This book is an indispensable resource for anyone interested in the roots, current debates and future development of social theory. It draws together a team of outstanding international scholars, and presents an authoritative and panoramic critical survey of the field. The volume is divided into three parts. The first part examines the classical tradition. Included here are critical discussions of Comte, Spencer, Marx, Durkheim, Weber, Simmel, Mead, Freud, Mannheim and classical feminist thought. This part conveys the classical tradition as a living resource in social theory, it demonstrates not only the critical significance of classical writings, but their continuing relevance. The second part moves on t

Classical Feminist Social Theory

Classical feminist social theory

Classical feminist social theory has its intellectual origins in the development of Western political theory in the eighteenth century, the emergence in the nineteenth century of a faith that social amelioration was possible through a science of society, but above all in the age-old record of women's protest against their subordination, particularly as that protest coalesced in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, in both Europe and America, into a social movement centering on women's struggle for political rights—the so-called ‘first wave’ of feminist mobilization.

Definitional Issues

In the context of this chapter, we will focus on classical feminist sociological theory, by which we shall mean works created between 1830 and 1930, by women who were reflectively exploring the ameliorative ...

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