Follow the guidelines given below. Remember that you must get written permission, in advance, to review any book not on one of the lists provided.
Read the instructions in the syllabus for more details about the book report.
The following suggestions are taken from ACC Professor Pat Goins "Critical Book Review" page.
Your book report must be approved by me. See the deadlines page in the syllabus. Ten percent of the value of the book report will be deducted for each class day that the review is turned in late. Your review should be typed, double spaced and 5 pages in length. In your review you should:
1. Identify the author and his/her background and training? Is the author writing as an expert in this subject or do their past writing indicate that they have no special training in the subject area they are writing about. When was the book written and recent is the data used in the book?
2.Summarize the author's main arguments. Do not simply rewrite what the author had written. Analyze and evaluate the author's thesis. Why did the author write the book? What does he/she want to prove? Is he/she convincing? Why or why not?
Compare the author's position with your text and what has been said in class? Which do you find more convincing? Why? Did the book enhance your understanding of the topic? Did it change any previously held opinions? What changes could be made to make this a better work? What types of sources were used? Is this book readable and well written? What is your overall reaction to the book and the subject covered? .
3. Proof read your report to eliminate errors of spelling, grammar, construction, typing, etc... Make sure that your review has a coherent theme and is sensibly organized. Use quotation marks and give page numbers to identify quotes and the ideas of others.
4. You may wish to see what other scholars have written about the book you are reviewing. I suggest that you first consult the following online databases that can be found on the computers in the library: Masterfile, Book Review Digest, Electric
Library, and Periodical Abstracts.
5. Make sure to include a bibliography that uses a correct form and lists all the sources you have used.
Additional instructions for Dr. Taylor's classes:
1. The book report should summarize each major topic in each chapter.
2. Critically evaluate the author's major sociological points of view.
3. State how you agree or disagree with the author.
Your professor recommends the
The Rich Get Richer and the Poor Get Prison by Jeffrey Remain, 6th ed. [Available in ACC bookstores.]
There is Nothing In The Middle Of The Road But Yellow Stripes And Dead Armadillos by Jim Hightower.
[Available at most major bookstores.]
Ten Questions: A sociological perspective
Joel Charon, 4th ed. [Available in ACC bookstores.]
Invitation to Sociology, Peter Berger, Anchor Books
Goffman, E., Interaction Ritual, 1967, Studies of interaction differences; embarrassment, alienation and other studies contributing to a civil society.
Goffman, E., The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life, This is the classic study by the man most highly recognized in the use of symbolic interaction and dramaturgical research. Skim through this work and you will find dozens of examples of observational research.
Levin, William, Sociological Ideas, Presents the basic sociological theories and how they are used to interpret social behavior. See the section, "Application", in each chapter on the use of theory.
Another very good list of books is ACC Professor Bob Woldman
Akers, R. Criminological Theories: Introduction and Evaluation.
Berger, P. The Sacred Canopy: Elements of a Sociological Theory of Religion.
Berger, P & T. Luckmann. The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise in the
Sociology of Knowledge.
Coontz, S. The Way We Never Were: American Families and The Nostalgia Trap.
Fanon, F. The Wretched of the Earth.
Fox, R. Organ Transplantation: Meanings and Realities.
Friedan, B. The Feminine Mystique.
Gitlin, T. The Whole World is Watching: Mass Media in the Making & Unmaking of the New Left.
Glaser, D. Profitable Penalties.
Hoefler, J. Managing Death.
Koster, K. Poverty: Opposing Viewpoints.
Kozel, J. Savage Inequalities: Children in American Schools.
McLanahan, S. and G. Sandefur. Growing Up with a Single Parent: What Hurts, What
Mayer, S. What Money Can't Buy.
Merton, R. K. On Theoretical Sociology.
Ritzer, G. The McDonaldization of Society: An Investigation into the Changing
Character of Contemporary Social Life.
Robertson, J. Children of Choice: Freedom and reproductive Technology.
Starr. P. The Social Transformation of American Medicine.
Tucher, B. The Decline in Marriage Among African Americans.