Launched in Chicago as an independent social science publisher in the early 1960s, Aldine was a cutting-edge publisher of major figures and trends in the fields of sociology, anthropology, and economics. Over time, Aldine refined and extended its editorial stream to include other fields of research such as social work and welfare, political science, sociobiology, physical anthropology, and public policy. In the 1970s, Aldine became a subsidiary of Walter de Gruyter, Inc., publishing books as well as the distinguished journal Human Nature. Over this period Aldine published approximately 700 titles, nearly all of which have been brought back to print by Transaction, under the imprint AldineTransaction. On July 1, 2004, Aldine was acquired by Transaction Publishers.

In their principles and practices, Aldine and Transaction had long been aligned. Aldine distributed the first twenty-four Transaction paperback titles entirely derived from Transaction/Society, Transaction's former flagship publication. The two publishers have tapped similar reservoirs of professional strength and academic personnel. Respected figures from all sectors of the social science world have appeared on lists published by both Aldine and Transaction.

After the issuance of four separate AldineTransaction catalogs from 2004 to 2007, the Aldine list became fully integrated with the Transaction seasonal catalogs.