Although it’s usually the first definition we think of, the word “law” does not necessarily mean a legal rule; it can also mean “a generalization based on the observation of repeated events.” It is in this sense that 600 Laws of Sociology uses the word law, following in the steps of such sociology pioneers as Auguste Comte and Emile Durkheim, who helped create a discipline that explained patterns in human behaviors and societies. 600 Laws of Sociology outlines probabilistic outcomes in all sorts of human interactions—love, marriage, voting, among others—and posits that the predictive accuracy of many areas of sociology can be compared to that of meteorology. In other words, if we know two-thirds of the factors in a marriage, we can predict with 90% accuracy the likelihood that the marriage will end in divorce.
The text ranges far and wide; topics range from global warming to early Christianity. The chapters are succinct: laws are each defined in about five words, then explained in a brief paragraph. In this way the book covers most of the content of most introductory sociology textbooks, while moving the reader from topic to topic with ease. Its innovative approach and strong, persuasive voice should keep students engaged and entertained until the last page.