By James Cosgrave

This reader contributes to the sociology of playing, and gives numerous sociological ways, starting from classical sociological analyses of playing to modern sociological ways to danger.

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The individualized framework within which gambling is represented in North America denies its societal contexts and habituses (Bourdieu 1990), contributing to the construction of problematic forms of gambling as personal troubles (Mills 1967). With respect to the issues of problem and pathological gambling—a field dominated by psychology—Collins’s chapter (Chapter Seventeen) demonstrates a sociological approach, governmentality, which focuses on the ways in which categories such as “pathological gambler” are discursively constructed within particular historical and social conditions.

The universe of future events is open to be shaped by human intervention—within limits which, as far as possible, are regulated by risk assessment. Yet the notions of fate and destiny have by no means disappeared in modern societies, and an investigation into their nature is rich with implications for the analysis of modernity and self-identity. Sweeping though the assertion may be, it can be said with some confidence that there is no non-modern culture which does not in some sense incorporate, as a central part of its philosophy, the notions of fate and destiny.

2002) “Gamblers Try to Collect a Debt to Society,” The Toronto Star, July 13, p. 4. com, December 6. Caillois, Roger (1962) Man, Play, and Games. London: Thames & Hudson. indb 21 5/25/06 8:12:08 AM 22 • The Sociology of Risk and Gambling Reader Calavita, Kitty, and Henry Pontell (1995) “Saving the Savings and Loans? S. Government Response to Financial Crime,” in Corporate Crime: Contemporary Debates, ed. Frank Pearce and Laureen Snider. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. Callahan, David (2004) The Cheating Culture: Why More Americans Are Doing Wrong to Get Ahead.

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