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Lecture 15

SOC 101 Lecture 15: SOC 101 CH 15

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University of Alabama
SOC 101

Communities, the Environment and Health Community: A set of social relationships, typically arising from living in a particular place, that give people a sense of identity and belonging Social environment: Cultural context and patterns of relationships within which humans live Natural environment: Land, water, air, vegetation and organisms that make up the physical world Built environment: Physical surroundings that humans create Nomadic life: Most of history, humans were hunters and gatherers, living in small groups and foraging their natural environment for food. They didn’t have a permanent residence and were nomadic, following the migration of animals and seasonal availability of plants. Not much built environment. Rural life: 7,000-10,000 years ago, humans began growing crops and raising animals. People became connected to one place, instead of roaming. Increasingly built environment. Produced and stored food surpluses, protecting them from droughts and disasters. Specialization of labor. Preindustrial cities: Rural to city life took thousands of years. Farmers increased capacity to produce surplus food, they could support larger populations. Modern urbanization: Remarkably short period in the 19 century, industrialization changed how we lived. Foundation for industrial revolution was a massive new capacity to manufacture consumer goods. Sunbelt cities and global growth Today, urbanization is increasingly global phenomena. 2008, UN called “an invisible but momentous milestone” that first time in human history, majority of people lived in urban areas. In 2015, eight of the ten largest metropolitan areas will be developing nations. Understanding the Culture of Urban Life Gemeinschaft: Social organization in which most relationships are based upon the long0term personal ties of collective kinship, common tradition, and shared values. Like small rural communities. Gesellschaft: Social organization in which most social relationships are impersonal, temporary and based primarily on the pursuit of individual rational self-interest. Durkheim – organic solidarity in the city. In his eyes, homogeneous rural communities exhibited mechanical solidarity, social cohesion based on shared experience, personal ties and limited sense of individuality. With the growth of cities, social solidarity was gradually replaced by organic solidarity, a new form of social cohesion based on interdependence. In modern industrial society, people depend on each other precisely because their work and social roles are so specialized. Jane Addams – to help address social problems like poor sanitation, crowded housing, increasing crime and exploitation of workers, Addams cofounded Hull House in 1889, a settlement house that provided community services for ethnically diverse poor and working- class residents. She invented a new form of urban sociology that relied on gathering detailed data and mapping the demographic characteristics of different neighborhoods. Community studies: Typically look at groups of people who share some common tie and engage in social interaction within a particular geographic area. Employed small scale direct observation from U of Chicago. Social cohesion even in the ethnic neighborhoods. Human ecology: The study of the links between the physical environment – natural and built- and social life. This approach reveals that the physical environment is important at all levels of social life. Distinguish between the various physical spaces that make up urban communities Inner city: typically, the most de
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