Sociological Theory Answers 3 Questions
How do societies work?
How do modern societies work?
How can we make modern society work better?
They are not exhaustive questions
o Much research addresses specific puzzles
Involve all social sciences
Real ideas of actual policies of his day
Universal idea of morality opposed to slavery as violation of morals
o i.e. saw morality and economic aspect to slaveryslavery is artificial
restraint on labor because have unhappy workers who
Different thoughts on division of labor, globalization, etc. than Smith
Marx was very involved in the organizing; getting class conflict going
Contradiction that although capitalism and some people continue to flourish, the
Basic sort of inequality with any sort of division of laborinequality in controls of
factors of production; some people have more control than others
Division in explanation of who controls what
Division of labor seen as enslavement and
Takes many of his principles from Auguste Comte = religion of humanity
Considered founder of sociology as a sciencemade more practical; became
established social fact
Third Republicrepublic reforms after 1871 (Paris uprising that w
Religion is a big deal for Durkheimunified system of beliefs and practices
relative to sacred things
Unites into one single moral community all those who adhere to them
Society generates religionreducing religion to soci
George Herbert Mead
Thinking about how to modernize and progress American society
Good theory considered to be key vehicle; extremely useful if think of
society in the right way
AAA theory of society function and shaping of self (huma
Foundations of a Neo-Marxist Class AnalysisEric Olin Wright
1. What grandiose claims do most Marxist scholars no longer support? (1)
They no longer support the claims of historical materialismclass or
modes of production that were central to general theo
1. How does Iannacone summarize the assumptions of rational choice theory? (26,
Individuals act rationally weighing the costs and benefits of potential
actions, and choosing those actions that maximize their net benefit
George Herbert MeadPart 1
1. What is the problem of society, according to Mead?
To incorporate methods of change into the order of society itself
How can you present order and structure in society and yet bring about
the changes that need to take place,
It Didnt Happen HereLipset and Marks
1. How do Lipset and Marks show that Socialists failed in America? (261, 263)
Socialist movements in the late 19th centuries repeatedly failed
U.S. has democratic system dominated by two parties that are
1. What gaps in studies of suicide do the authors aim to fill? What do they mean
by multilevel modeling? (922)
Impact of mental health, negative life events, drug use, and perceived
social support on suicide
Few bodies of research examine ad
Karl MarxPart 1
1. How does Engels evoke the chaos and filth of working-class Manchester in
the 1840s? (579-85)
Describes the habitation of Old Town and New Town and the filthy
conditions that the people live in, such as unclean, crowded homes,
Centered on hypothesis: cannot have connected facts without some theory, needs
o Holisticsociety is a superorganism
o Cultural-o Changechange because of human knowledge and advances
o Contemporary theorists would have a problem
Questions about modernity
o One or many?
o Bias built in?
o Definite direction?
o Continuity across centuries?
o Still liberal?
o Comment: questions are real but need not detail historical analysis of institutions
in modern context
Department of Sociology
Dr. Frank Lechner
Office Hrs: MW 10:30-11:30
SOC 457: DEVELOPMENT OF SOCIOLOGICAL THEORY
This course shows how sociological theo