Sociology 318 – Classical Social Theory

Fall 2002

Instructor:           Paul Gingrich

office:               CL 217

telephone:         585-4196  

fax:                   585-4815



Classes:              Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 11:30 a.m. – 12:20 p.m., CL313

Office Hours:      Monday 1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m., Friday 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., or by



Kenneth H. Tucker, Jr., Classical Social Theory: A Contemporary Approach.  HM435 T83

Marx, Karl, Capital, Volume 1.  HB501M355 1976 or check and all of volume 1 is at

Emile Durkheim, The Division of Labor in Society.  HD51 D98

Weber, Max, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism.  BR115 E3 W4 or on web sites: or

Additional materials on reserve in the University Library, as handouts, or on web sites.

Selections from various sociologists are available at:


Assigments and Grading:

October 16      Short paper (five pages)                             15 points

October 28     Midterm examination                                   20 points

December 13   Long paper  (ten pages)                               25 points

December 13   Final examination, 9:00 a.m – 12:00 noon    30 points

                        Discussion and participation                         10 points

Total                                                                                 100 points

Special Needs:  If there is any student in this course who, because of a disability, may have a need for accommodations, please discuss this with the instructor, as well as contacting the Coordinator of Special Needs Services at 585-463l.

Calendar Description:  An analysis of the emergence and development of sociological theory.  The emphasis will be on the work of ‘founding figures’ such as Comte, Marx, Durkheim, and Weber, though the contributions of others may be discussed.

Sociology 318, Fall 2002.  Tentative Class Schedule and Readings


Week of



September 3


Tucker, Introduction

September 9


Tucker, Ch. 1-2

September 16



Tucker, Ch. 3

Marx, selections from Capital, volume I

September 23

September 30

October 7



Tucker, Ch. 4

Durkheim, selections from The Division of Labor in Society

October 14

October 21

October 28



Tucker, Ch. 5

Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

November 4

November 11

November 18

Simmel and Mead

Tucker, Ch. 6

Simmel and Mead, selections

November 25

Gilman and Du Bois

Tucker, Ch.7

Gilman and Du Bois, selections

December 2


December 13

Final examination, 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon


Class Description.  In this class we survey the works of the classical social theorists Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim, Max Weber, and Georg Simmel, with a short discussion of George Herbert Mead, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and W. E. B. Du Bois.  In addition to the textbook, students are expected to read around two hundred pages of original writing by each of Marx, Durkheim, and Weber, with shorter selections from Simmel, Mead, Gilman, and Du Bois.  I will provide a reading guide to the works of these authors at the start of each section of the class.

The first paper is to be a short paper on a specific topic.  The long paper is to be a more detailed exploration of the writings of one of the theorists.  I will provide a list of suggested paper topics by mid-September.  The final examination is a comprehensive examination, with greater emphasis placed on issues examined in the last half of the semester.


Last updated August 28, 2002

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