Explorations in Classical Sociological Theory: Seeing the Social World
Explorations in Classical Sociological Theory: Seeing the Social World, Second Edition is an undergraduate sociological theory textbook that introduces the student to the major classical theorists, including Marx, Spencer, Durkheim, Weber, Simmel, Mead, Schutz, Gilman, and Du Bois. The theorists were chosen for the diversity of their perspectives as well as their ability to introduce the student to contemporary theory. Kenneth Allan uses a lively informative writing style to engage the students in the eras of social change that spawned the major sociological theories and then applies them to the current era, which also is experiencing major social change.
Features and benefits:
· The book includes a glossary of terms. Each of the theorist’s important concepts are highlighted in the text and clear definitions provided in the glossary. This feature is particularly important because theory is made up of terms and concepts and without the use of a glossary, it is very easy for the undergraduate theory student to lose track of the terms and meanings.
· While the book is organized primarily around the individual theorist’s perspective, a categorical scheme is also provided so the student can roughly situate the theorists and decide for themselves some of sociology’s big questions. The scheme provided in the book is not the one usually used by textbooks. The more commonly used scheme (conflict, functional, interaction) hides some really important questions that the student needs to consider (for example, is society an object or does it exist only through interpretations?).
· The book provides an appendix with complete definitions of most of sociology’s major "perspectives" e.g., critical theory (including feminism, race, and queer theory, postmodernism, and so on), exchange theory, rational choice theory, dramaturgy, ethnomethodology, structuration, network theory, ecological theory, social phenomenology, and so on.
· The book introduces the power and poetry of theory by extensive use of original source material from the theorists writings.