This is not hubris or the idea that the author of this response is any "better" than that of Giddens. However, sociology texts and summaries seem to leave out the idea that some actions, thought patterns and mindsets that are cultural and/or societal in nature make little to no logical or basic sense in the grand scheme of things. However, perhaps a covering of that dynamic would be too prone to bias and what not for a textbook like this (Giddens, 2011).
The third chapter of the Giddens text is a very good read because it focuses on something that is a common thread to us all, that being socializing with other people including family and non-family as well as general life course and aging. This is something that everyone needs to know but, maddeningly enough, a lot of people fail to grasp completely, if at all. However, one kvetch about this chapter is a fairly casual summary of life course, how important it is and what actions can truly throw one's life off-kilter is not covered nearly as much in depth as it should be. This is not to say that the book should be a motivational book or proselytize to its reader. However, there are a lot of people making decisions that are clearly bad for their future such as having kids too early, having kids out of wedlock or not finishing high school and that vein of thought is not really covered all that well given that it's clear that such actions are highly destructive and counterproductive to a solid and promising future. I guess Giddens was trying to avoid controversial statements and/or appearances of bias but clearly stating facts is not bias. it's not that hard to leave race and gender out of the discussion while still making the point (Giddens, 2011).
Another thing is that the book's third chapter is perhaps not modern or inclusive enough of real-world situations and examples that are pervasive in today's society. They really should be mentioned in this chapter…… [Read More]
And as we have gained greater scientific, medical, technological and ideological diffusiveness, theorists from every discipline concerning human matters have required their own lens for examination. For instance, the text by Conrad & Gabe (1999) focuses the whole of its discussion on the relationship between social systems and our ever-growing body of knowledge on systems specific to the physical makeup of the human being. Indeed, the authors provide an extremely compelling impetus for the continually expanding and splintering discourse under the sociology umbrella, demonstrating that with fundamental changes in our knowledge of human anatomy, genetics and evolutionary processes must come changes in the way we interpret social systems related to these dimensions of the species. Conrad & Gabe point out that "sociologists have researched other areas of genetics, including the social construction of genetic knowledge, the emergence and implications of genetic testing, the social control potential of genetic information and the commercialization of genetic biotechnology." (p. 5)
Such instances demonstrate that perspectives on the relationship between genetic patterns and social forces shift, and sometimes diverge in profoundly new directions, based on a continually growing understanding of internal, familial and hereditary human systems. This is similarly the case as external human systems shift, transform or evolve. Indeed, sociology has long concerned itself with the implications of 'modernity' to the human experience as well as to the way that human beings organize, conflict and differentiate. To this end, van Krieken (1997) argues that human beings are not to be understood as this static and definable entity but are instead only understood in light of the sociological forces that have molded them over time. Van Krieken contends "that such a conception of human identity enables us to improve our understanding of a range of theoretical issues, including the relation between social structure and action and the rationality of human action, as well as revealing the historical roots of a…… [Read More]
There is some suggestion on observation that many students of the dominant norm on campus do not engage in activities that might help Asian or other minority students feel as though they were members of a unique family or society with no racial or cultural boundaries. Rather, there is much in the way of stereotypical behaviors observed among the subtype population and the larger student body (Anderson & Taylor, 2006).
It seems however, many administrators, regardless of student behavior, are supportive of efforts by the subtype class to promote greater awareness among the dominant culture of cultural similarities. For example, in the environment explored, there are weekly meetings held as noted by flyers that suggest a "diversity" day be held bi-annually. On this day professors may interact with students and require subtypes and dominant typed students to interact with one another in focus group activities that require conversation, communication and mutual understanding.
If the campus were to increase its efforts at actually diversifying the student population on campus, and make efforts to recruit minority students from local, regional and national schools, the college would definitely demonstrate its inclination toward acceptance and diversity. This is not to say the subtype population does not have a duty to attend to however. On observation the subtype population seemed reserved and limited many of their communications to those that they new best. This typically meant other Asian students with whom they could identify with. It appears many consider themselves a victim of "cultural bias" as many students appear outnumbered in class, which may result in fears of discrimination or stereotyping (Andersen & Taylor, 2006; Shostak & McKay, (1971).
To help create change on campus, subcultures may want to offer the dominant culture opportunities to share their insights and cultural and ethical preferences. Likewise members of the dominant class can work to avoid establishing "normative" behaviors, and instead embrace the notion that all students are alike and have equal ability in learning. This may actually serve to encourage more students of the dominant class to enroll in more science, biology and engineering classes; likewise Asian students may feel encouraged to enroll in traditional classes including liberal arts, instead of focusing on the "norms" for their subtype, which on observation seem to include participating in many challenging classes, but few artistic or humanistic studies.
Andersen, M.L. & Taylor, H.F. (2006) General Sociology: Sociology in…… [Read More]
The social experience evolves around different dimensions that influence people's everyday experiences and realities in life. Inherent in every event, interaction, individual, and even tangible material/artifact are reflective of a specific kind of social order. Everything is social, and using this premise, this Sociology Portfolio provides a survey of literature and relevant material that illustrate the role that social experience plays in the development of current and essential issues affecting people's lives across nations/countries in the world.
This survey of relevant materials on sociology provides different scenarios in which sociology and its principles and concepts are applied in "real world" issues and problems societies face today. These literature materials are journal (scholarly) articles as well as popular ones, taken from newspapers and/or magazines. Two (2) films are also included to demonstrate how social issues are depicted on "reel," as interpreted realistically or artistically (symbolically) in the film.
The first part of the portfolio has three (3) summaries of journal articles discussing issues that are local (U.S. domestic) and international in scope. Moore and Hagedorn's (2011) analysis of the proliferation of female gangs in the U.S. illustrate the plight of marginalized women in contemporary U.S. society. At an international level, the U.S., as well as its ally countries, figured significantly in current socio-political issues prevalent in countries across the globe. Kilby (2002) provided a critical analysis of the role of the U.S. In promoting financial assistance programs to countries it considers as "third world" or are developing / underdeveloped. And in its war on terror, the U.S. And its Western allies have also encompassed their roles to also providing asylum to political allies in conflict-ridden and war-torn countries.
Newspaper and magazine articles also provided coverage to social issues that are popular and also both domestic and international in scope. While…… [Read More]
Sociology: Changing Societies in a Diverse World (Fourth Edition)
George J. Bryjak & Michael P. Soroka
Chapter One Summary of Key Concepts
Sociology is the field of study which seeks to "describe, explain, and predict human social patterns" from a scientific perspective. And though Sociology is part of the social sciences (such as psychology and anthropology), it is quite set apart from the other disciplines in social science; that is because it emphasizes the study of social groups - and how those social groups shape the thoughts and actions of humans.
The two phases of modernization: the first phase was the Industrial Revolution, which had a dramatic effect on countries like the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand; the second phase began post-WWI and continues now. Globalization alludes to the movement of industry - jobs, people and capital - from one society (and country) to another, as economies grow, throughout the world. Also, part of Globalization is the movement of values and other cultural characteristics with those industries and people. One down-side of Globalization is that if one interrelated economy hits a roadblock, the economies elsewhere in the world that fed or are fed by that slowed down economy, or are partially dependent upon that economy, can also suffer slow-downs. It has a ripple effect.
Sociology is a "debunking science" because it looks for "levels of reality" other than utilizing those already listed in official explanations and definitions. In Positivism, decisions are reached based on available scientific knowledge, whereas intuition means a person uses his best immediate extemporaneous response, judgment and sensory experience about something, not based on fact or previous research. Comte's contribution was to bring sociology into a more scientific genre; and he believed knowledge can only be based on what one sees, touches, feels, hears and tastes. The downside to Comte: he was wrong in his belief that social laws would determine the outcome of societal progression.
Durkheim's four categories of suicide: Altruistic suicide (people over-involved in a group, and have strong inner convictions); egoistic suicide (under-involved, under-committed individuals simply want a way out); anomic…… [Read More]
The South district of my town is primarily comprised of African-Americans with a white/black ratio of 15% 85%. The area is known for the highest level of crime as compared to any other area in and around the city. This enables the oppressive motive behind those who empower such ignorance as they base their final opinions, which dictate their actions, on the entire culture or population of African-Americans in association to one person and their actions. Almost as if a single criminal is appointed to represent his entire race through his actions simply because he is part of that race. This is stereotyping at its clearest existence. Though one would be correct in assuming that the lower end communities in my town and in other towns across the world are likely to accompany higher crime rates, higher poverty standards and an abundance of welfare recipient families; it would not be correct to assume that these areas are as they are simply because of the primary ethnic groups that orchestrate their populations. In the deepest consideration of early history, especially American history, it is apparent that the suppression of slaves and other African-Americans has carried on through the years in the form of constant cycles into each generation, and exacerbating the poverties that inflict many black communities.
Another example of the segregation and outright racism that I have witnessed within my community depicts the ideas and notions of profiling. I believe the local police, who may not employ a single black officer - at least from what I have seen, have become conditioned to target blacks foremost from whites. Though these instances today are likely to not be deliberate, the long-time conditioning that once remained on the force of every police department across the country creates a level of unconscious profiling (Jackson, 1994). I have seen many grocery patrons confronted by security or other employees abut shoplifting when they had done absolutely nothing to provoke such suspicions.
The segregation within this town is consistent in many forms, both subtle and harsh. However, the progression of earlier times in civil rights and equality has undeniably begun the redirection of some of these remaining aspects of segregation.
Jerome Jackson. 1994. The Color of Disposition; Still Holding Me Down. New York…… [Read More]
Sociology: Marx, Weber and Research Approach
When Karl Marx observed how the Industrial Revolution, with its new capitalist economic system, was affecting society and social life, he was especially concerned with the division industrialization brought into society. In his view, this new revolution polarized society into the bourgeoisie (those who own the means of production, the factories and the land) and the much larger proletariat (the working class who actually perform the labor necessary to extract something valuable from the means of production.)
In Marx's view, industrial capitalism presented many flaws as they went against certain implicit values that Marx based his own philosophy upon including: universal ethical values, which he believed were hindered by the presence of capitalism and the dimension it brought into the workforce and political atmosphere of the time.
While Marx found the idea of industrial capitalism segregating in terms of society, he viewed the entire situation as an inevitable bridge into a progression towards socialism and then communism, which was the ultimate goal in his mind. For Marx, industrial capitalism was a mere hurdle in the face of the possibility of a post-capitalist society that had been emancipated from the shackles of industrial capitalism. He viewed the time to come as a communist utopia
Marx believed that the only positive side to the progression of industrial capitalism was the fact that society would soon understand that their past existences, which revolved around more human, social, and cultural forms, had now been destroyed by the inclusion of a class-dominated society that would exploit the worker and benefit the upper class. With this realization, Marx believed that the worker would rise up in support of forming the communist utopia, free of class restrictions and the exploitation of the common man.
While Max Weber held his own views on the Industrial Revolution and the dawning age of industrial capitalism, his views were much different than those of…… [Read More]
More precisely, "studies show that disabled persons experience lower labor force participation rates, higher unemployment rates, and higher part-time employment rates than nondisabled persons." This is largely due to the fact that there is a sense of discrimination. Still, while the United States, more or less, is independent from this point-of-view, in terms of Germany, its approach is strictly connected to that of the European Union. A proof of this aspect is the actual statement made in 1999 to strengthen its commitment "to achieving the integration into employment and work of people with disabilities by promoting equal social standards for them" thus excluding discrimination. Moreover, the Treaty of Amsterdam which was fully accepted by Germany points out the need for a fair and non-discriminatory behavior.
There are several aspects which must be taken into account concerning the German way of handling the problem of people with disabilities. Thus, according to Esping-Andersen's theory, dealing with the inclusion of disabled people implies their reintegration in the labor force. More precisely it means that the welfare state, in the first instance approaches the idea of the reintegration process through commodification. The term is used to signify the fact that the individual, through the reintegration on the labor market is made dependent on the state for its basic needs. The next step in the process is, theoretically, the de-commodification which means the ability of the people to be as less dependable of the state as possible.
The strategy of the German state concerning the approach to the issue tends to follow these lines that were established at a theoretical level. In this sense, the first measure taken was at the level of the ministries of the unified country in the sense that "At federal level a division of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (BMA) is responsible for relief payments to war victims, laws relating to disabled people and vocational integration of disabled people." Therefore, it represents the main body which coordinates the activity and the measures undergone concerning the persons with disabilities.
There is more and more often the discussion over the best means to ensure that people with disabilities are protected from discriminatory behavior and at the same time they are helped by the state to become again part of the society. The latest approach on this issue concerns the duty of the state to protect civil rights as part…… [Read More]
When functionalists consider the preponderance of social deviance, they make a note of the positive role that inappropriate behavior plays in maintaining the health of a society. By soliciting outrage in others, a deviant can clarify and reinforce social norms while strengthening a group's sense of community togetherness (Harris, n.d.).
The conflict perspective, which stemmed originally out of Karl Marx's writings on class struggles, presents society in a different light than do the functionalists. While the functionalist perspective focuses on the positive aspects of society that contribute to its stability, the conflict perspective focuses on the negative, conflicted, and ever-changing nature of a society. Unlike functionalists who defend the status quo, avoid social change, and believe people cooperate to effect social order; conflict theorists challenge the status quo, encourage social change, and believe rich and powerful people force social order on the poor and the weak (Three Major Perspectives in Sociology, 2009).
During the 1940s and 1950s American sociologists generally ignored the conflict perspective in favor of the functionalist. But during the tumultuous 1960s, American sociologists began taking a considerable interest in conflict theory. It was during this time that Marx's idea that the key conflict in society was strictly economic was expanded. Modern day conflict theorists find social conflict between any groups in which the potential for inequality exists: racial, gender, religious, political, and economic. Conflict theorists feel that unequal groups usually have conflicting values and agendas, causing them to compete against one another. This constant competition between groups forms the basis for the ever-changing nature of society (Three Major Perspectives in Sociology, 2009).
Critics of the conflict perspective often point to its overly negative view of society. The theory ultimately characterizes humanitarian efforts, altruism, democracy, civil rights, and other positive aspects of society to capitalistic designs in order to control the masses and not to the inherent interests in preserving society and social order (Three Major Perspectives in Sociology, 2009).
In contrast to functionalism's somewhat benign organism viewpoint, conflict theory adopts the idea that society is war. The social realm is though of as a figurative battlefield upon which contending social factions struggle for control of scarce resources such as wealth and power. Functionalists tend to look for different functional components while conflict theorists look for competing interest groups, exploitation, and struggle.…… [Read More]
Nazi Germany and how it would be analyzed by Karl Marx, Max Weber and/or Emile Durkheim
Max Weber, born in 1864, is one of the best-known and most popular scholars of 'sociology', as well as of 'economic work'. One of his best contributions to the cause of economics as well as to sociology is his work entitled "Vertstehen" or what is also known as the theory of 'Interpretative Sociology' and his thinking on 'positivism'. Weber's theory of Verstehen is often seen as being very controversial and questionable. His view is that any research that is connected to history or sociology or economics must be approached with a particular idea or concept, or what is called a 'conceptual apparatus'. This apparatus was referred to be Weber as the 'ideal type', meaning that when an individual needs to understand or comprehend a particular sociological phenomenon, the various 'actions' of the different participants of the phenomena, and not stop at merely describing the phenomenon in itself. (Max Weber, 1864-1920)
However, the problem here is that one cannot actually comprehend interpretation unless and until the individual attempts to classify that particular within the phenomenon as belonging to that previously decided upon 'ideal type'. This was probably the reason that Max Weber described the 'Ideal Type' of behavior in four broad categories. The first ideal behavior was described as the 'rational means to rational ends', the second one as being 'the rational means to irrational ends', the third one was described, as being 'guided by emotion' and the fourth one was the 'guided by custom or habit'. Max Weber himself acknowledged the fact that utilizing the 'ideal type' for describing his theories was essentially abstract, but stated that it was an important means of understanding the various social phenomena that involved human behavior in all its intricacies, wherein an ideal type would help classify this intricate behavior into several ideal types, and this in turn…… [Read More]
"They've got their rules and we've got nothing to do with that" or "He has to learn the rules, just like anybody else" are key phrases which sustain this idea.
The two opponent groups are both looking to improve their performances in terms of privilege and power. The scene in which the prisoners are working and the pavement of the street and become motivated to work rapidly is also representative, as it points out their success in front of the authorities, therefore the earning of a privilege, more free time. On the other hand, the working conditions, the punishments they are being submitted to ("spending a night in the box") show the difference of status and the inequality between the two groups, which is the genesis of the conflict. Same does the appellative "boss" used with high frequency along the movie.
It is interesting to analyze the concept of "group cohesion" which is extremely obvious at least in the case of the prisoners. The way they manage to live together and somehow make their common life easier, their emotions, all of these are a result of their social interaction and a proof that they adhere to the same values and principles. The group cohesion is mostly obvious through the touching scenes in the movie, like the one where Luke returns from his attempt to escape and peers treat him with compassion or through the relationship of sincere friendship that Luke and Dragline develop.
Another sociological concept that appears in the construction of characters and that explains events and behavior is the term of "deviant behavior" that one can attribute to the main character, Luke. He ignores laws when being arrested and overlooks the sheriff through his attitude, and in general, he does not seem to conform to the prevailing rules and norms of living imposed, which is exactly the definition of a "deviant behavior."
Although the general line of the action follows the idea of conflict among individuals, one must take into account the fact that, both in the real life, and in movies is hard to define situations that coincide to a specific approach in all their…… [Read More]
(Frazer 8) to this end she develops the categories of "affirmation" and "transformation." In understanding Frazer's view it is imperative to bear in mind that older regimes of theory cannot achieve the synthesis that she is looking for and that new and more creative modes of political and social theory are necessary.
In essence what Fraser suggests is that in order to overcome this antimony between redistribution and recognition and to avoid the various reductive theories that have previously been put forward, she suggests a synthesis of various aspect of both critical theory as well as post -structural and deconstructive theory. In her view this would serve to overcome the false separation of these two central political and social elements.
In the final analysis Frazer's theory is based on a number of interrelated views. The first is that, " the redistribution - recognition dilemma is real" (Fraser 13). Secondly, Frazer notes that this dilemma can be "softened" by the search for perspectives and theoretical approaches that "...minimize conflicts between redistribution and recognition in cases where both must be pursued simultaneously" (Fraser 13). Importantly in this analysis is that various facets of the redistribution - recognition dilemma cut across and intersects with one another.
As a result and in conclusion, Fraser does not posit a vague or ephemeral solution to this problem but one which interrogates and attempts to find a theoretical locus that is based in pragmatic reality. In this regard she alludes to the combination of socialism and deconstruction as a theoretical basis to the central question of justice for all.
3. The politics of difference and multiculturalism and the Eurocentrism of social theory.
One of the central critiques of disciplines in the humanities that occurred in the latter part of the twentieth century was the critique of Eurocentrism. Simply stated, this refers to the process of European expansionism that the conquest of the world by countries like Great Britain and the subsequent colonialism that accompanied these events. As many theorists have pointed out, this was not only colonization of territory but also of identity and the mind.
The central concern and critique of Eurocentrism is that certain modes of thought and perceptions about reality, society, culture and identity were favored and promoted by the colonialists. In sociological terms this refers to…… [Read More]
Trey Parker and Matt Stone's television show South Park is a sociological show by nature. Every episode is imbued with the sociological imagination, and asks the viewer to think critically as well as comically about situational psychology and sociology. This is true for the Season 7 Episode 5, entitled "Fat Butt and Pancake Head." The theme of the episode is ethnic and linguistic stereotyping and issues related to diversity in America. "Fat Butt and Pancake Head" begins with a set of South Park Elementary School presentations on Latino contributions to American society. Most of the students give straightforward reports about contributions of Latinos to American society, but Eric Cartman's report is different. Instead of offering a dry explication of how Latinos are present in every sector of society, he paints a caricature of Latina superstar Jennifer Lopez on his hand. The caricature has an exaggerated accent and makes references to eating "tacos and burritos," even though Jennifer Lopez is Puerto Rican and not Mexican. The performance draws on every stereotype about Latino culture, and is overtly politically incorrect. Kyle, Cartman's friend, is infuriated because the hand puppet is a big hit with the Latino community leaders in the school auditorium. The Latinos in the crowd applaud Cartman's efforts and Cartman wins the prize for best presentation.
Cartman's hand puppet then becomes famous, out staging the real Jennifer Lopez and causing the record executives to fire her. Ben Affleck, Lopez's beau at the time, leaves the real Lopez for Eric's hand. The two are about to get married. However, the real Jennifer Lopez is upset and chases down Eric and the hand puppet. Cornered and prepared to end the ruse, Cartman reveals that the Jennifer Lopez on his hand is actually an alias of con artist Mitch Connor. He kills off both Lopez and Connor in front of a crowd of people. The episode ends with the real Jennifer Lopez working at a Mexican-themed fast food restaurant and complaining about her position.
This multi-layered South Park episode offers ample opportunity for sociological exploration and analysis. The most obvious issue that the episode raises is related to ethnic stereotyping. Cartman is an unapologetic bigot. His performance in "Fat Butt and Pancake Face" is very much true to character. In prior episodes, Cartman proves his bigotry against gays, Jews, women, and blacks. This time, Cartman's stereotyping against the Latino…… [Read More]
Individuals group themselves through the process of social identification as woman or nurse, etc. This classification enables the individual to define his social environment. Thus, identification answers the question "Who am I?" To some extent. Through the involvement with reference groups in social situations, individuals set up social identities.
Three major functions offered by the reference groups are: the determination of the traits, competencies, and values for a specific social identity. Individuals form two identities, namely, a 'global' identity and a 'role-specific' identity. The identity that is depicted in all circumstances is global identity. The role-specific identity is used for the communication with reference group response from group members. In social situations, the reference groups refer to one's co-workers, friends, etc. The identity-specific reference groups offer the social feedback, which is imperative in the development of the perceived self. Thus, the possible hierarchy for identities is global identity and then role-specific identity. (a Self-Concept-based model of Work Motivation)
Identity is thus one of the main themes in literature and cultural studies. For nearly two decades, identity proved to be a matter of deliberation for psychoanalytic, poststructuralist, and cultural materialist criticism in regions varying from postcolonial and ethnic studies to feminism and queer theory. Academics came to the conclusion that social or cultural identity, as a foundation for political action, is hypothetically illogical and politically destructive. We need to take the condemnations that have been aimed at the idea of identity, because we want to save identity from the disgrace into which it has fallen and we need to reconsider and get back identity.
Self-Concept-based model of Work Motivation" Retrieved at http://www.cba.uri.edu/Scholl/Papers/Self_Concept_Motivation.HTM. Accessed on 18 May 2005.
Assess the view that Identity is psychological continuity" Retrieved at http://www.arrod.co.uk/essays/psychological-continuity.php. Accessed on 18 May 2005
Desrochers, Stephan; Andreassi, Jeanine; Thompson, Cynthia. "Identity Theory" a Sloan Work…… [Read More]
In studying the individual, it is inevitable that a thorough analysis of the society s/he lives be conducted, in order to generate a better understanding that influences the individual's personality and development. Social sciences take into account the essential role that society plays in shaping the individual's attitudes, feelings, beliefs and behavior about important and trivial concerns in life. People's sentiments are best reflected through the character of the society they interact with.
Socialization, as a process of human interaction, is the most immediate way in which an individual acquires and adopts or rejects these learned values, attitudes, beliefs and behavior. The society, in return, is also altered by the presence of the individual; however, it is a fact that society has a bigger role in shaping and developing every individual. Without society, an individual ceases to be an individual, for s/he cannot have people to interact with and know what makes him/her different and similar with other…… [Read More]
Sociology: Deviant Behavior
'Instead of Fighting Deviance, Americans Just Get Used to It" an Analysis
According to the article "Instead of Fighting Deviance, Americans Just Get Used to It" Richard Starr suggests that deviance has become so much the norm that people in America are becoming desensitized to it. Starr begins with a re-cap of two news stories which tell of injuries to children wounded by gunfire and another of police breaking up a homeless illegal settlement. His focus is on deviant behavior and patterns of deviance in the United States in recent years.
Starr suggests that ordinary people are becoming more and more accustomed to violent crime just happening. Further he argues that it is a fact in the United States that there are circumstances, violent ones that exist that people choose to not notice. More and more behavior that in times of old would have been considered deviant is now becoming the norm. Specifically the population that Starr focuses on is citizens living in and around the Washington area, where eight homicides occurred at the time of his study.
According to Starr some of the reasons that deviant behavior is becoming the norm are because authorities, rules and laws are not focusing enough on behaviors that have been traditionally defined as deviant.
Starr supports the notion that people should be focusing on trying to make it socially and intellectually acceptable to again raise the bar and fight back against deviant behavior in order to deter it. Further he supports the idea that rules and laws have to be structured in such a way that deter deviant behavior and consistently work toward sensitizing rather than de-sensitizing people to behavior to assure the best possible outcome.
There are many different theories which attempt to define deviance. Conflict theorists would suggest that deviance is a function of the objective reality, where the norms and values…… [Read More]
Principle of rationality- the process in which a society achieves organization through abstract and explicitly stated rules and procedures (social norms and regulations).
Formal rationality- a shift from traditional and spontaneous methods of organization towards a more abstract and explicit development and implementation of rules and procedures in the society.
Disenchantment- a feeling or state in which the individual no longer feels satisfaction for an activity s/he is tasked to accomplish; when expectations received is less than the effort given to achieve that reward or expectation.
Charismatic leaders- an individual whose ability to lead was determined based on his/her exceptional or supernatural quality that his/her followers or people can uniquely attribute to him/her.
Religious doctrines and human identity- the relationship between these two concepts emerge when religion helps promote integration among individuals in a particular religious group. Upon integration, the individual assumes his/her identity based on her affiliation with his/her religious group.
Patriarchal leaders- individuals who govern over a society or group, believing that males are made to govern and women are meant to be submissive and subordinate only to men.
Moral life- standards set out by the society in order to generate a specific set of desired behavior from its members; usually agreed upon by all members of…… [Read More]
Would it be either desirable or possible to establish a truly classless society? Why? Provide both supporting and opposing viewpoints. In other words, the pros and cons to this type of society.
It is not entirely clear whether it would be either desirable or possible to establish a truly classless society. However, the idea of a truly classless society offers many advantages. First, a truly classless society would eliminate the conflicts and tensions which presently exist between the "haves" and the "have nots." The source of these conflicts and tensions is primarily due to the fact that certain individuals (i.e., "have nots") cannot afford even basic needs such as clothing, food, health insurance, and shelter while other individuals (i.e., "haves") may afford not only basic needs but also "luxury" items such as sports utility vehicles.
Next, a truly classless society would allow every individual to compete solely on the basis of merit. This is vital because presently, certain individuals receive opportunities (i.e., jobs, promotions, raises, etc.) merely because of their financial status or because of whom they know. Eliminating the class divisions in society would ensure that all individuals who were qualified based upon objective factors such as education, experience, intelligence, skills, training, etc. would be given a fair opportunity to compete for a position. In addition, emphasizing objective factors would allow society to return to a meritocracy, which would ensure that jobs, promotions, raises, etc. were doled out to the individual who was most qualified, not the individual who had the better class position or most connections.
While the notion of a truly classless society offers numerous advantages, there are also many disadvantages. First, a truly classless society devalues one of the core hallmarks of our democratic society, i.e., the theory of capitalism. One of the things which makes our democratic society function as well as it does is capitalism, i.e., the concept that individuals who work hard will eventually reap the financial rewards of their sweat. Next, although a truly classless…… [Read More]
It is evident that poor people, who have a low purchasing power and low production of foodstuffs, will be subject to malnutrition as compared to their counterparts, who have massive income and high production of foodstuffs.
The study of sociology is relevant to aiding in the understanding of health in as far as social factors are concerned. In trying to understand the sociological aspect of health, one needs to take into account structural and social factors rather than basing his or her arguments on the biological explanations of health and disease (Barry and Yuill 2011, p.17). Symbolic interaction is one of the most influential sociological perspectives that medical professionals can employ in their bid to understand health behaviors that seem to be irrational. The study of sociology for health care providers, therefore, is fundamental as it gives them a holistic approach towards health care provision since it emphasizes on linking an individual's behavior to the social factors that form a social environment for such an individual. It is useful in filling the gap that is created by the biomedical model, which does not address the social inequalities in health (Nettleton, 2006). The study of sociology by health care givers is crucial as it puts into perspectives that health professionals had failed to incorporate in their professional work.
Allen, K., (2006). Medical Sociology and Hispanic Health. The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education, 16(17), pp. 22-23.
Andersen, M.L., & Taylor, H.F. (2008). Sociology: Understanding a diverse society. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Thomson Learning.
Barry, a.M., & Yuill, C. (2011). Understanding the sociology of health: An introduction. London: SAGE.
Cockerham, W.C. (2007). Social causes of health and disease. Cambridge: Polity.
Cooke, H., & Philpin, S.M. (2008). Sociology in nursing and healthcare. Edinburgh, Baillie're Tindall.
Kellogg, V. (2008). Food…… [Read More]
Sociology, Identity, and Families
I would like to write about the concept of self in sociology this week because I have learned to evaluate the relationship between the internal and external self and the influence that society plays on developing who we are as individuals. When taken in the perspective of how we view children in society as influential and subject to the perspectives of key people, one would believe that we develop our identity based upon a culmination of all of our experiences and social influences. The institutions of education and religion are believed to be process by which socialization and identity development occur in the external world and therefore our external self is the result of these factors. Society and family are viewed as the agents by which individuals are molded into the people they are to become and this can be best accomplished through the use of structure and discipline. Yet one must also take into account the individual internal factors that make us more or less likely to be influenced by external forces. It is the merger of the external and internal forces that allow us to fully develop and individuate.
Sociology, Age, and Identity
This week I particularly connected with the concept of youth and their ability to develop an identity within the context of social stigmas that are associated with the transition to adulthood. Youth in their normal maturation process go through a natural period of individualization that is often viewed as rebellion and characterized as troubled behavior. The readings this week helped me to reflect on how these stigmas associated with a normal life process may impact the formation of self as a positive and contributing member of society. If one continues the logic of last week with society playing a significant role in shaping how children develop through the use of institutional influences, then one can see how society may view this natural rebellion as a failure of such institutions. One must consider whether it is the framing of the concept of youth in direct comparison of that of adulthood that leads to social stigma and the identification of categorical concepts based on age and specific developmental accomplishments.… [Read More]