Lord Anthony Giddens

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Lord Anthony Giddens is one of the most prominent figures in modern sociology. He recieved an honorary doctorate from Goldsmiths in 2016.

Born in Edmonton, North London, Anthony Giddens was the first member of his family to go to university. He was educated at the University of Hull and the London School of Economics (LSE) and went on to teach at the University of Leicester and at Cambridge as a Professor of Sociology.

From 1999 to 2003, Lord Giddens was Director of the LSE. He is currently a Life Fellow of King's College, Cambridge, and was made a Life Peer in May 2004.

Lord Giddens is a Fellow of the American Academy of Science and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and has sat on the board of various public organisations, including the Institute of Public Policy Research.

His books, of which there are at least 40, have been translated into some 40 different languages.

As one of the most prominent figures in modern sociology, Giddens is best known for his theory of structuration and his holistic view of modern societies. In 2007 he was the fifth most-referenced author of books across the humanities.

Major works include Capitalism and Modern Social Theory (1971), The Constitution of Society (1984), and his more recent critiques of postmodernity and discussion of “third way” politics, including The Consequences of Modernity (1990) and The Third Way: The Renewal of Social Democracy (1998). 

Lord Giddens’ impact on politics has been profound. His advice has been sought by political leaders from Asia, Latin America and Australia, as well as from the US and Europe.

In his acceptance speech for his honorary doctorate, Lord Giddens called on students to stand up for cosmopolitan values:

"I would implore you to do one thing. Please stand up for cosmopolitan values. We live in a world which is fractured and divided - the return of national division - but this is the most interdependent world ever, ever, ever. We have to live alongside people who think differently to ourselves."