Notes #1 - Sociology Midterm Friday, January 18 What does...

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Sociology Midterm Friday, January 18 What does it mean to examine things sociologically? C. Wright Mills : sociological imagination: intersections of biography and history within society… inside a marriage, a man and a woman may experience personal troubles; this is an indication of a structural issue having to due with the institutions of marriage - economy could affect the divorce rate - religion Karl Marx : Men make their own history, but they do not make it just as they please; they do not make it under circumstances chosen by themselves, but under circumstances directly encountered, given and transmitted from the past. The tradition of all the dead generations weighs like a nightmare on the brain of the living Giddens on Sociological Imagination : “Sociology shows us the need to look beyond the surface of people’s actions and study the social context to understand what happened. Sociology can also teach us to try to identify general patterns of behavior in particular individuals and to be systematic in explaining the social influences on these behavioral patterns” page 5 Example from reading: love Do sociologists believe people don’t have free will? Are the sociologists the ultimate apologists, claiming that there is no free will and that people are just puppets that do what society tells them? Newman 2006 “Mills did not mean to imply that the sociological imagination should debilitate us – that is, force us to powerlessly perceive our lives as wholly beyond our control, in fact, the opposite is true. An awareness of the impact of social forces of world history…” Wednesday, January 23 Macrosociology - Functionalism o “it would be incomprehensible if the most widespread forms of organization were not the most advantageous” – Emile Durkheim Father of functionalism o Robert Merton pointed out that things have both functions and dysfunctions, both manifest and latent War has functions and dysfunctions Some functions are manifest (obvious reason) and some are latent (less obvious reasons) The Media Functional/Manifest: - spread news by terms of communication - source of entertainment - faster communication to wider audience 1
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Dysfunctional/Manifest: - can be used for propaganda - speeds up society loss of meaning Latent/Functional: - provides jobs (economy) - publicizes products - effects norms- major form of socialization Latent/Dysfunctional: - misinformation - skewed views - sloth - Conflict Perspective o WHO benefits from the structure of society? o Focuses on conflict between various groups in society. o Sometimes referred to as Marxist perspective o You can look at feminism as a form of the conflict perspective Conflicts between man and woman Microsociology - Symbolic interactionism o Focuses on the micro level, looking at micro-level interactions and how we meaning is created through these interactions o One of the hallmark phrases of this approach is “the social construction of reality” o Symbolic interactionism also argues that objects gain meaning through interaction
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This note was uploaded on 04/08/2008 for the course SOCL 250 taught by Professor Linneman during the Spring '08 term at William & Mary.

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Notes #1 - Sociology Midterm Friday, January 18 What does...

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