Social Science and Historical Perspectives : Society, Science, and Ways of Knowing book cover
1st Edition

Social Science and Historical Perspectives
Society, Science, and Ways of Knowing

ISBN 9781138675797
Published September 19, 2016 by Routledge
310 Pages

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Book Description

This accessible book introduces the story of ‘social science’, with coverage of history, politics, economics, sociology, psychology, anthropology, and geography.

Key questions include:

  • How and why did the social sciences originate and differentiate?
  • How are they related to older traditions that have defined Western civilization?
  • What is the unique perspective or ‘way of knowing’ of each social science?
  • What are the challenges—and alternatives—to the social sciences as they stand in the twenty-first century?

Eller explains the origin, evolution, methods, and the main figures, literature, concepts, and theories in each discipline. The chapters also feature a range of contemporary examples, with consideration given to how the disciplines address present-day issues.

Table of Contents


Features of the Book

Chapter 1 What is Social Science?

Chapter 2 Historical Thinking

Chapter 3 Science of Politics

Chapter 4 Economic Outlook

Chapter 5 Psychological Careers

Chapter 6 Sociological Imagination

Chapter 7 Anthropological Perspective

Chapter 8 Geographical Worldview

Chapter 9 Social Science and Other Ways of Knowing

List of Key Terms


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Jack David Eller is Associate Professor (Emeritus) of Anthropology at the Community College of Denver, USA. An experienced teacher and author, his other books for Routledge include Cultural Anthropology: Global Forces, Local Lives (third edition, 2016), Cultural Anthropology: 101 (2015), Culture and Diversity in the United States (2015), and Introducing Anthropology of Religion (second edition, 2014).


Eller’s book is a logically structured and highly readable overview of the key tenets of various social science disciplines.

- Wendy Rouse, San José State University, USA