Wayward Pilgrims: A Study in the Sociology of Deviance
Kai T. Erikson
The white spiritual that the above title is drawn from has Appalachian roots. But it strikes me that wayfaring strangers, just like Bunyan‘s pilgrims, are travelers and Professor Erikson‘s Puritans traveled some distance to set their city on a hill.
It’s what they did once they got there that’s of interest to the good doctor.
This study, originally published in 1968, is a first-rate example of what I call old-school sociology. What I mean by that is it pre-dates the widespread use of advanced statistical analysis. So while there is data aplenty that data includes the historical narrative as well as facts and figures. The latter Continue reading