Towards a cosmopolitan turn in sociology Sociology, according to Ulrich Beck, bears the mark of methodological nationalism: it is an approach to the study of social phenomena which, often without reflection, assumes that societies can be nationally demarked and delineated and that it makes sense to study social phenomena – legislation, economic development, inequality, unemployment, institutions and so on – in a manner that is wholly separated from the developments and occurrences taking place in other societies. This kind of approach is, by now, defunct. It does not work. Beck, lapidary, puts it thus: ‘What remains national? Thought. What is no longer national? Reality!’ (Beck, 2006: 102). If today’s sociology wants to be able to truly take itself to be a science of reality, it must first come to terms with real cosmopolitanization and the new, interconnected world (Beck, 2000c, 2005: 10-50; 2006: 24-44). If we wish to understand the new social inequalities covered in the previous chapter, we will need to do away with the nation-state-oriented framing of social inequality which has been the predominant approach to the field. So far, research into the matter of social inequality has, writes Beck, questioned almost everything: ‘classes, strata, lifestyles, milieu and individualization – but not the territorial reference, the ties to the soil, the nation-state framing of social inequality’ (Beck, 2010: 168). The cosmopolitanization of reality, however, requires that this particular area of research – as well as sociology and the social sciences in general – be able to demonstrate a new and more reflective approach to the coupling between national state and society.