• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Praised for its conversational tone, personal examples, and helpful pedagogical tools, the Fourth Edition of Explorations in Classical Sociological Theory: Seeing the Social World is organized around the modern ideas of progress, knowledge, and democracy. With this historical thread woven throughout the chapters, the book presents a diverse selection of major classical theorists including Marx, Spencer, Durkheim, Weber, Mead, Simmel, Martineau, Gilman, Douglass, Du Bois, Parsons, and the Frankfurt School. Kenneth Allan and new co-author Sarah Daynes focus on the specific views of each theorist, rather than schools of thought, and highlight modernity and postmodernity to help contemporary readers understand how classical sociological theory applies to their lives.

The Modern Person : George Herbert Mead and Georg Simmel
The Modern Person: George Herbert Mead and Georg Simmel

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Source: Wikimedia Commons (top and bottom)

The topics of each of the previous chapters are central to the modern project. We’ve talked about social structures and complex social systems, religion and the state, capitalism and bureaucracy, culture and social integration, and so on. All of these are fairly large (macro level) institutional issues that help define modernity as a historical period. In this chapter, we’re bringing our analysis down to the micro level and the person. In a significant way, this chapter is about you—the theoretical you. However, it is vital for you to see that the topic of this chapter is just as central to ...

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