Historical Who is Who


1858 - 1918


One of the ‘founding fathers’ of academic sociology. A genuinely individual thinker of wide-ranging interests, and also somewhat an outsider figure for which his Jewish background may have been a contributory factor. Just as others constructed ‘ideal types’ to delineate characteristic institutional forms, Simmel did this for typical forms of individuality, including the adventurer, the mediator, the poor, the stranger. He regarded education which raises awareness of such features of life in society as essential for deepening humanity. His cultivation of aphorisms was his final contribution to this process.

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