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Book Details

  • Paperback
  • Bookstore's Wholesale Price: $77.00
  • August 2014
  • ISBN: 978-0-393-93745-9
  • 624 pages
  • Territory Rights: USA and Dependencies, Philippines and Canada.

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Essentials of Sociology

Fifth Edition


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Anthony Giddens (Author, London School of Economics), Mitchell Duneier (Author, City University of New York Graduate Center), Richard P. Appelbaum (Author, University of California, Santa Barbara), Deborah Carr (Author, Rutgers University)


The textbook that helps students see the big picture of sociology.

Essentials of Sociology moves students beyond their individual experiences by highlighting the macro social forces at work in our everyday lives. New “Digital Life” features in the Fifth Edition encourage students to think critically about how the Internet and smartphones are transforming the way we date, manage our health, and even practice religion. Innovative pedagogy, including end-of-chapter concept maps and a goal-focused organization, help students master the core concepts and see the big picture.


New “Digital Life” boxes explore technology’s role in modern life.

In the Fifth Edition, the authors address the realities of living in a digital age with new “Digital Life” boxes. In every chapter, these boxes explore how the Internet and the proliferation of smartphones are transforming our personal relationships, the nature of politics and social movements, and the ways in which we learn and work. Accompanying exercises in the IIG and coursepack make it easy for instructors to turn these boxed features into gradable assignments. 

“Globalization by the Numbers” infographics place the U.S. in a global context.

Data-driven “Globalization by the Numbers” infographics in every chapter “zoom out” to show students how the United States compares to other countries on metrics such as incarceration rate, maternity leave politics, education attainment, and gender equality. Interactive versions of these infographics encourage critical thinking by asking students to engage with the data and connect each infographic to specific “Big Picture” sociological concepts. 

New openers apply a sociological lens to current events.

Essentials of Sociology, Fifth Edition, shows students how the methods and ideas of sociology can help us better understand current events and the major social issues of our time. New openers on hot-button topics such as the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin, the imprisonment and subsequent release of members of Pussy Riot, and the attack on Malala Yousafzai by the Taliban challenge students to use their sociological imaginations to gain a richer understanding of these events.  

Learning goals and concept maps ensure students see the big picture.

Learning goals are outlined at the beginning of each chapter and then reappear as marginal notations at the start of the relevant sections, serving as a framework for both the text and the accompanying coursepack. Two-page “Big Picture” concept maps integrate key terms, “Big Questions,” “Concept Checks,” and “Thinking Sociologically” activities into a visually engaging study tool, serving as both a pre-reading guide to the chapter as well as a post-reading review. 

    Chapter 1: Sociology: Theory and Method
    Chapter 2: Culture and Society
    Chapter 3: Socialization, the Life Course, and Aging
    Chapter 4: Social Interaction and Everyday life in the Age of the Internet
    Chapter 5: Groups, Networks, and Organizations
    Chapter 6: Conformity, Deviance, and Crime
    Chapter 7: Stratification, Class, and Inequality
    Chapter 8: Global Inequality
    Chapter 9: Gender Inequality
    Chapter 10: Ethnicity and Race
    Chapter 11: Families and Intimate Relationships
    Chapter 12: Education and Religion
    Chapter 13: Politics and Economic Life
    Chapter 14: The Sociology of the Body: Health, Illness, and Sexuality
    Chapter 15: Urbanization, Populations, and the Environment
    Chapter 16: Globalization in a Changing World