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Title: Social epigenetics: a science of social science?
Authors: Chung, Emma
Cromby, John
Papadopoulos, Dimitris
Tufarelli, Cristina
First Published: 21-Apr-2016
Publisher: Wiley
Citation: The Sociological Review, 2016, Volume 64, Sociological Review Monograph Series: Biosocial Matters: Rethinking Sociology-Biology Relations in the Twenty-First Century Pages 168–185
Abstract: Epigenetics has considerable potential to transform social science by embedding mutually regulative reciprocal connections between biological and social processes within the human activities it studies. This paper highlights common epigenetic methods and outlines practical considerations in the design of ‘social epigenetics’ research addressing the identification of biomolecular pathways, statistical inference of causality, conceptualization of the environment as a biochemical event, heritability of epigenetic alterations and intergenerational accountability, and concept of time implied by attempts to capture complex, non-linear gene-environment interactions. Finally, we reflect on the social epigenome as a conceptual space and try to identify barriers to translation, and practical and ethical issues raised by epigenetics research. In order for social epigenetics and social science to contribute to the emergence of this putative ‘science of social science’ and to capture meaningful human experience they will both need to change significantly.
DOI Link: 10.1002/2059-7932.12019
ISSN: 0038-0261
eISSN: 1467-954X
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2016, The Editorial Board of The Sociological Review. This version of the article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives License ( ), which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Description: The file associated with this record is under a 12-month embargo from publication in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy. The full text may be available through the publisher links provided above.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, School of Management

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