In the Fourth Edition of Cultures and Societies in a Changing World, author Wendy Griswold illuminates how culture shapes our social world and how society shapes culture. She helps students gain an understanding of the sociology of culture and explore stories, beliefs, media, ideas, art, religious practices, fashions, and rituals from a sociological perspective. Cultural examples from multiple countries and time periods will broaden students' global understanding. They will develop a deeper appreciation of culture and society, gleaning insights that will help them overcome cultural misunderstandings, conflicts, and ignorance; equip them to be more effective in their professional and personal lives, and become wise citizens of the world.
In revision the book for its fourth edition, I have kept the same structure as in the third edition. That edition, published in 2008, included a new chapter on power; this current revision contains no new chapters. Instead I have updated a number of cases and examples, including especially ones drawn from the Middle East. I have added a great many current references (51 in total). This attention to up-to-date references in the sociological literature is primarily to help instructors, although the motivated student will have the ability to dig further into the issues raised in the book. I have made modest, clarifying changes in the text. These changes should not have much impact on the length of the book.