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Foundations of Modern Social Theory - Audio

By Iván Szelényi

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This course provides an overview of major works of social thought from the beginning of the modern era through the 1920s. Attention is paid to social and intellectual contexts, conceptual frameworks and methods, and contributions to contemporary social analysis. Writers include Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Montesquieu, Adam Smith, Marx, Weber, and Durkheim.

Customer Reviews

Great course, although needs more authors.

I find this course to be extremely useful. But there are some authors which should have been passed. The audio for Adam Smith is really John S. Mill and vice versa. Other than that it is a high quality lecture. It would be a great idea to complement with Charles Anderson's course on the subject, and David Gordon.

He should fact-check

I got as far as the second lecture, in which he gave a precis of Elizabethan English history to explain the background for Hobbs. It appears that the professor didn't know the difference between Avignon and Aragon (Henry VIII's first wife was Catherine of Avignon) or between Mary I and Mary Queen of Scots (Mary I had to "resign" because she was so unpopular, but Elizabeth later had her executed!) These are only a few, (and some are on his powerpoints), not to mention that Hobbs wasn't really Elizabethan. I gave up on the course because i figured if he has these basic facts wrong, I couldn't trust anything he said! Maybe that's why he's teaching in Dubai now.

I am surprised Yale keeps showing these lectures. On the other hand, my relatives in England had a good laugh.

Great introductory philosophy class without being boring

I like how the professor starts his discussion of different thinkers with some biographical info and the historical period that produced them. He is also good in connecting different thinkers' ideas, showing the roots of a certain concept which was identified with a certain philosopher but the seeds were intriduced by his predecessors.He also has a sense of humor, which definitely makes the lectures easier to follow. Overall, really good introductory class.