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Key Concepts in Classical Social Theory
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Key Concepts in Classical Social Theory

  • Alex Law - University of Abertay, Dundee


December 2010 | 240 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
"I think this will prove to be a very useful text for undergraduate students. Alex Law has produced a comprehensive list of key classical social theory concepts and provides an accessible account of the meaning of central terms, their place in the work of the classical analysts considered and the contemporary significance of their ideas. In addition he has offered useful additional reading guidance from which students will derive considerable benefit."
- Barry Smart, University of Portsmouth

This book's individual entries introduce, explain and contextualise the key topics within classical social theory. Definitions, summaries and key words are developed throughout with careful cross-referencing allowing students to move effortlessly between core ideas and themes. Each entry provides:
  • clear definitions
  • lucid accounts of key issues
  • up-to-date suggestions for further reading
  • informative cross-referencing.

Relevant, focused and accessible this book will provide students across the social sciences with an indispensible guide to the central concepts of classical social theory.

 
Introduction: Classical Social Theory
 
Alienation
 
Anomie
 
Base and Superstructure
 
Bureaucracy
 
Capital
 
Civil Society
 
Class
 
Class, Status and Party
 
Collective Effervescence
 
Collective Representations
 
Commodity Fetishism
 
Conscience Collective
 
Division of Labour (Smith and Ferguson)
 
Division of Labour (Marx)
 
Division of Labour in Society (Durkheim)
 
Fashion
 
Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft
 
Historical Materialism
 
Ideal-Types
 
Ideology
 
Legitimate Domination
 
Mechanical and Organic Solidarity
 
Metropolis
 
Mode of Production
 
Modernity
 
Money
 
Normal and Pathological
 
Positivism
 
Primitive Accumulation
 
Protestant Ethic and the 'Spirit of Capitalism'
 
Rationality and Rationalization
 
Sacred and Profane
 
Social Action
 
Social Facts
 
Social Forms and Sociation
 
Social Morphology
 
Social Space
 
Suicide
 
Totemism
 
Value Freedom
 
Verstehen

I think this will prove to be a very useful text for undergraduate students. Alex Law has produced a comprehensive list of key classical social theory concepts and provides an accessible account of the meaning of central terms, their place in the work of the classical analysts considered and the contemporary significance of their ideas. In addition he has offered useful additional reading guidance from which students will derive considerable benefit. I would certainly recommend the text to my students and I think they would find it a very useful addition to the library
Barry Smart
University of Portsmouth


The book covers key concepts of classical social theory. it is an important tool which students of social science, especially those in Politics, Public Administration and Developments. These concepts covered in this book are critical for students conceptual development and maturity in the application and operationalization for research and policy development. I therefore strongly recommend that students should have it as additional material and strongly advisable for University Libraries to have it as part of their collection

Mr SIPHIWE DAVIDSON NDOU
Accounting , UNIVERSITY OF LIMPOPO
September 7, 2015

In Key Concepts in Classical Social Theory individual entries introduce, explain and contextualize the key topics within classical social theory. Definitions, summaries and key words are developed throughout with careful cross-referencing, allowing students to move effortlessly between core ideas and themes.

Each entry provides:

• Clear definitions

• Lucid accounts of key issues

• Up-to-date suggestions for further reading

• Informative cross-referencing

Relevant, focused and accessible, this book will provide students with an indispensible guide to the central concepts of classical social theory.

Dr Charles Mugisha
Social Work, Birmingham City University
June 20, 2015

A quick reference to key ideas - perfect as a refresher/reassurance that you are on the right lines. Very useful reference for me as a teacher outside of the social sciences - and for some of my students who are interested in more abstract ideas.

Ms Isobelle Madden
Healthcare, Bedfordshire University
February 3, 2015

A very useful text that has been recommended to the students completing the Sociology degree programme here. It covers the key concepts from the key 'players' and moves beyond by providing some illuminating historical information.

Mr Adam Spiller
Teacher Education, Peterborough Regional College
July 21, 2014

a useful text for health professionals wanting to get to grips with social theory and will help develop their awareness of how these theories influence their own study.

Dr Nikki Petty
Health , Brighton University
November 27, 2012

This is a very useful reference source that students can use to get brief introductions to key Sociological concepts before moving on to more detailed texts.

Dr Serena Bufton
School of Social Science & Law, Sheffield Hallam University
September 7, 2012

Very useful Level 4 text

Dr Donna Woodhouse
HWB, Sheffield Hallam University
July 2, 2012

An excellent resource for both tutors and students alike at all undergraduate levels. It is in a very readable form and can sufice as a sort of dictionary as well.

Mr Michael Mahadeo
Dept of Sociology & Appl'd Soc Studies, Ulster University
March 29, 2012

Great resource both for those who make their first steps in social sciences and for those needing to brush up their familiarity with the key concepts.

Dr Piotr Goldstein
School of Languages, Linguistics and Cultures, Manchester University
July 29, 2011

Sample Materials & Chapters

Introduction: Classical Social Theory


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