Durkheim 1 (1).pdf - SOC 310 SOCIOLOGICAL THEORY Diego...

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Unformatted text preview: SOC 310 SOCIOLOGICAL THEORY Diego Contreras-Medrano [email protected] PLC 607 Mon & Wed 3:30-5 or by appointment Structure vs Structure ● ● Dialectical/Historical Materialism .- Structure is defined as the economic organization to produce: labor, division of labor, natural resources, means of production. The structure is the condition of the superstructure. Structuralism.- Does not follow the distinction Structure - Superstructure. The world is a system of structures, everything is part of the structure. Think of the movies “Matrix”. ○ ○ Symbolic/ Subjective Domain (the signifier) Objective Domain (material world, the signified) Structuralism 1.- The Domain of Symbolic The Domain of Symbolic. a. The separation between the reality (objective and material), and the subjective (ideas, symbols). b. Plato.- The symbolic is the relation between the reality and the world of ideas. c. There are structures (signifier and signified) that make ideas being real. d. Theories differ from each other in terms of the relation between reality and ideas. 2.- Location. Location. a. Interrelated positions of roles. b. Functional positions of roles. 3.- Differences. Difference. a. Difference as an operations that creates complexity: inclusion creates exclusion. Exclusion is a world of possibilities out of inclusion. b. Structure and environment. c. Normal and not-normal. d. Pattern e. Discrepancy f. Borders. 1. Social structures. Social structures. a. Reality and ideas are products of social structures. b. Real but not Actual. Ideal but not abstract. 5.- Principle. The principle. a. Structures differ from each other. b. There are principles in common among different structure. 6.- Dynamism. Dynamism. a. Structures are dynamic. b. Environment is always more complex than structures. If structures are not dynamic, they are consumed by the environment. c. Codes are static structures; Codes are institutionalized signs. d. Dynamism needs empty spaces. 7.- Subject. Subject. a. There is no agency. b. Actions are structural operations in different position of functional structures. Émile Durkheim. ● France, 1858. ● He came from a family of rabbis. ● Education. Teaching and education for everyone, not only for children. ○ Institutionalization of Sociology. ○ Made Sociology an Academic Discipline. ○ Sociology vs Social Psychology. ○ Sociology vs Philosophy. ○ Scientific jargon. ○ Sociology and Statistics. Émile Durkheim. ● Religion. ○ He was not interested in asking if God is real. ○ Religion exists. ○ What is religion? Why does religion exist? Why are there different religions? ○ Each society has its own religion. Émile Durkheim ● ● ● ● ● ● Group Formation. Group Identity. The Moral Consciousness of a Collectivity. Group Cohesion. Social Stability. Social reproduction. Theoretical Orientation Nonrational ● Structuralism ● Functionalism Durkheim Individual Collective Marx Rational Background. ● Auguste Comte. ○ Positivism. ○ Sociology: Social Physics. ○ Scientific knowledge: observation and experimentation. ○ Comparative Data: time to time; space to space. ○ “You cannot completely understand a science, if you don’t know its history”. Sociological Method ● ● ● ● Social Fact: ○ Conditions and circumstances external to the individual that nevertheless determine the individual's course of actions. ○ All form of doing, thinking and feeling, which can exert an external pressure on the individual and which has its own existence, independently of the individual consciences. ○ External. ○ Coercive. ○ Imposed. ○ Norms, Education, Religion, Family. Social facts can be ascertained by using collective data. Social facts should never be reduced to the individual level. Sociology does not study individuals. Sociological Method ● Individuals form collectives that produce "social" elements, which cannot be found or explained at the individual level. ● A collective produces a structure that regulates that individuals. ● This collective, or population, has its Density, Regulations and Cohesion. ● The whole is more important than the sum of its parts. ● Sociology vs Psychology. ○ By understanding individuals' brains, we may understand groups, as groups are merely the sum of individuals. ○ Social facts are phenomena sui generis… as life is for Biology. Sociological Method ● ● ● ● ● Sociology studies social facts. Do we study objects, or the idea we have about objects? Social scientists must avoid the seductive character of our pre-notions of society. Society is the product of human activity, and thus appears to be the expression of and even equivalent to the ideas we have of it. Even if social facts ultimately do not have the essential features of things, we must begin our investigations as if they did. 1. One must systematically discard all preconceptions. a. "He must free himself from those fallacious notions which hold sway over the mind of the ordinary person, shaking off, once and for all the yoke of those empirical categories that long habit often makes tyrannical." b. Sociologists must get rid of their common sense. Common sense is not science. must get rid of their common sense. 1. 2. One must systematically discard all preconceptions. a. "He must free himself from those fallacious notions which hold sway over the mind of the ordinary person, shaking off, once and for all the yoke of those empirical categories that long habit often makes tyrannical." b. Sociologists must get rid of their common sense. Common sense is not science. The object of research must only include a group of phenomena defined beforehand by certain common external characteristics, and all phenomena which correspond to this definition must be so included. a. Social facts can only be explained by another social fact. 1. 2. 3. One must systematically discard all preconceptions. a. "He must free himself from those fallacious notions which hold sway over the mind of the ordinary person, shaking off, once and for all the yoke of those empirical categories that long habit often makes tyrannical." b. Sociologists must get rid of their common sense. Common sense is not science. The object of research must only include a group of phenomena defined beforehand by certain common external characteristics, and all phenomena which correspond to this definition must be so included. a. Social facts can only be explained by another social fact. When sociologists undertake a research of any order of social facts, they must strive to consider them from a viewpoint where they present themselves in isolation from their individual manifestations. a. Social facts should be considered as things. Understand social facts as if they were things that can be known and studied objectively. ● Social Facts: External and Coercive. ● ● Social Facts: External and Coercive. Social Facts are the core of Sociological research. ● ● ● Social Facts: External and Coercive. Social Facts are the core of Sociological research. Social facts are the center of society, they tell us about the structure of society. ● ● ● ● Social Facts: External and Coercive. Social Facts are the core of Sociological research. Social facts are the center of society, they tell us about the structure of society. Social facts structure society, because they impose rules and punishments. ● ● ● ● ● Social Facts: External and Coercive. Social Facts are the core of Sociological research. Social facts are the center of society, they tell us about the structure of society. Social facts structure society, because they impose rules and punishments. Social institutions are social facts. ● ● ● ● ● ● Social Facts: External and Coercive. Social Facts are the core of Sociological research. Social facts are the center of society, they tell us about the structure of society. Social facts structure society, because they impose rules and punishments. Social institutions are social facts. Social institutions (Church, Universities, Family) reproduce the structure of a society. ● ● ● ● ● ● ● Social Facts: External and Coercive. Social Facts are the core of Sociological research. Social facts are the center of society, they tell us about the structure of society. Social facts structure society, because they impose rules and punishments. Social institutions are social facts. Social institutions (Church, Universities, Family) reproduce the structure of a society. Societies are not the sum of individuals, but the function of the structures. ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● Social Facts: External and Coercive. Social Facts are the core of Sociological research. Social facts are the center of society, they tell us about the structure of society. Social facts structure society, because they impose rules and punishments. Social institutions are social facts. Social institutions (Church, Universities, Family) reproduce the structure of a society. Societies are not the sum of individuals, but the function of the structures. Society is then a moral system. “A system of morals is always the affair of a group and can operate only if the group protects them by its authority. It is made up of rules which govern individuals, which compel them to act in such and such a way, and which impose limits to their inclinations and forbid them to go beyond. Now there is only one moral power—moral, and hence common to all—which stands above the individual and which can legitimately make laws for him, and that is collective power. To the extent the individual is left to his own devices and freed from all social constraint, he is unfettered by all moral constraint. It is not possible for professional ethics to escape this fundamental condition of any system of morals. Since, then, the society as a whole feels no concern in professional ethics, it is imperative that there be special groups in the society, within which these morals may be evolved, and whose business it is to see that they are observed”. -Durkheim, “Professional Ethics and Civic Morals”. Moral ● ● ● ● ● Moral is the set of norms and rules that prescribe the actions of individuals and are imposed by society. Therefore, the primary role of morality in the individual is to establish the behavior, fix it and subtract it from individual arbitrariness. For Durkheim, the content of education is rational and secular moral, aimed at the achievement of the great objectives: the intellectual development of the individual, the value of human dignity in all social organization, the construction of a global moral, tabto in the public area as in the private one. The individual can only be truly free in society. Children's games are essential to understand how morality is imposed on the individual in his development. To see how children begin to reproduce the norms of their society. Doll Test Normal ● ● ● The normal in the social sphere is everything that should be, that is, everything that is “correct” in a society, that is part of a daily statistics and of a correct stereotype that imposes the same everyday life. The normal is everything that is specific and is considered a social goal by individuals. There is a consensus. The normal is also utopian. For a thing to be considered normal, it has to be presented in a general way before society. The phenomenon that is repeated or found more often, will be considered normal. Pathology ● ● ● ● ● ● Pathology is the marginalization of individuals against the norms and values of a society. ○ If there is a fact that seems indisputably pathological, that is the crime. Crime is observed in all societies of all kinds. There is none where there is no crime. Acts that are qualified as criminals are not the same everywhere. But there is always an idea of ​criminal repression. No doubt it can happen that the crime itself has abnormal forms; This is what happens when, for example, it reaches an exaggerated rate. There is no doubt, in fact, that this excess is of a morbid nature. What is normal is simply that there is a normality. The most representative cases of these abnormal or pathological situations are earthquakes where the State's response capacity collapses, the event of Hurricane Katrina, the emergence of crack in New York and the rearrangement of the drug market. The crime is a proof that there is a possibility of changes in society, and sometimes, the same crime is the one that shows that way: ○ how many times is it only an anticipation of future morals, a path towards what will be. Anomie ● The moment when the social bonds weaken and society loses its strength to properly integrate and regulate individuals, generating social phenomena such as suicide. ● The lack of norms, the lack of regulations. ASMR In-class activity You are all social researchers, and you have 15 minutes to design a research protocol about contemporary American society. ● ● ● ● ● Define a social fact that you want to investigate. What is a social fact? What are the characteristics that define your social fact? What other social fact helps you define it? What are the norms and rules that regulate your social fact? What would be a pathological manifestation of this social fact? Suicide ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● Social cohesion Suicide is not an individual phenomenon, but a collective phenomenon. For his study of suicide, Durkheim begins to collect data that speaks both of suicide itself, and of the demographic composition of society. Descriptive statistics. He realized that suicide varied among individuals of different religious groups and beliefs. Therefore, psychology could not give an explanation to suicide. Suicide is more present among Protestants than among Catholics. The cause of suicide is in the collective tendencies, and their differences depend on habits, customs, physical environment. Under normal conditions, suicide and its forms are present. ● Suicide happens when social bonds weaken, when morality does not prevail over the individual, when the cohesion between institutions and between society and the individual is broken. ● Three types of suicides: ● Egoism suicide: Suicide is the weakening of social ties between society and the individual. The individual loses its social identity. The individual perception ends up prevailing over the collective. Depression. Apathy. Alienation. ● Altruistic suicide. When the community imposes itself on the individual identity. When the life of a collective is more important than the individual life. When you want to educate society. ● Anomie suicide. The weakening of social regulation, loss of norms, loss of behavior patterns. This weakening happens when there are changes in the circumstances and in time. ...
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