Understanding Contemporary Society: Theories of the Present is a comprehensive textbook to guide students through the complexities of social theory today. Over 30 chapters, written by an international team of contributors, demonstrate clearly the practical applications of social theory in making sense of the modern world. Students are both introduced to the most significant theories and guided through the major social developments which shape our lives. Key features of the book are: clearly structured and readable prose; bullet pointed summaries and annotated further reading for each topic; makes complex issues accessible to undergraduates; focuses on relevance and practicality; chapter lay-out which is ideal for t
Liberalism is a leading if not the leading dominant ideology of the modern world. There is no transhistorical essence of liberalism, however, just as no ideology can be comprehended in essentialist terms that do not allow for debate and development. Theories of liberalism, though, tend to see and value a liberal society as one that is organized by mutual agreement to promote the interests of free and equal individuals. Contemporary liberal theorists, like their predecessors, may disagree over how a liberal society is to be best organized, but they are united in recognizing the worth of a society in which free, equal and rational individuals can flourish. Contemporary liberalism, though, is different at the levels of theory and practice. In practice liberalism is ...