What is Sociology?

-The scientific study of social behavior and human groups. Influence of social relationships on individual attitudes and behavior. Not based on opinion but data

Sociological Imagination

-Developed by C. Wright MillsAn Awreness of the relationship between the individual and the wider societyAn "outside" viewBeyond Personal to publicPersonal experiences-Public Perspective

August Comte

FranceCoined Sociology"positivism"Established social principle and applied them to reformSocial static vs. Social Dynamic

Social Static

That within a culture that doesnt change readily: family, educationtakes time

Social Dynamic

That within a culture changes quicklyFashion, Technology

Harriet Martineau

Society in AmericaWork based off assumptions and secondary documents, letters, books.Comtes ideas to english and reduced to 2 volumesWealthy background allowed her to do the things she did

Emile Durkheim

Showing how social forces impact peoples behavior

Focus and thorough researchSuicideSocial factors underlie suicideSocial integrationThe degree to which people are tied to their social group.I.E.Males are more likely to kill themselves because of their masculinity, need to sustain their families but cannot/ Wealthier males have more freedom and less connectedness.
Woman Are less likely to commit suicide because of their nurturing role associated with females.


Breaking down of the controlling influences of societyChildren in the past listened to any adults in general. Today children only listen to their parents

Karl Marx
People need to be active in Changing society

Set framework for social conflict theoryClass conflict is the engine of human history: Economic ViabilitySociety divided into classes who clash in pursuit of their own class interestUpperclass needs are very different than middle classGroup identificatioms and associations influence an individuals place in societyRelationships within the class affect position of the individual


Take what you know and apply it

Max Weber

Verstehen:Insight and understanding ones intellectual work.Must understand peoples subjective meanings attached by themselves to their actionsHow oneself views and explain their own actionsVery Complexi.e.Im such a bad mother the children are better off dead>> The animal is suffering so we should put it down.Believed religion was the central force in change.Ideal TypeMade up model that can be measured against actual cases. Can be evaluated

W.E.B. DuBois

Made through many constraintspushed away by society because of ethnicityFounding member of NAACPWorked under Max Weber

Herbert Spencer

Very popularBelieved in social darwinism-Overtime societies will improve-coined term survival of the fittestHis theory was contradictiveI.e. America has advanced technology but a high infant mortality rateVegatative states allowed by technology-Fit society?-Did not conduct scientific studies

Structural Functionalism

MACRO SOCIALSociety is a complex system whose parts work together to promote solidarity and stabilitySocial structure-Relatively stable patterns of social behavior:i.e. standard behavior walking into class on the first day.Useless ideals, values, thoughts, or practice are not passed down from gen. to gen.Bad habits or things in which we have no idea why we are doing them may also get passed down

Manifest Function

Recognized and intended qonsequences of any social pattern- The transmission of knowledge at school.

Latent Function

Largely unrecognized or unintended consequence.-School provides free childcare in k-12. Higher education is the place for meeting oned marriage partner.


undesirable consequence or disruption to social structure.-Crime, But criminal need crime as well as guards, parol officer etc(now crime is functional)

Social Conflict theory

Some people benefit from things in society while other dont-(education) examine differences in individuals living in poorer communities to richer ones.scarce resources-not everyone can have everythingsociety is viewded as an arena of inequality, generating conflict and changeinterested in how societys institutions including family, government, religion, education and media may help to maintain the privleges of some groups and keep others in subservient positions- female siblings cannot stay out later than the same age male sibling because of sex.

Feminist Perspective

Inequity in gender is central to all behavior and organization.Allied with conflict theory but tends to focus on relationships of everyday lif like interactionistanalysis beyond the male point of view

Symbolic Interactionist

Interactons with other humans have a behavioral impact collectively on society Subtle messages influence long term Humans live in a world of meanigful objects-wedding ring is a symbol of current marriage, while not wearing it is a symbol of dissolved marriage.
-running into a burning building is mal adaptive behavior but the reasons we do it are personal and usually meaningful to the individual

What is culture?

Subjective Culture:Beliefs,Values,Behavior that together, form a peoples way of life.Harder to change than material/physical culture.Material Culture:physical or technological aspects of our daily livesAmerican culture is more subjected to adopt a more physical culture rather than subjective.

Cultural Universasls

General practices found in every culture:Family arrangement, kinship, food, sex taboos, recreation.

Cultural Diffusion

process by which a group cultural item spreads from group to group.More powerful culture takes over smaller culture beliefs and materials are diffused from larger to smaller

What is the purpose of culture?

Major mode of adaptation.Limits on behavior and guides us along predictable paths.becomes internalized-DOXA:umbrella when it rains, parties for birthdayUsed to survive

Characteristics of culture

�Culture is shared �uniquely �Culture is learned Culture begins in uteroUse culture to modify certain characteristics of everything�Culture is based on symbols�Culture is integrated �Cannot change one element without impacting another


� culturally defined standards which serve as broad guideline for social living (can be in conflict: war and peace)

High culture

� cultural patterns that distinguish a society�s elite-going to an opera, elite society

�Popular culture

� cultural patterns that are widespread among a society�s population-mainstream


� cultural patterns that distinguish some segment of a society�s population


� cultural patterns that strongly oppose those widely accepted in society


� the practice of judging another culture by the standards of one�s own culture-culture relativism deals with problem ofi.e. my moms better than your mom

Cultural relativism

� the practice of judging a culture by its own standards


Lifelong social experiences by which individuals develop their human potential and learn culture group

Sigmund Freud�s Personality Model

Id � the human being�s basic drives-solely based on individual needs. me, me, me<<decisions based off Ego � a person�s conscious efforts to balance innate pleasure-seeking drives with the demands of society Superego � the operation of culture within the individual-what should i do/decisions based on needs of society

Jean Piaget � Stages of Cognitive Development

1st stage � sensorimotor � level of human development in which individuals experience the world only through sensory contact:tactile,taste,-sense-Brain catalouges sensory interactions during early childhood2nd stage � preoperational � individuals first use language and other symbols Stage 3 � concrete operational � individuals first perceive causal connections in their surroundings:7-12yrs if i do this, this will happenrelationshipslimits of things Stage 4 � formal operational � individuals think abstractly and critically-more precise thoughts like i want to make money instead of i want to be a teacher.

George Herbert Mead

1st stage � Preparatory stage � children imitate people around them(must have developmental milestone to move into next stage-recognition of self>>paint on babies face realization) 2nd stage � Play stage- role taking � mentally assuming the perspective of another(key time fordevelopment of empathy : developed socially) 3rd stage � Game stage- can consider tasks and relationships simultaneously understanding tasks and roles involved with sports:>>players roles switch depending on posession

Erik Erikson

8 stages of development Stage 1 � Infancy � trust vs. distrust Stage 2 - Toddlerhood � autonomy vs. doubt and shame Stage 3 � Preschool � Initiative vs. guilt Stage 4 � Pre-Adolescence � industriousness vs. inferiority Stage 5 � Adolescence � identity vs. confusion Stage 6 � Young Adulthood � Intimacy vs. isolation Stage 7 � Middle Adulthood � Making a difference vs. Self-absorption Stage 8 � Old Age � integrity vs. despair

Charles Horton Cooley

Looking glass self � we learn who we are by interacting with others Imagine how we are presenting ourselves Imagine how people are evaluating us Form opinions about ourselves based on our perceptions

Agents of Socialization

Family � the most important agent of socialization:No suitable substitute for parents in society Peer groups School media

Forced Socialization

Anticipatory socialization � social learning geared toward gaining a desired position Resocialization � altering personality through deliberate control of the environment Total Institution � all aspects of a person�s life are under one authority


� a person�s fairly consistent patterns of thinking, feeling, and acting


� a dimension of personality composed of an individual�s self-awareness and self-image-towards the group


- specific statements which people hold to be true

Norms �

rules and expectations by which society guides the behavior of its members ��Formal -laws, gov.�Mores � norms that are widely observed and have great moral significance �informal-personal ettiquette, picking nose/Folkways � norms for routine, casual interaction

�Cultural transmission �

passing of cultural traits from one generation to the next Cultural Transmission passed from parents to children-watching sports, dress, food

�Cultural integration

� close relationship among various elements of a cultural system :school systems intertwine with politics, family life etc

�Cultural lag �

period of maladjustment when on element of culture changes and disrupts a system:(material)�

�Innovation �

introducing a new idea or object

�Invention �

creating new elements tht change society usually technology phines cars

�Discovery �

understanding an idea not fully understood before

�Symbol �

anything that carries a particular meaning recognized by people who share culture:to understand how people percieve situations most understand smbols.

�Language �

a system of symbols that allows people to communicate with each other �Language is our most important symbolic system �Ensures the continuity of culture

�Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis �

people perceive the world through the cultural lens of language. -The amount of words for technology and money the lack of words for kinship in the english lang.