If we're interested in why society changes and develops, and if we want to identify the forces that influence our personal beliefs and choices, then we must have an understanding of the nature and scope of human power. This distinctively clear text critically evaluates how power is defined, conceptualized and theorized. Spanning 500 years of thinking in the field, the book examines ideas from classical and contemporary thinkers, from Machiavelli to Michael Mann. Theories are firmly rooted in their historical context alongside real-life examples to explain their relevance to our lives today. Theorizing Power highlights the significance of power across all areas of social life, including gender, religion, morality and identity. It is the ideal text to stimulate thinking and debate on the subject of power for all students of sociology and politics.