© 2013 Springer Science + Business Media Dordrecht. The purpose of this book is to provide readers with a single source reviewing and updating developments in theories commonly used today in medical or health sociology. It originated in papers and discussions in a session on new developments in theory in medical sociology at the International Sociological Association's 2010 World Congress of Sociology held in Gothenburg, Sweden. The session itself was scheduled because theoretical work has increasingly become a major feature of medical sociology. When the field first appeared as a new sociological specialty in the mid-twentieth century, much of the work was atheoretical. Over time, this situation has changed dramatically and it is the task of this book to not only discuss the major theoretical approaches, but to also identify new directions in theory in medical sociology.