*chapter 1 and 2- must understand for tutorials and midterm. main goal of tutorials is to show
you've done the reading and UNDERSTAND it.
8 tutorials, at least do 5 but your grade will be based on your best 5.
--try to achieve 10 points, paste blurb into discussion-compose msg.
Is all about patterns of behavior, eg- hand holding, elevators, university, marriage patterns and
*men hold hands from the front, girls from behind. elevator behavor = standing far a part, no
I'ts about social structure, is society "real"? Is social stucture "real"? Does social stucture affect
your behaviour? yes. How do we create and maintain social structure? By interacting in certain
ways and by remaining to act in those certain ways.
*With social structure you do not have freedom of choice because our choices are always
influenced even if we do not know it.
-under what conditions do behaviour patterns and social structure remain stable?
What causes social change?
-population growth and migration
-environment (physical, political, econminc)
Who we are and what we do is influenced by many things, eg- age, gender, distance, community
of orgin, social class The Sociological Perspective
Thinking about Society
* ““the systematic study of human society”-there is structure guided by theory
* llooking at individual behaviour in a social context -people will behave differently within
different social context
* rrecognizing and understanding patterned behaviour
* uunderstanding social order/structure
* uunderstanding social change
seeing the general in the particular
this is a general pattern
* iindividual behaviour represents that of categories of people (e.g. men/women)
* social contexts – different effects on different categories of people, rather than on individuals
social contexts – different effects on different categories of people, rather than on individuals
Canadian Airborne Regiment (pp.2-3) the standford expirment, prisnor vs. guard
seeing the strange in the familiar
* ggiving up the notion of individual decision-making
* sseeing the guiding hand of society in our thoughts and deeds recognizing the “determinism” constraining our “free will”
***everything you do and feel is affected by your society
individual behaviour in a social context
* rrates are remarkably stable over time
* DDurkheim (know this man) looked at suicide rates among different categories of people
* high – affluent, Protestant, single
* low – poor, Catholic, married
* llevel of social integration/isolation
* rrates increase during rapid social change
* Aboriginal communities *gone through incredible social change)
* change in individual status/social mobility
* economic cycles
* ddiffers fromAmerican or European sociology
* eearly French-Canadian (i.e. Catholic) influences
* rreflects Canadian economy, which depends on natural resources (extraction and export)—fur,
lumber, fish, oil, uranium
* ssecond largest country in the world so nation-building difficult: communications,
communication technologies, and the media important areas
* CCanada is a country rooted in immigration: thus ethnicity, intergroup relations, stratification
and social class became important areas of sociological research
thinking sociologically requires sociological theory
*any thinking requires thoery* What is theory?
* ““a statement of how and why specific facts are related”
* aa framework for understanding cause and effect
* aa tool required for “thinking”
three major approaches
* aa theoretical approach is a “basic image of society that guides thinking and research”
* the structural-functional approach -implies there is structure in a society
* the social-conflict approach -implies there is a conflict
the symbolic-interaction approach -implies we create society through our interactions
*very important, know which is which and be able to identify an issue with one of these
the structural-functional approach
* ssees society as a complex system whose parts work together to promote solidarity and
* iimplies social structure
* relatively stable patterns of social behaviour
* shape to society and its components
* social functions (i.e. components serve some purpose, meet some need)
* the social system or structure has a life of its own (i.e. it’s “real”)
* the structure persists, while actors (or generations) come and go
the social-conflict approach
* eenvisions society as an arena of inequality generating conflict and change * hhighlights not solidarity but division - who has the power..
* class, race, ethnicity, sex or age are linked to unequal distribution of money, power,
education or prestige
* ssocial structure benefits some while depriving others = conflict
* pprivilege begets privilege = continuing inequality = continuing conflict -people who are
priveledged pass it down to their children
* the disadvantaged – women, workers, gays/lesbians, Native peoples – may mobilize to
bring about social change
* social movements
the symbolic-interaction approach
* eenvisions society as the product of the everyday interactions of individuals
* ““society” has no “real” existence
* sustained only by the continuing interaction of individuals (the social construction of
reality) - when people interact they construct reality
* if we interact differently or change our behaviour, society changes accordingly
* society is a shared “reality”, constantly constructed and reconstructed on the basis of
subjective meanings and responses (i.e. it’s fluid)
* social patterns are only as stable as the thinking and behaviour of countless individuals
*nothing real out there to construct you so social change is easy if people just act in a
different way social change will happen
*based on notion that people are always constructing
Why learn theory?
* yyou can’t think without theory – an intellectual tool
* ttheory determines your angle of observation
* sswitching approaches promotes intellectual flexibility and allows you to analyze complexity
* ttheory and analysis help you to make decisions about your own lives education, occupation, investment, mate-selection, child-rearing, leisure, voting, home-buying,
* ““seeing the world sociologically and asking questions”
* hhow do we know?
* we know some things because of faith, consensus, expertise, common sense
* a logical system that bases knowledge on direct systematic observation-looking,
Women as Methodologists
Harriet Martineau (1802-1876)- writer and investigative journalist (50+ books, 1600 articles) her
methodology delt with the art of thinking. she observed morals and manners. She wrote of book
called soicety in america where she was the first to tackle comprartive analysis, explicitly
sociological. she was an activist (anti-slavery, women's right to education and to vote)
Florence Nightingale (1820)1910)- lady with the lamp to soldiers wounded in the crimean war.
passionate statisticain- compared data cross-sectionally and over time showing that imporved
sanitation would reduce mortality in crimean and british hospitals. she argued that rates of crime,
suicide and marriage could be predicted accuratey despote indiviual free.
* eempirical evidence
* information we can verify with our senses
sight, hearing, touch, taste, smell
concept * mental construct that represents part of the world
student, teacher, chair are all concepts that represent something in our world
* concept whose value changes from case to case
grade point average is a concept that varies from student to student, top speed of a car-
varies with every tpype of car
* process of determining the value of a variable in a specific case
measuring performence some way or another
* ooperationalizing a variable
specifying exactly what one intends to measure in assigning a value to a variable
eg- if you wanted to study delinkulcy what are the measures u are going to establish and
use? you can use statisitcs or a surveys. the point is u have to measure something some
*religion can be studied scientificaly "how important is faith or religion in your life? a)
very b) not etc.
relationships among variables
* sscientific ideal = cause and effect
* a relationship in which we know that change in one variable causes change in another
* iindependent variable
* the variable that causes the change
* ddependent variable
* the variable that changes in response to changes in the independent variable
* ““relationship by which two (or more) variables change together”
* positive correlation-might appear if u try to measure the amount of hours spent studying
and mark on a midterm * negative correlation - measure amount of partying the night before a midterm and the
mark on midterm
* sspurious correlation
* a correlation caused by a third variable -eg in textbook
* ccontrol variable
* a variable held constant to clearly see the effect of another is still there
* if controlling for a third variable eliminates a correlation, then the original relationship
* note: study Figure 2-1 carefully
* delinquency by density
* by income level
* a doctrine contending that sense perceptions are the only admissible basis of human
knowledge and precise thought (hear, see, touch, taste)
* rremember “empirical evidence”
* information that we can verify with our senses
* sscientific sociology
* fits best with the structural-functional perspective- reason for that is that u are
* can identify (and predict) patterns of behaviour, but can tell us nothing about meaning
to the actors- cant tell us about feelings or what something means to somebody I.E the
* ““the study of society that focuses on the meanings people attach to their social world”
* deals with the meaning attached to behaviour * sees reality as constructed by people themselves – not as objective reality “out there -”
* relies on qualitative data, as opposed to quantitiative data
* VVerstehen – understanding (Max Weber)
* ffits best with the symbolic-interaction perspective
doing interpretive sociology
* rrequires intimate familiarity
* rrelies on three sources of data
* participant-observation-become a part of , must let the ppl know ur also observing them
while joining them
* iinterpretive understanding requires systematic analysis based on sustained personal contact
* ffeminist research tends to be both critical and interpretive
* ““the study of society that focuses on the need for social change”
* rejects the notion that research should be value free
-cant let religion or anything like that impact your research
* often includes the research subjects as equals in all stages of the research
* is openly political in orientation (activist) and seeks to bring about change
* appeals to people on the left of the political spectrum
* often carried out on behalf of people who are disadvantaged (visible minorities,
women,Aboriginals, seasonal workers)
* ssurvey research * random samples - poeple cant be all one type of people... not all preps, not all jocks..
* questionnaires – written questions, either closed-ended or open-ended, possibly self-
* interviews – questions administered personally -often done on phone
* systematic observation of people while joining in routine social activities
* uusing available data
* secondary analysis of data collected by others
content analysis - sometimes people do content analysis after the have been taking
notes... (counting the number of times something is mentioned)
The Glue that Binds
What is culture?
-defines us a society, shapes our life and identitiy.
-defines us a society, shapes our life and identitiy.
* ““the values, beliefs, behaviours, and material objects that constitute a people’s (a nation, a
ethnic group [canadians in quebec]) way of life”
* -- a people- people who hang together culturally
* in other words, everything that humans produce with their hands or their minds
(not just the opera)
* a bridge to the past, a guide to the future- move through time because of culture
* the basis of society’s survival or continuity-you're not a society if you don't have
* nnonmaterial culture * the intangible(can't touch it or hold it in your hand) world of ideas created by
members of society (language, symbols, theory, religion, science) the
primeminister is nonmaterial bc he is part of a system that humans have made up
* mmaterial culture
* the tangible things created by members of a society (wheels, clothing, cars, the CN
* tthe paste in the papier-mâché
* the glue that supports the structure of society, holding the pieces together
* the basis of social or societal solidarity
* separates human beings from primates
* is the basis or tool kit of intelligence
* distinguishes between societies
* allows for the development of personal identity-could not have sense of self if you
didnt have values
* makes social interaction possible
* makes society possible- cant have society without lanuage (ability to communicate with
* is the basis of our “Canadian” identity
* makes Quebec a distinct society within Canada
Canada in Six Words or Less (National Post contest) "medicare, we're dying to keep it"
"proud to be humble"
"bad weather, punishing taxes. cold beer"
"rights without responsiliblites"
"patriotic and proud of it...shh"
"canada: nobody gives a puck"
"canada: from sea to whining sea"
"americans on valium"
"so little history, so many cultures"