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THE STUDY OF
SOCIOLOGY

HERBERT SPENCER

· HENRY S. KING & Co.
65, CORNHILL, AND 12, PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON.

1873.

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PREFACE.

This little work has been written at the instigation of my American friend, Professor Youmans. When, some two years ago, he was in England making arrangements for that International Scientific Series which he originated and succeeded in organizing, he urged me to contribute to it a volume on the Study of Sociology. Feeling that the general undertaking in which I am engaged, is extensive enough to demand all my energies, I continued for a long time to resist ; and I finally yielded only to the modified proposal that I should furnish the ideas and materials, and leave the embodiment of them to some fit collaborateur. As might have been expected, it was difficult to find one in all respects suitable; and, eventually, I undertook the task myself.

After thus committing myself, it occurred to me as desirable that, instead of writing the volume simply for the

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International Scientific Series, I should prepare it for previous issue in a serial form, both here and in the United States. In pursuance of this idea, arrangements were made with the Contemporary Review to publish the successive · chapters ; and in America they have been simultaneously published in the Popular Science Monthly. Beginning in May, 1872, this publication by instalments has, with two brief intervals, since continued, and will be completed on the 1st October next : the issue of this volume being delayed until after that date.

Since commencing the work, I have pot regretted that I was led to undertake it. Various considerations which seemed needful by way of introduction to the Principles of Sociology, presently to be written, and which yet could not be conveniently included in it, have found, in this preliminary volume, a fit place. Much illustrative material also, partly accumulated during past years and lying unused, I have thus gained an occasion for turning to account. Further, the opportunity has been afforded me of commenting on special topics which the Principles of Sociology could not properly recognize; and of commenting on them in a style inadmissible in a purely-philosophical treatise—a style adapted, however, as I hope, to create such interest in the subject as may excite to serious pursuit of it.

In preparing the successive chapters for final publication, I have, besides carefully- revising them, here and there enforced the argument by a further illustration. Not much, however, has been done in this way: the only additions of moment being contained in the Appendix. One of these, pursuing in another direction the argument concerning academic discipline, will be found among the notes to Chapter IX.; and another, illustrative of the irrelation between intellectual culture and moral feeling, will be found in the notes to Chapter XV.

LONDON, July, 1873.

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