Randall Collins traces the movement of philosophical thought in ancient Greece, China, Japan, India, the medieval Islamic and Jewish world, medieval Christendom, and modern Europe. What emerges from this history is a social theory of intellectual change, one that avoids both the reduction of ideas to the influences of society at large and the purely contingent local construction of meanings. Instead, Collins focuses on the social locations where sophisticated ideas are formed: the patterns of intellectual networks and their inner divisions and conflicts.
The Sociology of Philosophies
A Global Theory of Intellectual Change
- 2002 Ludwik Fleck Prize, Society for Social Studies of Science
- 2000 American Educational Studies Association Critics’ Choice Award
- 1999 Distinguished Scholarly Book Award, American Sociological Association
- 1998 Association of American Publishers PSP Award for Excellence, Sociology and Anthropology Category