This title was first published in 2001. A classic ethnographic study of the interactions between paediatricians and parents of children thought to be neurologically handicapped. Strong used this work to systematize the often chaotic ideas of Erving Goffman, to explore the connections between micro and macro analysis in sociology and to reflect on the nature of medical practice in modern liberal societies. The book stands as a testament to Strong’s pursuit of methodological rigour in qualitative sociology.

chapter 1|17 pages


chapter 2|22 pages

Medical systems and settings

chapter 3|30 pages

Natural parenthood

chapter 4|30 pages

Collegial authority

chapter 5|28 pages

A joint venture

chapter 6|21 pages

Medical control

chapter 7|34 pages

Ease and tension in the alliance

chapter 8|43 pages

Conclusions and generalizations

chapter 9|10 pages

A methodological appendix