The Forest and the Trees

Sociology as Life, Practice, and Promise
Third Edition

Allan G. Johnson
Book Cover

PB: $28.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-1187-7
Publication: Oct 14

HC: $80.50
EAN: 978-1-4399-1186-0
Publication: Oct 14

Ebook: $28.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-1188-4

200 pages
6 x 9
4 figs.

An updated exploration of sociology as a way of thinking

Read the Introduction (pdf).


If sociology could teach everyone just one thing, what would it be? The Forest and the Trees is one sociologist's response to the hypothetical-the core insight with the greatest potential to change how people see the world and themselves in relation to it. This Third Edition features: * Updated key references, data, resources, and examples, from global warming, Barack Obama's election, and gay marriage to the Occupy Wall Street Movement * A glossary of terms * A new framework for the short essays in Chapter 6, exhibiting the power of sociology to dig beneath easy and popular understandings * An additional analysis of how men’s violence is made invisible even though most violence is perpetrated by men * Chapter 7’s new focus on sociology as a worldview with an analysis of the origins of white privilege

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction: Life, Practice, and Promise 1 The Forest, the Trees, and the One Thing 2 Culture: Symbols, Ideas, and the Stuff of Life 3 The Structures of Social Life 4 Population and Human Ecology: People, Space, and Place 5 Us, It, and Social Interaction 6 Things Are Not What They Seem 7 Sociology as Worldview: Where White Privilege Came From Epilogue: Who Are We Really? Notes Glossary Index

About the Author(s)

Allan G. Johnson is a nationally recognized sociologist, nonfiction author, novelist, and public speaker best known for his work on issues of privilege and oppression, especially in relation to gender and race. He is the author of numerous books, including The Gender Knot: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Legacy (Temple) and Privilege, Power, and Difference. His work has been translated into several languages and excerpted in numerous anthologies. Visit him online at and follow his blog at