50 Sociology Books to enhance your Sociological Imagination
See below 50 Sociology Books which will have you analysing the world from a different perspective. Remember, the Sociological Imagination is developed over time so don’t feel scared to read one of these books every once in a while.
- Friedrich Engels & Karl Marx – The Communist Manifesto
- Emile Durkheim – Suicide: A Study in Sociology
- Pierre Bourdieu – Distinction
- Norbert Elias – The Civilizing Process
- Benedict Anderson – Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism
- C. Wright Mills – The Sociological Imagination
- Simone de Beauvoir – The Second Sex
- Howard S. Becker – Outsiders: Studies in Sociology of Deviance
- Michel Foucault – Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison
- Micheal Kimmell – Guyland: The Perilous World Where Boys Become Men
- Max Weber – The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism
- Sue Pryce – Fixing Drugs: The Politics of Drug Prohibition
- Raewyn Connell – Masculinities
- Michel Foucault – The History of Sexuality: The Will to Knowledge v. 1
- Michel Foucault – The History of Sexuality: The Use of Pleasure v. 2
- Michel Foucault – The Care of the Self
- Theodor W. Adorno & Max Horkheimer – Dialectic of Enlightenment
- Malcolm Gladwell – The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference
- W. E. B. Du Bois – The Souls of Black Folk
- Robert D. Putnam – Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community
- Steven D. Levitt – Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything
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- Joseph Campbell – The Power of Myth
- Alexis de Tocqueville – Democracy in America: And Two Essays on America
- Jared Diamond – Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies
- Trevor Noah – Born A Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood
- Michelle Alexander – The New Jim Crow
- George Ritzer – The McDonaldization of Society
- Aziz Ansari – Modern Romance
- Thorstein Veblen – The Theory of the Leisure Class
- Peter L. Berger – The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise in the Sociology of Knowledge
- Naomi Wolf – The Beauty Myth: How Images of Beauty are Used Against Women
- Yuval Noah Harari – Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
- Owen Jones – Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Class
- Emile Durkheim – The Elementary Forms of Religious Life
- Sudhir Venkatesh – Gang Leader for a Day
- Emile Durkheim – The Division of Labor in Society
- Jessica Valenti – The Purity Myth: How America’s Obsession with Virginity Is Hurting Young Women
- C. Wright Mills – The Power Elite
- Erving Goffman – Stigma: Notes on the Management of Spoiled Identity
- Betty Friedan – The Feminine Mystique
- Malcolm Gladwell – Outliers: The Story of Success
- Judith Butler – Gender Trouble
- Peggy Orenstein – Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture
- Erving Goffman – Asylums: Essays on the Social Situation of Mental Patients and Other Inmates
- Max Weber – Economy and Society
- Bell Hooks – Ain’t I a Woman: Black Women and Feminism
- Karl Marx – Capital: Critique of Political Economy v. 1
- Naomi Klein – No Is Not Enough: Defeating the New Shock Politics
- Sylvia Walby – Theorizing Patriarchy
- Michel Foucault – Power: The Essential Works of Michel Foucault 1954-1984
Enjoy reading these 50 Sociology Books and let us know any other Sociology Books we may have missed.
Good list. But Sennett and Cobb, The Hidden Injuries of Class should be there. Too much Foucault!
Sorry about that, will look into that book for sure 🙂
Definitely too much Foucault ..
Sorry about that!
Just curious how you come up this list. What is the criteria?
Simply asking around Ben
Thank you for your offering of information. I came around this link from the sociological cinema whose work I’ve appreciated. And I think we should be doing this work of syllabus creation in community, because I know I have blind spots, ways of thinking that would completely leave out large swaths of people, for me it’s usually folks who non-english speakers and folks might not center books. Who is your list centering and putting on the periphery?
Honestly I think this list really deeply centers western thinkers and western way of knowing (I think 98% of the folk are from western places, I could be wrong). My addition if you’re trying to really enhance the way the worlds thinks include different thinkers, try this whole process again before publishing, ask folks from different experiences so they can be a part of the creation of the center. At that point I wonder would this list only include books at that point? What other forms of knowing information might it need if other people who might not have as much access to books center. I’d be happy to be a part of that group of folks if you dropped a survey link in this thread.
What about Latin American authors?
Mignolo, Canclini, Mariategui, Lowy?