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Lecture 2

SOCC30H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Human Capital, Political Sociology, Underemployment

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Julian Tanner

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- political sociology; seeing politics differently
- politics; beyond formal spheres to include the paces of our everyday lives
owho rules and how?
- Power
Historically contingent
Happens in a moment in time
oContingent (depends on circumstances)
Not everyone is able to exercise power in the same way
oResistance; potentiality in all social relations and circumstances
Even in extremes, people can resist the exercise of power
Not all about consent and acceptance
oRational and exercised. Historically contingent, that happens in a
particular moment in time
oBy conceptualizing power as relational, it helps us understand that
power is connected to resistance, it si not absolute
- Sociological imagination
oOffers optics on power that connects self and society, biography
and history
oSocial theory can guide political practice: how we can act to change
the world
Social theory is not just a way of seeing, understanding or
analyzing, but a pathway to being able to change ones social
circumstance or condition
- Social theory
oPerspective (way of seeing)
oExplanation (way of understanding)
oLike maps; social theory strives for accuracy in description and
prediction, clarity, comprehensiveness, simplicity
oTacit vs. grand theory (also meso-)
Tacit; common sense
Ex. weather
Grand theory; social theories that are proven
Ex. Karl Marx’s theories
- Youth unemployment
oMajor issue
oHigh levels on unemployment for almost all areas
oYoung people who are in the prime of their lives, the likelihood for
them to get jobs is high
oNot just unemployment, its underemployment
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- Underemployment
oSomeone has a university degree but finds a job where their
degree is not necessary or applicable
- Why are youth underemployed
oHigh proportionate of university students working these jobs
o¼ of all youths with university degrees in low skilled jobs
ogeneration y; youths born in 1995 only think of themselves
lazy and not wanting to work, etc
osystematic issue; youth and unemployment labour
oyouth are the major contributors in society, a social problem and
also tied to the issue of crisis
- What kinds of solutions offered?
oIdentify at least 2 solutions
Offer more jobs to the youths
Work without pay to constitute for better jobs in the future
Allowing people to retire first
oWhat kind of solutions are they? Individual? Governments?
oEvaluate which solutions you find most promising
oWhat kind of solutions not offered?
The complexity of issues, we often do not hear about
focusing on youths on not expanding the field of employment
oRevolution; connected to each other when it comes to youth
- From individual to collective change
oSystematic change, or collective, karl marx might be saying
individuals are different from collective
- How do people change structures?
oMarx’s answer organize collectively as a class and wage
revolutionary class struggle
oRevolutionary; change the system, not just the rules
- Communist manifesto; the history of all hitherto existing society is the
history of class struggles
- What it means to be revolutionary, changing the system was also
changing the rules, about changing how the economy was being
organized in a capitalist system
oin order for us to understand how society is changing we have to
understand the dynamics that create class struggles and etc
- karl marx
orevolutionary in non-revolutionary times after revolution 1789 france
oabout material history not history of ideas; production is the first
historical act (german ideology
oglobal capitalism; extreme inequality and class polarization
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