In this book, one of the foremost sociologists of the present day, turns his gaze upon the key figures and seminal institutions in the rise of sociology. Turner examines the work of Karl Marx, Max Weber, Karl Mannheim, Georg Simmel, Emile Durkheim and Talcott Parsons to produce a rich and authoritative perspective on the classical tradition. He argues that classical sociology has developed on many fronts, including debates on the family, religion, the city, social stratification, generations and citizenship. The book defends classical perspectives as a living tradition for understanding contemporary social life and demonstrates how the classical tradition produces an agenda for contemporary sociology.

The Sociology of the City

The sociology of the city

Introduction: Cities and Civilization

In the history of the human species, cities are a relatively recent development. The earliest cities appeared simultaneously between 3000 and 4000 bc in the Nile Valley and in Mesopotamia. Around 2000 bc cities also developed in Crete, in the Yellow River in China, Greece and the Indus Valley. Cities arose independently in the New World in Central Mexico around 300 bc. The Mayan and Aztec cities arose in the first millennium AD, but large cities are a product of the industrial revolution and the demographic transformation of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The two principal conditions for the emergence of the city are an agricultural surplus and an administrative system which exists ...

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