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FSU SYG 1000 - Midterm Notes

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SYG1000 Midterm NotesMonday, 6/27/11 What is Sociology?Sociology enables us to understand the structure and dynamics of society, and their intricate connections to patterns of human behavior and individual life changes. It examines the ways in which the forms of social structure—groups, organizations, communities, social categories (such as class, sex, age or race), and various social institutions (such as kinship, economic, political, or religious) affect human attitudes, actions, and opportunities-Studying the interplay between individual vs. groupSociologists question things that are often taken for granted (choose where you live, where your kids go for school)Making the familiar strange- taking something you often take for granted and analyze itKey concepts: social structure, social institutions, social interaction, social changesSocial structure- the people in a society considered as a system organized by a characteristic pattern of relationshipsSocial institutions- needs to have broader meaningSocial interaction- way people relate and respond to one another, how social interaction benefits/harms individuals or groupsSocial changes- social structures might not change often but we want to know the effect these have on individuals and groupsTuesday, 6/28/11 Theories and Roots of SociologyRole conflict- when someone holds two contradictory rolesRole strain- tension that arises in one strainResocialization- moving somewhere newC. Wright Mills: Sociological imaginationSociologists study the intersection between history and personal biography.Three questions that Mills asks:1. What is the social structure of the particular society? The pieces and how they differ throughout history.2. Where does the society stand in human history? Change in roles over time, like women’s place in household.3. What types of individuals prevail in the society and period?Look at race, gender, orientation over time and draw connections.When we use our sociological imagination we are asking how our history and biography intersect.BeginningsAugust Comte (1798-1857)- “positivism” - Seeks to identify laws that describe behavior of a particular reality and the scientific study of societyHarriet Martineau (1802-1876)- one of the first methods books- translated the work of Comte into EnglishThe Big 3- Classical TheoristsKarl Marx- Labor and creativity- Class conflict is what drove society- When you’re forced to sell your labor it forms a sense of alienation- Alienation- Alienated person: “I really don’t care (because I am detached from my work and from other people).”- If something in society is harming someone, we should work to fix itEmile Durkheim- Social solidarityo Mechanical solidarity- traditional/hunter-gatherer society. Everyone’s role is set. No diversity.o Organic solidarity- functional interdependence among people- Anomie- sense of despair and aimlessness, when you don’t feel connected via social solidarity, no common values- Anomic person: “I am distressed about it (because there are no common values or norms to guide me).”- Society is failing meMax Weber- Rationalization- Iron Cage of Bureaucracy- produced by too much rationalization- Rational person: “Let me think about it, and I’ll get back to you later (because I need to make some calculations before I know the answer).”American SociologyThe Chicago School-Robert Parks-Cooley and Mead: Looking Glass Self-WI ThomasWEB Dubois: race, civil rightsJane Addams: applied sociologyStructural-Functionalism- Roots in the work of Durkheim- Society as an organism with systems that function together- Equilibrium that operates efficiently- Functions (positive) vs. dysfunctions (negative)- Manifest Functions (intended) vs. Latent Functions (unintended)Conflict Perspective- Roots in the work of Marx- Society is a collection of parts held together by power- Differences in the balance of power produce conflicts; dominate group gains benefits at expense of subordinate group- Social change is the result of conflicts. Conflict produces change.- Cohesion through conflictSymbolic interactionism- Roots in Cooley and Mead- Focuses on the micro-level rather (than macro)- People act in response to the meanings that signs and social signals hold- Dramaturgy- GoffmanSociology Versus- History tends to focus on narratives, individuals, unique events- Anthropology don’t use quantitative methods- Psychology tends to study you, sociology studies us- Political Science and EconomicsWednesday, 6/29/11 Research MethodsWhat are Research Methods- A way of testing hypotheses we have about the social world- “sociological” scientific methodo Identify a problemo Become familiar with previous researcho Form a hypothesis and clearly define variables of interesto Choose a research design/methodo Collect datao Analyze datao Disseminate findingsDeductive vs. Inductive- Deductive research begins with a theory, forms a hypothesis, makes empirical observations and analyzes in order to modify the original theory- Inductive research starts with empirical observations and works to form a theoryCorrelation or Causation?- REMEMBER! Correlation does not mean causation!- Correlation: a relationship between two variables in which they change together- Causation: relationship between variables in which a change in one DIRECTLY produces a change in the otherCausalityIn order to determine causality three things are necessary:-correlation-time order-non-spuriousness (or lack of alternate explanations)Challenges of CausalityReverse causality: When you believe that A causes B, but really B causes AEx: Health and incomeSpuriousness: when it appears that there is a relationship between A and B, but really C (or some observed factor aka confounding factor) is causing the relationship to appear significantEx: Ice cream sales and death from drowningBasic definitions- Literature review- Hypothesis- Dependent variable- your outcome- Independent variable- controlled, the ones you think might be causing- Operationalization the process of assigning a precise method of measurementTwo types of social research- Quantitative methods: examine the social world using data that can or is already converted into numerical form. Uses statistical analysis to examine social phenomena- Qualitative methods: collect and analyze data that cannot be readily converted into numeric formData and MethodsTypically Qualitative:Ethnography, historical methods, comparative research, experimentation,


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