Thinking Through Methods: A Social Science Primer

Paperback | February 22, 2017

byJohn Levi Martin

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Sociological research is hard enough already—you don’t need to make it even harder by smashing about like a bull in a china shop, not knowing what you’re doing or where you’re heading. Or so says John Levi Martin in this witty, insightful, and desperately needed primer on how to practice rigorous social science. Thinking Through Methods focuses on the practical decisions that you will need to make as a researcher—where the data you are working with comes from and how that data relates to all the possible data you could have gathered.
            This is a user’s guide to sociological research, designed to be used at both the undergraduate and graduate level. Rather than offer mechanical rules and applications, Martin chooses instead to team up with the reader to think through and with methods. He acknowledges that we are human beings—and thus prone to the same cognitive limitations and distortions found in subjects—and proposes ways to compensate for these limitations. Martin also forcefully argues for principled symmetry, contending that bad ethics makes for bad research, and vice versa. Thinking Through Methods is a landmark work—one that students will turn to again and again throughout the course of their sociological research.

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From the Publisher

Sociological research is hard enough already—you don’t need to make it even harder by smashing about like a bull in a china shop, not knowing what you’re doing or where you’re heading. Or so says John Levi Martin in this witty, insightful, and desperately needed primer on how to practice rigorous social science. Thinking Through Method...

John Levi Martin is the Florence Borchert Bartling Professor of Sociology at the University of Chicago. He is the author of Social Structures, The Explanation of Social Action, and Thinking Through Theory.

other books by John Levi Martin

Social Structures
Social Structures

Kobo ebook|Jul 27 2009

$37.89 online$49.21list price(save 23%)
The Explanation of Social Action
The Explanation of Social Action

Hardcover|Aug 25 2011

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:280 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:February 22, 2017Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022643172X

ISBN - 13:9780226431727

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Preface
Chapter 1: Sharpen Your Tools
Chapter 2: How to Formulate a Question
Chapter 3: How Do You Choose a Site?
Chapter 4: Talking to People
Chapter 5: Hanging Out
Chapter 6: Ethics in Research
Chapter 7: Comparing
Chapter 8: Dealing with Documents
Chapter 9: Interpreting It and Writing It Up
Conclusion
References
Index

Editorial Reviews

“Thinking Through Methods offers an incisive introduction to social research methods. Methods textbooks are too often a bit stodgy. This book is anything but dull. It’s irreverent and entertaining, full of examples of good and bad research. Novice and experienced researchers alike will come away with strategies to avoid common mistakes. I look forward to assigning it in both undergraduate and graduate methods courses.”