This has proved to be an excellent introduction to what sociology is and what kinds of information and useful knowledge the practice of this discipline provides. In discussing family structure, the relation between the economy and society, social class, social control, and religion, the author uses appropriate examples of African experience. For this third edition, Dr Goldthorpe has thoroughly revised the text to take account of the changes affecting men and women in contemporary societies. Major revisions have been made to the chapter on the family, in the light of recent research on child care. The chapter on social class has been extensively revised to incorporate new material (including work by the author's namesake J. H. Goldthorpe) on social mobility and inequality in contemporary societies, and the debate on socialism has been updated. Changes have been made too in the passages on hunting and food-gathering societies, and on peasants, while there has been a general up dating of statistics, references, and suggestions for further reading throughout.