Contemporary Sociological Theory [ePub]

by Margaret M. Poloma

I read this book before the quals, to review social theory in mainly the American context. From Dahrendorf to Mills, from Parsons to Daniel Bell, Poloma's book is a clearly written, to-the-point, review book, if you know about these persons beforehand but did not study some of them in detail.

I'd think this is a book between easy introduction and hard, detailed reading. Even then, the book achieves being analytical about main trends in mid-1900s American sociological theory. Chapters focus on chosen sociologists and summarize their work shortly, discuss their contribution, and put them into perspective. Yet, to repeat once again, you will get the most from this reading if you have some background knowledge of, for example, Mills' sociological imagination and Gouldner's reflexive sociology. So that you can compare them after the reading.

Overall, Contemporary Sociological Theory gives good hints about how sociological currents (structuralism, functionalism, social constructionism, subjective knowledge on the rise, reflexive sociology...) in the world interacted with American sociology.



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