The literature of sociology is dispersed and there are only a few core sociology reference sources. This guide is not intended to be comprehensive. If you need assistance in locating these or any other sources, please ask at the Mugar Memorial Library Research Center.


Publisher: Washington,D.C. : American Sociological Association.
Available at Reference X (LB 2372 S6 G94 )

The Social Sciences: A Cross-Disciplinary Guide to Selected Sources. 3rd. ed. 2002.

Consult the “Sociology” chapter for an annotated list of recent reference sources in sociology. Mugar H61 S59 2002.

Sociology: A Guide to Reference and Information Sources. 3rd ed. 2005.

Guide to reference works in sociology and related fields. Includes sociology Web sites. Mugar Ref. X Z7164 S68 A24 2005.

The Sociology Student Writer’s Manual. 6th ed. 2010.

Introduction to researching and writing sociology research papers, including book reviews, social analysis papers, case studies, and sociological survey papers. Brief guide to the research process, library research, sociology on the World Wide Web, and conducting qualitative and quantitative research. Mugar HM585 S638 2010.

Databases and Full-Text Sources

Reference Works

Battleground: Women, Gender, and Sexuality. 2 vols. 2008.

From “abortion” to “work: paid versus unpaid,” this work contains essays on “the ways in which gender and sexuality intersect in societal understandings of women’s (and men’s) lives.” Mugar Ref. X HQ1115 B38 2008.

Blackwell Dictionary of Sociology: A User’s Guide to Sociological Language. 1995.

A-Z dictionary of sociological terms from aberrant deviance to z-score. Separate section has biographical sketches of “major figures (living and dead) who have shaped sociological concepts and thinking over the past two centuries.” Mugar HM17 J64 1995.

Blackwell Dictionary of Twentieth-Century Social Thought. 1993.

Surveys major concepts of social thought, philosophical schools and movements, political doctrines, styles of literature and art, and institutions and organizations important to the study of social analysis. Mugar H41 B53 1993.

Blackwell Encyclopedia of Social Psychology. 1995.

Standard reference on the subject of social psychology, containing well-written analytic articles on the various subfields of social psychology, and shorter, glossary entries for terms. Mugar HM251 B476 1995.

Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology Online


The Continuum Complete International Encyclopedia of Sexuality. 2004.

Contains comprehensive information about sexual beliefs, norms, and activities in 60 countries. Mugar Ref. X HQ21 I68 2004.

A Critical Dictionary of Sociology. 1989.

Essay-length entries with bibliographies and a thematic index. Mugar HM17 B6813 1989.

Dictionary of Quotations in Sociology. 1985.

Presents the nature, origin, development and current status of general sociological concepts through quotations. Mugar HM17 B37 1985.

A Dictionary of Sociology


Dictionary of the Social Sciences


Encyclopedia of American Social History. 3 vols. 1993.

Arranged into 14 thematic areas, the 180 lengthy essays cover a wide range of topics, including the homeless, lifestyles, nativism and 19th century sports. Mugar HN57 E58 1993.

Encyclopedia of American Social Movements. 4 vols. 2004.

From antislavery movements to the fair trade coffee movement, this encyclopedia contains articles on American social movements from the 1700s to the present, biographical portraits of key figures, and excerpts from primary source documents. Topics include the labor movement, civil rights, global justice, anti-war protests, and more. Mugar Ref. X HN57 E594 2004.

The Encyclopedia of Death and Dying. 2005.

From “abandonment of the dying” to “wrongful death,” the 560 entries cover terms and concepts on issues of life and death relating to culture, economics, history, law, medicine, religion, and sociology. Useful appendixes include an advance care plan document, statistical data, a checklist for end-of-life planning, a list of organizations, a bibliography, and more. Mugar Ref. X HQ1073 C374 2005.

Encyclopedia of Drugs, Alcohol, and Addictive Behavior. 4 vols. 2001.

Contains overview essays and briefer entries on topics such as gangs and drugs and legal regulation of drugs and alcohol, as well as articles about individual drugs. Includes extensive directory of drug abuse and alcoholism treatment and prevention programs, research centers, and organizations. Mugar Ref. X HV5804 E53 2001.

Encyclopedia of Gender and Society. 2 vols. 2009.

From “ABANTU for Development” to “Yin-Yang,” this encyclopedia “covers the major theories, research, people, and issues in contemporary gender studies. This comprehensive, two-volume encyclopedia is distinguished by a cross-national/cross-cultural perspective that provides comparative analyses of the life experiences of men and women around the world.” Mugar Ref. X HQ1115 E54 2009

The Encyclopedia of Human Ecology. 2 vols. 2003.

Multi-disciplinary encyclopedia with 250+ entries examining human environments and human interactions and their impact on our health, quality of life, and natural and human-made environments. Covers such varied topics as adolescents, young adults, elderly and family issues, gays and lesbians, ethnic groups, juvenile justice, violence in teen dating, death, drugs, smoking, suicide, housing, and the men’s movement. Mugar Ref. X GF4 E53 2003.

Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity, and Society. 3 vols. 2008.

“Presents a comprehensive look at the role race and ethnicity play in society and in our daily lives. Offers informative coverage of intergroup relations in the United States and the comparative examination of race and ethnicity worldwide. Containing nearly 600 entries, this resource provides a foundation to understanding as well as researching racial and ethnic diversity from a multidisciplinary perspective.” Mugar Ref. X HT1521 E63 2008.

Note: Also available in print: Mugar Memorial Library Reference X H62 .E585 2005

Encyclopedia of Social Theory. 2 vols. 2004.

Entries cover the “developments, achievements, and prospects of social theory from its inception in the 18th century to the present.” Mugar Ref. X HM 425 E47 2004.

Encyclopedia of Social Work. 20th ed. 2008.

Presents an overview of social work in the U.S., including its history, current concerns, and future. Mugar Ref. X HV35 F30.

Encyclopedia of Sociology. 5 vols. 2000.

Contains 397 entries for concepts in sociology. Essays are lengthy and include bibliographies. Mugar HM425 E5 2000.

Encyclopedia of Survey Research Methods. 2 vols. 2008.

From “ABC News/Washington Post Poll” to “z-score,” the 640+ entries in this two-volume work are arranged alphabetically. A readers’ guide categorizes entries into nine topics: ethical issues in survey research; measurement; nonresponse; operations; political and election polling; public opinion; sampling, coverage, and weighting; survey industry; and survey statistics. Mugar Ref. X HN29 E53 2008.

Encyclopedia of Women and Gender: Sex Similarities and Differences and the Impact of Society on Gender. 2 vols. 2001.

Comprehensive coverage of topics covering current scholarship on the psychology of women and gender. Mugar Ref. X HQ1115 E52 2001.

Human Sexuality: An Encyclopedia. 1994.

Contains more than 200 signed articles on the topic of sexuality, written by experts from anthropology, biology, history, literature, nursing, political science and psychology. Articles discuss terms, ideas and individuals, and provide references for further reading. Mugar Ref. X HQ9 H846 1994.

International Encyclopedia of Marriage and Family. 2nd ed. 4 vols. 2003.

From abortion to Zambia, the lengthy articles in this work cover such topics as cohabitation, nonmarital childbearing, aand widowhood, as well as marriage and family life issues in some fifty countries. Mugar Ref. X HQ9 E52 2003.

International Encyclopedia of Population. 2 vols. 1982.

Contains articles on migration, marriage, fertility, contraception, mortality, data collection, population policies, as well as articles on particular regions and countries. Mugar HB849.2 I55 1982.

International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences. 26 vols. 2001.

Contains authoritative articles on sociology and related fields. Includes biographical essays on prominent sociologists no longer living. Mugar Ref. X H41 I58 2001.

International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences. 2nd ed. 9 vols. 2008.

Includes comprehensive, authoritative articles on many aspects of sociology. Use the thematic outline in volume 1 to locate articles and biographical essays classified under “social issues and policy,” “social psychology,” “social sciences,” “societies,” and “sociology.” Bibliographies accompany articles. Mugar Ref. X H40 A2 I5 2008.

Men and Masculinities: A Social, Cultural, and Historical Encyclopedia. 2 vols. 2004.

Summarizes historical, biological, cross-cultural, psychological, and sociological research on men and masculinity. It also examines literature, art, and music from a gender point of view. From Charles Atlas to wimps, GI Joe to Promise Keepers, castration anxiety to Viagra, the 400+ entries investigate the complexities of men’s lives and manhood. Mugar Ref. X HQ1090.3 M436 2004.

The Sage Encyclopedia of Qualitative Research Methods. 2 vols. 2008.

“Entries cover every major facet of qualitative methods, including access to research participants, data coding, research ethics, the role of theory in qualitative research and much more.” Mugar Ref. X H61 S234 2008.

Sage Encyclopedia of Social Science Research Methods. 3 vols. 2004.

Alphabetically arranged essays on qualitative and quantitative social science research methods. Mugar Ref X H62 L456 2004.

Women in Sociology: A Bio-Bibliographical Sourcebook. 1991.

Biographical profiles of 51 women sociologists active between 1840 and 1990. Profiles contain biographical information, major themes, critiques of works, and a bibliography of works by or about each individual. Mugar HM19 W59 1991.

Women’s Studies Encyclopedia. 3 vols. Revised and expanded ed. 1999.

Arranged alphabetically from “Abolitionism” to “Zhenotdel” (the women’s section of the Soviet Communist Party), entries contain information about women from all disciplines of study. While many entries discuss women elsewhere in the world, the primary focus is on women in the U. S. Mugar HQ1115 W645 1999.

Yearbooks and Review Literature

Annual Review of Sociology


Current Sociology



Atlas of American Diversity. 1998.

Examines issues of crime, health, immigration and migration, language, politics, and socioeconomic status as they relate to racial and ethnic variance in America. Mugar E184 A1 J575 1998.

Atlas of American Society. 1995.

Uses maps, tables and text to present statistical data on American society in several categories, including the status of women, senior citizens, crime and violence, lifestyle risks, education, health and health care, and ethnicity. Mugar HN60 A5 1995.