Retrieving modernity's past, understanding modernity's present
Changing views of modernity:
from convergence and stability to plurality and transformations
crisis, criticism and the idea of progress
Disentangling the concept of modernity:
time, action and problems to be solved
Analyzing contemporary modernity
The link between capitalism and democracy reconsidered
European and non-European trajectories of modernity compared
Violence and justice in global modernity:
reflections on South Africa with world-sociological intent
Towards a world-sociology of modernity
Neil Smelser, University of California, Berkeley
‘Peter Wagner's work is simply indispensable to those who wish to conceptualize modernity in a truly global way that challenges the Eurocentrism built into all classical writings on the subject. Wagner is a high theorist but his openness to questions of historical diversity remains exemplary.'
Dipesh Chakrabarty, The University of Chicago
‘Peter Wagner's developing "world sociology of modernity", outlined in this splendid book, is a major advance in his and our thinking about modernity around the world. The book is also an excellent and very readable summary of the current state of the field.'
William Outhwaite, Newcastle University
- This is a brief, authoritative and accessible introduction to the idea of modernity, written by a leading social theorist.
- Wagner shows that modernity was based on ideas of freedom, reason and progress, but he examines the extent to which these ideas have been, and can be, realized in the modern world.
- He shows that our concept of modernity is inextricably tied to the history of the West and asks whether this places limits on attempts to compare societies and to develop a world sociology of modernity.
- This book will appeal to undergraduates, graduates and scholars in sociology, politics, cultural studies and related subjects.