SOCIOLOGY AND HISTORY
Seymour Martin Lipset
How history can use sociology and vice versa strictly for specialists in both fields. The former question is hotter, because sociologists' concern with history took a nose dive in the Thirties, got utterly scrapped during the Fifties' heyday of "empirical" data on scattered, narrow subjects. Mills and Reisman urged a return to macroscopic, historically oriented analysis (but, as Hofstadter points out here, they themselves failed to do so). These essays display the concern with methodology for its own sake which Mills deplored, and the topics mostly stay within American history. Authors include Benson, Baltzell, Donald, Merritt, Thernstrom and Lazarsfeld. The effort to keep the best in the quantitative approach predominates; a trend toward comparative, cross-disciplinary study is also perceptible. The editors are prominent professors of history and sociology respectively. But as anthologizers they must how to Levitas (Culture and Consciousness, 1967) and Lindenfeld (Reader in Political Sociology, 1967), who excelled in delineating the issues and presenting a genuine diversity of selections.