Chapter 1


Published on

Sociological Perspective/Theories

Published in: Education, Technology
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Chapter 1

  1. 1. Sociology – 11 th Ed. John J. Macionis Seeing Ourselves: Classic, Contemporary, and Cross-Cultural Readings in Sociology, 7/E
  2. 2. Introduction to Sociology Marty W. Deane – Instructor Sociology – ASOC 115 MWF 11:30-12:25 – Class # 8488 Office Hours – M/W 5:30-6:30 Graduate Office 306 Soc. Dept.
  3. 3. What Is Sociology? <ul><li>“ ...The systematic study of human society </li></ul><ul><li>and social behavior” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Systematic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Scientific discipline that focuses attention on patterns of behavior </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Human society </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Group behavior is primary focus; how groups influence individuals and vice versa </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>At the “heart of sociology” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The sociological perspective which offers a unique view of society </li></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>During class, carefully observe the interaction and behavior of the instructor and the other students. </li></ul><ul><li>What patterns do you see in who speaks? </li></ul><ul><li>What about how people use space? </li></ul><ul><li>What categories of people are taking the class in the first place… </li></ul><ul><li>Think: race, social class, and gender, age. </li></ul>
  6. 6. VA TECH Shooting as a Societal Issue
  7. 7. EXAMPLES OF THINGS TO CONSIDER: <ul><ul><li>Virginia Tech Shootings – </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What was the reason for such a massacre? (how could society have contributed?) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When did it become a societal issue versus a personal issue? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>(Sociological V. Psychological) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What was the response to the shootings? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Could Columbine have been an effect? </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. VA. TECH STUDENTS Police Response
  9. 9. Why Take Sociology? <ul><li>Education and liberal arts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Well-rounded as a person </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social expectations </li></ul></ul><ul><li>More appreciation for diversity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The global village </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Domestic social marginality </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Enhanced life chances </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Micro and macro understanding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increase social potentials </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. To Understand Sociology: <ul><li>TWO things you must develop: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sociological Perspective </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sociological Imagination </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. The Sociological Perspective
  12. 12. Keep in mind, that the perspective you take influences what you see <ul><li>One perspective emphasizes certain aspects of an event </li></ul><ul><li>Another perspective accepts different aspects of the same event </li></ul><ul><li>Same event – seen in different ways. </li></ul>
  13. 13. What do you see?
  15. 15. Can you see both parallel and the slope?
  16. 16. Benefits of the Sociological Perspective <ul><li>Helps us assess the truth of common sense </li></ul><ul><li>Helps us assess both opportunities and constraints in our lives </li></ul><ul><li>Empowers us to be active participants in our society </li></ul><ul><li>Helps us live in a diverse world </li></ul>
  17. 18. Importance of Global Perspective (as a sociological perspective) <ul><li>Where we live makes a great difference in shaping our lives </li></ul><ul><li>Societies throughout the world are increasingly interconnected through technology and economics </li></ul><ul><li>Many problems that we faced in the united states are more serious elsewhere </li></ul><ul><li>Thinking globally is a good way to learn more about ourselves </li></ul>
  18. 19. Global Map 1-1 (p. 4) Women’s Childbearing in Global Perspective Is childbearing simply a matter of personal choice? A look around the world shows that it is not. In general, women living in poor countries have many more children than women in rich nations. Can you point to some of the reasons for this global disparity? In simple terms, such differences mean that if you had been born into another society (whether you are female or male), your life might be quite different from what it is now. Source : Data from United Nations (2000) and U.S. Census Bureau (2003). Map projection from Peters Atlas of the World (1990).
  19. 20. The Sociological Perspective: Peter Berger (1963) <ul><li>Seeing the general in the particular </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sociologists identify general social patterns in the behavior of particular individuals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Individuals are unique but, society’s social forces shape us into “kinds” of people (e.g. Women, Catholics, Hispanics) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Seeing the strange in the familiar </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Giving up the idea that human behavior is simply a matter of what individuals decide to do (e.g. who is more likely to divorce?) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Understanding that society shapes our lives </li></ul></ul></ul>
  20. 21. Sociological Perspective <ul><li>People are influenced by their society </li></ul><ul><li>An individual’s identity is socially bestowed </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(who we are – and how people treat us are usually consequences of our social location in society) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Our personalities are shaped by the way we are accepted, rejected, and defined by other people. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(e.g. are we worthy – depends on the values of the groups in which we are immersed) </li></ul></ul>
  21. 22. Applying the Sociological Perspective <ul><li>Periods of crisis or social change prompt people to think sociologically: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(e.g. Great Depression: Something is wrong with me, I can’t find a job! (personal) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Thinking sociologically : The economy has collapsed there are few jobs to be found – it isn’t just me) </li></ul></ul></ul>
  22. 23. Sociological Imagination <ul><li>C. Wright Mills </li></ul><ul><li>1959 </li></ul>
  23. 24. C. Wright Mills 1916-1962 Age 28 - 1944
  24. 25. C. Wright Mills Mills traveled via motorcycle back and forth to Columbia University
  25. 26. C. Wright Mills’ Sociological Imagination <ul><li>The power of the sociological perspective lies not just in changing individual lives but in transforming society </li></ul><ul><li>Society, (not personal failings) is a root cause of social problems </li></ul><ul><li>The sociological imagination transforms personal problems into public issues </li></ul>
  26. 27. Sociological Imagination <ul><li>… .enables us to grasp the connection between history and biography </li></ul><ul><li>Turns personal problems into public issues </li></ul><ul><li>The Society in which we grow up, and our particular location in that society, lie at the center of what we do and what we think. </li></ul><ul><li>To understand others issues – think of the social forces that are affecting their lives. </li></ul>
  27. 28. Beloit College Mindset List College Entry - Class of 2011 <ul><li>What Berlin Wall? </li></ul><ul><li>They never rolled down a car window </li></ul><ul><li>They grew up with bottled water </li></ul><ul><li>Women have always been police chiefs in major cities </li></ul><ul><li>They grew up in Wayne’s world </li></ul><ul><li>Classmates could include Michelle Wie, Jordin Sparks , and Bart Simpson </li></ul>*Beloit College is in Wisconsin and started doing the lists in 2002 They were started to prevent “hardening of the references”
  28. 29. Mindset Continued…. Incoming 2011…. … <ul><li>U2 has always been more than a spy plane </li></ul><ul><li>Being a latchkey kid has never been a big deal </li></ul><ul><li>They’re always texting one another </li></ul><ul><li>MTV has never featured music videos </li></ul><ul><li>Most phone calls have never been private </li></ul><ul><li>They drove their parents crazy with the Bevis and Butt-head laugh </li></ul>
  29. 30. Mills Basic Assumptions <ul><li>Human beings cannot be understood apart from the social and historical structures in which they are formed and in which they interact </li></ul><ul><li>The sociological imagination is simply a “quality of mind” that allows us to grasp “history” and biography” and the relations between the two within society. </li></ul>
  30. 31. Major Sociological Theories
  31. 32. All the Discussion about Perspective – Leads to “The Big Three” <ul><li>Structural-Functional - Macro </li></ul><ul><li>Social Conflict - Macro </li></ul><ul><li>Symbolic Interactionism - Micro </li></ul>
  32. 33. Sociological Theory <ul><li>Theory : a statement of how and why facts are related </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Explains social behavior to the real world </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Theoretical paradigm : a set of fundamental assumptions that guides theory </li></ul>
  33. 34. THE ORIGINS OF SOCIOLOGY <ul><li>One of the youngest of academic disciplines, sociology has it origins in powerful social forces: </li></ul><ul><li>Social Change </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Industrialization, urbanization, political revolution, and a new awareness of society </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Science </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3-Stages: Theological, Metaphysical & Scientific </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Positivism – a way of understanding based on science </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Gender & Race </li></ul><ul><ul><li>These important contributions have been pushed to the margins of society </li></ul></ul>
  34. 35. Durkheim’s Study of Suicide <ul><li>Emile Durkheim’s research showed that society affects even our most personal choices. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>More likely to commit suicide : Male Protestants who were wealthy and unmarried </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Less likely to commit: Male Jews and Catholics who were poor and married </li></ul></ul><ul><li>One of the basic findings: Why? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The differences between these groups had to do with “social integration” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Those with strong social ties had less of a chance of COMMITING suicide </li></ul></ul>
  35. 36. National Map 1-1 (p. 14) Suicide Rates across the United States This map shows which states have high, average, and low suicide rates. Look for patterns. By and large, high suicide rates occur where people live far apart from one another. More densely populated states have low suicide rates. Do these data support or contradict Durkheim’s theory of suicide? Why?
  36. 37. Teenage Wasteland <ul><li>1967-1994 </li></ul>
  37. 38. History and Biography <ul><li>Jimmie Hendrix 1970 </li></ul><ul><li>Janis Joplin - 1970 </li></ul><ul><li>Jim Morrison 1971 </li></ul>
  38. 39. Structural –Functional Paradigm <ul><li>The basics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A macro-level orientation, concerned with broad patterns that shape society as a whole </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Views society as a complex system whose parts work together to promote solidarity and stability </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Key elements : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social structure refers to any relatively stable patterns of social behavior found in social institutions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social function refers to the consequences for the operation of society as a whole </li></ul></ul>
  39. 40. Who’s Who in Structural-Functional Paradigm <ul><li>Auguste Comte </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Importance of social integration during times of rapid change </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Emile Durkheim </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Helped establish sociology as a university discipline/Major study of suicide </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Herbert Spencer </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Compared society to the human body, organic approach </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Talcott Parsons </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sought to identify tasks that every society must perform </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Robert K. Merton </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Manifest functions are recognized and intended consequences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Latent functions are unrecognized and unintended consequences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social dysfunctions are undesirable consequences </li></ul></ul>
  40. 41. Social-Conflict Paradigm <ul><li>The Basics : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A macro-oriented paradigm </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Views society as an arena of inequality that generates conflict and social change </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Key elements : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Society is structured in ways to benefit a few at the expense of the majority </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Factors such as race, sex, class, and age are linked to social inequality </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dominant group vs. Minority group relations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Incompatible interests and major differences </li></ul></ul></ul>
  41. 42. Who’s Who in Social-Conflict Paradigm <ul><li>Karl Marx </li></ul><ul><li>Society is a complex system characterized by inequality and conflict that generate social change </li></ul><ul><li>W.E.B. DuBois </li></ul><ul><li>Race as the major problem facing the United States in the twentieth century </li></ul><ul><li>Jane Adams </li></ul><ul><li>Although trained at the University of Chicago – was not considered a serious Sociologist because she was female </li></ul><ul><li>Harriet Martineau </li></ul><ul><li>First female Sociologist and fought for changes in educational policy – so women could have choices other than home. </li></ul>
  42. 43. Symbolic Interaction Paradigm <ul><li>The Basics : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A micro-level orientation, a close-up focus on social interactions in specific situations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Views society as the product of everyday interactions of individuals </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Key elements : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Society is nothing more than the shared reality that people construct as they interact with one another </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Society is a complex, ever-changing mosaic of subjective meanings </li></ul></ul>
  43. 44. Who’s Who in Symbolic-Interaction Paradigm <ul><li>Max Weber </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Understanding a setting from the people in it </li></ul></ul><ul><li>George Herbert Mead </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How we build personalities from social experience </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Erving Goffman </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Dramaturgical analysis </li></ul></ul><ul><li>George Homans & Peter Blau </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social-exchange analysis </li></ul></ul>
  44. 45. Critical Evaluation <ul><li>Structural-Functional </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Too broad, ignores inequalities of social class, race & gender, focuses on stability at the expense of conflict </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Social-Conflict </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Too broad, ignores how shared values and mutual interdependence unify society, pursues political goals </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Symbolic-Interaction </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ignores larger social structures, effects of culture, factors such as class, gender & race </li></ul></ul>
  45. 46. Applying Theory (p. 22) Major Theoretical Perspectives