Contested Knowledge is a well-established text offering up-to-date perspectives on social theory by one of the most important thinkers of our time. Steven Seidman tracks the work of major figures in the field, from the classical sociologists - Durkheim, Marx, Weber - to contemporary theorists -- Giddens, Foucault, Bourdieu, and Judith Butler. By exploring contemporary social theories and movements -- including feminism, post-structuralism, African-American thought, and queer theory -- the author provides a compelling look at sociological theory and its established canon. Contested Knowledge combines social analysis and moral advocacy, showing how social theory can and does - and sometimes doesn't - work within the public and political sphere. Highlights of the fourth edition include a new section on globalization. A major revision of social theory has been to shift the unit of social analysis from the independent nation state or discrete-bounded society to the global or world order, and to emphasize the importance of situating key social dynamics within a wider global context.The updated version includes a new section entitled Theories of Global and World Order, offering three timely chapters, 'Capitalism as a world order', 'The making of a global order', and 'Civilizational clash or the return of Empire?' The book's introduction is more in-depth and existing chapters are widely revised. With sustained historical and theoretical argument, the text successfully balances the tensions existing between philosophical, scientific, and moral modes of theorizing. The challenges and changes to the classical tradition found within current social theory are explored. Contested Knowledge is a thoughtful and rigorous, yet highly accessible and reader-friendly account of social theory.
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