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Social Structure And Social Interaction
Intro to Sociology Social Structure And Social Interaction HOOK VIDEO
What is Sociology? Systematic, scientific study of human society
Relies on scientific evidence—helps straighten out myths vs. realities We learn more about ourselves by studying others BUT learn more from social marginality – being excluded from main-stream society (“outsiders”); more aware of a societal group because you’re on the outside
Social Class: A system of ranking people into abstract categories of social positions
Scientific Method Observations Hypothesis Testing Theory
Social Forces Sociology studies “from the outside” versus “from the inside” (Psych.) to explain social forces – forces that arise from society in which we are a part we see it through behavior Example: People in wide-open areas more likely to commit suicide. Why?
The ability to see the relationship between events in our personal lives and events in society What is gained by using it? Understand effects of events Awareness permits to learn and get a fuller understanding of events Questions common interpretations of human social behavior. Helps us to make our own decisions rather than conform
Sociological Imagination: Video Explanation
Social Integration The degree to which people are tied to a social group – social integration Therefore, inadequate levels of integration = high suicide rate (different in other cultures, though) We are each other’s sociological backbone!
History of Sociology 19th century, because of Industrial Revolution – brought new ways of living together Then French Revolution – people questioning legitimacy of monarchies; wanted more freedoms Grew because of social unrest of this time
AUGUSTE COMTE Father of Sociology Positivism: belief knowledge is from scientific observation Social statics: study of social stability and order Social dynamics study of social change Video
Herbert Spencer Thought society can be compared to a living organism
Each part of animal has own function, but all parts are interdependent Also says if society is left alone, it fixes its own problems
KARL MARX Says main feature of sociology is class conflict – struggle between capitalists and proletariats Did not believe in natural selection – urged people to change society, not let it evolve Video
Emile Durkheim Applied scientific method to Sociology
Really studied suicide and the “social facts” Mechanical solidarity: social dependency based on widespread consensus of values and beliefsconformity and dependence on tradition/family Organic solidarity: social dependency based on high degree of specialization in roles Video: from 3:35
MAX WEBER Thought one must go beyond observations & find out how people feel about their own behavior (put yourself in their shoes) Verstehen Video
The Role of Theoretical Perspectives
Perception is the way the brain interprets an image or event. Have you ever shared a different perception of an event from a friend?
Youthful Face vs. Old Face
Face vs. Vase
Fundamentals Perspective is a particular point of view.
We all see what is happening around us through our own perspectives Sociology has its own perspective – Sociological Perspective (a view that looks at behavior of groups not individuals) Functionalist perspective – focuses on social order; each part of society performs as the whole, interdependently If something happens to this social order, a social consensus must be made for this new change
Functions of Behavior Manifest – intended & obvious behaviors
Latent – unintended & unrecognized behaviors
The Good and the Bad Society does change, but only for a reason conflicts When status quo is criticized, everyone starts to focus on differences & emphasizes their group is better than others – conflict perspective Society is always changing because of this competition POWER explains the change Symbolic interactionism: interactions among people based on mutually understood symbols (an item with an agreed-upon meaning attached to it)
Conflicts in Society
Symbols are EVERYWHERE
ROLE STRAIN AND ROLE CONFLICT
Role Strain: stress or strain of an individual when incompatible behavior, expectations, or obligations are associated with a single social role. Ex: Being a student and an employee Role Conflict: a situation in which a person is expected to play two incompatible roles Ex: A boss who is forced to fire an employee, who is also a friend
Example: SPORTS!!! HARMFUL BENEFICIAL
Conducive to success in other areas of life Develops skill, ability, self-discipline, mental alertness, physical fitness Enhances health & happiness Contributes to social order & stability through unification Sports act as an opiate, numbing the masses sense of dissatisfaction w/capitalist society Reinforces social, gender, & racial inequalities Big business – elitist system “Man’s world” – glorifies masculinity
Wrap-Up Sociology can help enrich our lives intellectual exercise, general guide, pursue careers, & just obtain a better understanding of the world through our own interpretations The world around us affects our lives more than what the world does to us.
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