sociology notes exam 1

sociology notes exam 1 - People like to explain events, and...

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People like to explain events, and they have many ways to frame them: as natural, acts of God, as personal choices, etc… People often disagree about the cause of any one event Ex. Susan Smith’s sons What made her kill her sons? Smith’s insanity, child abuse or inherited disease, etc. . Most people, most of the time, employ the individual frame, which makes sociology counterintuitive Solidarity [Pride in a group membership] is an important resource [Other resources: money, authority] We generate much solidarity both by waging conflict with out-groups and by affirming our dependence upon well defined ingroups. Young men beating up homeless Systematic, explicit, and repeatable methods of collecting and analyzing data Sociologists have yet to develop technology for the rapid collection of new forms of data, and so have yet to develop into the rapid discovery made of the physical sciences The discipline of sociology Objectivism: the philosophical perspective that one’s beliefs are simply true, and that anything different is a mistake Constructivism: the contrary perspective one’s beliefs are based on group activities. When the daily activities of a group change, so does their belief. Group activities construct world views Sociology adopts the constructivist perspective even though our daily lives demand the objectivist faith that we sustain with group rituals and other habits Objectivist faith results when people construct beliefs but forget that they constructed them Objectification is the process by which we take our constructions for granted, imputing them to nature or God Example of construction Shipping, mercantile, capitalism, and the shape of the universe Heliocentric vs. teracentric The cotton-harvesting maching, agribusiness, and the size of the human race Slaves vs. African Americans In all cases, economic changes altered perception Objectification occurs through ritual and habit Rituals focus group attention on ideas that are important to them, and then involve groups emotionall moving activity, which has the effect of affirming the truth of the ideas Habit makes any behavior seem normal by way of daily repetition. After a while, the assumptions behind habitual behaviors can seem like eternal truths. The most dramatic example of non-rational but self-interested behavior is crusading, in which people break daily routines and bond together to try to eliminate or at least punish deviance. People tend to choose deviants to persecute in self-interested ways, but then organize crusades in ways that ensure that they would never eliminate the deviance. Religion: the collective ritual affirmation of cosmologies, which include supernatural beings that have power over our survival and make ethical demands. Ritual: scripted group effort focused on a shared symbol
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This note was uploaded on 03/18/2008 for the course SOC 1004 taught by Professor Mdhughes during the Spring '07 term at Virginia Tech.

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sociology notes exam 1 - People like to explain events, and...

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