Here are the items of the collection:
1. Outline of a General Theory of Magic (1902-1903)
2. The Gift. Shape and because of the exchange in archaic societies (1923-1924)
3. Reports and actual practices of psychology and sociology (1924)
4. Physical effect in the individual the idea of death suggested by the community (1926)
5. A category of the human mind: the notion of person, that of "I" (1938)
6. The body techniques (1934)
7. Social Morphology. Test on seasonal variations Eskimos companies (1904-1905)
These texts are of unequal interest. The oldest - the 1st and 7th - are perhaps the least interesting. The most recent show an author who déprend of the most rigid ideas of Durkheim, in favor of a renewed understanding of the sociological project. While looking at very innovative for its time subjects - the gifts, the design of "me," the education of the body ...
In sum, despite their age, most of these items are still very challenging today. The British social anthropology, for example, still discusses today. Thus, the English translation of chapter 5 resulted in a volume of very interesting discussions (The Category of the Person: Anthropology, Philosophy, History). When in Chapter 2 ("Essay on the gift"), its influence has been enormous, not only in the social sciences, but also (via reading proposed by Bataille in The Accursed Share: The term preceded by expenditure ) in literary circles.
The dizzying introduction of Lévi-Strauss belongs to the most interesting texts. It offers a critique of Mauss which itself drew criticism - for example, those of Claude Lefort (forms of history) and Vincent Descombes (Institutions of meaning). Beyond the debates raised by this introduction, these items Mauss resulted in several insightful comments - eg at Bruno Karsenti, Théry (The gender distinction: A new approach to equality), Mary Douglas (How to think institutions monitoring Self-knowledge and there is no free gift), Louis Dumont (Essays on individualism), etc. We read these commentators profitably because if Mauss is still very clear, it does not stress in broad strokes all the theoretical implications of its work.