Sociology 1301 - John Macionis Final Exam

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Sociology

the systematic study of human society

Sociological Perspective

the special point of view of sociology that sees general patterns of society in the lives of particular people

C. W Mills

The sociological imaginiation brings people together to create change by transforming personal problems into public issues.

The Origins of Sociology

Sociology was born in response to wide-reaching changes in Europe during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Three changes - the rise of an industrial economy, the explosive growth of cities, and the emergence of new political ideas made people pay attention to how society operates.

The new discipline of sociology

was born in England, France and Germany where the changes were greatest.

Auguste Comte coined the term

sociology in 1838 to describe a new way of looking at society.

Sociological Theory

A theory states how facts are related, weaving observations into insight and understanding. The job of sociological theory is to explain social behavior in the real world.

In building theory, sociologist face two questions

What issues should we study? How should we connect the facts?

Theoretical approach

a basic image of society that guides thinking and research

Three major theoretical approaches:

1) the structural-functional approach 2) the social-conflict approach 3) symbolic-interaction approach

Structural-Functional Approach

is a framework for building theory that sees society as a complex system whose parts work together to promote solidarity and stability.

Social-Conflict Approach

is a framework for building theory that sees society as an arena of inequality that generates conflict and change.

Macro level orientation

a broad focus on social structures that shape society as a whole.

Micro level orientation

a close-up focus on social interaction in specific situations.

Symbolic-Interaction Approach

a framework for building theory that sees society as the product of the everyday interactions of individuals.

Positivism

Auguste Comte's contribution came in applying the scientific approach. Comte's approach is called positivism, a way of understanding based on science.

Manifest Function

the recognized and intended consequences of any social pattern.

Latent Function

the unrecognized and unintended consequences of any social pattern.

Robert K. Merton

expanded our understanding of the concept of social function by pointing out that any social structure probably has many functions. He distinguished between manifest functions and latent functions.

Emile Durkheim

They study of suicide, found that some categories fo people were more likely than others to commit suicide.

Jane Addams

(1860-1935) was a sociological pioneer whose contributions began in 1889 when she helped found Hull House, a Chicago settlement house that provided assistance to immigrant families. Addams spoke out on issues involving immigration and the pursuit of peace. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931.

Harriet Martineau

(1802-1876) is regarded as the first woman sociologist. In 1853 translated the writings of Auguste Comte from French to English. Published writings on the evils of slavery and argued for laws to protect factory workers, defending workers rights to unionize. Concerned about the position of women in society and fought for changes in education policy so women could look forward to more in life than marriage and raising children.

W.E. B Du Bois

(1868-1963) Born to a poor Masschusetts family, enrolled at Fisk University in Nashville, TN, and then at Harvard University, where he earned the first doctorate awarded by that university to a person of color. Spoke out against racial separation and was a founding member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

Karl Marx

Marx's materialist approach claims that societies are defined by their economic systems. He traced conflict between social classes, from "ancient" societies (masters and slaves) to agrarian societies (nobles and serfs) to industrial-capitalist societies (capitalists and proletarians).

Sociological Investigation

There are two basic requirements 1) Apply the sociological perspective 2) Be curious and ask questions about the world around us.

Common Sense vs. Scientifc Evidence

Scientific evidence sometimes challenges our common sense. Example: "Most poor people don't want to work" It is not what we do not know that gets us into trouble as much as things we do know that are not true. We all have been brought up believing widely accepted truths, being bombarded by expert advice, and feeling pressure to accept the opinions of people around us. We need to evaluate more critically what we see, read and hear.

Variable

is a concept whose value changes from case to case.

Reliability

Reliability refers to consistency in measurement. A measurement is reliable if repeated measurements give the same result time after time. But consistency does not guarantee validity.

Validity

means actually measuring exactly what you intend to measure.

Cause and Effect

a relationship in which change in one variable causes change in another. Example: Studying hard for an exam results in a high grade.

Variable

is a concept whose value changes from case to case.

Independent Variable

The variable that causes the change (how much you study) is called the independent variable.

Dependent Variable

The variable that changes (the exam grade) is called the dependent variable. Allows us to predict the outcome of future events.

Research Ethics

Research can harm as well as help subjects or communities. For this reason, the American Sociological Association (ASA) - the major professional association of sociologist of North America - established formal guidelines for conducting research (1997).

Research Ethics - Sociologist must:

a) strive to be both skillfull and fairminded in their work. b) Must disclose all research findings, without omitting significant data. c) They should make their results available to other sociologist (for replicate study) d) make sure subjects are not harmed e) protect the privacy f) must include in their published results the sources of all financial support g) avoid taking money taht raises concerns of conflicts of interest

Research Method

is a systematic plan for doing research.

Experiment

a research method for investigating cause and effect under highly controlled conditions. Generates quantitive data.

Hypothesis

a statement of possible relationship between two (or more) variables. A hypothesis typically takes the form of an if-then statement: If one thing were to happen, then something else will result.

Survey

a research method in which subjects respond to a series of statements or questions in a questionnaire or an interview. Are good for studying attitudes - such as beliefs about politics, religion, or race-since there is no way to observe directly what people think. Useful for descriptive and explanatory research. Generates quantitative or qualitative data.

Population

the people who are the focus of research

Sample

a part of a populaton that represents the whole

questionnaire

a series of written questions a researcher presents to subjects. One type of questionnaire provides not only the questons but also a selection of fixed responses (similar to a multiple-choice examination). This is a closed-ended format.

Interview

is a series of questions a researcher asks respondents in person.

Participant Observation

a research method in which investigators systematically observe people while joining them in their routine activities. Allows an inside look at social life settings ranging from nightclubs to religious seminaries. Called fieldwork to study communities and other societies.

Exisiting Sources

Sometimes sociolgists analyze existing sources, data collected by others. For descriptive or expanatory research. Saves time and expense of data collection. Researcher has no control over possible biases in data.

Culture

is the values, beliefs, behavior, and material objects that together form a people's way of life. Culture includes what we think, how we act, and what we own. Culture is a way of life shared by members of society.

Elements of Culture

Although cultures vary greatly, they all have common elements, including symbols, language, values, and norms.

Symbols

is anything that carries a particular meaning recognized by people who share a culture. A word, a whistle, a wall graffitis, a flashing red light, a raise fist - all serve as symbols.

Language

is a system of symbols that allows people to communicate with one another.

Culture Shock

personal disorientation when experienceing an unfamiliar way of life.

Values

culturally defined standards that people use to decide what is desirable, good, and beautiful, and that serve as broad guidelines for social living. Values are standards that people who share a culture use to make choices about how to live.

Beliefs

Values are broad principles that support beliefs. Beliefs are specific statements that people hold to be true.

Key Values of US Culture

Sociologist Robin Williams (1970) Identified 10 values that are widespread in the US and are central to our way of life:
1) Equal Opportunity - chance to get ahead
2) Achievement and success -
3) Material Comfort
4) Activity and work
5) Practcality and efficiency
6) Progress 7) Science 8) Democracy and free enterprise
9) Freedom 10) Racism and group superiority

Norms

rules and expectations by which society guides the behavior of its members. Norms which guide human behavior, are of two kinds: mores, which have great moral significance and folkways, which are norms for everyday interaction.

Mores

norms that are widely observed and have great moral significance. Mores, or taboos, include our society's insistence that adults not engate in sexual relations with children. Mores distinguish between right and wrong.

Folkways

norms for routine or casual interaction. Examples include ideas about appropriate greetings and proper dress. Folkways draw a line between right and rude.

Material Culture

the physical things created by members of a society. Example: Everything from armchairs to zippers.

Nonmaterial Culture

the ideas created by members of society.
Example: Ideas that range from art to Zen.

High Culture

cultural patterns that distinguish a society's elite.
(distinguish social class)

Popular Culture

cultural patterns that widespread among a society's population.

Afrocentrism

emphasizing and promoting African Cultural patterns.
(Emphazing achievements of African societies, and African Americans after centuries of minimizing or ignoring them).

Cultural Lag

the fact that some cultural elements change more quickly than others, distrupting a cultural system.
Note: Technology moves quickly, generating new elements of material culture (things) faster than nonmaterial culture (ideas) can keep up with them. Example: A woman can give birth to a child by using another woman's egg, which has been fertilized in a lab with sperm of a total stranger.

Ethnocentrism

the practice of judging another culture by standards of one's own culture.

Cultural Relativism

the practice of juding a culture by its own standards

Culture Shock

personal disorientation when experiencing an unfamilair way of life.

Culture Universals

traits that are part of every known culture.
Example: The family, which functions everywhere to control sexual reproduction and to oversee the care of children.

sociobiology

theoretical approach that explores ways in which human biology afftects how we create culture.
Note: Sociobiology rests on theory of evolution proposed by Charles Darwin regarding natural selection.

Eurocentrism

the dominance of European (especially English) cultural patterns.
Note: Early in US history English established as the nation's dominate language.

SOCIETY

people who interact in a defined territory and share a culture

hunting and gathering

the use of simple tools to hunt animals and gather vegtation for food.

Hunting and Gathering Societies

Composed of a small number of family-centered nomads. Depend on the family. The family must get and distribute food, protect its members, and teach the children. Healthy adults do most of the work, leaving the very young and the very old to help out as they can. Women gather vegetation.

Horticulture

the use of hand tools to raise crops.
Note: The hoe was used to work soil and plant seeds in the ground. These inventions allowed people to give up gathering in favor of growing their own food.

Pastoralism

the domestication of animals.

Horticultural and Pastorial Societies

Pastorialists remained nomadic, leading their herds to fresh grazing lands. But Horicuturalists formed settlements, moving only when the soil gave out. Joined by trade, these settlements formed societies with populations into the thousands.

Agriculture

large scale cultivation using plows harnessed to animals or more powerful energy sources.

Agrarian societies

Plows have the added advantage of turning and aerating the soil, making it more fertile. Farmers could work the same land for generations, encouraging permanent settlements. Agrarian societies have extreme social inequality. In most cases, a large share of people are peasants or slaves, who do most of the work. Elites have more time for refined activities. Raises men to a position of social dominance, men take charge of food production by using metal plow pulled by animals and women are left with support task, such as weeding and carrying water to the fields.

Industrialism

the production of goods using advances sources of energy to drive large machinery.

Industrial societies

Until the industrial era began, the major source of energy had been with muscles of humans and animals they tended. In 1750, people turned to water power and then steam boilers to operate mills and factories filled with larger and larger machines. Change was so rapid it sparked the birth of sociology itself. Industrialization drew people away from home to factories situated near energy sources (such as coal fields) that power large machinery. Workers lost close working relationships, strong family ties, and many traditional values, beliefs, and customs that guide agrargarain life. Industrial technology changes the family, reducing its traditional importance as the center of social life. The greatest effect has been to raise living standards, which have increased in the US. People have more comfortable lives. Industrial societies provide extended schooling and greater political rights.

Postindustrial societies

production has shifted from heavy machinery making material things to computers and related technology processing information. The Information Revolution, which is at the heart of postindustrial society, is most evident in rich nations, yet new information affects the whole world. A worldwide flow of goods, people, and information how links societies has advanced a global culture.

Socialization

the lifelong social experience by which people develop their human potential and learn culture.

Nature

Charles Darwin 1859 study of evolution, led people to think that human behavior was instinctive, simply our "nature". Example: that some people are "born criminals", or that women are "naturally" emotional while men are "naturally rational. Nature is biology (height, hair color) and heredity plays a part in intelligence, musical and artistic talent.

Nuture

Unless children are stimulated to use their brains early in life, the brain does not fully develop. Therefore, the ability to realize any inherited potential depends on having the opportunity to develop it. Nuture matters more in shaping human behavior.

social isolation

There is a point precisely when is unclear from the small number of cases studied at which isolation in childhood causes permanent developmental damage.

Sigmund Freud's Elements of Personality

Freud combined basic needs and the influence of society into a model of personality with three parts: id, ego and the superego.

id

Freud's term for the human beings basic drives, which are unconscious and demand immediate satisfaction. Represents innate human drives (the live and death instincts). Rooted in biology, the id is present at birth, making a newborn a bundle of demands for attention, touching, and food.

ego

Freud's term for a person's conscious efforts to balance innate pleasure-seeking drives with the demands of society.

superego

the cultural values and norms internalized by an individual. The superego operates as our conscience, telling us why we cannot have everything we want.

Jean Piaget's Theory of Cognitive Development

believed that human development involves both biological maturation and gaining social experience. He identified 4 stages: 1) sensorimotor 2) preoperational 3) concrete operational 4) formal

Sensorimotor stage

Piaget's term for the level of human development at which individual experience the world only through their senses.

Preoperational stage

Piaget's term for the level of human development at which individuals first use language and other symbols.

Concrete Operational

Piaget's term for the level of human development at which individuals first see casual connections in their surroundings.

Formal Operational

Paiget's term for the level of human development at which individuals think abstractly and critically.

Lawrence Kohlberg's Theory of Moral Development

applied Piaget's approach to moral development. We first judge rightness in preconventional terms, according to our individual needs. Next, conventional moral reasoning takes account of parental attitudes and cultural norms. Finally, postconventional reasoning allows us to critize society itself.

The I and Me

George Herbert Mead - the self has two parts. One part of the self operates as subject, being active and spontaneous. Mead called the active side of the self the "I" . The other part of the self works as an object, the way we imagine others see us. Mead called the objective side of the self the "me".

The Looking Glass Self

Charles Horton Cooley used the term looking-glass self to explain that we see ourselves as we imagine others see us.

The self

George Herbert Mead - the part of an individual's personality composed of self-awareness and self-image. Mead saw the self as the product of social experience.

Development of the Self

For George Herbert Mead, self develops only as the individual interacts with others.

Erik H. Erikson

He explained that we face challenges throughout the life course. 8 Stages

Stage 1

Erikson - Infancy: the challenge of trust (versus mistrust)

Stage 2

Erikson - Toddlerhood: the challenge of autonomy

Stage 3

Erikson - Preschool: the challenge of initiative (versus guilt)

Stage 4

Erikson - Preadolescence: the challenge of industriousness (versus inferiority)

Stage 5

Erikson - Adolescence: the challenge of gaining identity (versus confusion)

Stage 6

Erikson - Young adulthood: the challeng of intimacy (versus isolation)

Stage 7

Erikson - Middle adulthood: the challenge of making a difference (versus self-absorption)

Stage 8

Erikson - Old age: the challenge of integrity (versus despair)

Agents of Socialization

Usually, the first setting of socialization, the family has the greatest influence on a child's attitudes and behavior. Schools expose children to greater social diversity and introduce them to impersonal bureaucracy. Peer groups free children from adult supervison and tak on great significance during adolescence. The mass media, especially television, have great impact on the socialation process.

Death and Dying

Psychologist Elisabeth Kuber-Ross (1969) - described death as an orderly transition involving five distinct stages.
1) Denial
2) Anger
3) Negotiation
4) Resignation
5) Acceptance

Total institution

a setting in which people are isolated from the rest of society and manipulated by an administrative staff.

Resocialization

efforts to radically change an inmate's personality by carefully controlling the environment.

Social interaction

the process by which people act and react in relation to others.

Status

a social position that a person holds

Ascribed Status

a social position a person takes on voluntarily that reflects personal ability and effort.

Achieved Status

a social position a person takes on voluntarily that reflects personal ability and effort.

Master status

a status that has special importance for social identity, often shaping a person's entire life.

role

behavior expected of someone who holds a particular status

The Social Construction of Reality

The process by which people creatively shape reality through social interaction.

ethnomethodology

Harold Garfinkel's term for the study of the way people make sense of their everyday surroundings

nonverbal communication

communication using body movements, gestures, and facial expressions rather than speech

Personal Space

the surrounding area over which a person makes some claim to privacy

Social Group

two or more people who identify and interact with one another

Primary Group

A small social group whose members pursue a specific goal or activity

Secondary Group

a large and impersonal social group whose members pursue a specific goal or activity. Example: Students in same college course.

Group Leadership

Groups benefit from two kinds of leadership: 1) Instrumental leadership - a group leadership that focuses on the completion of task. Members look to instrumental leaders to make plans, give orders, and get things done. 2) Expressive Leadership - by contrast, is a group leadership that focuses on the group's well-being. Expressive leaders take less interest in achieving goals than in raising group morale and minimizing tension and conflict amoung members.

reference group

a social group that serves as a point of reference in making evaluations and decisions.

In Group

a social group toward which a member feels respect and loyalty.

Out Group

a social group toward which a person fees a sence of competition or opposition.

The Dyad

a social group with two members

Triad

a social group with three members

Network

is a web of weak social ties.

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