Aron Raymond

Aron Raymond

(1905-83) French sociologist and influential political commentator with wide interests in sociological theory, strategic studies, and the sociology of industrial societies. His contributions to the discussion of sociological theory include German Sociology (1935) and Main Currents in Sociological Theory (1965). In The Opium of the Intellectuals (1957) he criticized the tendency of intellectuals to suspend their critical judgements and to be too readily seduced by Marxism. On strategic studies he wrote voluminously producing important works such as The Century of Total War (1951), Peace and War (1961) and Clausewitz, Philosopher of War (1976). He wrote several books on modern industrial societies, among them Eighteen Lectures on Industrial Society (1963) and Democracy and Totalitarianism (1965). Closer to TOCQUEVILLE or WEBER than to DURKHEIM or MARX in his approach, in general his work stresses the importance of the political dimension in social life, and the virtues of PLURALISM. The unpredictability he saw for political and cultural dimensions also meant that he was unimpressed by suggestions that a CONVERGENCE would occur between East and West.
Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000