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Sociology -- the scientific study of human social relationships
WHAT IS SOCIAL?
Social -- interaction between two or more people
Asocial -- not social, not interacting with others Either by choice … … or by being left out
Anti-social -- negative interaction or avoidance of interaction KEEP OUT
Pseudo-social -- appears to be social, but isnt
Early Sociologists A Brief Review
Theorists of Sociology Comte Durkheim Marx Spencer Weber
Auguste Comte Considered the founder of Sociology Coined the term sociology
Comte coined term Sociology –Socious- companion (Latin) –Logos- study of (Greek)
Theorists of Sociology Auguste Comte- French Philosopher, interested in finding solutions to the chaos of the French Revolution
Comte believed that sociologists should be concerned with two main concepts: Order & Change
Comte Social Statics èconstants ènon-changing principles èlife and death èman v. nature
Comte –change –attitudes and acceptable behaviors Social Dynamics
Auguste Comte Practiced cerebral hygiene
Comte §Positivism - all science should be value free and objective
Karl Marx Not really a sociologist, but a social philosopher
Karl Marx Believed that class conflict led to social change Influenced the modern conflict theory
Theorists of Sociology Karl Marx ( ) not a sociologist but had a profound affect on sociology (and history)
Marx- importance of economics in everyday life and in history Economic Determinism
Marx- Concerned with class conflict Worker v. Capitalist
Marx Felt that any historical change would involve conflict between the workers and capitalists
Marx- society similar to a human body- each part performs a function many parts make up the whole Organic Totalitity
Herbert Spencer Was strongly influenced by Charles Darwin Believed no steps should be taken to correct societys problems
Herbert Spencer Coined the phrase Survival of the Fittest His theory is called Social Darwinism
Herbert Spencer Society is made up of interdependent parts
Emile Durkheim First sociologist to systematically apply the scientific method to the study of society
Emile Durkheim Greatly influenced the modern Functionalist theory
Emile Durkheim- Thought only the overt should be studied Not- thoughts, feelings or emotions Believed that everything has numerous functions
Emile Durkheim- functions Manifest Function- the intended or primary purpose of an object –transportation Latent Function- the unintended purpose of an object –status symbol
Max Weber Studied the effects of society on the individual Influenced the modern Inter- actionist theory
Max Weber Verstehen -- essentially seeing a situation through someone elses eyes
Max Weber- Interested in groups within society, not just society as a whole
Max Weber- Verstehen §understanding the meaning others attach to their actions
… And now for something new...
C. Wright Mills No social study is complete until it deals with the intersection of History and Biography Biography H t i s r y
This intersection is the connection between the larger world (history)... … and our personal lives (biography)
Sociological Imagination … can therefore be defined as the ability to perceive the connection between your per- sonal life and the larger world around you.
Sociological Imagination Mills said that the researcher must follow three lines of questioning to utilize sociological imagination:
What is the structure of the society as a whole? What are its essential components? How are they interrelated? How does this society differ from others?
Where does this society stand in human history? How is it changing? How is it affected by the historical period in which it exists?
What varieties of people prevail in this society? What are the men and women in this society like? Who are the winners and how are these people selected or formed in this society?
Theorist Evaluation Q. Which theorist developed the idea of Social Darwinism?
Theorist Evaluation Q. Which theorist developed the idea of Social Darwinism? A. Herbert Spencer
Theorist Evaluation Q. Who coined the term sociology?
Theorist Evaluation Q. Who coined the term sociology? A. Auguste Comte
Theorist Evaluation Q. Which theorist emphasized class conflict?
Theorist Evaluation Q. Which theorist emphasized class conflict? A. Karl Marx
Theorist Evaluation Q. Which theorist is responsible for the idea of verstehen?
Theorist Evaluation Q. Which theorist is responsible for the idea of verstehen? A. Max Weber
Theorist Evaluation Q. Which theorist applied the scientific method to sociology?
Theorist Evaluation Q. Which theorist applied the scientific method to sociology? A. Emile Durkheim
… And now for the Sociological Theoretical Perspectives...
Functionalist Perspective: Asks the question: What is the use or purpose of A or B?
Function -- the positive consequence of an element of society stabilizes society
Dysfunction -- the negative consequence of an element of society destabilizes society
Example: Cars Function? Dysfunction?
Manifest function -- the intended and recognized function Latent function -- the unintended and unrecognized function
Cars … Manifest function? Latent function?
Conflict Perspective: Asks the question: How is A pitted against B, and why?
Conflict Perspective: Society is divided between haves and have-nots Conflict leads to social change
Conflict Perspective: Looks at who has power and who does not. How did those in power get it and how do they keep it?
Conflict Perspective: Who does not have power and how are they trying to get it? What obstacles stand in their way from succeeding?
Interactionist Perspective: Asks the question: How is A related to B?
Interactionist Perspective: Looks at how individuals relate to one another.
Interactionist Perspective: An area if interest is understanding the meaning that people attach to their own and others actions.
Social Phenomenon -- an act or occurrence in human society that can be observed and studied Notes:
Variable -- a characteristic that can change from one individual (or group) to another (opposite of constant)
Correlation -- when a change in one variable is associated with a change in another variable AB
Causation -- when a change in one brings about a change in another variable. AB
Ex: Smoking & Lung Cancer This is a direct or a positive correlation
Ex: Amount of Homework & Stress Does one cause the other?
Ex: Exercise & Heart Disease This is an inverse or a negative correlation
Ex: Hospitalization & Death Does one cause the other?
Hospitalization Death NO! A third variable causes both! Serious Illness
When a third variable causes both, this is called a spurious correlation.
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