Durkheim: Essays on Morals and Education by W. S. Pickering (ed) (Translated by H. L. Sutcliffe) - review by Bernard T. Harrison

Bernard T. Harrison

Nature Bent

Durkheim: Essays on Morals and Education


Routledge 240pp £9.50 order from our bookshop

This book brings together translations of essays, reviews and other items by the pioneer French sociologist Emile Durkheim (1858–1917), together with two substantial introductory essays by William Pickering on Durkheim’s contributions to thought on ‘morals’ and ‘education’. On the face of it, the price of the book makes it hardly likely to attract any but librarians and the keenest devotees of Durkheim; but Pickering’s linking essays help to make the book a worthwhile buy, in giving an effective shape and unity to a collection. of writings which are on the whole a series of obiter scripta, rather than linked by much continuity of argument.

Readers of Durkheim’s famous treatise on Suicide will have recognised how this founder of modern educational sociology often adds a fascinating personal dimension to his discourse, giving it extra qualities of vigour and frankness. Such qualities are present in ‘the best parts of this new volume, especially in his ‘discourse

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