Most Cited Philosophy Books in the Social Sciences

Elliott Green, a professor in the International Development Department at the London School of Economics, looked at which works from anthropology, economics, education, geography, linguistics, management, philosophy, political science, and psychology are cited most by social scientists. At the top of the list of the 50 most cited books, he reports, is Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.

By Green’s count, there are six philosophy books in the top 50. But it is not clear whether some of the works are categorized properly.

Here are the top 25 most cited books in the social sciences, across all of the aforementioned disciplines:

Most Cited Books in Social Science - Elliott Green

Most glaringly, John Rawls’s A Theory of Justice is listed as a work in political science, not philosophy. Some might wonder whether Marx’s Das Kapital fits better in philosophy, as well (especially given Green’s method for borderline cases—“I tended to decide based on the author’s degrees and/or professional title”—since Marx’s PhD was in philosophy). I can’t tell from Greene’s post which books are in the bottom half of the top-50, but his classification elsewhere in his post of Dewey’s Democracy and Education as falling under “education” rather than “philosophy” suggests that, given a slightly different and perhaps more plausible categorization, there are more than six works in philosophy among the top-50 most cited books in social science.

Greene’s post is here.

(via Marginal Revolution)

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