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Read Stephen Mennell being interviewed about Norbert Elias
in Sociologica, 2014

Read the January 2015 newsletter of the Norbert Elias Foundation
Norbert Elias died on 1 August 1990.
To mark the twentieth anniversary, the German radio station WDR3
(Westdeutscher Rundfunk 3. Programm) broadcast a fifteen
-minute programme in its daily ZeitZeichen series

You can find out more information about Elias by visiting the Norbert Elias Foundation website

Essays III
On Sociology and the Humanities

Norbert Elias (author)
Richard Kilminster (author)
Stephen Mennell (author)
Publication date:
25th April 2009

Author Biography

NORBERT ELIAS (1897-1990) was one of the greatest sociologists of the twentieth century. He studied with Alfred Weber in Heidelberg and served as Karl Mannheim's assistant in Frankfurt. On Hitler's coming to power, he went into exile, first in France and then in Britain. His magnum opus The Civilizing Process received little attention when it was published in Switzerland in 1939 and only after Elias's formal retirement in 1962 were most of his other books and essays published. International intellectual celebrity came to him right at the end of his long life. RICHARD KILMINSTER is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Leeds; STEPHEN MENNELL is Professor of Sociology at University College Dublin.


Almost half of the 28 essays in this volume have not been published in English before, and many of the others were little known. Some directly express Elias' dissatisfaction with the ahistorical, present-centred trend of modern sociology. Others scintillatingly show how wide ranging were Elias' own sociological interests. Topics include, among many others: the work of Theodor W. Adorno; sociology and psychiatry; psychosomatic illness; human emotions; communities in long-term perspective; the changing balance of power between the sexes; African art; football; and even pigeon racing.