British sociology has been central to the evolution of the field, playing a key role in the establishment of the discipline internationally and in the professionalization of the subject within the academy. This Handbook, drawing together leading specialists from across the subject, provides a comprehensive history of the discipline within Britain and demonstrates the continuing influence of British sociological thinking globally.
Addressing key moments in the development of sociology, this Handbook examines its 18th century origins in Scottish thought, 19th century evolutionism, the impact of the end of empire in the 20th century, the role of exiles, the rise of feminism and the implications of the most recent Government policies toward universities. The volume examines the institutionalization of sociology through the creation of departments, the development of research methods, the writing of textbooks and the creation and influence of the book series, the International Library of Sociology. Further, individual chapters discuss key topics of sociological study in Britain such as class, race and ethnicity, religion, the sociology of the body, cultural studies, and criminology, and its relation to other fields of research such as poverty, social work and the humanities. Challenging received ideas about the discipline and recovering lost histories this one-stop overview is an essential reference guide to the growth of sociology and the sociological imagination.