He began his working life at the University of Leicester and then worked for some ten years at Cambridge University before he was eventually promoted to a full professorship. A central problem in social theory is how to make sense of the opposition, or dualism, of agency and structure. Many people ordinarily experience that their activities are both constrained and enabled by social structures.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationManagement, Organizations and Contemporary Social Theory
EditorsStewart Clegg, Miguel Pina e Cunha
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9780429279591
ISBN (Print)9780815365846, 9780367233778
Publication statusPublished - 2019


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