George Ritzer is one of the leading social and cultural commentators of the present day. In this essential new book he considers some of the main tendencies in contemporary social theory. Included here are Ritzer's latest reflections on the uses and misuses of metatheory. According to Ritzer, sociology is a multiparadigm science. The differences and intensities of rivalries between paradigms are often very confusing for students and even for professional sociologists. This book seeks to find a way out of the confusion by sketching out the lineaments of a new integrated sociological paradigm and demonstrates how this paradigm can be applied. It shows the various ways in which Ritzer has developed rationalization theory to shed light on professional integration, the shape of consumer culture, hyperrationality and the state of sociology today.