Pioneers and Early Beginnings

Part of the Sociology Transformed book series (SOTR)


This chapter briefly reviews the origins of British sociology in the theoretical and statistical discussions of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It considers the influence of the ‘classical’ sociologies of Patrick Geddes and Leonard Hobhouse and assesses their role in the establishment of professional sociology. The formation of the first department of sociology at the London School of Economics is discussed, and the origins of other departments of social studies and social science are summarised. The chapter concludes with an overview of the main studies undertaken between 1920 and 1940.


Spencer Booth Geddes Hobhouse Sociological Society 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Essex UniversityColchesterUK
  2. 2.Exeter UniversityExeterUK

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