Emile Durkheim

A Principal Founder of Modern Sociology


Was born on April 15, 1858 in Epinal, France to a Jewish family. During his childhood he studied at the Lycee Louis le grand, a secondary school in Paris, France. Which afterwards he went to continue his education at the École normale supérieure, a higher education than public university center. After his education, he went on to teach philosophy. He later was chosen to teach Social Sciences and Pedagogy at the University of Bordeaux


  • Functionalism: societal equilibrium; if something goes wrong people need to adapt/adjust.

  • Division of Labor: shift in societies from a simple society to a complex society;

  • Mechanical Solidarity: individuals within structural units are alike; he based this off of physical science

  • Organic Solidarity: individuals needing one another for their services.

  • Anomie: the lack of normal ethics and social standards; practically started this theory when teaching sociology


Carls, Paul. "Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy." Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Sept. 2016. <http://www.iep.utm.edu/durkheim/#SH1a>.

Encyclopedia Britannica, Editors Of. "Mechanical and Organic Solidarity."Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, n.d. Web. 18 Sept. 2016. <https://www.britannica.com/topic/mechanical-and-organic-solidarity>.

Peyre, Henri M. "Emile Durkheim." Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, 23 June 2007. Web. 18 Sept. 2016. <https://www.britannica.com/biography/Emile-Durkheim>.