Sociology’s Top 10

Books of the Century

 “ISA [International Sociological Association] XIV World Congress of Sociology (Montréal, 26 July-1 August 1, 1998) was the last ISA congress organized in the twentieth century and was also an occasion to celebrate fiftieth anniversary of the International Sociological Association. One of the major aims of the Montreal Congress was to make a critical assessment of sociological heritage of the twentieth century. In this framework the ISA Congress Programme Committee carried on in 1997 an opinion survey in order to identify ten most influential books for sociologists. ISA members were asked to list five books published in the twentieth century which were most influential in their work as sociologists. 16% of ISA members (455 out of 2785) participated in the survey.”

Top 10:

1. Max Weber, Economy and Society

2. Charles Wright Mills, The Sociological Imagination

3. Robert K. Merton, Social Theory and Social Structure

4. Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

5. P. L. Berger and T. Luckmann, The Social Construction of Reality

6. Pierre Bourdieu, Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste

7. Norbert Elias, The Civilizing Process

8. Juergen Habermas, The Theory of Communicative Action

9. Talcott Parsons, The Structure of Social Action

10. Erving Goffman, The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life 

See also most voted books by females, most voted books by males, most voted authors by females, most voted authors by males, list of all voted books and languages in which respondents studied sociology

Nice simple survey, isn’t it? Exciting to imagine a similar one for sociocultural anthropology. Just–I would not limit the publications to be published in the 20th century.  Wonder whether there already is one out there.


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