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soc 101 class lecture 1-3 2012.docx

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Sociology #1 Class Durkheim - suicide (rare, isolated, antisocial) • the rate of suicide, is a function not of the state of mind of people that commit suicide but the state of mind of social institutions • men commit more suicide than women (euroschemia), highest among Protestants and low among Jews • people are embedded in social relations and the nature of those relations determine suicide. Therefore what is the nature of social relations that will determine if someone takes own life? Level of social solidarity, which is determined by frequency of interactions and degree by which they share beliefs, values and morals • Higher level of social solidarity the less inclined to commit suicide. for ex: married people won't commit suicide, even though they are experiencing the same level of social distress. (either because they have children, spouse, religion …which all anchors them to the world and they can resist taking their own life) • Religious groups: Protestants are more likely to commit suicide. • structure in Catholicism leads to low suicide. Jews have been persecuted for years…in short…they're used to it. • if we want to reach an explanation for the different patterns of behaviour of these people then we need to examine the social relations between these people • not why we did this or that, but why rate of this or that differs from rest of population • as the level of social solidarity increases, suicide drops. when it increases beyond a certain point the suicide may occur too because they are at unusual heights. (ex: Ultralistic suicide: in the war someone throws a grenade and you protect others by throwing yourself on it. Armies try to install high levels of solidarity, to teach loyalty, to protect comrades) • Durkheim was troubled with French . He wanted to suggest how various forms of disorder could be delt with . • Deviance comes from a lack of supervision. • Like Durkheim, sociologists today strive to identify a particular type of behaviour that is of interest for intellectual purposes…and try to investigate the social forces that lie outside peoples minds that could explain the behaviour…and they try to determine sociological changes that could change behaviour and explain it. ◦ ideas about the way the world works, explanations for how people behave, are not things that only sociologists think about. Everyone thinks about it. What social scientists do, is research to test theories and they learn how to systematically collect evidence and analyze it to prove or disprove theories ◦ romeo and Juliet: star crossed lovers. In Shakespeare plays we learn there is something wrong/out of joint and it disrupts everything below. ◦ Gallalao in 1610: "philosophers tried hard to tear down and argue the new planets out of heaven. he won't even see with his own eyes that there are planets ou there that no one has looked at yet." this scientific attitude was crucial towards believing that there are social barriers that restrict a persons behaviour. ◦ if the scientific revolution was only pillar, there are two others. Second derived from democratic revolution (french and american) . They encouraged that human action can change society. The revolutions threw out the predestined rulers (king and queen) believing that they were not above the rest. it was a revolutionary ides: giving power to the people….you can change society. Third thing that had to occur was the industrial revolution (early 1780's) It involved growth and industry, but it also dislocated people. They worked countless hours when moved to the city and faced filth and bureaucracy, criminal behaviour. It was a hellish mess, Charles Dickens. Terrible suffering occurred. ◦ Sociologists called industrial revolution a laboratory for determining why people are acting the way they are acting. It provided a lab for analyzing issues that wasn't available previously. Sociology # 2 Class Culture • gives us guidelines for how to act • it is shared by means of human interaction and learning • we create it to solve real life problems Hero's Aeolopile ▪ steam engine from 100 c.e. that was later redefined in late 19th century when there was a wide spread need for it • our culture is part of our environment and may not be aware that we are in it. • we tend to take our culture for granted • People are often startled when confronted with cultures other than our own. The other cultures may seen odd, irrational, or inferior. (Ethnocentrism) ◦ whereas Cultural Relativism: belief that all cultures should be respected as equally valid Cliterectomy: removing female genetalia. Women who have not experienced this are more likely to experience male tendencies. It lessens or eradicates sexual arousal in women. Associated with infection, shock, infertility, and Hep B. As a result, UN voted that it was a violation against women and worked to prevent this practice. And is against the law in most countries. • In general, it is important to understand Ethnocentrism. But we should draw the line at some point. • We have to be aware of the need to draw the line somewhere. • The education we receive and culture somehow constrains us. • Culture is two faced, its constraining and freeing parts. Constraining Culture • Rationalization (efficient means to achieve goals and negative consequences of doing so) • Bureaucracy (organizations that are being created to rationalize life) • Max Weber: ◦ bureaucracy is an arranged hierarchy that is constricting, having procedures, experts… ◦ staff members strive to achieve goals more efficiently • Consumerism: defining us by the stuff we buy ◦ Our tendency to define ourselves by the stuff we buy is evident int the way we buy clothes or cars. ◦ Advertising encourages us to buy certain products and to do so frequently. It defines out lives by the things we buy. People want to be part of a group, not an outcast. ▪ Advertising banks on our desire to be part of a group and allows us to buy socially desirable characteristics. ▪ Consumer debt has never been higher, this forces us to work harder to pay it off, which then increase our stress levels and depression level. So if we respond the way advertisers want us to respond, we will develop problems of both a economic and physical nature ▪ Consumerism draws attention away from pressing issues Negative Consequences of Consumerism • (via TABLE) • how does fashion define us as individuals? tell whether we are active, fashionista… Sociology Class # 3 Feminist Theory, Emotions, and the Building Blocks of Social Interaction • Research shows that women laugh more than men. Women are also shown to interrupt more often. ◦ men are less likely to ask for directions, which causes many conflicts • Social interaction involves communication among people acting + reacting to one another, either face-face or computer. ◦ Feminist sociologists are sensitive to gender differences in social interaction. They see that gender often structures interaction patterns. • If status is seen as a social position, generally people with higher status (usually men, in this case) will get more laughs, while people will lesser status (like women) will laugh more. • Study in psychiatric hospital: researcher discovered something called "downward humour". ◦ The higher the status of a staff member, the more laughs they got. ◦ psychiatrists often made the residents the target of their humour, while residents +paramedics target the patients themselves. • Laughter is often a signal of who has higher/lower status. ◦ Social structure influences who laughs more. • Social statuses are 1/3 building blocks that structure all social interactions. ◦ the others are Roles and Norms Roles: expected behaviours. People occupy a status, they perform a role. Norm: generally accepted way of doing things. Norms are imposed by the instructors, who often punish the class clown Emotion Management • Scholars think that laughter + other emotions are like the common cold. An external disturbance causes a reaction that people presumably experience involuntarily. ◦ ex: external disturbance could be grizzly bear attack that causes fear/exposure to a virus. ▪ In either case, we can't control our body's patterned response. • Emotions just happen • Feminists were the 1st sociologists to note the flaw in the view that emotional responses are typically involuntary ◦ seeing as how women are status subordinates, must control their emotions, they generalized the idea. ◦ They argued that emotions don't just happen to us, we manage them. ( if a grizzle comes after you, you can choose to play dead or run) If you choose to calm and play dead, you ignite another emotion…HOPE. (Figure #1) • When people manage emotions, they follow "scripts", like knowledge that playing dead will give you a better chance at survival ◦ people know the culturally designated emotional response and try to mimic it appropriately. If they don't achieve this, they often feel disappointment, or guilt • Sociologist Arlie Russel Hochschild leads the study of emotion management (he coined the term). ◦ she argues that this management involves people obeying "feeling rules" + responding appropriately to situations ex: people talk about RIGHT to feel angry b/c they should feel angry ◦ People have conventional expectations not only about what they should feel but also about how much they should feel, how long they should feel it, and with whom they should share those feelings. ◦ Norms and rules govern our emotional life Emotion Labour • Hochschild distinguishes emotion management (everyday life) from emotion labour ( people do as part of job for which they are paid) Teachers punishing students for late assignments… = emotion labour. People who work at Air Canada are experts in emotion labour …"come again!" • Hochschild estimates that in USA a good portion of jobs involves emotion labour. more women than men do emotion labour b/c they are better socialized to undertake caring + nurturing roles • As economy shifts from production of goods to production of services, the market for emotion labour grows because more people preselected and trained Emotions in Historical Perspective • social structure impinges on emotional experiences the common sense view of emotions as unique, spontaneous, uncontrollable, authentic, natural, and perhaps even rooted exclusively in our biological makeup proves to be misguided. Feeling rules take different forms under different social conditions, which vary historically. 3 examples from social history of emotions help illustrate the point: GRIEF: the crude death rate helps determine our experience of grief Many infants died at birth or in first year of life. Infectious disses declined populations. The risk of losing family members, was mu
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