Conditions of Use
Primarily focused on Marx, Engels, Durkheim, and Weber, there is also a section on Early American theorists, which does make an attempt to indicate the ways in which the European theorists' work laid the groundwork for the work of US theorists... read more
Primarily focused on Marx, Engels, Durkheim, and Weber, there is also a section on Early American theorists, which does make an attempt to indicate the ways in which the European theorists' work laid the groundwork for the work of US theorists like Jane Addams and WEB Dubois. In each of the theorist sections, there is a comprehensive look at their major perspectives and contributions. It's hard to say if it's a lack of comprehensiveness or if organization would help pull this out more, but I was surprised at the lack of highlighting of Durkheim's contributions about Sociological Imagination.
The book's straightforward tone and lack of editorializing makes the book's accuracy clear. There is not a strong bias, with the exception of the framing.
Because of the historical nature of the book, it's context is contemporary, but the information is resilient to obsolescence.
The writing of the book is clear, however the organization of chapters and headings could be more intuitive.
There is consistency in the terminology and framework, though again, the organization is a bit confusing at times.
The section breaks with questions are very helpful, but the lack of consistency across the sections in how they are broken down into smaller section does make the overall modularity a little bit of a challenge.
This part was the most challenging. I wish there was more consistency with the different sections having an internal flow.
Very easy to navigate the online version of the book.
No distracting errors
Because of the specific cultural context of the theorists in question, there are no obvious issues.
Table of Contents
- I. Marx and Engels
- II. Durkheim
- III. Weber
- IV. Early American Sociology
About the Book
There are a few major themes that come up over and over again during the course of classical sociological theory’s development. All three classical theorists were writing at a time when sociology was a new and emerging discipline. This new discipline was called forth by momentous social changes taking place in European (and American) society during this time period. These changes were related to the rise of capitalism, industrialization, and new political representation for the majority of people (or, at least, a desire for such by many). Calls for socialism emerged as a response to recognition of new social divisions. Each of the three theorists you will read here weighed in on these historical changes, theorizing the contours and dynamics of this new “modern” society.
About the Contributors
Allison L. Hurst, Oregon State University