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Greg Bird (6)
Lecture 6


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Greg Bird

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Lecture 6 part 1 notes scroll down for 2nd partthey both deal with some kind of deviance Becker more concretely and explicitly as beaker studies marijuana use garfunkel deviates from social expectation They both have very different methods and approaches however THey both developed a perspective in sociology that is associated with their names Becker mostly studies musiciansjazz ones He wrote a book called outsiders which has to do with jazz musicians using marijuana Labeling theory is what he is famous for it was a radically new way of understanding deviance Deviance is often explained by recourse to the characteristics of the personeducation personality biologyHe started to think that social behavior develops based on the labels others put on us Becker said smoking marijuana has nothing to do with the psychological or genetical characteristics of the selfnot the person or the marijuana itself He developed a method called ethnomethodology Garfinkel developed the breaching experiment Students would show the work we do to disrupt that social order and how we maintain that social order He did that at a time where it was easy to do something like this We learn a lot through those experiments Howard beckers piece the article came out in 1953 once people have been labelled then act in accordance to that label We can apply it to actions that arent deviant at all If you look at mead and blumer you can see how beckers idea is very consistent with those ideasour sense of self and the meanings we give to things we do are no so much the product of our internal dispositions but rather things that are outside of usThis was very revolutionary at the time it came out What beaker said was that marijuana users didnt do it for distinctionset apart from the rest of society but because its a social process you have to learn how to smoke it properlyfirst step the second step includes you have to recognize the symptoms and the third step is to see the symptoms as enjoyable You have to learn to label that experience as something thats enjoyable Social experience is very important here You need to learn how others do it and what sort of experiences other see as enjoyable or notWhat sort of a social behavior that youve seen around you where you can see people only enjoying a practice by learning from others that the outcome is an enjoyable one Exercise is one example You learn that the end which is you being in pain you have to learn to appreciate that as enjoyable We learn from otherswe learn by observing others and by looking at the perceptions and judgements of others Becker would say our inclination to do things has to do with learning to enjoy them that we have an inclination to do them This is a way of explaining behavior by not looking at what causes of behavior but rather we should look very closely at that behavior and examine the process And describe the sets of changes people go through as they learn to perform and appreciate their acidity or object In doing that we can see a change in how people conceptualizer and experience the actionThis is very close to mead and can bear in mind the conversation of gestures that we can learn meaning from Becker crticjzes thePast theories about marijuana usageDispositional theories because ether dont account for why people take up smoking or give it up Why is it not a matter of dispositions or marijuana itself but a process He gives some cases if you have a really bad experience unless its pleasurable people stop He also says if you dont know how to smoke it properly you wont get that experience out of it Another case is peoplewho are high all the time cant distinguish from being high eventually stop because they cant distinguish between that and reality The other important thing he says that we have to continue to label the activity as pleasurable to keep smoking Continuously point to themselves that this is pleasurable otherwise they would think this is not pleasurable and would stop We see here the role of social interaction It is key to understand the meaning we give to what we doIts only from being around people that they may change the way they understand an object Construction of meaning and maintenance of that meaning through such processes That meaning has to be maintained Not only do we learn how people do certain things but that meanings are maintained within a larger social group The meaning we give something enable or prevent activities from happeningGarfinkel he found an ethnomethodology Developed a whole new way of studying sociology Its less of a theory and more of a
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