This article examines Durkheim’s relationship to real- ism. I argue that there is enough prima facie evidence of realist commitments in his work that our task should be to consider what kind of realist Durkheim was. I discuss, first of all, Durkheim’s epistemics and follow that analysis with a discussion of metaphysical realism in his texts. The first part of the paper covers a wide range of his work; the second part focuses primarily on The Elementary Forms of Religious Life. In a final concluding section, I go on to consider how his epistemic arguments and his philosophi- cal realism might work together to support important parts of his general sociology. Realism is not often brought to bear on Durkheim’s work. When it has been, Durkheim has been identified as a naïve realist. These interpretations of Durkheim do not recognize the sophistication of contem- porary realism, which does not reduce to naïve representa- tionalism. This paper will sort out Durkheim’s realist commitments in his texts, and in light of the variety of real- isms consistent with “sophisticated” (that is, non-naïve) realism.