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Definition of Sociology

Social relationships and the way people interact and shape society

Sociological perspective

Stresses the social contexts in which people live


A group of people who share a culture and a territory

Social Location

Corners people occupy because of their location


Requires theories that can be tested by research

Scientific Method

Using objective, systematic observations to test theories

Positivism (Auguste Comte)

Applying the scientific method to the social world

Who came up with the name "Sociology"

Auguste Comte

Who came up with the concept that societies evolve from lower to higher forms?

Herbert Spencer

Survival of the Fittest

Herbert Spencer

Social Darwinism

Herbert Spencer

Class Conflict

Engine of Human History

Is Marxism the same as communism?


Emile Durkheim's goal

To show how social forces affect people's behavior

Social Integration

The degree to which people are tied to their social group

Durkheim's central principle

Human behavior cannot be understood only in terms of the individual; we must always examine the social forces that affect people's lives

Applied Sociology

Using sociology to solve problems


General Statement about how some parts of the world fit together and how they work

Three major sociology theories

Symbolic interactionism, functional analysis, and conflict theory

Symbolic Interactionism

How people use symbols

Functional Analysis

Society is a whole unit made up of parts that work together

Macro-Level Analysis

Examining large scale patterns

Social Interaction

Examining what people do in another's presence.

Micro-Level Analysis

Examines small-scale patterns of social interaction

Nonverbal interaction

Gestures, silence, and use of space


Members from your target population


A feeling of trust with respondents

Secondary Analysis

Researches analyze data others have collected

Dependent Variable

The variable that might change

Independent Variable

Something that causes a change in another variable

Unobtrusive measures

Observing the behavior of people who don't know that are being studied

Value Free

Sociologist should not allow beliefs to affect research


Repeating a study in order to compare the new results with the original findings


the language, beliefs, values, and norms that are passed from generation to generation

Material Culture

Jewelry, art, buildings, weapons, and machines

Non-material Culture

A groups way of thinking - values


a tendency to use our own ways of doing things as a yardstick for judging others

Cultural relativism

trying to understand a culture on its own terms

Symbolic culture

Nonmaterial culture


something to which people attach meaning and use for communication


Movements of the body used for communication with others

Sapir-Whorf hypothesis

Language determines our consciousness


What's desirable in life


Expectations concerning the right way to reflect values

Positive Sanction

Expresses approval for following a norm

Negative Sanction

Reflects disapproval for breaking a norm

History and biography

What were the two elements C. Wright Mills identified as being the key to understanding the sociological imagination?

The idea of applying the scientific method to the social world, which was first proposed by Auguste Comte, is called


What world event most inspired the development of sociology?

the Industrial Revolution

second father of sociology

Herbert Spencer

What term did Emile Durkheim use for the degree to which people are tied to their social groups?

social integration

What term did sociologist Max Weber use to refer to the self-denying approach to life?

the Protestant Ethic

Harriet Martireau

The woman who translated Auguste Comte's works into English

Robert Merton referred to the unintended consequences of a system that helps it adjust and aid the overall working of society as a[n]

latent function

Norms which are not strictly enforced, such as eating habits in the student dining hall and a relaxed dress code for attending class are referred to as


A society made up of many different groups with no single group having dominance over the others is called a ____________ society.


The sociologist who identified 12 core values shared by many groups in American society was ____________.

Robin Williams

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