Sociology helps you better understand the social forces that make people do what they do. When you learn sociology, you’ll be better able to deal with a lot of different things in your life. Â
So, how should you go about learning sociology, and what should you do? The best way to learn about it is to talk to the experts. To make sure you learn everything you need to know, we’ve found the best sociology books.
Best Sociology Books
Take a look at the top sociology books below to learn more about how social forces work and how they can be good or bad.
The Sociological Imagination by C. Wright Mills
In The Sociological Imagination, C. Wright Mills says what he thinks about how social science should be done and why. A humanist sociology would be better, he says. This is because he doesn’t agree with the popular schools of sociology in the United States. In a humanist sociology, the personal, social, and historical aspects of our lives would all be linked together in a way that makes sense.
Sociologists should look at the connections between the seemingly private problems of each person and the big issues that affect the whole world. This is what he wants us to do.
The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life by Erving Goffman
The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life is one of the most important things we can learn about ourselves. In this, Goffman looks at how people act in social situations and how they appear to others. This book talks about how understanding how people interact with each other in the real world can help us control how people think about us. It uses theatrical performances as a framework.
By reading this, you’ll learn how to keep a performance going, just like an actor does with a group of people. The many social skills in this book are based on a lot of detailed sociological research and different cultural traditions from all over the world.
Distinction by Pierre Bourdieu
In sociology, Distinction is one of the best books to show how the middle class in the modern world thinks about social issues. This book, which was written in 1979, talks about the tastes and preferences of the French bourgeoisie.
In the course of everyday life, we have to choose between what we like and what we don’t like. Taste isn’t clean. Instead, our choices are all made in contrast to other choices. This interesting book says that the social world is both a system of power relations and one where taste is used to make social judgments.
Suicide: A Study in Sociology by Emile DurkheimÂ
In a world where everyone knew about the social frameworks in which we live, there would be no need for sociology. Because of Emile Durkheim, we can connect to the bigger picture. If anything can explain how people act and interact with society, it is suicide. I don’t know why. What went wrong? Because it is more common in some places than in others, why?
In this, Durkheim talks about how suicide can help us improve our understanding of sociology and learn more about people from this act that is often misunderstood.
The Social Construction of Reality by Peter L. Berger
The Social Construction of Reality is a treatise on sociology of knowledge. It looks at how knowledge is made and how it changes and stays the same in a society. When Berger does this, he moves away from intellectual history and focuses on common sense and everyday knowledge. If you look at the majority of people, you can learn a lot about their morals, proverbs, and beliefs.
This book changed both Western philosophy and sociology by introducing social construction and many other new ideas.
Bowling Alone by Robert D. Putnam
Bowling Alone looks at why we’ve become less connected to each other. It looks at new data that shows why Americans have changed their behavior. From church groups to political parties, many social structures have broken down.
In this important book, Putnam talks about how social groups have a lot of power when it comes to making a happy and healthy society. Not only does he explain what this central crisis means for our society, but he also tells us what we can do to improve our situation.
Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
Outliers is a book by Malcolm Gladwell that tells a story of success and explains what makes people who do well different from the rest of us. There is also proof that people who have had the most important lives are the ones who give the best advice and wisdom.
When we look at people who are successful, we pay too much attention to what they look like and not enough attention to how they were raised. Along the way, he talks about the secrets of software billionaires, what made The Beatles the best rock band, and how you can use the knowledge of successful people to improve your own life.
The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell
All about how small things can make a big difference. In this, Malcolm Gladwell talks about the science behind how things go viral in business, marketing, and people’s lives. There is a point at which an idea or social trend spreads like wildfire. It’s the same way that one person can start a pandemic. One person can start a global trend.
He shows how this happens and how this phenomenon is already changing the way people think about human behavior and business in this well-known book.
Economy and Society by Max Weber
Economy and Society has been called one of the best sociological books of the 20th century. It is the book that started the idea of sociology. When Weber talks about this, he compares social structures and normative orders. World-historical depth is used in this book to look at social action, religion, law, politics, and more.
In this book, we are asked to rethink our ideas about sociology. People who study Weber or want to improve their analytical skills will find this book useful.
Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond
One of the best books of 2017 is Evicted, which talks about one of the most important things people have: shelter. Matthew Desmond is an author who has spent his life recording the stories of people who are struggling to stay alive. From abandoned slums to shelters, he has done this for a long time now. They still don’t stop.
Desmond shows us why, without a home, nothing is possible.
The Rules of Sociological Method by Emile Durkheim
The Rules of Sociological Method is a great book about what sociology is and how it works. This book, now with a new introduction and a new translation, is still one of the most important sociology books. It is through letters, arguments and debates that Durkheim tries to show that his scientific method is objective and can be used to study people.
This important book says that individual-level factors can’t be used to explain human behavior. Instead, we need to look at social phenomena on a much bigger scale to better understand how and why certain trends happen.