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Lecture Notes on Loss of Community

Course Code
Barry Green

of 2
Soc. Notes 9/29/09
relatively general question
20 mins responses
Essay questions
Loss of community (ch)
-shows how soc works
-“The question mark in this ch. is very significant
-did loss of community occur?
-The issue of doing good research and good theories
- begins with industrialization
-before the dev. Of factories (late 1700 to 1800s) most human beings lived in either
rural areas or in villages, small towns, or in farm land
-Today most people live in urban areas and big cities
-machines being made to make production easier: required man power so many
people moved to these urban areas to work the machines in factories (huge movement of
-kids werent going to school then so they (males) were being apprenticed around the
age of 10 or 12. Females just worked everything
-Brought school in to the picture since many of the jobs required basic arithmetic
and also basic reading and writing skills
-labor laws changed childhoods
-2 reasons to work in factories compared to living in rural areas: 1. You were kicked
off (you gave a proportion of what you were producing to the landlords. Then the landlords
discovered that mechanics and machines make for more money) 2. You chose to leave
because you were tired of the landlords and you wanted to be free so they went and sold
their labor in urban areas at factories.
- no sanitation, no sewers, barely any water and the water that was available was
- this is what Karl Marx was watching and wrote about
-German romantic movement, romanticizing about the past
- Tonnies: wrote about the loss of communities where 1 family died and lived for
centuries and where everyone knew everyone. Strong family/kinship ties. A real sense of
belonging. All the same ideas and beliefs.
-Demographic shifts to the urban areas and the only thing they have in common is
the want to work
-In the end people began to see the industrialization as an important event that
meant better electricity etc… but during the time anti-industrialization
-Gale Simmel (german) rather than blaming industrialization on the loss of community he
blames geographic difference of living in a city
-reasons for loss of community economic/technological or geographic
-University of Chicago (best university for sociology for so much time)
-research based
-researched the urban areas with the many urban problems during the depression
(many unemployed)
-did participant observation (blending in and observing)
-Louis Wirth: most important part of the urban areas is the size of the area, population
area, density size, and how much difference of the area (heterogenous).
- The bigger the area, and the more dense, and the more heterogeneous the less
likely it is that a community will form and vice versa
-tested this theory: researchers go to villages in mexico. Finds very happy
community. Due to the small area, less dense, and very homogenous.