Sociology Study guide

  1. The sociological imagination
    • Being able to see the link btwn:
    • history <-> biography
    • private troubles <-> public issues
    • Indv lives <-> societal forces
  2. Verstehen
    • A attempt to gain a subjective understanding
    • The idea of understanding from the POV of "being in your shoes"
    • Factors in: cultures, socialization, shared ideas
  3. Micro-level analysis
    • focuses on indv, thoughts, actions, & indv behaviors,
    • focuses on day to day stuff (like interaction)
    • ( apart of the interactionist theory)
  4. Macro-level analysis
    focuses on social structures that influence individuals, such as groupsm organizations, cultures, or even societies (broad social patterns)
  5. Emile Durkheim/ STructural functional perspective
    • Social structures exist because of their function for society. Those socal stuctures constrain indv. behavior.
    • Macro-level analysis (broad social patterns)
    • (Structures)Some structures lead to important consequences-> (Social consequences)The consequences, in turn, help societes survive -> (Society) So societies that survive are more likely to have these structures.
  6. Max Weber/Interactionist theory
    • Indv, thoguh constrained by soc circumstances, can make decisions & take actions that ake actions that influence their own lives & those of others. (AGENCY)
    • Symbols are used to communicate btwn ppl
    • Emergent properties are importan characteristics of groups that cannot be reduced to some simple combo of characteristics of indv
    • Micro-level (focusing on interaction among individuals)
  7. Karl Marx/ Conflict theory
    • Society consists of groups competing for scarce resources
    • What appears on the surface to be copeation merely masks the struggle for power
    • Soc structures persist in society (serve the interests of the wealthy & powerful)
    • Economic determinism
    • Macro-level (broad social patterns)
  8. Social structures & human agency
    • Agency- Indv, though constrained by soc circumstances, can make decisions & take actions that ake actions that influence their own lives & those of others
    • Social structure- enduring, relatively stable patterns of social behavior.
  9. Conformatory research
    Theory is the starting point
  10. Exploratory research
    Data is the starting point
  11. Reliability
    The extent to which a measure o scale produces consistent results
  12. Validity
    The extent to which a measure or scale measurse what we think it measures.
  13. Qualitative research
    • research emphasizing verbal description & data & avoiding counting items or the use of mathematics
    • often exploratory rather than confirmatory, developing new theories rather than tesing hypotheses
    • often uses participant observation & historical/comparative methods
  14. Quantitative research
    • emphasizes numberical descriptions of data, counting, & the use of math & statistics to descrpe & analyze data
    • permits the use of powerful statistscs & math to help deduce the implications of theories & test hypotheses empirically
    • often uses social surveys, experiments & systematic observation
  15. Convience Sample
    • A sample of people who are selected because they are easy to find
    • (EX: the next 20 ppl who enter a door)
  16. Quota sample
    • A sample including specific numbers (quoats) of cass falling in various subcategories
    • (EX: the first 10 men & the first 10 women you meet n the street)
  17. Probability sample
    A sample in which each case in the population has some known probability of being included and all segments of the population are represented.
  18. Biased sampling
    produces results that are systematically different from those of the population in a specific direction
  19. Participant observation
    • a method for collecting data in research in which the researcher particiates in & is directly involved in the lived of those he/she is studying.
    • typically involves both the observations & interviews with participants or informants.
  20. Systematic observation
    • A formal quantitaive method of observaation in which researchers typically develop a systematic set of codes, use those to code each event observed, & analyze the results statistically
    • Systematic observers are ugually known to be doing research by the ppl being studied
  21. Association vs. Causality
    • 2 variables are ASSOCIATED when the values of one variable depends on or can be predicted from the valuess of the other variables
    • Just because 2 variables are associated oes not mean that one causes the other (not CAUSAL)
  22. Research methods
    • Social surveys
    • Experiments
    • Observation
    • HIstorical-comparative methods
    • Data & research on the internet
  23. Social surveys
    • a common method of social research gathering info by asking ppl questions
    • face-to-face interviews
    • phone intervies
    • mailed questionnaires
  24. Experiments
    • empirical studies in which subjects are assigned to 2 or more groups, & the groups are treaed differently & compared
    • create controlled situations in which most control variables are held constant so they cant account for differences btwn the experiemntal groups
  25. Historical-cmparative studies
    examines ways in which social life changes across cultures & over time
  26. Symbols
    • words, gestures, pictures, anything thing that conveys meaning to people who share a culture
    • arbritrary signs that stand for something (they can mean different things in different contexts & cultures)
  27. Values
    standars of desirability, rightness, or importance in a society. Indcates whether something is good or bad, important or uninportant, attractivem or unattractive. Values are not neurtral. Tey are postive or negative
  28. Beliefs
    what is accepted as true based on values
  29. Folkways
    rules governeing everyday conduct that are not considered to be morally important and are not stictly enforced.
  30. Mores
    • tabos
    • serious norms for important activities having a strong moral imperative & strictly enforced
  31. Social sanctions
    • acts designed to encourage behaviors conforming o norms and discourae behaviors that violate norms
    • punishments: negative santions
    • rewards: positive sanctions
    • we give one another considerable discretion regarding folkways but often harsly punish violations of mores
  32. Dominant culture
    • the culture that takes precedence over other cultures in activities or events involving ppl from many categories of the population
    • often so pervasive that it isnt questioned but is take for granted
    • supports the domination by the ruling clas through ideologies, values, & beliefs
  33. Subcultures
    • a culture containing many elements of he dominant cultre but having unique features that distinguish its members from the rest of the population
    • may be based on ethnic heritage, lifestyle choices, social class, regional differences, age, race, gender or a myriad of other categories
  34. Countercultures
    • a subculture that challenges important elembnts of the dominant culture such as beliefs, attitudes, or values, & seeks to create an alternative lifestyle
    • often have a normative culture at odds with the dom culture
  35. The functional view of culture
    • Explains cultural element by their functions for society
    • if this view is correct they their shouldbe cultural universals- cultural elements found in all cultures
  36. Inteeractionist view of culture
    how we come to define the meaning of cultural elements through soc interaction
  37. The conflict view (marxist view) of culture
    • culture perpetuates inequalityies
    • consolidates class posistion
    • of the wealthy
    • lower classes through consumptipon (become instruments of their own subordination)
  38. High culture
    • the artifacts, values, knowledge, beliefs, & other cultura; elements that elites in a society use to distinguiseh themselves from the masses (oEX: opera, ballet & workd wby "great authors")
    • Strtegy of distinction: high culture is an effort by ppl in the upper social classes to differentiate tehmselves from the masses through the creation & consumption of the cultural elements that may remain largely inaccessble or not understood byt those in lwr soc classes
  39. Pop culture
    all the artifacts, values, knowledge , belieds & other cultural elements that appeal to the masses
  40. Cultural lag thory
    • technological change drives other changes in culture, w/ other cultural elemnts often laggiung behind (William Ogburn)
    • occurs when 1 of 2parts of culture which are correlated changes before or in greater degree than the other part does
    • EX: atomic bomb
  41. Cultural diffusion
    • The spread of cultural elements incl objs & ideas from one culture to another
    • always common, today even more so
    • cultureal diffusion-> cultural leveling
    • cultural leveling: the reduction of diffrences(good/bad) btwn cultures resulting in a loss of cultural uniqueness & cultural heritage
  42. Theoretical views of socialization
    • The functional view: inhereting culture
    • The conflict view: passing on advantage
    • The symbolic interactionist view: constructing the social self
  43. The functional view: inhereting culture
    • socialization is one of the primary mean by which culture (incl knowledge) is passed on from one gen to the next (CONTINUITY)
    • Socialization occurs not only in primary & 2dary schools & professional schools, but even among countercultures & cubcultures, engaging in illicit activity
  44. The conflict view: passing on advantage
    • Socialization is the means by which the rich & the pwrful passoonn their advantages to their children
    • socialization experiences tend to both justify & reproducee the status quo
    • puts ppl in their rightful place. but rightful according to whose definition?
  45. The symbolic interactionist view:constructing the social self
    • How do we reach a self understanding
    • Nature vs nurture debate
    • phsycology/ developmental perpective
    • "disorder" inherent to the indv
    • personality- expl as biological/sexual
  46. social channeling
    a process of soc in which children of the rich are prepared for & directed towards posistions of privilege in society while children of the poor are prepared for & directed into low prestige posistion of subservience.
  47. Looking glass self
    • Seeing yuorself as others see you
    • 1. imagine how others see you
    • Interpret reactions of others
    • 3 Develkopment of a self concept in interaction with others
  48. Formal socialization
    soc occuring in setting intentionaly designed for socialization
  49. informal socialization
    soc in which peers and more areexperienced members train newcomers as they carry out their roles
  50. Agents of socialization
    • Family (infants & young children)
    • Mass media, peers, education (adolescents)
    • peers, work (adults)
  51. anticipatory socialization
    • soc for a status that occurs before the person occupies the status
    • much adolescent soc is anticipatory
    • many statuses req extensive soc before a person occupies the status
    • anticipatory socialization lets ppl learn more about the status & its role obligations before they commit to it
    • gives them an oppurtunity to change their minds about entering that status
  52. Resocialization
    a process of unlearning old norms, roles, & values then learnig the new ones req by the new soc envrion
  53. Rites of passage
    ceremonies marking important transistions in life such as the passage from being single to being married
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Sociology Study guide