First published in 1975, this collection of essays embodies a conception of sociological thought as a critical analysis of social theories and doctrines, of social institutions and political regimes, of recent social movements. They deal, in particular, with some conservative versions of sociology and with attempts to develop more radical theories; they extend the author's previous writings on classes, elites and politics; and they analyse some of the problems of socialism in the late twentieth century.

There is a close unity of theme througout the book in its critical attempt to formulate new intellectual bases for future radical and egalitarian politics. It is written with that quiet wisdom and impressive command of sources which readers have come to associate with Professor Bottomore's work.

part |2 pages

Part I: Social Theories

chapter 1|10 pages

Conservative Man

chapter 3|11 pages

The Crisis in Sociology

chapter 4|17 pages

Capitalism, Socialism and Development

chapter 5|13 pages

Karl Marx: Sociologist or Marxist?

part |2 pages

Part II: Classes and Elites

chapter 6|10 pages

In Search of a Proletariat

chapter 7|17 pages

Class Structure and Social Consciousness

chapter 8|18 pages

Class and Politics in Western Europe

chapter 9|12 pages

The Administrative Elite

chapter 10|17 pages

Cohesion and Division in Indian Elites

part |2 pages

Part III: Social Movements and Political Action

chapter 11|18 pages

Conflict and Social Change

chapter 12|13 pages

The Political Context of Technology

chapter 13|9 pages

Reflections on the Student Movement

chapter 14|10 pages

The Prospect for Radicalism