SOC 08221 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Social Disintegration, Social Integration, Anomie
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• Social institutions- any set of persons, such as a family, economy, government, or religion,
cooperating for the purpose of organizing stable patterns of human activity.
• Cohort- within a population, a group of individuals of similar age who share a particular
• Demographic factors- social characteristics of a population, in particular those of race,
age, and gender.
• Intersectionality- the ways in which several demographic factors- especially social class,
race, ethnicity, and gender- combine to effect people’s experiences.
• Social Class- a category of people whose experience in life are determined by the amount
of income and wealth they own and control.
• Sociology- the study of social behavior and human society
• Social problem- a social condition, event, or pattern of behavior that negatively affects
the well-being of a significant number of people who believe the conditions, event, or
pattern needs to be changed.
• Data sources- collection of information
• Global perspective- a viewpoint from which we compare our own society to other
societies around the world.
• Paradigms- theories that are very broad.
• Capitalism- An economic system that includes the ownership of private property, the
making of financial profit, and the hiring of workers.
• Capitalists- the economically dominant class that privately owns and controls human
labor, raw materials, land, tools, machinery, technologies, and factories
• Social self- A process by which people are able to see themselves in relationship to others.
• Looking glass self- the idea that we see ourselves as we think others see us.
• Self-fulfilling prophecy- The social process whereby a false definition of a situation brings
about behavior that makes the false definition “come true”
• Social integration- the unity or cohesiveness of society
• Social disintegration- (opposite of social integration) which leads to the collapse of
• Theory- a collection of related concepts
• Norms- social rules
• Values- social beliefs
• Dysfunctions- negative consequences of social structures or social institutions.
• Social interaction- the communication that occurs between two or more people.
• Anomie- a state of normlessness in society
Aspects of social problems
• Concrete measure of a problem and its prevalence
• Studied using qualitative research
• Examples: crime rates, population growth.