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

Michel Foucault: ‘A Man in Danger’

Michel foucault: ‘A man in danger’

Our societies have proved to be really demonic since they happen to combine those two games—the city-citizen game and the shepherdflock game—in what we call modern states.

Foucault, 1988c: 71

What could Michel Foucault have meant by this statement delivered in his Tanner lectures to his audience at Stanford University in October 1979? Was it a case of hyperbole, an attempt to catch the ear of an indifferent American audience, designed to convince them of his critical intent and credentials? Was it something we were meant to pass over quickly and move on to the more detailed analysis of different forms of what he called ‘political rationality’? Or was this statement meant to summarize and to ...

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