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Roads From Past To Future

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-0847684090
ISBN-10: 0847684091
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Review

Tilly at his best: intelligent theorizing and critique, combined with careful reflection on the data in the light of its historical context. (Immanuel Wallerstein, Fernand Braudel Center, Yale University)

Of all living sociologists, Charles Tilly is almost certainly the one most respected by historians and political scientists. He always compares, he invariably asks and answers important questions, he knows the past as a historian, and he never forgets that the present and future are rooted in it. (Eric J. Hobsbawm)

From the Back Cover

Over the years Charles Tilly has had an indelible influence on a remarkable number of key questions in social sciences and history. In the fields of social change, states and institutions, urbanization, and historical sociology, his seminal work has spawned whole new lines of inquiry and research. In one volume, this book offers the best and most influential of Tilly's work, with a new introduction by the author that relates his analyses to a wide body of scholarship. The book also includes a review and critique by Arthur L. Stinchcombe.
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Product Details

  • Series: Legacies of Social Thought Series
  • Hardcover: 488 pages
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers (January 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0847684091
  • ISBN-13: 978-0847684090
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,607,308 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Some fantastic essays in political science by Tilly in a vaguely left-sociological perspective. Tilly's honesty, critical thinking, and humor (!) set them apart. Included is the classic "War-making and State-making as Organized Crime," which starts:

"If protection rackets represent organized crime at its smoothest, then war making and state making quintessential protection rackets with the advantage of legitimacy qualify as our largest examples of organized crime. Without branding all generals and statespeople as murderers or thieves, I want to urge the value of that analogy. At least for the European experience of the past few centuries, a portrait of war makers and state makers as coercive and self-seeking entrepreneurs bears a far greater resemblance to the facts than do its chief alternatives: the idea of a social contract, the idea of an open market in which operators of armies and states otter services to willing consumers, the idea of a society the shared norms and expectations of which call forth a certain kind of government."

If you find that compelling (or even if you find it preposterous), do read Tilly. He also wins points in my book for drawing a comparison between the education of jazz musicians and social scientists.
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