Social theory is a crucial resource for the social sciences. It provides rich insights into how human beings think and act, and how contemporary social life is constructed. But often the key ideas of social theorists are expressed in highly technical and difficult language that can hide more than it reveals. Cutting through the often off–putting writing styles of social theorists, this book demonstrates exactly what social theory is about, clearly presenting the key themes of major social theory from the classical thinkers onwards. Areas covered include Marxism, structuralism, post–structuralism, phenomenology, symbolic interactionism, feminism and structuration theories. Wide–ranging in scope and coverage, the book is concise in presentation and free from jargon. Showing why social theory matters, and why it is of far–reaching social and political importance, the book is ideal for students across the social sciences seeking a clear, crisp mapping of a complex but very rewarding area.