Book Awards

  • Distinguished Publication Award for Best Book, American Sociological Association, 1999, for The Sociology of Philosophies

  • Association of American Publishers Scholarly Publishing Annual Award in the Category of Sociology and Anthropology, 1999, for The Sociology of Philosophies

  • Ten Best Books of the Year, Philadelphia Inquirer, 2000, for The Sociology of Philosophies

  • Ludwik Fleck Prize, for best book, Society for Social Studies of Science, 2002, for The Sociology of Philosophies

  • Distinguished Publication Award for Best Book, American Sociological Association, 2011, for Violence: A Micro-Sociological Theory


  • He has been traveling the world, including most of America, his whole life. He visited all the locations in CW2, through innumerable trips over many years.
  • When he was studying psychology at Stanford, he often experimented on rats, variously putting them through mazes and/or stimulating their brains with electrodes.

  • He was active in the Free Speech movement at Berkeley in the 1960s, and was even arrested in connection with it. He believes he originated the expression “Don’t trust anyone over 30,” though this has been attributed to his co-activist Jack Weinberg (See

  • His first published novel, 1979’s The Case of The Philosophers’ Ring, was a Sherlock Holmes mystery, and for it he was elected a member of the Crime Writers’ Association (Great Britain).

  • He is considered one of the only people, let alone scientists or other scholars, to have ever accurately forecast a major world event, when he predicted the fall of communism.

  • Being an expert in the social science of violence, Dr. Collins has consulted with the US and UK governments and militaries on possible geopolitical futures.

  • At the University of Pennsylvania, he taught a popular course on the study of gangs.

  • Also being a polymath in an array of fields such as psychology and the history of philosophies, he recently visited Japan as a consultant in the formation of a new institution to study the origins of consciousness.

  • He considers himself a speed-reader, and is one of the most wide-ranging readers a person might ever meet, in or out of scholarly circles. He prides himself on having a great personal library. As a youth, he read entire encyclopedias, and had a voracious appetite for great literature (as he still does), as well as for adventure stories and comic books. He loves movies, especially classics like Casablanca, though he will also go see superhero movies if they are based on any of his old favorite comic books.

  • He looks at all human behavior as ripe for study; to him, even babies’ cries are scientifically interesting. He thinks the ways that most people see the world are fraught with clichés, which he always wants to challenge. He considers the Political Correctness trend conformist.

  • He considers himself a Buddhist.



1979 - The Case of the Philosophers Ring.  New York: Crown Publishers. British edition, London: Harvester Press, 1980; reissued, Ostara Publications, 2009; Spanish edition, Madrid: Valdemar Ediciones, 2008.

2017 - Civil War 2. Los Angeles: Maren Ink. 


1975 - Conflict Sociology: Toward an Explanatory Science

1979 - The Credential Society: An Historical Sociology of Education and Stratification

1986 - Weberian Sociological Theory

1988 - Theoretical Sociology

1992 - Sociological Insight: An Introduction to Non-Obvious Sociology 2nd ed.

1994 - Four Sociological Traditions

1998.  The Sociology of Philosophies: A Global Theory of Intellectual Change. Harvard University Press. Russian edition2002.   Chinese edition 2004. Spanish edition 2005. Turkish edition 2013. 

1999 - Macro-History

2004. Interaction Ritual Chains. Princeton University Press.  Spanish translation 2009. Korean translation 2010. Chinese translation 2011. Polish translation 2011.

2008. Violence:  A Micro-Sociological Theory.  Princeton University Press.  German translation 2011; Italian translation 2014; Chinese translation (Peking University Press) 2016.

2013. Does Capitalism Have a Future?  co-authored with Immanuel Wallerstein.  Oxford University Press. translations in Chinese, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, Slovenian, Czech, German, French, Arabic, Farsi, Polish, Finnish, Korean, Japanese, Romanian.

2015 - Napoleon Never Slept: How Great Leaders Leverage Social Energy. co-authored with Maren McConnell. Maren Ink.