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on 25 August 2015

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Sociology is...

The systemic study of the relationships between individuals and society.

Sociology gives us...

- The sociological perspective

- The Sociological imagination

Crisis and Sociological Periods
Modernity (1700s)
- Growth of democracy, personal freedom, reliance on science and "reason", shift towards urban industrial economy

Industrial Revolution
- The transformation of society from rural, agricultural into urban industrial society which brought....
Theory, Theory, Theory
Structure, Culture, Power--ALL THE TIME!
recurring patterns of behavior in social life including...

collection of values, norms and beliefs shared by people in a society and passed down generationally

ability to bring about intended outcome, despite opposition
For Sociologists...

- Your identity(ies)

- Your social environment

_ Your lived experiences
What makes you you?
The Sociological Perspective
- Seeing the general patterns in the particular behavior of people

- Seeing the strange in the familiar
(society shapes what we think and do)

Pattern: Average guys, Good looking women
Breaking up Explained...
ECONOMIST- Exchange Theory-need to maximize resources; can do better

PSYCHOLOGIST- individual issues, not a good fit of personality types

SOCIOLOGIST- dating patterns are changing, people are committing later in life and dating more people

Industrialization, Inequality, and the Founding of Sociology


- Urbanization-
the growth of cities

- Increased social inequalities and consumerism
- Why?

- Sociology is founded within the shifting
societal contexts
Look at us now...
The Major Theorists
Those who helped define Sociology...

Auguste Comte-
coined the term Sociology
- How and why do societies change?
- What is the basis of social stability?

the belief that accurate knowledge must be based on the scientific method

Herbert Spencer-
the original guy to use the term "survival of the fittest"
- Society is a social organism-we are all connected

The Big 3:
Marx, Weber, & Durkheim
Karl Marx
- What do you know or what have
you heard (tell your neighbor--be honest!)
Marx's Main Terms
- Capitalists-
people who "own the means of production"

- Proletariats-
the rest of us, the workers

Max Weber
We voluntarily chose capitalism.

Bureaucracy and the iron cage-it's efficient, but traps us in rules

Rationalization of society-
historical process whereby society is now concerned with predictability, efficiency, dehumanization, and calculability
Emile Durkheim
Social solidarity-
collective bonds that connect individuals
social cohesion based on dependence; specialization of work

Collective conscience-
shared values of society
normlessness, happens in absence of shared values
can be explained by social ties according to Durkheim.

Martineau, DuBois & Addams
Suicide studies
- Suicide rates are relatively high among college students – low social integration for some

-Low rates among elementary school teachers

- Highest occupation – artists, dentists

- Suicide rates rise with age
- 9.7 per 100,000 individuals 15-24
- 16.9 per 100,000 aged 85+

Harriet Martineau-
- First female sociologist
- Studied gender discrimination and

W.E.B. DuBois-
- First African American Ph.D. from Harvard
- Double consciousness

Jane Addams-
- Critiqued male sociologists for generalizing to experiences of women
- Hull House Founder
- First American woman to win Nobel Peace Prize

Structural Functionalism
- Society is complex system whose parts work together to promote solidarity and stability

- Social structure:
any relatively stable pattern of social behavior

Examples: Family, Economy, Health -care

Criminal justice system, Sports

Macro-level framework:
broad focus on social structures that shape society as a whole

Which main theorist is a functionalist?
* Remember- theory is just a way of explaining
the world. We don't all have to agree on them.

The Biggies:

- Structural functionalism
- Conflict theory
- Symbolic Interactionism
- Feminist theory
PRO: Strengthens social bonds

- ever heard, "WE won, they lost!?"

CON: Ignores and leaves unacknowledged conflict and inequality
Pros and Cons of Functionalism
- Macro-level framework:
broad focus on social structures that shape society as a whole

- Sees society as an arena of inequality that generates conflict and change

- Brings attention to how race, gender, sexual identity, social class, age, ability, etc. are linked to inequality
Wealth, power, prestige

_ Which main theorist?
Conflict Theory
Pros and Cons of Conflict Theory
PRO: Incorporates social identities into the explanation of society

CONS: Ignores and leaves unacknowledged inner-connection, harmony
Symbolic Interactionism
- Micro-level framework:
a close up focus on social interaction in specific situations

- Sees society as the product of the everyday interaction of individuals

- Attention is on symbols

Reality is socially constructed, which means...
- Society is composed of nothing more than the “reality” people construct as they interact each day.
- We live in worlds of symbols – interpreting everything from body language to fashion to door opening etiquette
- Examples?
Pros and Cons of Symbolic Interactionsim

PRO: Takes into account the "small" in our everyday lived experiences

CON: Risks neglecting widespread influences like race, culture, religion, and gender in favor of unique situations
Feminist Theory
- Explains how inequalities between men and women are created and enforced in daily interactions
-which makes it a part of what theory?

- Multiple feminist theories-not just one.

- Intersectionality-
understanding our identities as plural and interlocking; not singular
social cohesion emerges from homogenity in less industrialized societies
Full transcript