3rd Edition

Social Theory Re-Wired New Connections to Classical and Contemporary Perspectives

Edited By Wesley Longhofer, Daniel Winchester Copyright 2023
    540 Pages 11 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    540 Pages 11 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This third edition of Social Theory Re-Wired is a significantly revised edition of this leading text and its unique web learning interactive programs that "allow us to go farther into theory and to build student skills than ever before," according to many teachers. Vital political and social updates are reflected both in the text and the online supplements. "System updates" to each section offer an expanded set of contemporary theory readings that focus on the impacts of information/digital technologies on each of the text’s five big themes: 1) the Puzzles of Social Order, 2) the Social Consequences of Capitalism, 3) the Darkside of Modernity, 4) Subordinated/Alternative Knowledges, and 5) Self-Identity and Society.

    New to this edition:

    • The "big ideas/questions" thematic structure of the text as well as the connections between classical and contemporary theorists continues to be popular with instructors. This feature is enhanced in the new edition
    • An expanded "Podcast Companions" series now pairs at least one podcast to every reading in the book
    • Many new updates to the exercise platform allow students to theorize and build theory on their own
    • New readings excerpts include such important recent work as: Shoshana Zuboff’s "The Age of Surveillance Capitalism," Ruha Benjamin’s "Race After Technology," David Graeber’s "Of Flying Cars and the Declining Rate of Profit," Sherry Turkle’s “Always-On/Always-on-You.”


    I. EMERGENCE THROUGH CONVERGENCE: The Puzzles of Social Order

    Introductory Essay: "The Virus that Changed Our World"

    Classical Connections

    Emile Durkheim, The Rules of Sociological Method

    Emile Durkheim, The Division of Labor in Society

    Emile Durkheim, Suicide

    Emile Durkheim, The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

    Contemporary Extensions

    Harold Garfinkel, Studies in Ethnomethodology

    Bruno Latour, Mixing Humans and Nonhumans Together: The Sociology of a Door-Closer

    Mark Granovetter, The Strength of Weak Ties

    Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann, The Social Construction of Reality

    System Update

    Manuel Castells, "Materials for an Exploratory Theory of the Network Society"

    II. NETWORKS OF CAPITAL: Dimensions of Global Capitalism

    Introductory Essay: "The Redditors Who Took Down a Giant (Sort Of)"

    Classical Connections

    Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, The German Ideology

    Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party

    Karl Marx, Capital

    Karl Marx, "Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844"

    Contemporary Extensions

    Immanuel Wallerstein, "The Rise and Future Demise of the World Capitalist System"

    Cedric Robinson, Black Marxism

    Pierre Bourdieu, "The Forms of Capital"

    Pierre Bourdieu, Distinction

    Raka Ray and Seemin Qayum, Cultures of Servitude

    System Update

    Shoshana Zuboff, The Age of Surveillance Capitalism

    III. PATHWAY TO MELTDOWN: Theorizing the Dark Side of Modernity

    Introductory Essay: "Do You Ever Get the Feeling You’re Being Watched?"

    Classical Connections

    Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

    Max Weber, "Basic Sociological Terms"

    Max Weber, "The Types of Legitimate Domination"

    Max Weber, "Bureaucracy"

    Contemporary Extensions

    Herbert Marcuse, One–Dimensional Man

    Jurgen Habermas, Toward a Rational Society

    Michel Foucault, Discipline and Punish

    Zygmunt Bauman, Modernity and the Holocaust

    System Update

    David Graeber, "Of Flying Cars and the Declining Rate of Profit"

    IV. SHIFTING THE PARADIGM: Excluded Voices, Alternative Knowledges

    Introductory Essay: 

    Classical Connections

    W.E.B. Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk

    Simone de Beauvoir, The Second Sex

    Contemporary Extensions

    Frantz Fanon, Black Skin, White Masks

    Edward Said, Orientalism

    Dorothy Smith, The Conceptual Practices of Power

    Patricia Hill Collins, Black Feminist Thought

    Julian Go, Postcolonial Thought and Social Theory

    System Update

    Ruha Benjamin, Race After Technology

    V. RISE OF THE AVATAR: Connecting Self and Society 

    Introductory Essay: "Through the Looking Glass of TikTok"

    Classical Connections

    George Herbert Mead, "Self"

    Georg Simmel, "The Metropolis and Mental Life"

    Georg Simmel, "The Stranger"

    Contemporary Extensions

    Erving Goffman, The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life

    Judith Butler, Gender Trouble

    Stuart Hall, "Cultural Identity and Diaspora"

    Anthony Giddens, Modernity and Self-Identity

    System Update

    Sherry Turkle, "Always-On/Always-On-You: The Tethered Self"




    Wesley Longhofer is Associate Professor of Organization and Management at Emory University.

    Daniel Winchester is Associate Professor of Sociology at Purdue University

    "Longhofer and Winchester have produced the best social theory textbook on the market today. Comprehensive, clever, and well-organized, this new 3rd edition provides instructors with plenty of resources to engage undergraduate students both online and in the classroom. Highly recommended!"

    -- Manfred B. Steger, Professor of Sociology, University of Hawai'i-Manoa and author of What Is Global Studies? (Routledge, 2017). 

    "No other social theory reader brings together the essential excerpts of the classics with this diversity of contemporary extensions in quite the same way as Social Theory Re-wired. Students appreciate the accessible examples of theory applied to social problems. The online learning resources offer valuable study support. By the semester’s end, my students are knowledgeable of the canon and skilled in constructing their own evidence-based arguments."

    -- Selina Gallo-Cruz, Associate Professor of Sociology, Syracuse University

    "Social Theory Re-wired, by Winchester and Longhofer, provides a well-selected sample of the ‘classics’ while also encouraging instructors and students to expand their understanding of what theory (and sociology) can be. Their section introductions are accessible and encourage the use of the readings to better understand the complexities of the contemporary moment—everything from social media re-shaping the way we dance to viruses re-shaping society. This reader will help breathe new life into my Sociological Theory course."

    -- Kyle Green, Associate Professor of Sociology, SUNY, Brockport