Emile Durkin

Topics: Sociology, Émile Durkheim, Auguste Comte Pages: 2 (663 words) Published: June 16, 2008
Extra Credit Question:

7. Select an important person within the history of social work and write about their life.

Emile Durkheim came from a long line of French Jews. At an early age, he decided not to follow in his family's rabbinical footsteps. Durkheim would lead a completely different life. Much of his work, in fact, was dedicated to religious phenomena from social factors. His Jewish background did shape his sociological perspective many of his students and were fellow Jews, and often relatives. As a student Durkheim entered the cole Normale Suprieure in 1879. The class that year was one of the most brilliant of the nineteenth century and many of his classmates would go on to become major figures in France's history. At the ENS, Durkheim studied with Numa Denis Fustel de Coulanges a classicist with a social scientific outlook. At the same time, he read Auguste Comte and Herbert Spencer. This made Durkheim interested in a scientific approach to society very early on in his career. Durkheim finished second to last in his graduating class. After spending a year studying sociology in Germany he traveled to Bordeaux in 1887.There he taught pedagogy and social science. From this Durkheim reformed the French school system and introduced the study of social science. In 1893 he published his dissertation entitled The Division of Labour in Society. In this work Durkheim examined how social order was in different types of societies. He focused on the Division of Labour , and examined how it was different from and . Authors before him such as Herbert Spencer Otto von Gierke or had argued that much like living moving from a simple state to a more complex one resembling the workings of complex machines. In 1895 he published his manifesto entitled Rules of the Sociological Method. In 1896 he wrote the journalL'Anne Sociologique in order to publicize this work to what was by then a growing number of students and collaborators he would have to write another...
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