Rural sociology has its intellectual roots in classical political economy and the Canadian political economy tradition. Max Weber, often thought of exclusively as a sociologist, was a political economist who also studied rural issues and agrarian history. The book attempts to strive for a more inter-disciplinary political economy view. This multi-disciplinary book consists of chapters by senior rural sociologists, sociologists, a geographer, a medical doctor, an anthropologist, and others. The idea is to examine the rural imaginary in a global perspective rather than just within the U.S. or Canada.
Professor Johannes Bakker, who is known as Hans, retired in 2012 after thirty five years at the University of Guelph. He taught in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology and conducted research in India and Indonesia. He is still active in the Rural Sociological Society and the American Sociological Association as well as other academic groups. His book on Gandhi and his edited book on Gandhi and the Gita enjoyed good academic sales. He has published more than forty refereed articles and chapters.