Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Ratio Working Papers,
The Ratio Institute

No 81: Sociology and Classical Liberalism

Daniel Klein () and Lotta Stern ()
Additional contact information
Daniel Klein: Department of Economics, Postal: George Mason University, Fairfax, VA 22030, USA
Lotta Stern: Institute for Social Research (SOFI), Postal: Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockhom, Sweden

Abstract: We advocate the development of a classical-liberal character within professional sociology. The American Sociological Association (ASA) is taken as representative of professional sociology in the United States. We review the ASA’s activities and organizational statements, to show the association’s leftist character. Internal criticism is often very uneasy about leftist domination of the field. We present survey results establishing that, in voting and in policy views, the ASA membership is mostly left-wing and devoid of classical liberalism. We sketch some ideas showing that sociology needs classical liberalism, and classical liberalism needs sociology.

Keywords: sociology; American Sociological Association; ideology; policy views; classical liberalism

JEL-codes: A13; A14

23 pages, December 20, 2005

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