chapter  1
26 Pages

Edwin H. Sutherland’s life and career as a sociologist and criminologist

ByDavid Friedrichs, Isabel Schoultz, Aleksandra Jordanoska

This chapter addresses the important developments in the life and professional career of Edwin H. Sutherland, with special attention to the socio-historical and personal context within which his life and career played out. It identifies some of the key characteristics of the evolving discipline of sociology and the field of criminology during the period of time when Sutherland became engaged with sociology and criminology. The chapter establishes the basic improbability of Sutherland for his status as the most important American criminologist of the twentieth century, at least in the view of some prominent commentators. Sutherland was fortunate that his full-fledge engagement with criminology coincided with a period of significant growth for the field Edwin Sutherland's election as the twenty-ninth president of the American Sociological Society is noteworthy on a number of counts. First and foremost, Sutherland is one of only several criminologists selected for this honor during the 110-year history of American sociology's premiere association.