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Department
Sociology
Course
Sociology 2240E
Professor
All Professors
Semester
Spring

Description
The Origins of Sociological TheoryThe Contours of Sociological TheorywedonotsimplyreacttooursituationsintheworldwetheorizeaboutthemsociologicaltheoryanabstractsymbolicrepresentationofandexplanationofsocialrealitywhenwetalkaboutitwearetalkingaboutguidelinesforthinkinginadisciplinedmanneraboutthesocialworldDeductiveReasoningtheorizingfromthegeneraltotheparticularInductiveReasoningtheorizingfromtheparticulartothegeneralIdeologyandObjectivityIdeologyasetofideasthatjustifiesjudgementsaboutgoodbadectwhenappliedtoagroupitisthoughttoassertthepowerofsomegroupoveranotherParticularideologiesinvolvesystemsofknowledgethatdeformorconcealfactsTotalideologiessystemsofknowledgetiedtothesocialhistoricalplaceandtimeoftheindividualswhoadoptthemirrespectiveofgoodorbadintentionssociologywassupposedtohelpusunderstandhumanobjectivelyusingscientificmethodshoweversomearguethisdampersourabilitytohelppeopleSociologicalSubjectsassubjectssociologicaltheoriststheyaspiretoadetachedorobjectiveviewofsocietyasobjectshumanbeingstheyarerootedinaparticularsocietyandhavepersonalbeliefsaboutitthesubjectsofsociologicalscrutinyareneverstatictheychangeovertimeandplaceResearchTraditionsmakeassumptionsabouthowthesocialworldisorganizedandhowitoperatesandhowhumansbeingscanknowtheworldPositivismsocialworldcanbestudiedthesameasthenaturalworldseektofindsociallawsthatwillenablethemtomakepredictionsandcausationabouthumanbehavioursTheydenythingstheycannotviewwiththeirsensesTheyareobjectiveandscientificIdealismattemptstoexplainbehaviourandeventsintermsofthemeaningtheyhavefortheparticipantsTheyaresubjectiveCriticalTheoryrejectstheideathatknowledgecanbeobjectiveaimstorevealgoalsthatcanbettersocietyitsgoalissocialchangeThePhilosophicalPrecursorsofSociologytheestablishmentofsociologywasatermcoinedbyAugustComte17981857liberalsbelievedhumansbeingsarerationalandperfectibleandthereforesocietycanbeimprovedconservativesavoidtinkeringwithsocietystatusquoconservativescallfortheprotectionofthingsastheyarereactionaryconservativesseektobringbacktraditionandthegoodolddaysradicalswanttooverthrowthestatusquoinfavourofabetterfutureTraditionandModernitythTheGreatChainupuntilthelate18CPeoplebelievedinTheGreatChainwhichillustratedthesubservienceofallobjectsandbeingstoauniversalGodthstRenaissance15C1tentativechangestothisthinkingPeoplebegantodiscoverlawsthroughmathnotGodDaVinciandGalileoagreedwiththisideaRene Descartes 15961650 was one of the first to examine systematically the idea that science and math not religious dogma are the basis for control over the physical worldProtestantismalsochallengesthecatholicchurchaswelltherewaseconomicandpoliticaltransformationsconnectedwithindustrializationThePhilosophesandTheEnlightenmentthPhilosophes18CEnlightenmentthinkerswhochallengedtraditionsocioreligioustheoriesmainideawastoattainhumanandsocialperfectibilityhereandnowratherthaninheaventheyplacedagreatdealofemphasisonpracticalknowledgefarmingectcentraltothediscoveryoftruthwasrationalscientificeducationPoliticalRevolutionsTheDeclarationofIndependenceappealedtoreasonthenaturalrightsofallandequalitychallengedthepoliticalstatusquoandreligioustraditionsTheAmericanRevolutionthetermdemocracywascreatednewideasaboutequalityectwereraisedSubjectsandCitizensbothAmericanandFrenchrevolutionswerepossibleinpartbecausesubjectshadgraduallybeentransformingintocitizensintraditionalsocietiesallmembersaresubjectsoftherulerHobbesLockeMontesquieuRousseauandWollstonecraftallcontributedinthetransformationsofsubjectsintocitizensThomasHobbes15881679suggestedsocialorderwasmadebyhumansandthereforecouldbechangedbyhumansHebelievesubjectscouldjustlywithdrawaltheirconsenttosovereignpowerBelieveshumansareasocialandcompetitiveJohnLocke16321704BelieveshumansaresocialandcooperativeBelievedintherightsofindividualsaredisowningsoveriegnpowerMontesquieu16891775arguedallhumanbeingsaresocialbeingsonemustobservethefactsofsocietytoattempttodiscoverlawlikepatternsinsocialbehaviourHesawthreegovernmentsTypeofGovernmentNaturePrincipleRepublicThepeoplehavesovereignpowerCivicvirtuelegitimatizesthegovernmentMonarchySinglepersonhaspowerwithlawsHonourlegitimatizesandconventionsDespotismAsinglepersonrulesbytheirownFearlegitimatizeswillnolawsThissuggestsgovernmentisnotuniversalbutisconstructedMontesquieuisaculturalrelativistlawsofnatureapplytoallbuttheytakeondifferentformsaccordingtotheformofgovernmentJeanJacquesRousseau17121778focusedonthepossibilityofdrasticsocialchangebelievemansoriginalnaturewascorruptedbysocietyArguedprivatepropertyboughtwarandconflictBelievepowermustresideinthegeneralwillHispoliticaltheorywasimportantbecauseisdemonstratedthatthepresumedinnatepropertiesofhumannaturewereinfactsocialproductsandsuggestedademocraticsocietywithfreeandequalcitizensBelievedbiologicaldifferenceswerethebasisforidealgenderrelationsmeninpublicwomeninprivateMaryWollstonecraft17591797arguedwithRousseaushebelievedallhumanshavereasonnotjustmenBelievereasonANDpassionwerenecessaryinthevirtuouscitizenandthatwomenhadboth
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