SOCI1101 Unit One


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SOCI1101 INTRODUCTION TO SOCIOLOGY UNIT 1 IN-CLASS NOTES COMPILIATION Exam Monday, September 13, 2010 Monday, August 16, 2010 Sociology is the scientific study of human society. The term was first coined by Auguste Comte in 1838. Sociology applies scientific rules and principles of “hard sciences” to the study of human behavior and society. The scientific study of human society 1838 – Auguste Comte Made sociology one of the younger academic disciplines Scientific rules and principles of “hard sciences” (physics, biology, chemistry) to study human behavior and society (positivism; social physics) Move away from theoretical theories Religion Back-up with data Wednesday, August 18, 2010 Three Major Events which gave Birth to Sociology 1. Industrialism – change in the nature of work from agrarianism; 1750s 2. Urbanization – move from rural areas to urban areas to find work 3. Individualism – emphasis on “wage labor” made people more individualistic Industrialism (change in nature of work from agrarianism) Urbanization: rural to urban for work Individualism: wage labor = individualism Comte wanted to make Sociology a science Industrial Revolution – 1750 (1850 in US) All 3 events led to other Modern concerns created by urbanization Concentration of crime, poverty, homelessness Change in environment led from concern to shift from collective to individual Self-importance increase led to change in society Changed social, economy, politics The Sociological Perspective Peter Berger in “Invitation to Sociology” outlines two key principles: 1. Seeing the general in the particular Identifying general patterns of behavior in particular individuals around us. The demographics we belong to (race, ethnicity, gender, class, education level, religious beliefs, etc.) after how we behave individually
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2. Seeing the strange in the familiar Familiar idea in American society is “individualism.” We are taught that as individuals we make choices in a vacuum, independent of others and their wishes. The “strange” idea that Berger writees of is that in actuality, and thinking sociologically, our thoughts, actions, and deeds are more dictated by society than by individualism. Berger argues that marriage and falling in love are two examples where society actually “arranges” the people we fall in love with. Peter Berger “Invitation to society” 2 Key principles How Separate are we from Society? 1. Seeing general and particularly Identify general pattern of behavior in particular individuals around us Demographics affect behavior Race, ethnicity, gender, class, educational level, religion, etc. “Act as _____” as we think “___ should be”
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