Available in paperback 4-color for the first time! This economical paperback text is theoretically balanced, offers global perspectives, shows how sociology is applied to real problems, and contains a built-in study guide. This introduction to sociology uses the three major theoretical perspectives-functionalist, conflict, and interactionist-as tools for examining the social world. The author uses illuminating examples to show how society works and how human behavior is shaped by cultural, structural, and institutional forces. As in previous editions, the Eighth Edition integrates two themes that reflect contemporary trends in sociology. The first is a reemergence of interest in how sociological knowledge can be applied to social problems or to helping people improve their lives. The second is the focus on globalization and its impact on societies and cultures as they become increasingly diverse and interdependent. The Eighth edition offers an expanded focus on the sociology of media and technology, especially the newer technologies of the internet and an online, electronic world.