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Capitalism and Modern Social Theory: An Analysis of the Writings of Marx, Durkheim and Max Weber Paperback – February 8, 1973

ISBN-13: 978-0521097857 ISBN-10: 0521097851 Edition: Later Printing

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Capitalism and Modern Social Theory: An Analysis of the Writings of Marx, Durkheim and Max Weber + The Marx-Engels Reader (Second Edition) + The Division of Labor in Society
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 261 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; Later Printing edition (February 8, 1973)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521097851
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521097857
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #89,954 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 15, 2000
Format: Paperback
I'm quite surprised this hasn't been reviewed yet; it's a wonderful book. Likely not for undergrads, Giddens is able to tie together in novel ways some of the key concepts that connect the writings of Marx, Weber and Durkheim. A good deal of the book summarizes the key writings of each author-- which is useful in itself-- and supports much of the summary material with compelling quotes and citations of both the author in question, as well as others who have done secondary analyses. Giddens also devotes a few chapters to analyzing the three authors in comparison, and spends a good deal of time teasing out differences between the three that were not, for me at least, apparent right away. In other words, a solid and original analysis. Not five stars because there was less on similarities of thought between the authors than I would have liked to have seen (and no explicit comparative analysis of Weber and Durkheim, only Marx vis-a-vis the other two), but this is probably due to the fact that Marx, Weber and Durkheim diverge in so many fundamental ways. Nevertheless, truly a must read for those who want to begin to get a grip on classical western social theory in a more sophisticated fashion than what most textbooks (which this is not) might have to offer. Get it, because if it's this old and still in print in the academic world, there's a reason for it...
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By mike cerneant on January 20, 2001
Format: Paperback
Well, to sort of disagree with the previous review, I feel that this book is great for Undergrads! I, myself had the opportunity to read this book in a social theory class and have since relied upon Giddens excellent analysis of these theorists! It really helped me grasp the detailed (and often times confusing) ideas and theories of the classical theorists. After reading the book, I was able to more fully understand the actual works of these individuals. I use this book as reference guide to refer back to what Marx, Durkheim and Max Weber said.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 3, 2003
Format: Paperback
Giddens outdid himself for sure! He definitely knew that me and my friends would use this book in our Sociology theory assignment as supplemental reading to aid out paper. Although I did not read this book from cover to cover, it found the Durkheim commentary very useful. Two of my friends also used the Weber and Marx sections, and thanked me so much for purchasing the book. Giddens gets straight to the point, explaning himself very clearly to the reader . . . which is often difficult in theory. The best way to use the book is to look up your subject of interest in the index while you have your primary source in front of you. Enjoy it and save it . . . it'll come in handy een after you're done with your theory class.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Suckwoo Lee on June 26, 2002
Format: Paperback
Giddens is the most well-known British social scientist after Keynes and one of three masters in sociology with Bourdieu and Habermas. This book has been widely used as textbook in classes on the history of sociology, while his more recent book, ¡®Introduction to Sociology¡¯ ahs occupied most introductory classes of sociology.
1. Giddens might be the best and deepest understander of three father of sociology. The prestige and appeal of his structuration theory might be rooted in that mastery. Before proposed the outline of structuration theory in ¡®New Rules of Sociological Method¡¯, he spent about ten years in digging into three founders: Marx, Weber, and Durkheim. This book is the fruit of that effort.
Unlike usual textbook, this book us not simple introduction to classical theorists. The need to read classics lies in the problem sociology poses to itself: ¡®what is the modernity?¡¯ Whereas other sister disciplines pose somewhat narrower problems-capitalism for economics, democracy for political sciences- sociology questions the modernity itself. That¡¯s the very problem three fathers posed over a century ago. But still we question the same problem in the way they set. So we should always return to classics when meeting the fundamental problem.
2. The style of this book is clear, easy-to-follow, and jargon-free enough to be used in undergraduate introductory class. But it doesn¡¯t mean that there is no depth in this book. Giddens argues that thoughts of Weber and Durkheim should be understood as the reaction to Marx. His emphasis is convincing and offers a good standpoint to look up three fathers as a whole. Such a point is invaluable to beginners. Moreover, his interpretations are opposite to conventional wisdom, with solid grounds.
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