This book examines the connection between sociology and the challenges faced by the modern military.

Military sociology has received little attention in the broader academic world, and is mostly focused on civil-military relations. This book seeks to address this gap and combines ideas, theories and insights from sociology’s founding authors, with each chapter focusing on a specific thinker. There are chapters on Max Weber, Emile Durkheim, Karl Marx, Georg Simmel, Jane Addams, W. E. B. Du Bois, Erving Goffman, Michel Foucault, Morris Janowitz, Norbert Elias, Cornelis Lammers, Arlie Russell Hochschild, Cynthia Enloe and Bruno Latour, and each essay discusses their ideas and theories in relation to topics that are of concern in and around the military today. Military studies are taken in a broad sense here, so the volume encompasses a wide range of issues, including civil-military relations, military-political affairs, performance and outcomes of military operations, and organizational arrangements including technology and the composition, performance and well-being of personnel. The book intends to provide views and insights that will help the military to innovate their organizations and practices, not necessarily in the usual functional way of innovating (i.e. faster, more precise, etc.) but in a broader way.

This book will be of great interest to students of sociology, military studies, civil-military relations, war and conflict studies, and IR in general.

chapter |7 pages


chapter 1|14 pages

Max Weber

Bureaucracy, leadership and military music

chapter 2|15 pages

Emile Durkheim

The military group, culture and its consequences

chapter 3|14 pages

Karl Marx

Critical analyses of society and the military

chapter 4|14 pages

Georg Simmel

Networks, conflict, secrecy and the stranger

chapter 5|13 pages

Jane Addams

From peace activism to pragmatic peacekeeping

chapter 6|13 pages

W. E. B. Du Bois

Race, diversity and inclusion, in society and the military

chapter 7|14 pages

Erving Goffman

Total institutions, interaction rituals, street-level bureaucrats

chapter 8|13 pages

Michel Foucault

Discipline and surveillance in and by the military

chapter 9|12 pages

Morris Janowitz

The professional soldier, civil–military relations and the AVF

chapter 10|13 pages

Norbert Elias

Decline of violence, habitus in combat, international relations

chapter 11|14 pages

Cornelis Lammers

Strikes and mutinies, occupational styles, and cooperation

chapter 12|12 pages

Arlie Russell Hochschild

Emotions in organizations and in the military

chapter 13|12 pages

Cynthia Enloe

Feminist views of the military and its surroundings

chapter 14|15 pages

Bruno Latour

Science and technology in society and the military

chapter 15|9 pages

From the classics to the future in military studies

Conclusions, themes and prospects