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Emile Durkheim

            Emile Durkheim was born in the eastern French province of Lorraine on April 15, 1858. He was the s on of a rabbi and descending from a long line of rabbis, he decided early that he would follow the family tradition and become a rabbi himself. He studied Hebrew, the Old Testament, and the Talmud, while following the regular course of in secular schools. He soon turned away from all religious involvement, though purposely not from interest in religious phenomena, and became a freethinker, or non-believer. At about the time of his graduation he decided that he would dedicate himself to the scientific study of society. Since sociology was not a subject either at the secondary schools or at the university, Durkheim launched a career as a teacher in philosophy. Emile Durkheim made many contributions to the study of society, suicide, the division of labor, solidarity and religion. Raised in a time of troubles in France, Durkheim spent much of his talent justifying order and commitment to order. Durkheim was a pioneer French sociologist, taught at Bordeaux (1887-1902) and the University of Paris (1902-17). He introduced the system and hypothetical framework of accurate social science. Durkheim was author of The Division of Labour (1893), Rules of Sociological Method (1895), Suicide (1897), Elementary Forms of Religious Life (1915). Emile Durkheim has often been characterized as the founder of professional sociology. He has a great closeness with the two introductory sociologists, Comte and Saint-Simon. Durkheim willingly noticed the ideas of the Division of Labor and the Biological Analogy. Both ideas which had been differently well developed by Comte and Saint-Simon. Durkheim's holism approach said that sociology should focus on and study large social operations and cultures. He used functionalism, an approach of studying social and cultural phenomena as a set of interdependent parts, to find out the roles these institutions and processes play in keeping social order.

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