SociologyDay2.docx - Sociology Social structure We have...

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Sociology Social structure We have free will but behavior and how our lives turn out happen w in a larger context We are all interconnected and in situation together. o Individuals are embedded within a social network What is Sociology? Scientific study of the dynamic relationship between individual people and social systems and their influence on human behavior and social life. KNOW THIS!!! Defined more by its perspective (sociological ation) than a particular subject matter. Sociologists believe that outside forces effect how we act. Individualism Strongly rooted in enlightenment o Valued the mind of the individual Made ppl believe social problems are caused by flaws in individual character. Society= individual ppl Ignores difference between individuals and social relationships, social forces. Pic on phone o Individuals are part of groups which are part of social systems . Individual and society= two sides of the same coin. You need both. They can’t be separated Individual can’t be defined w/o understanding the relationship to the social “our very identity is a social creation that is constantly sustained by social relationships both small and large.” Social systems/Structures collection of statuses, roles, and shared ideas (norms and values) tie statuses and roles together into relationships. o Ex) families, universities, or whole societies Social institutions Complex groups of interdependent positions that perform a social role and reproduce themselves o Ex) family, education, economy, government, religion Our lives are shaped by socialization and social control. We make social structures happen. You can’t have social structures w/o individuals. Main Points Individualistic perspective that dominates current thinking is limited Social structures cannot be understood simply by looking at individuals.
Scientific Study Sociology is based on an epistemology of empiricism o Epistemology: how we know what we claim to know o Empiricism: knowledge through evidence gathered from senses History of Sociology – industrial revolution Shift in economic structure of society away from agriculture Mass movement away from rural life on farms and cities and work in factories Had influence on all aspects of social life and brought new social problems including urban poverty. Auguste Comte- society can be understood by determining the logic or scientific laws governing human behavior Harriet Martineau- translated Comte’s work into English; she advocated for racial, gender, and class equality. Karl Marx o Materialist conception of history: all social patterns and relations stem from the economic system Argued that class conflicted produced social change/ drove history Struggle between “haves” and “have nots” o Class struggle under capitalism was between capitalists and proletariat Capitalists: those who owned the means of production (small #) reaped the benefits.

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