CHAPTER OUTLINE Chapter 1
A. Sociology is defined as the science dealing with the study of social forces. It is the science
of society and social behavior.
B. Social forces that shape our lives:
2. Social relationships
3. Groups such as race, sex, and class
4. Structured pressures coming from corporations or international politics
II. The Sociological Perspective (The sociological ways of perceiving and interpreting the social
A. 3 key assumptions of the sociological perspective:
1. Individuals are by their nature social beings.
a. Human infants are totally dependent on others for an extended period of
b. Throughout history humans have demonstrated a capacity and need to
cooperate with others in order to survive.
2. Individuals are largely socially determined
a. Society (e.g., rules, values, goals) is transmitted to the child through the
b. The individual's identity and perceptions are shaped by the social
c. One of the main tasks of sociology is to identify these social forces.
d. However, this does not imply a total social determinism (the assumption
that human behavior is explained exclusively by social forces).
3. Individuals create, sustain, and change the social forms within which they
conduct their lives.
1. Social groups of all sizes and types (families, peer groups, work
groups, etc.) are made by people.
2. Interacting people create social structures that become sources of
control over them.
3. The continuous interaction of group members act to change the
b. Four important implications:
1. Social forms that are created have a certain momentum of their
own that defies change.
2. Social organizations, because they are created and sustained by
people, are imperfect.
3. Through collective action, individuals are capable of changing the
structure of society and even the course of history.
4. Individuals are not passive; rather, through the process of human
agency, they actively shape social life by adapting to, negotiating
with, and changing social structures.
B. Problems with the Sociological Perspective
1. Sociology is not a comfortable discipline.
a. The sociological perspective challenges what is ordinarily taken for
granted to the extent that sociologists:
1) Sociologists do not take everything at face value.
2) They ask questions about existing social arrangements.
b. The critical examination of society
1) Sociology perspective demystifies and demythologizes social
2) It sensitizes individuals to the inconsistencies present in society.
c. The sociological assumption is that the social world is human-made and
therefore not sacred.
d. An understanding of society's constraints is liberating.
e. However, sociology is difficult because the behavior of sociology's
subjects is not always certain.
2. Sociology is extraordinary because it can be regarded as both trivial and
a. Some students may see sociology as trivial and boring.
1. May question the value of sociology and see Sociology as a
science of the obvious.
2. Most are unconscious of their social boundaries.
b. Sociology is subversive; it undermines our foundations by questing
III. The Historical Development of Sociology
A. Sociology emerged in Western Europe during the late eighteenth century, spurred by
social changes brought on by the Industrial Revolution, the French Revolution,
urbanization, capitalism, and the intellectual ideals of the period (e.g., progress,
democracy, freedom, individualism, and the scientific method).
B. Auguste Comte (1798-1857)
1. The founder of sociology
2. Sought to establish sociology as a science free of religious arguments about
society and human nature.
3. Believed that positivism, which is the philosophy that knowledge should be based
on systematic principles, experiments, and comparisons, could solve social
C. Emile Durkheim (1858-1917)
a. Provided the rationale for sociology by emphasizing social facts, which
are human factors that explain human behavior.
b. His classic study of suicide (1897) demonstrates how social factors
explain individual behavior.
2. Durkheirn also pointed out the binding power of belief systems, how labeling
some people as deviant reaffirms our conception of what is right, and. the impact
of the division of labor on social solidarity.
3. Key concepts introduced by Durkheim: social roles, socialization, anomie,
deviant behavior, social control, and the social bond.
D. Karl Marx (1818-1883) - The founding father of conflict theory
1. Devoted his life to analyzing and criticizing the society around him.
2. He reasoned that the economic system found in society provides the basic
social structures, which are:
a. System of stratification
b. Unequal distribution of resources
c. The bias of the taw
d. Prevailing ideology.
3. Interested in how the economic system, particularly capitalism, shaped society.
a. Owners of capital:
1. Exploited their workers for maximum profit.
2. Used their economic power to keep the less powerful in their
place and to benefit unequally.
3. Determined the prevailing ideology created false
consciousness (believing in ideas that are not in their objective
interests but rather in the best interests of the capitalist class)
which contributed to the oppression of the working class.
4. Social change occurs when the contradictions inherent in capitalism cause the
working class to:
a. Recognize their oppression
b. Develop class consciousness by recognizing their class interests,
common oppression, and an understanding of who their oppressors are
c. Revolt against the system.
5. Marx made extraordinary contributions to core sociological concepts: systems
of inequality, social class, power, alienation, and social movements.
E. Max Weber (1864-1920): A response to Marx
1. Much of Weber's thought was a reaction to the writings of Karl Marx (who Weber
considered to narrowly deterministic.
2. Weber contended:
a. The basic structure of society comes from three sources: the political,
economic, and cultural spheres.
b. Weber argued that political power may have its source in the charisma,
or expressive qualifies, of individual leaders or in organizations.
3. The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (1904), which demonstrates
how the Protestant belief system made capitalism possible, was Weber's most
4. Weber added to the field of sociology such core concepts: power, ideology,
charisma, bureaucracy, and social change.
IV. Sociological Methods: The Craft of Sociology
A. 4 types of sociological questions:
1. Factual questions try to identify quot;who,quot; quot;what,quot; quot;when,quot; and quot;where.quot;
2. Comparative questions allow us to compare one area or group to others. (See
3. Historical questions look for trends and changes over time.
4. Theoretical questions seek to identify causal relationships
a. Theoretical questions ask why?'
b. A sociological theory is a set of ideas that explains a range of human
behavior and a variety of social and societal events.
B. Problems in collecting data
a. Sociologists as social scientists are obligated to study society in a
detached and dispassionate manner.
b. However, sociologists are also members of society with beliefs, feelings,
2. Value neutrality (to be absolutely free of bias in research) can be attacked from
a. Scientists should not be morally indifferent to the implications of their
b. Type of problems researched and strategies employed tend either to
support the existing societal arrangements or to undermine them. In both
cases, social research is political.
c. Bias is inevitable in studying social problems.
d. Sociologists must display scientific integrity and must recognize bias so
that it does not and must recognize bias so that it does not invalidate their
3. Minimizing bias (see Research Methods box)
4. Non-scientific analysis
a. People tend to generalize from personal experiences, which is a
b. People may make assumptions from a single case.
c. People tend to use some authority, such as the media or the Bible,
instead of their senses.
5. Prevailing myths and stereotypes that are contradicted by scientific evidence.
a. Six myths that are not supported by the facts:
1. Most homeless people are disabled by drugs, mental disease,
or physical afflictions.
2. Adolescent Blacks are more likely than adolescent whites to
3. Welfare makes people dependent, lazy, and unmotivated.
4. Welfare is given more generously to the- poor than to the non-
5. Blacks are similar in their behaviors (i.e. they are monolithic).
6. Unmarried women are having children to increase their
b. Use of aphorisms, proverbs and conventional wisdom to describe
C. Sources of data
1. Survey research-allows researcher to obtain information using
standardized questionnaires and sophisticated statistical
a. Data may be gathered using:
2. Personal interviews (caption, p.21)
3. Written questionnaires
b. The researcher obtains information:
1. From a selected sample (a representative part
of a population).
2. Regarding a particular variable (an attitude,
behavior, or condition that vary in magnitude
and significance from case to case).
2. Experiments are used to understand the cause and-effect
relationship among a few variables.
a. Two groups are used:
1. The control group, which is a group of subjects
not exposed to the independent variable.
2. The experimental group, which is made up of
the subjects who are exposed to the independent
b. Change is studied because the researcher.
1. Varies the subjects' exposure to the
independent variable, which is the condition
that is believed to be responsible for the
2. The amount of change that happens to the
dependent variable (the variable that is
influenced the effect of another variable) is
observed and measured.
3. Observations can be used to record or watch and study what
occurs in a community, group, or social event.
4. Existing data, which has been collected by another researcher
or agency, may be used as the source of data needed to
CHAPTER OUTLINE Chapter 2
A. The authors discuss the Sherifs' classic summer camp experiment to illustrate the
dynamics of social organization. When the boys enrolled in the camp were divided into
two groups, each group developed:
1 . Divisions of labor
2. Hierarchial structure of ranks
3. kules that governed behavior
4. Punishments for violations of the rules
5. Specialized languages (argots) with nicknames and group symbols
6. Member cooperation to achieve goals.
II. The Micro Level: The Process of Social Organization
A. The process of social organization
1 . Social organization refers to the ways in which human conduct is socially organized -
that is there are observed regularities in the behavior of people
2. The social conditions that constrain human behavior can be divided into two groups:
a. Social structure - the structure of behavior in groups and society;
b. Culture - the shared beliefs of group behavior that:
1) Unites members, and
2) Guides their behavior
B. Social Structure - patterns that emerge when people interact-through linkages and
1. Aggregates - a collection of individuals who happen to be at the same place at the same
2. Groups - collections of people who, because of sustained interaction, have evolved a
common structure and culture.
a. Social interaction is the basic building block of groups.
1) Communication through speech, the written work, or a symbolic act such as a wink,
facial expression, or gesture.
2) Social interaction may be either transitory or enduring. A case of enduring social
interaction is a social relationship in which members are united at least in some minimal
with the other members of the group.
b. Members of a social relationship behave differently than they would as participants in a
fleeting interaction. And once interaction takes place, the behavior of participants is
C. Culture - the shared beliefs of a group's members that serve to guide and constrain their
1. Norms are common expectations that emerge about how people should act.
2. Values are the criteria that emerge for judging what is appropriate, correct, moral, and
3. Social roles are the expectations that group members have of individuals occupying
various positions Within the group.
D. Norms are the behavioral expectations that members of a particular group collectively
1 . Folkways are the minor rules that vary from group to group. Folkways involve
etiquette, customs, and minor regulations.
2. Mores are important norms, the violation of which results in severe punishment. Mores
involve morality and can be thought of as quot;moral imperatives.quot;
E. Status and Role are the positions of social organization within the group. An
understanding of what positions are present and how they are interrelated provides a
quot;structural mapquot; of the social group.
1. Status refers to the position one plays in an organization or group.
2. Hierarchy refers to the arrangement of people in order of importance and in terms of
how they are rewarded and esteemed.
3. An individual's master status refers to a status that has exceptional significance for social
identity; it quot;trumpsquot; all other statuses when a situation or an individual is evaluated by
4. The behavior expected of a person occupying a status in a group is that person's role,
which are behavioral expectations and requirements attached to a position in a social
5. A-Jthough role performance by members may vary, the organization or group generally
6. The role performance of the occupants of the various statuses in an organization or
group can vary for three reasons:
a. Personality variables can make obvious differences in the behavior of individuals even
under identical groups statuses and situations.
b. The status occupant
1) May not receive a clear, consistent message as to what behavior is expected in a given
2) May hold multiple group memberships and statuses with conflicting expectations.
3) May change statuses within the group or organization and thus be subject to changed
c. Roles have the power to protect individuals and relieves the individual of the
responsibility for action.
7. Social Control is achieved by the group by
a. Demanding conformity on certain important norms, and
b. Socializing members to internalize the group's norms and values, and
c. Establishing sanctions or social rewards and punishments for approved and disapproved
d. Society's sanctions (or the threat of sanctions) act to constrain the individual and
maintain social control.
8. Primary and Secondary Groups
a. A social group is:
1 ) An organization created through enduring and attemed interaction.
2) People who have a common identity, share a common culture, and define themselves as
a distinct social unit.
3) Two types:
a) Primary Groups are groups whose members are the most intimately involved with each
other, small and face-to-face; informal in organization, and long-lasting.
b) Secondary Groups are much larger and more impersonal; formally organized; task-
oriented; and relatively non-permanent.
4) Primary groups within secondary groups are important in carrying out the goals of the
secondary group because they create loyalty, discourage individualism, and generate
shared goals and values, all of which are important to the long-term success of the larger
b. Bureaucracy: The Ultimate Secondary Group
1 ) A bureaucracy is a hierarchical formal organization characterized by rationality and
efficiency - that is, improved efficiency and more effective attainment of common goals.
2) Organization efficiency is maximized:
a) The work is divided into small tasks and performed by specialists
b) There is a hierarchy (chain of command), with each position having clearly defined
duties and responsibilities
c) Behaviors are governed by standardized, written, and explicit rules
d) All decisions are made on the basis of technological knowledge (not personal
e) Members are judged solely on the basis of proficiency and discipline is impartially
3) Bureaucracies - a quot;well-oiled machinesquot;?
a) Bureaucracies pervade all levels of government, the church, education, organized sports
(e.g., the NCAA and athletic departments at quot;big-timequot; schools), and corporations.
b) McDonaldization describes the increasing bureaucratization of social life (George
c) Benefits of bureaucracy include:
i) Division of labor is efficient.
ii) Specific expectations of members.
iii) Rewards based on achievement rather than favoritism.
iv) Expertise for specific tasks coordinated to accomplish complex goals.
d) Criticisms of bureaucracy include:
i) Excessive number of regulations.
ii) Blind obedience to these rules and the unquestioned following of orders that prevents
the efficient handling of unusual situations.
iii) Where adherence to was once a means to and end becomes an end-, in-itself (Merton).
iv) quot;Iron cagequot; of rationality - bureaucracies are cages in the sense that people are
trapped in them, their basic humanity denied.
• Causes dehumanization that is characteristic of bureaucracies.
• Weber feared dehumanization would overtake modem society.
9. Power of the Social Group - Groups affect peoples lives in a number of ways:
a. The group affects the probability of suicide -Durkheim
1) One's attachment to a group affects the probability of suicide.
2) Durkheim posited three types of suicide:
a) Egoistic - when an individual has minimal ties to a social group.
b) Altruistic - when an individual is totally group-oriented.
c) Anomic - when an individual experiences conflicting group expectations.
b. The group affects the individual's perceptions.
1) Asch's experiment examined the effect of group pressures. He asked subjects to compare
the length of a line on a card; some participants were coached to give the wrong answer,
when pressured, subjects often agreed with incorrect answers.
2) Sherif, in a series of experiments, tried to determine the extent of conformity of subjects.
He had subjects placed alone in a dark room and asked to describe when a light moved.
When placed in a group, individuals frequently modified their observations to make them
consistent With those of others in the group.
c. The group affects the individual's convictions.
1 ) Provides effective social support for members even in the face of contradictory
2) Festinger conducted an experiment to see how a group would handle a prophecy and a
disconfirmation of it.
The leader of a group, whose members believed there would be a devastating flood, was
instructed to assemble the group and wait for a flying saucer to arrive and save them.
When the spacecraft did not appear, another communication was made to the leader they
the area was being spared. The group was not disillusioned, but instead reaffirmed their
beliefs and doubled their efforts to win converts.
d. The group affects the individual's health and life.
1) Because a child is destined to occupy the social stratum (caste, cJass, etc.) into which he
or she is bom, other members of that stratum (usually the family) will prepare the child for
his/her role in society.
a) The family of a child in Indian's lower classes will prepare the child to become a beggar
by intentionally deforming the child (deformed beggars are seen as more successful at the
b) Many Appalachian families practice serpent handling and expose themselves and their
children to injury or death
c) Members of certain religious sects refuse medical treatment for themselves and their
children (e.g., the Church of the First Bom).
e. Group affects the individual's behavior
1) Although human beings are biologically programmed to eat, drink, sleep, and engage in
sexual activity, human groups significantly shape how these drives are met.
2) Our everyday activities, our perceptions and interpretations, and our attitudes are the
productions of our group memberships.
f. Social groups undergo a quot;universal processquot; - the process of social organization.
1) Interaction among the social actors in a social organization is constant and continuous,
2) However, group interactions also brings about change
III. The Macro Level: The Social Structure of Society
1. Are the largest social organizations to which people owe their allegiance.
2. A society is
a. An aggregate of people who are united by a common culture.
b. An aggregate of people who are relatively autonomous and self-sufficient.
c. An aggregate of people who live in a definite geographical location
B. A society is a social system, composed of interdependent parts that are linked together
into a boundary-maintaining whole.
1. A system has
a. Order and predictability within the system
b. Clear boundaries in terms of membership and terTitory
c. The parts are interdependent
2. The authors use the U.S. economy as an example of interdependence.
C. Culture of society
1. Culture explains the persistence of most aspects of social life.
2. Culture explains much of individual and group behavior.
D. Social classes
1. Social stratification is the hierarchical arrangement of people in terms of power,
prestige, and resources
2. At the individual level, placement in the hierarchy directly affects self-perception,
motivation, political attitudes, and the degree of advantage or disadvantage in school, the
economy, courts, and life itself
3. At the society level, the extent of inequality affects the types and magnitude of social
problems, societal stability, and economic growth
D. Social institutions
1. Institutions are social arrangements that channel behavior in prescribed ways in
important areas of social life.
2. Institutions are interrelated sets of norms, values, and role expectations.
3. Social institutions are the product of cultural evolution that tend to be conservative, but
are subject to deliberate efforts toward constructive changes.
CHAPTER 3 OUTLINE
A. How can one explain violence?
1. One's answer depends on one's vantage point in the power structure, because
violence is defined as such if the act threatens the power structure.
2. Violence always refers to a disruption of some condition or order. However,
order, like violence, is also politically defined
3. Order itself can be very destructive to some categories of persons (e.g., caste
and class systems)
a. For instance the normal way society is organized does harm to some people (e.g. minorities in
some society's receive poor health care, low wages, segregated facilities, unfair systems of justice,
b. Sometimes the term quot;violencequot; is not applied to high mortality rates and rates of preventable
disease that prevail among the poor and powerless in every society.
c. The term quot;institutional violencequot; is used to imply that the system itself injures and destroys.
4. Violence is defined politically through the selection process; some acts of violence are not
forbidden or condemned.
a. For instance, property damaged during celebrations like the Mardi Gras
or destruction by students on spring break in Florida.
b. The same destruction in a demonstration intended to change the system
would be defined as violent.
c. Thus, violence is condoned or condemned through political pressures
5. Understanding the relationship between the power structure and violence and how violence is
defined helps us to understand the role of conflict and order in society.
II. Social Systems: Order and Conflict
A. The analysis of society begins with a mental image or model of its structure.
1. The analytical model (or mental picture one has of the structure of society) influences what
a. Look for.
b. What they see.
c. How they explain the phenomena that occur within society.
2. One characteristic of society is the existence of segmentation:
a. Segmentation is the basis for the two prevailing models of society.
b. May result from differences in age, race, sex, physical prowess,
wisdom, or any other characteristic considered important by its members.
c. The important question is quot;What is the basic relationship among the
parts of society?quot;
d. The contradictory. answers to that question protide the rational for two
models of society - conflict and order.
B. The order model, which is sometimes referred to as functionalism
1. The order model attributes to society:
a. The essential characteristics of cohesion, consensus, cooperation,
reciprocity, stability, and persistence.
b. The various parts of the system are basically in harmony with each
c. A high degree of cooperation (and societal integration) arises because
there is a high degree of consensus on societal goals and cultural values.
2. Central questions for order theorists
a. What is the nature of the social bond?
b. What produces social cohesion?
3. Emile Durkheim provided the classic discussion of the order model in the early
a. For Durkheim, there were two types of societies:
1) Smaller, less complex societies
a) Solidarity among members occur through the collective
holding of beliefs.
b) Social integration occurs because the members are
2) Modern, complex societies
a) Social integration is achieved through differentiation.
b) Society is based on a division of labor in which
members involved in specialized tasks are united by their
dependence on each other.
b. Durkheim focused on integration by determining the manifest and latent consequences of social
1 ) Manifest consequence refers to the intended consequence of a
particular function in society (for instance, the manifest
consequence of the punishment of crime is punishing and
deterring the criminal).
2) Latent consequence refers to the unintended consequence of a
societal function. For instance, the latent consequence of the
punishment of crime is the societal reaffirmation of what is to be
c. By focusing on the consequences of social structures and activities-intended and unintended,
and negative, malintegrative functions (dysfunctions) we can better understand social
arrangements and activities.
C. The conflict model
1. Offers a different view of society which posits that:
a. Conflict is a normal feature of social life.
b. Conflict influences the distribution of power.
c. Conflict influences the direction and magnitude of social change.
d. Because the individuals and groups of society compete for advantage,
the degree of social integration is minimal and tenuods.
e. Social change results from the conflict among competing groups;
therefore change tends to be drastic and revolutionary.
f. Conflict results from the dissimilar goals and interests of social groups
g. Conflict is the result of social organization itself.
2. Historically, the most important conflict theorist has been Karl Marx.
a. Marx believed that there exists in every society a dynamic tension
between two groups who were the sources of division and exploitation.
The two groups are:
1) Owners of the means of production.
2) Workers, who work for them.
b. Marx focused on inequality-between the oppressors and the oppressed,
the dominant and the dominated, the powerful and the powerless.
1) The powerful protect their privileges by supporting the status
2) The powerful abuse the powerless, thereby sowing the seeds
of their own destruction.
3) The destruction of the elite is accomplished when the
dominated people unite and overthrow the dominants.
3. Contemporary conflict theorist, Ralf Dahrendorf argued that:
a. Although conflict is a universal condition, aspects of social organization
other than economic factors generate it.
b. Conflict is inherent in social organization because organization means
that power is distributed unequally between quot;havesquot; and quot;have-nots.quot;
4. Conflict theorists emphasize that any unity present in society results from
coercion, not from consensus.
D. The duality of social life
1. An overview or order and conflict theories (see Table 3.1) reveals that:
a. Each focuses on reality, but only part of that social reality.
b. Scientists have tended to accept one or the other of these models,
thereby focusing on only part of the social reality for two reasons:
1) One model or the other was in vogue at the time.
2) One model or the other made more sense for the analysis of the
particular problems of interest.
2. The analysis of sport illustrates the difference in how sociologists are influenced
by the order and the conflict models.
a. From the order perspective, it is argued that sport contributes to the
stability of society; it preserves the existing order by:
1) Symbolizing the American way of life (e.g., competition,
individualism, achievement, fair play).
2) Socializing youth to adopt desirable character traits, to accept
authority, and to strive for excellence.
3) Promoting the unity of society's members through patriotism.
4) Inspiring feelings of unity of purpose and loyalty by the fans.
b. From the conflict perspective, it's argued that sport:
1) Reflects the interests of the powerful.
2) Is organized to exploit athletes.
3) Inhibits the potential for revolution by society's have-nots by:
a. Validating the prevailing myths of capitalism-e.g. that anyone can succeed if he or she works
hard; if one fails, it's his or her fault, etc.
b. Serving as an quot;opiate of the massesquot; by diverting attention away from harsh realities.
c. Giving false hope of upward mobility to minorities and other oppressed members of society.
3. Social problems from the order and conflict perspectives
a. Social problems are societal induced conditions that harm any segment of the population or
violations of normative expectations and values of society.
b. Order theorists
1) From the order perspective, deviants are:
a) People who somehow do not conform to the standards
of the dominant group.
b) People who are assumed to be out of phase with
conventional behavior; the focus is on the deviants
c) People who have not internalized the norms and values
of society either because of the environment in Which they
were brought up or the influence of a deviant subculture.
2) See the remedy to deviance is to rehabilitate the deviants so that they conform to societal
c. Conflict theorists
1) Criticize order theorists for blaming the victim.
2) Argues that to focus on the individual deviant locates the
symptom, not the disease.
3) Believe that deviants represent society's failure to meet the
needs of its individual members.
4) Because the system is the primary cause of the problem, the
system and not the individual must be changed.
d. The authors favor the conflict model while trying to strike a balance between the order and
III. Synthesis of the Order and Conflict Models
A. Five assumptions of a synthesis approach:
1. The first assumption is that the processes of stability and change are properties
of all societies.
a. There is an essential paradox to all human-t;ocieties: they are always
ordered, yet they are always changing.
1) There are forces within society acting as the impetus for
2) There are forces insisting on rooted permanence.
b. Two contrary tendencies have been labeled by Allen Wheelis:
1) The instrumental process is the desire for technological change-
to find new and more efficient techniques to achieve goals.
2) The institutional process designates all those activities that are
dominated by the quest for certainty.
c. The dialectic, or opposing forces, of society results from the opposing
forces-the instrumental and institutional-which generate tension because
the instrumental forces are always pressing society's institutions to change
when it is not their nature to do so.
2. The second assumption of the synthesis approach is that societies are
organized, but the very process of organization generates conflict.
a. Organization implies the differential allocation of power.
b. Inequalities are manifested in 2 ways:
1) Differentials in decision making.
2) Inequalities in the system of social stratification.
3. The third assumption is that society-is a social system.
a. There are 3 important implications of system-ness:
1) There is not chaos but some semblance of order.
2) Boundaries exist that may be in terms of geographical space or membership.
3) There are parts that are inter-dependent-thus concurrently conveying the reality of differentiation
b. A society is comprised of subsystems (e.g. groups, organizations, and
1 ) Some subsystems are strongly linked, but others have only a
2) Events and decisions in one sector influence the entire system.
3) There is generally a degree of cooperation and harmony
because of consensus over common goals and similar interests.
4) CompetiFion and dissent are also present because of
incompatible interests, scarcity of resources, and unequal
5) Therefore, societies are imperfect social systems.
4. The fourth assumption of the synthesis approach is that societies are held together by
complementary interests, by consensus on cultural values, and also by coercion.
a. There are forces that bind diverse groups into a single entity.
b. The emphasis of both order and conflict models provide twin bases for the integration of
consensus and coercion.
5. The fifth and final assumption is that social change is a ubiquitous phenomenon is in all
societies. ft may be gradual or abrupt, reforming or revolutionary.
a. Order theorists tend to view change as gradual, occurring either because of innovation or
because of differentiation.
b. Change can be abrupt, because of internal violence, or can resulting from forces outside the
society (conflict view).
B. A synthesis of the order and conflict models views society as having quot;two faces of equal reality-
one is stability, harmony, and consensus; the other is change, conflict, and, constraint.quot;
C. Division and Violence
1 . Factors that promote disunity and conflict in the United States cited are:
a. Size - the U.S. is large, both in numbers of people and size.
1) Because of the large population in the U.S. and a high level of technology, there is a refined
division of labor. As a result, people probably interact more often with and cooperate with people
like themselves; it is likely that they also compete with other groups for advantage.
2) Because of the size of the U.S. is a wide range of climates and topography; some areas are
sparsely settled, others densely populated. There have been pronounced regional differences, and
b. Social class - Economic differences create economic inequality - the gap between the rich and
poor-- create important sources of division in U.S. society.
1) In sharp contrast to the 189 billionaires in the U.S. in 1998, there were 38 million people living
below the poverty line.
2) Bill Gates, CEO of Microsoft, has a net worth roughly equal to the combined net worth of the
least wealthy 40% of American households.
c. Race - the primary differentiating factor in the U.S.
1) As a result of the system of discrimination, African Americans, Native Americans, Latinos, and
others are disadvantaged and treated as second-class citizens.
2) Racial violence brings repression by the powerful, which further angers and frustrates minorities.
This creates a treadmill of violence and division.
d. Ethnicity - is a factor because immigrant groups have distinctive lifestyles; and customs.
Because of the structure of U.S. society - the persistence of subordination, discriminatory housing
and work patterns, and other forms of structured inequality - encourages solidarity between the
disadvantaged and increasing racial tensions.
e. Sexual orientation - the small minority of gay or lesbian Americans is the object of considerable
hostility from the dominant heterosexual- population.
f. Religion and religious differences are polarizing since they often are used in selecting (and
rejecting) mates, friends, neighbors, schools, and employees.
2. These segmenting factors create some groups that the disadvantaged and others that are
3. Eitzen and Baca Zinn, in a closer look at India, identify 6 kinds of violence:
a. Religious violence
b. Case violence
c. Partisan violence
d. Linguistic violence
e. Ethnic violence
f. Economic violence
4. 2 beliefs combine to create the myth of peaceful progress, which is the incorrect belief that
throughout U.S. history disadvantaged groups have gained their share of, power, prosperity, and
respectability without violence.
a. Myth #1: The U.S. is made up of diverse groups that have learned to
compromise differences in a peaceful manner.
b. Myth #2: Any group in the United States can gain its share of power,
prosperity, and respectability merely by playing the game according to the
5. Dissent by minorities
a. Is not understood by most people in the U.S. because they believe the myth of peaceful
b People locate the blame outside the system itself - that dissent is communist-inspired, or that
such groups are exceptions.
6. History shows that groups have consistently used violent means to secure rights and privileges.
Examples cited are:
a. Revolutionary colonists
b. Native Americans
c. Exploited farmers
e. WASP supremacists
f. Ethnic minorities
g. Labor disputants
D. Order theorists focus on the integrative forces in society
1. Although they recognize that conflict, disharmony, and division occur within societies, order
theorists stress cooperation, harmony, and solidarity.
2. Order theorists focus on 8 factors that hold society together:
a. Functional integration - the unity among divergent elements of society resulting from a
specialized divisions of labor - is effected through the regular interaction and interdependence
among different groups.
1) Consensus on basic fundamental societal values like
quot;democracy being the best possible government,quot; quot;patriotism,quot;
quot;the revered heritage of the U.S.,quot; etc.
2) The unifying effect of symbols such as the flag, patriotic and
religious holidays, etc.
b. The social order - the similar influences and rules to which all people, at least minimally, are
subjected. These include:
1) The same body of laws and government.
2) The same language.
3) The same monetary exchange, standards of measurement, etc.
c. Group memberships are a source of unity as well as cleavage:
1 ) Heterogeneous organizations like political parties, religious
denominations, and veterans' organizations allow members the
change to interact with others like themselves and to join in a
2) Exclusive organizations generate feelings of superiority among
their members but create tension for the people who are excluded.
d. International competition and conflict unifies diverse groups within the U.S.
e. The mass media, in the midst of a communication revolution, encompasses virtually everyone in
the U.S. and is used by government to shape public action and reinforces the values and norms of
f. Planned integration happens when:
1) Charismatic leaders unite segmented parts of the system.
2) Public officials at various levels in the government use their power to integrate the parts of
society in 3 ways:
a) By passing laws that eliminate
barriers between groups.
b) By working to solve the problems
that segment society.
c) By providing mediators to help negotiate settlements between feuding groups.
3) High officials use various means to accomplish the task:
a) Co-optation - appointing a member of a dissident group
to a policy-making body to appease the dissenting group.
b) Use of executive powers to enforce and interpret the
laws in such as way as to unite society.
c) Use of the media to persuade diverse groups to unite.
g. False consciousness - the beliefs held by oppressed people that are damaging to their own
interests - is created by most Americans believing that they either are part of the haves or that they
or their children have the potential to be.
IV. The Use of the Order and the Conflict Models In This Book
A. The authors promise to use a realistic analysis that includes both perspectives.
B. As they examine the major institutions of society, one task is to determine how each
institution aids in social integration.
C. A major consideraion centers of the question of who benefits by the way the U.S. is
structured and who does not.
D. The legitimacy of the system is always to be doubted.
CHAPTER 4 OUTLINE
1. Introduction to Culture
A. The authors examine the meaning given to the new millennium
1. Some cults believed it would bring the apocalypse.
2. In fact, the calendar we use if off by as much as six years in its
calculation of the birth of Jesus.
3. When the west marked the millennium, a. The Chinese were celebrating
the year 4698. b. The year was 2390 for followers of 2oroastrianism in
Iran. c. Jews marked the year 5760.
4. The starting date for calendars is an arbitrary decision about which
5. The way to delineate time is one of the devices humans use to impose
order upon a complicated world.
6. Such cultural beliefs as the beginning of the new millennium are
social constructions; the meanings people attach to such constructions
are powerful determinants of human behavior.
B. Culture is the knowledge that members of a social organization share.
a. Ideas about what is right.
b. Ideas of how one is to behave in various situations.
c. Religious beliefs.
C. Culture constrains not only behavior but also how people think about
and interpret their world.
II. Culture: The Knowledge that People Share
A. Characteristics of Culture.
1 . Culture is an emergent process.
a. As individuals interact they exchange ideas that develop into common
beliefs and common ways of doing things.
b. Interacting individuals thus create culture.
c. Culture, once it emerges, is always undergoing change.
2. Culture is learned behavior.
a. It is not instinctive or innate in the human species.
b. Humans are symbol-making creatures capable of attaching meaning to
particular objects and actions and communicating those meanings.
c. Culture is acquired through socialization, which is the process of
3. Culture channels human behavior.
a. Culture is essential to the maintenance of any social system because
it provides two critical functions - predictability of action and
b. To provide predictability and stability, culture must constrain
individuals by restricting their freedom.
c. Through cultural patterns, the individual is expected to conform to
the expectations of the group-culture is not freedom but rather
d. Culture operates not only outside humans but also inside them; through
internalization, which is the process of society's demands becoming part
of the individual and acting to control his or her behavior.
Internalization happens in 3 ways:
1 ) Culture becomes part of the human makeup through the social
organization's belief system.
2) Culture is internalized through members' psychological identification
with the group to which people belong or reference groups, which is a
group to which they want to belong.
3) Culture is internalized by providing the individual with an identity,
which is socially bestowed, socially sustained, and socially transformed.
e. The paradox of culture, as Peter Berger points out, is that while
society is like a prison to the people trapped in its cultural demands
and expectations, it is not perceived as limiting to individual freedom.
4. Culture maintains boundaries by:
1) Limiting the range of acceptable behavior and attitudes.
2) Instilling a sense of naturalness about the alternatives peculiar to
a given society.
3) Establishing a universal tendency for people to think other societies
are wrong, inefficient, or immoral, and to think of one's own group as
superior-as the only right way, which iscalled ethnocentrism.
B. Types of shared knowledge - culture combines 6 types of shared
a. Language takes many forms: written, spoken, non-verbal signs and
b. Each form carries a socially constructed meaning; for instance, the quot;W
(for victory) sign (when it exposes the back of the hand to the viewer)
is the equivalent in Australia of flashing the middle finger in the U.S.
2. Technology refers to the information, techniques, and tools used by
people to satisfy their needs and desires.
a. Material technology is the knowledge of how to make and use things.
b. Social technology is the knowledge that enables individuals to
establish, maintain, and operate the technical aspects of a social
3. Ideologies are shared beliefs about the physical, social and
a. They help individuals interpret events.
b. They provide a rationale for action.
4. Societal norms are rules that specify appropriate and inappropriate
a. Ethnomethodology is the scientific study of the commonplace activities
of daily life.
1) Its goal is to discover and understand the underpinnings of
relationships, which is the shared meanings that implicitly guide social
2) The assumption is that much of social life is scripted; players act
according to society's rules (the script).
b. Societal norms vary in importance:
1) Folkways are relatively unimportant norms and are not severely
punished if violated.
2) Mores are highly salient norms whose violation is considered important
enough by society to merit severe punishment.
c. The criteria used to delineate types of norms--degree of importance
and severity of punishments-are determined by the people in power.
d. Norms are situational and vary between and within cultures.
5. Values are the bases for norms. They are the criteria used in
evaluating objects, acts, feelings, or events as to their relative
desirability, merit, or correctness.
6. Roles are the behavioral expectations for the people who occupy
particular social positions (statuses).
C . The social construction of reality refers to the process whereby
people learn how to define reality from other people in interaction and
by learning the culture.
1. Culture provides us with a framework for interpreting the social and
physical world, particularly through language.
a. Language, in particular, influences how the members of society
b. Language helps us to make order out of what we experience.
2. Two contrasting views of reality:
a. Ontology accepts the reality of things because their nature cannot be
denied - a chair, a tree, the wind, a society.
b. Epistemology (opposite of ontology) argues that all reality is
3. Cultural relativity is the argument that customs should not be
evaluation by our standards but theirs.
a. Customs should be evaluated in light of society's own culture and the
customs serve for that society.
b. Customs should not be evaluated by an quot;absolutequot; standard.
c. The cultural relativity perspective is that meaning is socially
d. The major barrier to cultural relativity is ethnocentrism, which
makes it difficult for
individuals to view other societies/groups in perspective.
1. Humans are valuing beings - they are continually evaluating themselves
2. The quickest way to understand a culture is to examine its values.
3. There are a number of ways of determining a society's values:
a. What preoccupies people in their conversations and actions.
b. What choices do people make consistently.
c. What do people say is good, bad, moral, immoral, desirable, or
1) What people do and what they say are not always the same.
2) People will generally respond in ways they feel are appropriate and
this will indicate the values of the society
d. Observe the reward-punishment system of the society.
e. What causes guilt, shame, or ego enhancement.
f. Examine the principles that are held as part of the so-called
American way of life by inspecting historical documents or political
E. Values are sources of societal integration and social problems
1. The value system in the United States is unique.
a. Geographically, the United States has been relatively isolated for
most of its history
1) It has had an abundance of natural resources
2) Because of this abundance, conservation seemed unnecessary and
resources were wasted
b. Historically, the U.S. has been unique:
1) It began through revolution.
2) Its populace originally consisted mostly of immigrants.
c. Religiously, the U.S. has a unique heritage:
1) The Judeo-Christian ethic has prevailed throughout U.S. history.
2) The emphasis on the following has 6d a significant effect on how
Americans evaluate each other.
b) The inherent worth of all individuals.
c) Morality based on the Ten Commandments.
d) The biblical injunction to quot;have dominion over all living things.quot;
3) The Protestant ethic
a. The religious belief emphasizing hard work and continual striving o
prove that one is saved.
b. It has been an important determinant of the values believed to typify
most people in the U.S.
2. Three caveats are cited as regards values:
1) The diversity of the U.S. precludes any universal values.
2) Values are not always consistent with behavior.
3) Values are not always consistent.
F. The authors examine the most dominant American values:
1. Success (individual achievement).
a. The self-made person is highly valued in American society.
b. Economic success is the most commonly used measurement of success.
c. There is evidence that today's parents are puffing more and more
pressure on their children to succeed.
d. Parents are pushed toward structured activities for their children.
1) This is in part because both parents are in the work force and adult
supervision of children is important.
2) Parents want their children to find their niche and specialize early
so they can get college scholarships and get on the road to success in an
2. Competition is highly valued because it is believed that:
a. It motivates individuals and groups to be discontented with second
b. It fosters a belief in the survival of the fittest.
c. It can encourage illegal activities so people can quot;get ahead.quot;
3. There are 3 highly valued means to achieve success in U.S. society:
a. People who are industrious are valued, and people who are not are
denigrated; most Reople believe this explains the condition of poor
b. Continual striving - a person should never be content with what he or
she has; there is always new land to own, new money to make, more books
c. Deferred gratification - the willingness to deny immediate pleasure
for later reward, is the hallmark of the successful person in the U.S.;
This has been used as the point that distinguishes the poor from the
4. Progress-a brighter tomorrow, a better job, a bigger home, etc.-4s
a. Americans are not satisfied with the status quo and thus are prone to
emphasize the future.
b. Progress also involves a faith in technology:
1) Scientific knowledge will solve problems.
2) However, technology creates unanticipated problems.
5. Material progress creates a belief among people that quot;work pays offquot;;
in addition, quot;having thingsquot; has become a way of life.
6. Individual freedom is highly valued by Americans.
a. Americans value individualism and believe in individual responsibility
for success or failure.
b. Individual freedom is related to capitalism and private property and
is not to be restricted; this line of thinking has led to:
1) Unfair competition.
2) A caveat emptor (let the buyer beware) philosophy.
3) The ecology crisis results from our neglect conservation of natural
G. Values and behavior - The discrepancy between values and behavior has
always existed in the U.S. Some examples include:
1 . Although behavior may differ from expressed values, values still
provide the standards by which we are evaluated.
2. Americans glorify individualism and self-reliance;_Oowever,
individualism is not rewarded in bureaucracies where one has to go along
and be a quot;team playerquot;
3. Americans proclaim that they place a high value on equality but do not
4. Americans value quot;law and orderquot; but when the laws are inconvenient,
they are ignored
5. Americans display pride in solving difficult technical problems, yet
avoid confronting chronic social problems
H. Cultural diversity
1 . While certain values are generally held by the U.S. population, there
is never total agreement on any of them.
2. U.S. cultural diversity is due to differences in sex, age, race,
region, class, ethnicity, religion, rural/urban residence, etc.
3. A subculture is a relatively cohesive cultural system that vary in
form and substance from the dominant culture.
a. Some subcultures exists because they has not been fully assimilated.
b. Under the rubric of subculture are ethnic groups, delinquent gangs,
and religious sects
4. A counterculture is a culturally homogeneous group that has developed
values and norms that substantially differ from the larger society
a. The counterculture opposes the dominant culture.
b. The counterculture is in conflict with the dominant culture.
c. The particular values and norms can be understood only by reference to
the dominant groups
I. Values from the order and conflict perspective
1 . Order theorists assume that values promote-societal integration,
unity, and consensus
2. Conflict theorists contend that the mass acceptance of values is a
form of cultural tyranny that promotes political conservatism, inhibits
creativity, and gets people to accept their lot rather than joining
others to try to change it.
CHAPTER 5 OUTLINE
A. Socialization is:
1. The process of learning the culture.
2. The process by which individuals develop through interaction with other
3. Socialization is a lifelong process occurring with each social group within
B. It is through socialization that:
1. We learn the ways of thinking, feeling, and acting that are essential for
effective participation in society.
2. We develop a sense of our self.
C. Although we are biologically human beings at birth, it is only through
interaction with other
humans that we fulfill our potential of becoming human ourselves. As an example:
1. Feral children are children alleged to have been raised by animals.
2. When found, feral children look human but act like the animals with
whom they have had contact.
D. Language is an essential part of socialization.
1. Language is the vehicle by which socialization occurs.
2. Learning languages affects how individuals think and perceive.
3. Language gives meaning to symbols, Words and objects like the cross,
the flag, and traffic lights.
II. The Personality as a Social Product
A. Theories of socialization:
1. Charles H. Cooley (1864-1929) saw the personality as the looking-glass
a. Children's conceptions of themselves arise from interaction with
b. Each of us imagines how we look to others and what their
judgement is of us.
c. In turn, we feel some emotion in response to this imagined
evaluation by others.
d. The feedback the individual receives from others is the critical
process in the development of Personality.
2. George Herbert Mead (1863-1931) described socialization as taking the
role of the other.
a. Children learn who they are by stages:
1) Infants learn to distinguish between themselves and others
from the actions of their parents.
2) By about age two, children have become self-conscious
and have internalized the feelings of others.
3) In the play stage (ages 4-7), children play a variety of
social roles. By quot;taking the role of the other,quot; they develop
basic understandings of adult roles, and why people in those
roles act the way they do.
4) In the game stage (about age 8), children are involved in
activities that are structured by formal rules and roles.
Participants must know the rol es of all players and adjust
their behavior to others. The assessment of the entire
situation is what Mead called the discovery of the
3. Sigmund Freud (1865-1939) -offered the psychoanalytic view.
a. Freud emphasized biological as well as social factors in
b. Freud saw the personality as being comprised of three parts:
1) The id - the pleasure seeking, primitive biological force
which dominates the infant.
2) The ego - the rational part of the personality that controls
the id's basic urges and finds realistic ways to satisfy
biological cravings. Socialization entails learning to control
3) The superego - internalization of the parents' morals. A
strong superego represses the id and channels behavior in
socially acceptable ways.
c. In Freud's view, the process of socialization is a matter of society
controlling the id.
4. Key differences between Mead and Cooley and Sigmund Freud:
a. Whereas Mead and Cooley saw the socialization process as a
complete and conflictual one.
b. Freud, on the other hand saw socialization as a process that was
incomplete and accomplished by force.
B. Society's socialization agents
1. The family:
a. The primary and first agent of socialization.
b. Provides for children's basic needs and indoctrinates them in the
ways of society.
c. Indoctrination is a somewhat subjective process.
2. The schools-
a. Uniformly indoctrinates youth.
b. Prepares youths for adult roles.
c. Transmits the attitudes, values, and skills necessary for the
maintenance of society.
d. Focuses on order and control.
e. Proves impersonal and regimented socialization.
f. Prepares the child for the larger society by teaching society's
3. The media:
a. Consists of newspapers, magazines, movies, radio and television.
b. Plays a vital role in promoting the existing values and practices of
c. Preserves the status quo via stereotypical portrayals masked as
d. Often treats the poor, racial minorities, and women unfairly in
e. Exposes children to more TV time than classroom time.
f. Overwhelmingly supports the dominant system.
g. Exposes youths to violence and violent images.
III. Similarities and Differences Among the Members of Society
A. Modal personality type:
1. Each society tends to produce a certain type of individual, called a modal
a. Small, homogeneous societies provide members with consistent
b. Heterogeneous societies (e.g., the United States) present a number of
themes, variations, and counter themes.
2. Comparison between the Pueblo of the southwest and Native Americans of the
3. The power of socialization can vary by the type of society.
4. It is not clear if the socialization process is completely deterministic.
B. Why we are not all alike:
1. Families differ in what and how they teach their children and in what values they
feel are more important.
a. The influence of parents on their children may be neutralized by contrary
values held by friends. (Note that this neutralization process is facilitated by
the decreasing amount of time that parents spend with children compared
with time spent in previous generations.)
b. Peers, baby-sifters, schools, and television have become more important
as agents of socialization as parental interaction with children decreases.
2. Schools are conservative. Some schools have rigid curriculum, schedules, and
philosophy whereas others are more flexible. The products of these two types of
schools differ substantially.
3. Organized religion generally supports the status quo but differences exist among
and within religions.
4. Those who see themselves as having a superior social location to others in the
society are more likely to support the status quo whereas those who are less
advantaged are more likely to be antagonistic to the existing state of affairs and
support changes beneficial to them.
5. Our age cohort greatly affects our life experiences.
6. There are contradictory influences in society.
a. Peer pressure vs. parental influences.
b. Media violence vs. family, church, and school normative guidelines.
7. Conflicts in role definitions occur because there is little consensus in American
society today on the correct definition of each of our roles.
a. The authors point specifically to the lack of consensus in role
expectations of adolescents and the elderly.
b. There is a great deal of variation in role expectations for gender
appropriate behavior for men and women.
CHAPTER 6 OUTLINE
I. Introduction to Social Control
A. Social control is a central fact of social organization.
1. Control is essential for social order.
2. All social groups have mechanisms of social, control -
mechanisms to ensure conformity.
3. External social control mechanisms are necessary because
socialization is not perfect; people deviate.
B. The methods of social control vary by type of society:
1. In small, homogeneous societies, which are less diverse
and more dominated by tradition, informal controls are
typical and usually effective.
2. In large, modern societies, which are less affected by the
forces of tradition and are more diverse, social control
tends to be more formal and repressive.
II. Agents of Ideological Social Control
A. Peter Berger has identified 8 sources of social control, which
Eitzen and Baca Zinn present as sources of social control used by
society to ensure conformity:
1. Force - the use of violence or fear of violence.
2. Economic rewards or punishment - the promise or denial of
3. Ridicule and gossip - fear of being belittled for being
outside group expectations.
4. Ostracism - the threat or actual removal from the group.
5. Fraud and deception - actions to manipulate others to
6. Belief systems - the use of ideology to induce individuals
7. The sphere of intimates - pressures from close friends,
peers, and relatives to conform.
8. The contract - actions controlled by the stipulations of a
B. Ideological social control
1. Ideological social control is defined as the attempt to
manipulate the consciousness of citizens so that they:
a. Accept the ruling ideology and refuse to be moved by
b. Comply willingly with laws.
c. Don't question the existing distribution of societal
power and rewards.
2. Ideological social control is attained by:
a. Socializing the young - at home, in school, in sport
organizations, the scouts, and through the media.
b. Directing frontal attacks on competing ideologies -
by politicians, pastors, teachers, and others in
c. Propaganda issued by authorities.
3. The agents of social control are:
a. The family
1) Teaches the child the attitudes, values, and
behaviors considered by society
2) Prepares the child to quot;fitquot; into society
b. The formal system of education
1) Insures the behavioral standards of speech,
dress, etc. of the community.
2) Indoctrinates students in the correct
attitudes about work, authority, and patriotism.
3) Biases history in the direction authorities
prefer and to legitimize the role of the U.S. in
4)Tends to produce conformists rather than
1) Provides the guidelines for the behavior of
members and punishments for disobedience.
2) Supports the status quo in U.S. society.
3) Teaches acceptance of an imperfect world
(because people are born sinners) and promises
reward in the quot;next' life.
4) Advises people that there is no need to change
the system from below.
1) It reinforces conforming attitudes and
2) Competition promotes national pride and unity:
a) International competition invokes
b) The militaristic pageantry surrounding
support invokes patriotism.
3) Team accomplishments are viewed as collective
4) Sport serves as an opiate of the masses
a) Produces, through vicarious
participation, a safety valve for
aggression and competition.
b) Attention is deflected away from hunger
and misery of the masses.
c) Perpetuates the myth that upward social
mobility can be achieved.
d) Reinforces basic American values among
the participants (e.g., competition,
perseverance, discipline, and order).
i. Supports the notion that hard work
leads to success.
ii.Schools insist athletes behave in
a certain way during practice and
games, but they also strictly monitor
behavior of athletes in other
e. The media
1) There is a conservative bias in the mainstream
a) The financial success of advertisers
depends on the public buying the products.
b) The financial success of media
corporations depends on advertisers buying
their vehicles (air time, print space,
2) Images and ideologies promoted in the media
support imperialism, capitalism, racism, sexism,
militarism, authoritarian violence, vigilantism,
and anti-working class attitudes (see pp. 143 for
a list from Michael Parent's Make-Believe Media:
The Politics of Entertainment.
3) The media has tremendous power to influence us
to accept or questions the system.
4) Although the media do investigative reporting
and occasionally question the system, the overall
impact of the media is supportive of it.
1) The government (and schools) works to convince
the public that socialism is bad and capitalism
2) Government ideological control.
a. Occurs in political speeches, books
(sometimes the ideological content of
schoolbooks), and legislation.
b. Can be seen in the public relations
programs of government agencies (e.g., the
3) Speeches (particularly those of the president
and using free television time) promote
solidarity against political, military, and
ideological enemies and for and against
III. Agents of Direct Social Control
A. Direct social control is the attempt to punish or neutralize
(i.e., render powerless) organizations or individuals who deviate
from society's norms.
1. The deviant targets are the poor, the mentally ill,
criminals, and political dissidents.
2. Three agents of social control are directed at those
1) Public assistance programs defuse social
unrest, particularly in times of high
2) When stability is restored, public assistance
programs are reduced.
3) Welfare keeps the poor relatively satisfied
with their low wages.
4) The creation of an quot;outcastquot; class whose
members are treated with such contempt that their
degradation serves to celebrate the virtue of all
work and deter potential workers from seeing aid.
b. Science and medicine
1) Practitioners and theoreticians have developed
many devices (drugs, electroshock, and
psychosurgery) that are aimed at controlling the
behavior of some members of society.
2) Mental health practitioners validate, enforce,
and reinforce the established ways of society;
people who are considered abnormal are treated -
sometimes with brain surgery - to correct the
3) The labeling of mental illness works as a
system of social control (Scarpetti and
4) Eugenics is the improvement of the human race
through the control of hereditary factors; this
is the ultimate form of social control.
1. A major goal of government is to apprehend and punish
criminals - in 1998 the various levels of the government
in the U.S. put 1.8 million people in jail or prison.
2. The U.S. is second only to Russia in the industrialized
world in incarcerating people in prison.
3. A less clear role of the government is to stifle dissent,
which is done in the interest of quot;preserving order.quot;
a) American tradition and values affirm the right of
people to dissent.
b) Two facts of political life work against that
1. For social order to prevail and to avoid anarchy,
society needs to ensure that existing power-
relationships are maintained over time.
2. The well-off in society benefit from the existing
power arrangements, so they use their influence to
encourage the repression of challenges to the
3. Various levels of the government work together to
establish and preserve social control.
a) Some levels of government determine what the
law will be.
b) Another level apprehends and punishes
c) Laws and the enforcement of laws promote
certain points of view at the expense of others.
4. Two views of the legal system:
a) Order theorists believe that:
i. The law exists to maintain order and
stability, which is the dominant
ii. The state and law are considered
iii. The political system is pluralistic
(i.e., made up of the existence of a
number of interest groups of more-or-
less equal power).
b) Conflict theorists assume that:
i. The state exists to serve the ruling
ii. The law and the legal system reflect
and serve the needs of the ruling
iii. When domestic order prevails and
challenges to the economic and
political system are successfully
thwarted the interests of the ruling
class are served.
5. The FBI and other federal investigative agencies
collect various forms of information about U.S.
citizens and others. These activities include:
a) Installation of hidden cameras and other
b) Tapping telephones and installing listening
c) Recording all numbers dialed from and to
d) Subpoenaing telephone records, credit
card records, utility records, etc.
a. Requiring telephone companies to install
b. Maintaining elaborate databases on millions of people,
including information from telephone companies, motor
vehicle registration, voter registration, etc.
1. The National Security Agency, using spy satellites and
listening stations and crossing national boundaries conducts
the snooping operation, called quot;Echelon,quot; which intercepts
and subjects various forms of communication to supercomputing
power to screen for various forms of illegal activity and
political unrest.) Pages 153-154 list various actions taken
against U.S. citizens by the IRS, CIA, FBI, etc.
2. Thomas Jefferson believed that quot;protest is the hallmark of a
democracy.quot; However, 'the government squelches dissent and
IV. implications for Contemporary Life
A.George Orwell, in his novel 1984, predicted that the
government would monitor every word, every thought, and every
facial expression of citizens using sophisticated electronic
B. The computer age means that the government and businesses
have the technology to know much about our private lives-our
purchasing habits, for instance.
1. The privacy of citizens and workers are in question.
2. The authors pose the question, quot;at what point does
the government go too far in its control of
C. The government can use the information gained from its
surveillance activities to control not only political
dissidents but ordinary people as well.
D. With the technology available to government, absolute
control is a real threat.
CHAPTER 7 OUTLINE
1. What is Deviance?
A. Two definitions
1. Deviance is behavior that violates the rules of a group.
2. Deviance is behavior that does not conform to social
a. Deviance is socially constituted since social
organizations create right and wrong by originating
norms, the infraction of which constitutes deviance.
b. Rules vary from group to group; therefore, deviance is
relative and not absolute.
1. There are inconsistencies among societies as to
what is deviance.
2. There are inconsistencies in the labeling of
behavior as deviant within a single society.
B. Deviance, in a heterogeneous society.
1. There is differential treatment for similar behaviors by
different categories of people within society.
2. There is widespread disagreement on what the rules are
and, therefore, what constitutes deviance.
3. The majority determines who is a deviant.
C. Order theorists (e.g., Durkheim) contend that:
1. Deviance is an integral part of a healthy society and has
positive consequences. a. It gives the non-deviants a sense
of solidarity by reasserting the importance of the rule being
violated. b. By punishing deviants, the group expresses
collective indignation and reaffirms it commitments to the
2. The true function of punishment is not the prevention of
future crimes, but to reassert the importance of the rule
3. Defining certain acts as crimes creates the boundaries for
what is socially acceptable behavior.
4. Deviance is not only a consequence of social order but is
also necessary for social order.
D. Conflict theorists point out that:
1. All views of rule violations have political implications.
2. Punishment of rule breakers says that the norms are
3. The bias of the dominant norms serves to preserve the
status quo and the current distribution of power.
4. Opposition views - that the norms of society are wrong -
is also political.
5. When people break laws and customs, they are not only
rejecting the status quo but are also questioning the
legitimacy of those in power.
2. Traditional Theories for the Causes of Deviance
A. The individual as the source of deviance is the central thesis
of biological, psychological, and some sociological theories.
1. Biological explanations for deviance focus on physical
features, genetic anomalies, and brain malfunctions (e.g.,
Lombroso's atavism theory).
2. Psychological theories consider the source of deviance to
be conditions of the individual's mind or personality.-
3. The sociological approach.
a. Crime and mental illness rates vary by social class,
ethnicity, race, place of residence and sex.
b. Three theories are examined:
1) Cultural transmission:
a) Edwin Sutherland proposes a theory of
b) Asserts that through interaction and
close association with deviants, one learns
to be a criminal.
2) Societal goals and differential opportunities:
a) Robert Merton dominates this theory.
b) Argues that lack of access to legitimate
means of achieving appropriate goals
(particularly the poor) leads people to
resort to deviant behavior to achieve
3) Subcultural differences or quot;culture of
a) Edward Banfield is leading theorist.
b) Because of their class position, the
poor are qualitatively different in values
c) A unique (and deviant) morality and set
of norms make a person achieve success in
4) See quot;Other Societies, Other Waysquot; -
quot;Capitalism and Crime in the Former Soviet Bloc
B. The quot;blaming the victimquot; critique of the individual-oriented
explanations for deviance.
1. Although socialization theories focus on forces external
to individuals, they, like biological and psychological
theories, find the fault within the individual.
2. William Ryan argues that, as a result, such theories
quot;blame the victim.quot;
3. Society demands that the victim change rather than trying
to change the social conditions, which actually led the
victim to his/her deviant state.
4. Is the victim or society to blame?
a. Victim-blame approach
1) Who are the victims?
a) Victim blamers point to children's
cultural deprivation, which implies that
the culture of the group is not only
deficient but also inferior.
i) They argue that slum children fail
in school because they have not been
exposed to all of the educational
experiences of middle class children.
ii) But, are the children and their
families to blame, or is the
education system to blame?
b) Victim blamers contend that
characteristics of criminals account for
the high rate of recidivism or
reinvolvement in crime.
i) They claim that ex-criminal's
return to crime is because they are
greedy, aggressive, have weak impulse
ii) Is the criminal to blame or does
the penal and education systems fail
c) Victim blamers assert that the
characteristics of racial minorities
account for their deviant behavior.
i) They claim that they are
culturally deprived, have high rates
of illegitimacy and a high proportion
of transient males, and their
families have matriarchal structures.
ii) But are individuals to blame for
their own circumstances or are they
victims of racism?
2) Why do people tend to blame individuals for
deviance rather than the social system?
a) First, people define deviance as
behavior that deviates from the norms and
standards of society.
b) Second, people do not ordinarily
question the norms or the way things are
done, but rather see the people who do not
conform as the trouble.
3) Consequences of blaming the victim.
a. it frees the government, the economy, the system of
stratification, the system of justice, and the
educational system from blame or the need to change
b. The established order is protected from criticism.
c. Authorities can control troublesome individuals and
groups under the guise of being helpful.
1) Authorities can control troublesome
individuals and groups in a publicly acceptable
manner and thus, in a sense, eliminate the
d. The approach legitimates the right to initiate person-
change treatment rather than system-change approaches.
e. Reinforces social myths about the degree of control we
have over our fate and provides justification for a
form of Social Darwinism, a perspective that a person's
placement in the stratification system is a function of
ability and effort.
1) Dangers of the system-blame approach
a. The approach offers only part of the
truth; social problems are highly complex
phenomena that have both individual and
f. A dogmatic system-blame orientation offers a rigidly
deterministic explanation for social problems.
g. An excessive system-blame approach absolves individuals
from the responsibility for their behavior. d. Eitzen
and Baca Zinn propose a balanced view, which
acknowledges that human beings have autonomy most of
the time but that the system is largely to blame. a.
This approach is contrary to the prevailing view in
American society. b. It suggests that the subject
matter of sociology is not the individual but society.
III. Society as the Source of Deviance
A. Labeling theory
1. The results of studies do not mesh with our perceptions
and the apparent facts.
a. Most people break the rules of society at one time
b. Members of all social classes commit deviant acts,
but crime statistics show that the lower classes are
more likely to be criminals.
2. Society creates deviance by creating rules, the violation
of which constitutes deviance.
a. Labeling theory stresses the importance of society
in defining what is illegal and in assigning deviant
status to particular individuals, and this in turn
dominates their identifies and behaviors.
b. Lower class persons are (according to William
1) More likely to be scrutinized and observed in
any violation of the law.
2) More likely to be arrested if discovered under
suspicious circumstances. 3) More likely to spend
the time between arrest and trial in jail.
4) More likely to come to trial.
5) More likely to be found guilty.
6) If found guilty, more likely to receive harsh
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