Key Issues in Sociological Theory

Course Description: 

This course intends to give the students a detailed insight into the emergence of sociology as a distinct discipline, and the development of sociological theory, based on the works of the core founding theorists, at a time period beginning from the mid nineteenth century to the early twentieth century. At the same time, we will endeavor to develop a critical reading of these classics, by re-embedding them within their own specific historical context; we will also read and discuss some work by scholars, writing outside the ‘west’, whose work is not conventionally included in the mainstream classical curriculum because of the west-European bias of our discipline.

Attendance and participation are mandatory. The course will be a combination of lecture and discussion. You are required to come completely prepared, including a thorough, “quality-time” reading of the assigned texts. Participation is assessed through a combination of attendance record and active, meaningful participation in class. If you miss TWO classes or more WITHOUT ANY SPECIAL REASON LIKE SICKNESS, you cannot pass the course. Over fifteen minute of lateness will be considered as absence.

You are required to bring at least one question to our small-group discussion each week. The question should be posted on the E-learning before the class.

We will have a take-home exam at the end of the semester. It will be composed of two short-essay questions. You will have two days to finish the exam.

You are not expected to read the thousands of secondary literature items dealing with any of the readings. However, this does not mean that you are entitled to appropriate other interpretations and critical readings from this vast body of secondary literature and present them as your own in your essays. Obviously, the same applies to the use of material from the internet. If you feel that you have come across a particularly relevant idea, which you need to use in your paper, make sure to include the proper references. Overall, use secondary sources sparingly. Also, try to avoid using too many direct quotes from the readings too, but do provide page references when relying on the text. Any attempt at plagiarism will result in a failing grade. For more details on what constitutes plagiarism see:

Learning Outcomes: