Foundations of Modern Social Theory

Yale, , Prof. Iván Szelényi

Updated On 02 Feb, 19


Introduction - Hobbes: Authority, Human Rights and Social Order - Locke: Equality, Freedom, Property and the Right to Dissent - The Division of Powers- Montesquieu - Rousseau: Popular Sovereignty and General Will - Rousseau on State of Nature and Education - Utilitarianism and Liberty, John Stuart Mill - Smith: The Invisible Hand - Marx's Theory of Alienation-Marx's Theory of Historical Materialism - Marx's Theory of Historical Materialism -Nietzsche on Power, Knowledge and Morality - freud on Sexuality and Civilization - Weber on Protestantism and Capitalism - Conceptual Foundations of Weber's Theory of Domination - Weber on Traditional Authority - Weber on Charismatic Authority-Weber on Legal - Rational Authority - Weber's Theory of Class - Durkheim and Types of Social Solidarity - Durkheim's Theory of Anomie - Durkheim on Suicide - Durkheim and Social Facts


Lecture 15:

4.1 ( 11 )

Lecture Details

Foundations of Modern Social Thought (SOCY 151)

Freuds brand of critical theory adds important dimensions; he argues that we can better understand our consciousness through the process of psychoanalysis—the talking cure, dream work, etc—and we can cure ourselves through this process as well. We discuss Freuds early days in Vienna developing psychoanalysis as a clinical approach alongside Jung, Ferenczi, and others in their tight-knit circle. They develop the ideas of the id, ego, and superego as well as the antithetical drives, the love drive (Eros) and the death drive (Thanatos). Later, Freud applies these concepts to society as a whole in his books Totem and Taboo and Civilization and its Discontents. His argument in Civilization and its Discontents calls to mind Nietzsche; he argues that the repression of urges and drives allows civilization to bloom and flourish, but the same repression is problematic on the level of individual psychology as well as on the level of civilization.

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website httpopen.yale.educourses

This course was recorded in Fall 2009.



1 Ratings
comment person image


Excellent course helped me understand topic that i couldn't while attendinfg my college.

comment person image


Great course. Thank you very much.