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The Sociological Perspective

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Presentation on theme: "The Sociological Perspective"— Presentation transcript:

1 The Sociological Perspective

2 Society A group of people who share a culture and a territory
Ex. US Society Italian Society

3 Example of understanding problems in society Suicide: Why does it Happen?
Depression Loneliness Stress/Pressure Are some people more likely to have higher suicide rates than others? According to Emilie Durkheim yes

4 Yes- Who is more likely? Men Divorced and Widowed Soldiers
Single people Without kids Protestants more than Catholics

5 How can sociology explain these differences?
Some people not tied “in” the social network Some people are disturbed by norms that change too quickly in a person’s life - guidance and purpose no longer there Divorce, loss of loved ones

6 What do Sociologists do to understand suicide?
Examine society as a whole to explain suicide

7 Sociological Imagination/perspective
Asking questions Being open minded

8 Sociological perspective (imagination)
Understanding the world through a new lens “enables us to grasp the connection between history and biography”*** History of the Civil Rights Movement with the biography of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. See links between what people do and the social settings that shape their behavior (urban vs. suburban- different ways of growing up)

9 The Sociological Perspective
Examines how group membership influences behavior Focus on the behavior of groups, not individuals How external events in our social environment affect an individual

10 Using a sociological imagination

11 Create your own sociological questions
Baseball players taking steroids Questions Why would a person take steroids? Does the media influence our opinion?

12 Weddings in America Question: Why do people spend so much money on weddings?

13 War in Iraq and Afghanistan
Question: Why should another government have a say in how another country operates?

14 Gay Marriage Question: What’s the purpose of marriage?

15 Homework: Vocabulary pages 1-8

16 Social Location The corners in life that people occupy because of where they are located in a society (jobs, income, family, gender) Think of being identified by gender, how does it influence us to identify as either male or female?

17 Natural Science Disciplines designed to comprehend, explain, and predict events in our natural environment

18 What is a social science?
Examines human relationships in an attempt to objectively understand the social world

19 Political Science Study of politics and government
Study of how people govern themselves

20 Economics Study the production and distribution of the material goods and services of society

21 Anthropology Study culture- the group’s artifacts (tools, art, and weapons)

22 Psychology Processes that occur within the individual
Study of mental processes Sociology stresses the understanding of factors that are external to the individual and how these external factors influence people’s behavior and attitudes

23 Period 5- Magazine Project
Find images in the magazines that explain the differences in the social sciences

24 Common Sense Those things that “everyone knows” are true
Sociologists move beyond common sense

25 Goals of Science 1. Explain why something happens
2. To make generalizations that go beyond the individual case 3. To predict what will happen in the future Move beyond common sense

26 Homework Period 5 Each person reads about one Sociologist and takes notes to share with the class

27 Origins of Sociology Always around- attempt to understand social life+social problems New Discipline- 1850s Started during Industrial Revolution- why do some aspects of society suffer?? New thought Apply the scientific method to real world problems

28 Auguste Comte “Father of Sociology” (1798-1857) France
Apply the scientific method to social life Wanted to reform society We should observe society to uncover flaws Didn’t conduct scientific studies himself

29 Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) England
Disagreed with Comte no one should intervene in reforming society “Survival of the fittest”- most intelligent members of society survive Social Darwinism Didn’t conduct scientific studies

30 Karl Marx ( ) Germany Economics is the central force in social change Class conflict- “haves and have- nots” Bourgeoisie (upper class) and proletariat (worker) Wanted a classless society

31 Emile Durkheim (1858-1917) French
Got Sociology recognized as an academic discipline Studied suicide rates Key factor= social integration- the degree to which people feel a part of social groups Those with weaker ties to society are more likely to commit suicide

32 Durkheim continued… Sociologists should diagnose causes of social ills and develop remedies for them Anomie- breaking down of the controlling influences of society People become detached and left with too little guidance

33 Harriet Martineau 1802-1876- England
Translated Comte’s work into English Wrote about the inferior role of women in society Supported the end of slavery & rights for women

34 Max Weber (1864- 1920) Germany Protestantism encouraged change
Religion was key to social change Working hard would please God

35 Role of Values in Social Research- Weber
Sociology to remain value free- the researcher’s values shouldn’t be involved in research Believed in Objectivity Replication- repeating a study by other researchers to compare results- uncover if values have influenced research

36 Verstehen and social facts
Weber explained Verstehen- “to grasp by insight” Best interpreter is someone who “has been there” .de/bilder/versteh.gif Snoopy Comic

37 Jane Addams- US Co-founded the Hull House in city slum
social reformer Co-founded the Hull House in city slum Saw the effects of industrialization on the poor

38 W.E.B. DuBois African American Activist
Analyzed the social structure of the Black community Worked for African American Rights

39 Jane Addams

40 1st American woman given the Nobel Peace Prize

41 Question of Sociologists
Should the research be used to reform society or used for another purpose What do you think?

42 Basic versus applied Sociology
Analyze society and publish results The use of sociology to solve problems Careers in Sociology 1. Counseling children 2. How is AIDS transmitted 3. Analyzing the census

43 Theory Theory- a general statement about how some parts of the world fit together An explanation of how two or more facts are related to one another

44 Three Main Theories of Sociology
1. Symbolic Interactionism 2. Functional Analysis 3. Conflict Theory Use divorce as an example- How does each theory help us to understand why the divorce rate in the US is so high

45 1. Symbolic Interactionism
Usual level of analysis Focus Key Terms Applying to Divorce Rate examines small scale patterns of social interaction Face to face interaction; how people use symbols to create social life Labels Micro-level anaylsis Industrialization and marital roles led to a redefinition of love, marriage, children, and divorce

46 Symbolic Interactionism
Sociologists- Charles Cooley, William Thomas, and George Herbert Mead Studies the use of symbols to establish meaning, develop views of the world, and communicate Our behaviors depend on the way we define ourselves and others (aunts, uncles, boyfriends, girlfriends) these relationships dictate how we act Study face to face interactions and relationships

47 Applying Symbolic Interactionism
1. Emotional Satisfaction- demand far greater than in the past 2. The love symbol- expectation of “true love” 3. Meaning of Children- in the past mini adults, now vulnerable and innocent 4. Meaning of parenthood- lasts longer as kids go to college and sometimes come home

48 5. Marital roles- who works? Inside and outside of home
6. Perception of alternatives- women outside of home working, several alt. than remain in unhappy marriages 7. The meaning of divorce- as divorce became more common, meaning changed, personal change and the opportunity to begin new instead of negative 8. Changes in law- much easier to divorce

49 Functional Analysis Usual level of Analysis Focus of Analysis
Key Terms Applying the Perspective to Divorce Rate Macro level analysis - Examines large- scale patterns of society Relationships among the parts of society; how these parts are functional or dysfunctional Structure Functions (manifest- help or latent- unintended consequence) Dysfunction Society changes and the traditional functions of the family, family ties weaken, divorce rate increases

50 Functional Analysis Society is a whole unit made up of interrelated parts that work together Auguste Comte and Herbert Spencer saw society as a living organism If society is to function smoothly it’s parts must work together in harmony

51 Robert Merton- Manifest and latent functions
Manifest functions- if an action is intended to help some part of a system- $10,000 to a couple to have kids to raise the birth rate Latent Functions- unintended consequences- economy benefits because of diapers and cribs…. When all parts fulfill their functions, society is in normal state

52 Applying functional analysis
Believe that industrialization and urbanization undermined the traditional functions of the family 1. Economic production- family team to factory 2. Socialization of Children- education by family now schools 3. Care of the sick and elderly- had been family care now to hospital 4. Recreation- entertainment 5. Sexual control of membership- sex outside of marriage 6. Reproduction- single women have children

53 Family has lost many traditional functions

54 3. Conflict Theory level of analysis Focus Key Terms
Applying to Divorce rate Macrolevel examines large scale patterns of society Struggle for scarce resources by groups in a society how the elites use their power to control the less powerful Inequality Power Conflict Competition Exploitation When men control economic life, the divorce rate is low because women find few alternatives to bad marriages; today women have jobs and can leave

55 Conflict Theory States that society is composed of groups engaged in fierce competition for scarce resources Karl Marx- key to human history is class struggle- Bourgeoise and Proletariat People in positions of authority try to enforce conformity, which, creates resentment and resistance Result is a constant struggle

56 Applying Conflict Theory
Focus on how men’s and women’s rel. have changed Men dominated women- not anymore Women can support selves Wives strive for more equality from husbands

57 Theories Macro Functionalists and Conflict Theorists focus on large scale patterns of society Micro Symbolic Interactionists focus on social interaction in small scale patterns

58 Which perspective?

59 A. Functionalist perspective B. Symbolic Interactionist perspective
The theoretical perspective that focuses on forces in society that promote competition and change A. Functionalist perspective B. Symbolic Interactionist perspective C. Conflict theory perspective****

60 B. Symbolic Interactionist C. Conflict Theory
The theorteical perspective whose interest is how people respond to one another in everyday situations and how they attach meaning to their own actions A. Functionalist B. Symbolic Interactionist C. Conflict Theory

61 This theoretical perspective utilizes a macro level of understanding of human behavior
Focus on how larger components of society interrelate and work together A. Functionalist B. Symbolic C. Conflict

62 This theory focuses on competition for power and money between the haves and have nots:
Symbolic Interactionsim Functional Analysis Conflict Theory

63 According to this theory, our behavior depends on the way we define ourselves and others:
Symbolic Interactionsim Functional Analysis Conflict Theory

64 According to this theory, when all parts of fulfill their function; society is in a normal state:
Symbolic Interactionsim Functional Analysis Conflict Theory

65 This theory studies face to face interactions and relationships:
Symbolic Interactionsim Functional Analysis Conflict Theory

66 This theory can be summed up by a constant struggle:
Symbolic Interactionsim Functional Analysis Conflict Theory

67 Group poster that highlights one perspective
Get into groups of three to create a group poster that explains one of the three perspectives Use images and vocabulary to explain your perspective in detail

68 Writing Assignment If you were a sociologist studying the rise of domestic violence in the 1990’s which perspective would you use to study the topic? Explain why. There is no right or wrong answer. Social Interactionism Functionalism Conflict Theory

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