Sociology: the Basics PowerPoint Presentation, free download

Lecture 6.7: Thomas Theorem
Lecture 6.7: Thomas Theorem

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Sociology: the Basics. Chapter 4. Social Structure: A Guide to Everyday Living. Social Interaction – the process by which people act and react in relation to others Through interaction, we create the reality in which we live. Social structure guides our interaction. Status.

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Sociology: the Basics Chapter 4

Social Structure: A Guide to Everyday Living • Social Interaction – the process by which people act and react in relation to others • Through interaction, we create the reality in which we live. • Social structure guides our interaction.

Status • Status – a social position that an individual occupies. • Every status is part of our social identity. • A Status Set – all of the statuses a person holds at a given time. • Ascribed Status – a social position a person receives at birth or assumes involuntarily. • AchievedStatus – a social position a person assumes voluntarily that reflects personal ability.

“Be not afraid of greatness: some are born great, some achieve greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them”. – (Quote Act II, Scene V, Twelfth Night, William Shakespeare).

A Master Status • Some statuses matter more than others. • A Master Status – a status that has special importance for social identity. • For most, one’s occupation is a master status. • Serious illness or disability may also operate as a master status.

Role • Role – behavior expected of someone who holds a particular status. • One performs a role. It requires action. • Role performance varies according to personality. • Role Set – a number of roles attached to a single status. (text pg 90)

Role Conflict and Role Strain • Role Conflict – conflict between roles corresponding to 2 or more statuses. • When we experience being pulled in several different directions. • Role Strain – tension between roles connected to a single status. • Performing various roles attached to one status feels like a “balancing act.”

Can you think of examples of role conflict (conflict between different roles)? • Can you think of examples role strain (tension between roles connected to a single status)?

The Social Construction of Reality • Reality is not as “fixed” as we may think. • Social construction of reality – the process by which people creatively shape reality through social interaction. • Interaction is a complex negotiation.

The Thomas Theorem • The Thomas Theorem – situations that are defined as real are real in their consequences. • Can you think of examples? • Although reality is “soft” as it is fashioned, it can become “hard” in its effects. • Can you think of examples?

Ethno-methodology • Harold Garfinkel states people create reality in everyday encounters. • Ethnomethodology – the study of the way people make sense of their everyday surroundings. • This explores the process of making sense of social encounters. • Realities are influenced by culture. • Can you think of some examples?

Dramaturgical Analysis:“The Presentation of Self” • Erving Goffman states people are much like actors performing on a stage. • Dramaturgical analysis – the study of social interaction in terms of theatrical performance. • Each performance involves the presentation of self.

Jaques: All the world’s a stage,And all the men and women merely players;They have their exits and their entrances,And one man in his time plays many parts,His acts being seven ages… • As You Like It Act 2, scene 7, 139–143

Nonverbal Communication • Nonverbal communication – using body movements, gestures, and facial expressions rather than speech. • This conveys information. • Eye contact is used to invite interaction. • Hand gestures may convey an insult. • Gestures also supplement spoken words.

Gender and Performances • Women are socialized to be less assertive than men. • Women tend to be more sensitive to nonverbal communication. • Women craft their personal performances more carefully than men. • Men typically command more space than women. • To what extent to do agree with the above?

Idealization, Embarrassment, and Tact • We construct performances to idealize our intentions. • We try to convince others we do not have selfish motives. • Embarrassment – discomfort resulting from a spoiled performance. • Tact – helping someone “save face”

Interactions in Everyday Life: Emotions • Emotions, more commonly called feelings, are an important dimension of every day life. • Just as society guides our behavior, it guides our emotional life. • Do you agree? Why or why not? • Emotions include a biological element, and a cultural element. • Can you think of some examples?

Interaction in Everyday Life: Language • Language conveys deep levels of meaning. • Language defines men and women differently in several ways: • The power function of language. • The value function of language • The attention function of language

Interaction of Everyday Life: Humor • Humor is a product of reality construction. • Humor arises from contradiction, ambiguity, and double meanings found in differing definitions of the same situation. • Humor provides a way to express an opinion without being serious. • Humor often is a sign of real conflict. • Consider your favorite comedies? Do you see examples of any of the above?

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