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3a03 final review.docx

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Benjamin Kelly

Simmel - prolific writer - unable to develop sociological system – no simmel school Four levels of social reality: 1. Psychological assumptions 2. Interpersonal relationships (focused on) 3. Structure and changes of the spirit of the time 4. Metaphysics Emergence: - higher levels emerge out of lower levels - whole-ism: the whole is greater than the sum of its parts (ie H2O) Methodological relationist – everything interacts in some way with everything else (dialectical) Social form and content: - any social phenomenon are composed of 2 phenomenon which are insperable 1) Content: - the interest/motive of the phenomenon/interaction - messy, everyone has different interests 2) Form: - the mode of interaction among individuals through the shape of which the content achieves social reality - patterns that interaction can take, social structure Form emerges through content Ie – WATER H2O = form H,H,O = content ->when they interact, bunch of forms occur (steam) Content: colonization or Russian take-over (issues of power) Form: both subordination Content: hospital, school Form: cooporation, inequality “mere spatial or temporal aggregation of parts is not sufficient” - society requires reciprocal relationships Settings change but form stays the same Form/Content analysis rests on 2 principles: 1. the same form of sociation is observered in dissimilar contents 2. content is expressed through a variety of different forms of sociation as its medium Problem of sociology: sociology should separate form from content by scientific abstraction Simmel focuses on a variety of forms (division of labour, subordination, in-group solidarity) Contents (ie. Econ interests) can be relized through the form of competition and cooperation Subjective and Objective Culture Objective: things people produce (ie art and science) Subjective: ability to absorb, control elements of objective culture…aka individual culture Problem – objective seems to have life of its own Example: language: produce it, but what if we deviate from it? (ie being silent for wk) Feedback effect: acts back on what created it (ie. Frankenstein) – taking for granted things we have produced (simmel’s reification) Norms and values: become internalized  both internally and externally – the “dual character of the moral command” Social Geometry: Dyad and triads rd - adding 3 person changes group dynamics - ppl more likely to find meaning beyond group - new social roles ( can become mediator or object of competition) - authority systems can emerge Fashion: - simmel paid attention to leisure and consumption - discussed why fashion goes in and out of style so quickly - fashion = o a form of conformity o contradiction - success leads to eventual failure - as large numbers consume, ceases to be unique - unfashionable people just engage in inverse forms of imitation – a productive factor that represents our human nature ( to connect and be social) = negative though, difference is muted - has 2 social tendencies: union, isolation Money - conducted study, econ approach - went beyond place in market and linked it to culture and society - a money economy transforms culture and individual relationships (+,-) - money becomes symbol of value - individual freedom increases but theres problems of alienation For Marx, econ problems based on capitalism For simmel, econ problems reflected in increasing powerlessness of individual in face of growth of objective culture Marx thought problems can be solved, simmel thought prblems with money = inherent, no hope DISTANCE in terms of money greater difficulty obtaining object, more valuable Too easily obtained, not very valuable Impossible, lack value Money & Reification: - distancing factors – time, scarcity, difficulty, sacrifice - money creates distance from people/objects and provides means to overcome it Money & rationalization - contributes - emphasizes quantitative over qual - promotes rational calculation - replaces personal ties (delivery, online shopping) -> impersonal - modern paradox: while we grow more dependent on other positions for convenience, we know less about the people who occupy them - moneys dictation seems unavoidable Sociology of Secrecy: - the person hides something while someone tries to reveal what is being hidden - we’ll never know everything about the other - we acquire not only truth but ignorance and errer - we choose “fragments” we want to reveal and conceal - social relationships require truth and error - we can accept lies from those who are further from us (ie politician) FREUD Theory of the Mind - appreiacted by plays, writers - innate instincts and drives – undergirded behavior of humans and animals 1. Pleasure principle – demand by body to have its needs met immediately 2. Reality principle – in trying to meet these needs, the infant encounters physical world in a way that does not immediately meet desires - ego develops to mediate between external relatity and the preasure principle - ie at first, infant urinates then parents teaches social rules - 3. Superego – the accumulated and sometimes unconscious knowledge of social rules and taboos that a child leans not to violate - at first, rules imposed externally by adults - as superego develops, they become ingrained and part of personality - urges have to be controlled - conscious mind conditioned not to recognize desires - buried in unconscious in unpredictable ways - life instinces of sexual desire (libido) and aggressive urges (thantos) being most prominent - Freud’s solution – find words to express repressed thoughts - Moving from unconscious -> conscious - The surfacing of the repressed allows it to be discussed and understood The origins of society - “totems and taboos” - linking state of nature (unknowable) with state of culture - primal horde o alpha male dominated by females, young men maturing banished o offspring returned, kill father, liberating women they took for themselves o father = totem (bearer of the law) o have guilt, remorse, create community  collective crime = birth of humanity  overcome powerlessness and achieved a sense of solidarity  world of relations of force (impulse, aggression), gives way to world of alliances, solidarity (civilization) Civilization & its discontents: - compares civilized and savage - we pay price for civilization bc it demands we repress instinctual drives restricting limits of personal happiness - birth of civilization = rooted in egoism (humans strive for personal happiness and avoid sadness) - in order to do this, we create cultures and connect - suppression of needs – causing discontents such as regulating sexuality - the origins of civilization are in the individual and each of us born into a threatening world where we seek pleasure and avoid pain - left questioning if civilation is benefifical - in civiliza
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