8/21/13- Introduction (What is theory?)
• Will have a quiz on 8/28/2013- open book and in groups
• Sociological theory is not philosophy, it is supposed to be scientific theory like other scientific
theories. It is derived in the same way through actual evidence.
◦ Observable patterns of behavior across groups.- If there are not any differences, we dont
• There used to be a pattern in the United States that each generation had a better standard of
living then their parents- this has stopped. (was called inter-generational mobility). - Used to be
that if you worked hard you would succeed, this is a cultural story, not necessary true.
◦ Low-income children in Columbus are less likely to climb out of poverty than their parents
• In Ohio and surrounding areas the children in the bottom fifth are only 4-10% likely to move up
to the top fifth.
◦ The south is pretty consistently in 4%
• Theory- a potential explanation to a pattern.
• The potential explanations come from having a fundamental knowledge in sociological theory.
• Sociology is not terrible concerned with one individual, they are looking for group patterns
(becomes a social issue).
◦ Example: one person unemployed vs. 35% of the state being unemployed
• Social Issues/ Problems of the Times
◦ Big social issues in the country/ world right now?
▪ Gun control- regulations and restrictions- school shootings
• Aspects of school shootings that came up- wanted to limit/ ban guns and magazine
sizes for guns.
• Wants harsher background checks to help with gun control
◦ mental illness would prevent one from obtaining a gun- but, how much mental
illness is a problem? It is hard to identify the ones who would actually commit
school shootings, etc.
Sociological Theory- The “Why”
• Sociological Theory: Explanations
◦ “ The social world is, to a large extent, what the agents make of it, at each moment; but they
have no chance of un-making and re-making it except on the basis of realistic knowledge
(this is the research aspect) of what it is and of what they can do with it from the position
they occupy within it.”- Pierre Bourdieu
• Social World
◦ What kind of things are in the social world?
▪ Culture- contains values and beliefs
▪ Social phenomenon- laws
• Government, legal structure, is what influences us to not break these social
phenomenon.- they watch us with police, to make sure we follow the laws
• Un-Making and Re-Making It
◦ can do this by voting, protests, sit-ins, etc. ◦ If we do not have realistic knowledge, we may have public policy issues
• Realistic knowledge of the social world is sociology's job
• Un-Making and Re-Making is not likely on anyone's agenda. Sociology is often on the side that
there is something we can do. (Although, science doesn't take sides)
• Social power is relational- you cannot have power unless someone else gives it to you.
• Can have power by disguising the realistic knowledge that is set up, by having people operate
under your knowledge instead (making them do what you want them to do).
• Realistic VS. Objective Knowledge
◦ Theories provide “realistic” knowledge when tested within and applied to everyday life via
◦ But, theories themselves areALWAYS based on assumptions, logical decutions (or
inductions), and other preceding frameworks.
◦ Theories are not “objective” if by that is meant “free from bias or preconceived notions”
◦ Science itself is a preconceived notion
• Sociological Theory:Assumptions
◦ It is both desirable and possible to understand the social world that we ourselves are
interacting in by stepping outside far enough to apply methods of rigorous observations
◦ There are relatively stable patterns of social interactions
◦ There is, never the less, continuous social change
◦ Social life is not random, nor is it predetermined
▪ “Not just anything can happen.” - Talcott Parsons
• Sociological Theory: Corollaries
◦ Some patterns of social interaction are not beneficial for society- social problems
◦ It is desirable and possible for us (agents) to direct inevitable social change inw ays that
change those social patterns (un-make and re-make)
◦ Realistic knowledge of the existing patterns, out own position within those patterns, and
potential alternative patterns, is essential
◦ There are strong forces invested in the current
8/23/13- Introduction to Marx and Power Relations
• American Dream Beyond Reach- Columbus DispatchArticle
◦ Question: Why is Ohio's inter-generational mobility so low?
◦ Why?: Family Structure, Community Relationships, and Urban Setting
▪ Could be happening more in Ohio because we do not have as many jobs.
• Manufacturing and mining job are starting to be less and less common
◦ How to get out of poverty?: Welfare can be used as a crutch and can keep you alive. But
really all you can do is get a job.
• Logistics- Walk through syllabus and Carmen
◦ First essay is due on 9/27/13
◦ All lectures and due dates are entered in the calendar on carmen.
▪ Content ---> Upcoming Events ---> Course Schedule
◦ Group discussion questions will be the eligible essay questions on the exams
▪ Come with typed answers to the questions to go over with the group.
◦ In The News Essay- due 9/27; will go over the paper in week three ◦ People ---> groups ---> to see group number. Know group number for Wednesday
◦ Bring textbook to class on Wednesday, will need for the open book vocabulary quiz
• History of Sociological Theory- The Enlightenment, the Modern World and Marx
◦ The Enlightenthnt th
▪ Late 17 , early 18 Centuries
• First time to see social change in their life times
• When things were not changing it was believed that everything know was truth,
however when everything began change destabilization happened.
▪ Long-standing ideas and beliefs on social life were turned upside down (various
▪ The development of civil society (open spaces of debate relatively free from government
• Civil Society- Radical idea that there would be a part of life that the church did not
control. And that tradition would not be dragging people down. We would be free of
the government, religion, and tradition.
▪ The rapid pace of the modern world
• Due to the pace is was destabilizing to the people, children were being born into a
completely different world than their parents.
▪ Acritical mass of literate citizens began to think about the economic, political, and
cultural conditions that shaped society
• Quite a radical notion
• Ideas were being shared across the world, the Bible was written in different
◦ Reason and Science
▪ The emphasis on reason underpinned the rise of science
• Science developed as a way to regularize observations and give an ability for people
to solve their problems themselves.
• This was crazy because this was starting to take over things that GOD was
responsible for prior to science.
▪ Thinkers claimed that laws could be uncovered by means of science and empirical
▪ They rebuked existing knowledge (based on religious faith and common-sense) as full
of prejudice and mindless tradition
• Radical for the time!
◦ Birth of Sociology
▪ Sociology- a disciplinary new-comer
• People were returning from ships and saying not all societies acting the way they
▪ French intellectualAuguste Comte (1798-1857), coined the term “sociology” in 1839
• Figured if you could do physics, you could do “social physics” thought maybe if
there were laws of physics there may be laws of society.
• Comte did not develop it much, but did help put the thought in people's heads.
▪ French theorist Emile Durkheim (1858-1917) was most instrumental in laying the
groundwork for the emerging discipline of sociology.
• Helped set distinctions from psychology. • Anthropology and Sociology are tight knit due to Durkheim
◦ These Particular Founding “Fathers”- all were jewish, started with anti-semitism.
▪ Durkheim emphasized that the primary domain of sociology is social facts: conditions
and circumstances external to the individual that, nevertheless, influence one's course of
• SOCIAL FACTS is what separates sociology from psychology.
• Was worried about destabilizing features like with the french revolution
• Focused on what kept society together.
▪ Marx analyzed not only the economic dynamic of capitalism, but also the social and
moral problems inherent to the capitalist system.
• Started with an industrial revolution
• With the mechanical changes in farming farmers were selling and losing their land,
all they had were themselves.
◦ Came to large cities for factory jobs in large groups. No regulations on housing
or factories, but these people had no choice- THIS FUELED MARX.
▪ Weber combined a methodical, scientific approach with a concern about both the
material conditions and idea systems of modern societies.
• Combined notions of protestantism with capitalism.
• Navigating Sociological Theory- Order and action, up and down
◦ AStrategy to Compare Theories
▪ Two central questions that social theorists and philosophers have grappled with for
• The questions of order and action (Alexander 1987)- what theories are created form,
order and action
▪ Order: What accounts for the patterns and/or predictability of behavior that lead us to
experience social life as stable and routine.
• Feelings of order and stability is required for social life to happen.
▪ Action: What factors motivate individuals or groups to act.
• We are always aware that were are motivated by certain things..- We hate doing
somethings and love doing other things.
◦ The Question of ORDER: Working Down
▪ Society can be pictured as an overarching system that works down on individuals and
groups to determine the shape of the social order.
• EX: OSU gives and order to follow certain rules, go to class but we are constrained
by the external force of OSU.
▪ Society is understood to operate according to its own logic distinct from the will of
▪ This orientation has assumed many different names- macro, holistic, objectivist,
structuralist, and label we use here, collectivist.
• If we talk about society working down on use it is a collectivist notion, the order is
in the collectivity.
◦ The Question of Order: Working Up
▪ Or society can be individuals and groups creating, re-creating, or altering the social
order that works up to produce society.
• EX: Chose to come to OSU, individuals now where sweats to class instead of suits and ties like in early 1900's
▪ This position grants more autonomy to actors, who are seen as relatively free to
reproduce the patterns and routines of social life (i.e., the social order) or transform
▪ Over time, this orientation has earned several names a swell- micro, elementarism,
subjectivist, and the term we adopt, individualist.
• Individuals hash out in interactions and the order develops.
◦ The Question of Action
▪ Two ends of the spectrum: nonrational and rational.
▪ Action is primarily nonrational when it is guided by values, morals, norms, traditions,
the quest for meaning, unconscious desires, and/ or emotional states
• Not questioning, just accepting based on the things listed above.
▪ Action is primarily rational when it is assumed that individual and group actions are
motivated primarily by the attempt to maximize rewards while minimizing costs.
◦ The Conflict Tradition
▪ Not a popular notion- pointing out that all is NOT fine under the surface.
8/28/13- Marx: Conflict within Capitalism
• Capitol by Marx is fair game for multiple choice questions on the test!
• Pay attention to the Bourdieu quote- she keeps re-using it
◦ In regards to Marx: Wanted a revolution to un-make the government. The un-making is
easy, the re-making is hard.
• The Conflict Traditions
◦ Fighting for scarce resources
◦ Not a popular notion- pointing out that all is NOT fine under the surface.
◦ Offshoot of effort to write/ understand history
▪ Story of one kind of struggle after another: political and religious
▪ Persecutions, factions
• What makes society change?
◦ Struggle, not peaceful growth.
▪ Society would be fighting for change. There has always been a dominate group
exploited by a subordinate group. Would lead to demise- would lead to a bubble that
▪ In order to get something you have to give up something, and people did not necessarily
want to do that.
▪ The force that is driving this, according to Marx, is the domination of the higher group-
power and equality was just unstable.
• Karl Marx 1818-1883
◦ Marx was a revolutionary always in every way. He was booted out of many countries and
ended up starving to death living in poverty.
◦ He died by what he lived by.
◦ He would pick stuff out and put it together to come up with his own rendering of what was
going on and what was going to happen.- Social Philosophy.
• Overall Notion
◦ Material System- how were the goods and services produced to keep people alive. ▪ There is a contradiction within each of these because of the power struggle
▪ Capitalism must die because of the exploitation and domination- it was getting ready to
blow according to Marx.
▪ You can't fix capitalism
▪ Capitalism produced it's own grave diggers- it was going to bring itself down.
• See the historical stage of society slide #13
▪ He believed the society in his day mirrored past society.
• You lived day to day- you cannot amass a surplus, no body can own anything.
• There is not social classes in this world
▪ The slide will show who the oppressing class was and who the oppressed class was
according to the stage of history
▪ Commerce was the change from capitalism to socialism.
▪ Capitalism was really just what was going on during his time, there were still land
owners and such, but it was not as common because many lost their land, there was very
• Once they lost their land subsistence farmers had to start selling themselves for
labor, they were no longer just selling their crops- they lost their land.
▪ We have to do away with the notion of private property- you had to figure out how to do
that- according to Marx.
• Human Motivation
◦ Capitalism is based on theories of behavior.
◦ The human motivation is to survive, after that (we are not satisfied with that) we want more.
◦ We are constantly manufacturing new needs EX: needing the stylish shoes instead of the
◦ Human nature includes a feature that we are workers and inventors- we transform ourselves
and nature (nature/ environment first) but human beings act purposely- capitalism squashed
this- they did not have any say
◦ Human beings can act in their own behalf but capitalism is a great evil because a vast
majority of people are unfulfilling- they have to sell their body for money for a new need
that they have produced. Marx finds this real evil because it is against human nature to have
your work so defined.
▪ He felt human beings were being prohibited from reaching their full potential
• Theory of Social Classes
◦ To Marx their were two major classes, the other ones did not really matter.
◦ The reason factory owners are in direct conflict with the workers is because:
▪ Owners do not want the workers to be more powerful
▪ They both feel as though they should be receiving more money
◦ The focus of capitalism is extra money to buy extra stuff- driven by profit
▪ Money is still the driving motivation today
◦ Marx says this tension is never going to be a long term proposition.
• Problems with Capitalism
◦ Marx was an insightful critic of capitalism- pointing out it's flaws.
▪ The reason he was violently opposed is because he thought it was going down anyways.
• Why is Capitalism alienating?
◦ Alienation means that humans beings are forced into working in opposition to their own
best interest. ▪ They are outsiders to themselves
▪ They are outsiders to their work- they do not have any say about when the day starts or
when the work day ends- your work is totally mindless
• The are producing something they cannot buy- you begin to essentially hate what
you are making. You view your co—workers as your competition.
• One of the seeds of capitalism was the factory line assembly system.
▪ Separation from what Marx construed as being a natural human being.
• Class Consciousness
◦ Why do the workers not just rise up?- You are afraid everyone else will show up and you
will get fired and not make your money.
◦ When the workers becomes one and realizes that the capitalist class is their true opposition
they would be able to do something about it.
▪ Capitalist were just doing what they were expected to do. Exploitation was not part of
▪ Workers do not see themselves as exploited.
◦ Adam Smith- capitalism in an open market is a good thing- it would be efficient allocation
◦ Workers feel as though they have no power- seeing this dynamic was what would’ve been
the “spark” that Marx was talking about.
◦ Only the proletariat would every achieve class consciousness, the capitalist would not- they
are benefiting from the system, they have no reason to want to change anything.
▪ The workers have history on their side.
• If this was to happen the utopian society would've been reached.
◦ The power comes in when workers come together.
• There has never really been marxian socialism
• Page 27 and slide 21- Marx's Model of Revolution
◦ Marx claims that the capitalists just buy everything and see back and watch- the workers
add all the value to the raw materials as they are the ones turning it into a commodity
▪ This is surplus value because they are making more value than what the capitalists paid
for the raw material. None of this surplus value is given to the workers- goes straight ot
◦ The capitalists start overproducing and they've laid off a ton of workers- no one is buying
◦ In this era many revolutions were popping up, but they were all put down.
• Reading the Communist Manifesto
◦ Current World- Market: Critique of Capitalism pg. 54-56
▪ See slide 24 to read the articles that were posted on the critique of capitalism
▪ How capitalism works isn't wrong- Marx is still looked at today because of his insightful
▪ Private property= root of all evil
• Capital- Marx
◦ Things have value meaning we want them for some reason- use value is because they are
◦ Commodities are what's for sale
◦ Exchange value is equivalencies- the only value of a credit with money is because it will get
a cup of coffee at starbucks ▪ For the equivalent thing in a different form
◦ Fetishism of Commodities
▪ magical power commodities have over us..
◦ General Formula for Capital
▪ Capitalism is money- the thing you exchange for stuff
▪ Capitalists start out with much to invest to produce commodities which are then sold for
more money. (M-C-M)
• M-C-M= accumulation of capital
▪ The proletariat only own themselves- they are a commodity with use value, so for their
work they earn money (the exchange) and they are paid exactly what it takes to get the
commodity through the next day. So the proletariat can not get ahead getting paid this
8/30/13- Emile Durkheim- From conflict to cohesion
• Basic Sociological Questions
◦ What makes societies change?
▪ Restaurant workers are striking for higher wages
• Marx wanted the workers to band together and revolt- instead of trying harder and
coming up with a global workers union they started banning together to get a little
bit bigger piece of the pie from the capitalists.
• The strikes are probably not going to be very successful because they are unskilled
and there are probably others who would love to take the position they do not want.-
THEYARE EASILY REPLACEABLE.
• Marx might say, well should have overthrown the system because you are not
winning where you are at.
◦ Functionalist tradition- Durkheim
▪ What holds societies together?
• Durkheim was sympathetic to the socialists views in his time but did not believe in
activist academics. Educating people was the best way to go.
• When people feel they are no longer in the same group ---> factional fighting
• Durkheim was concerned with the bonds that hold society together.
▪ Foundational at beginning of sociology as a discipline
• Talks about integration of the society- having a lot of ties holding the society
• He felt the shared values and beliefs are a key part of integration- one feels the
• Functionalism: Basic Questions
◦ If we do feel part of society we are likely to agree with the constraints put on us- we like the
• Functionalism: How Society Works
◦ Functionalism gets it name from part of the answer to the questions, there are social
structures like the government, economy, and the schools that are based on shard values and
therefore hold us together and we abide by the laws and rules and when we all do that and
things are kind of in sync society seems to be in equilibrium. Things are functioning as a
▪ All of it clicks. • EX: post WWII America- GIs came back, got loans for school, job were creating and
◦ What about when there's threats? Threats to the social organism will lead to re- structure and
creation of new institutions and structures responding to the threat while working like your
body to work of a disease to return to the equilibrium.
▪ We may currently be in a time like this when things are out of sync.
• Functionalism: Assumptions
◦ All of this requires that all people in society think alike and agree that they have a problem,
etc. Thinks that we all can see the problem
◦ Within the values and beliefs the problem would be solved.
◦ Strong forms of social control are needed- we want people to work together but they have to
also know that there is a cost to not working together- just in case they do not want to be a
part of the collectivity.
◦ Part of how to fix things has to do with the analysis of social facts- this is the key to what
sociology's job is in durkheim's opinion.
◦ Social evolution is the way to go!
• Emile Durkheim (1858-1917)
◦ There was a joining at the hip of understanding and having a notion of society involving
from primitive to complex. We need to see that we evolved from the primitive societies.
◦ Marx and Durkheim believe that there is a evolution of society.
◦ Scientific method- helped established sociology as a discipline.Any thing that was in a
historical record they used to try to test their theories. Go back as far as you can and see if
you can see things change that go along with the theory.
▪ Only method they had for research
• Abit of biography
◦ Jewish, elite gentleman- elite education, elite job- didn't work it way up from coal mines of
◦ Durkheim was done in by WWI- his students and his son were slaughtered in the trenches-
he never recovered and died a couple years later.
◦ Sociology almost died in the first world war- that generation was so decimated that almost
all students learned from the founding fathers were not very common.
• Concepts: Power of Society
◦ How does society constrain us?
▪ EX: We are all wearing clothes while sitting in class. The further constraint is the kind
of clothes required.
▪ EX: Constrained by just showing up to class
▪ Sometimes we do not like to admit this, but it is manifestly true that by in large we obey
▪ The college student is one of the more conforming roles in the world.
▪ We perceive these things as being in place already because we were born into it, but we
forget constraints are always changing and that we made them up!
• EX: on campus education will change to online technology due to the technological
◦ The social arrangements that we are born into are seen to be prior to us, and we do not think
of the control they have over us.
◦ If you were born into a certain religion you may feel that the religion is constraining you from the outside- Durkheim when talking about functions included religion as having a
function. Called it a social thing like anything else- didn't make him very popular.
• Rules of the sociological method
◦ What are social facts?
▪ How do you study social facts?
• Makes a claim that this is why sociology belongs in the academy.
• Social facts exercise an exterior constraint- it shoehorns us into a certain behavior
that is conforming in a certain way. It is felt sometimes to be exterior.
◦ We don't often acknowledge it, this is a social power exerted on us.
▪ What will people say/ think?
• Holds society together, accepted by society
• You have mutual expectations for others in society.
• Collective sentiment- a collective feeling that something is right and proper.
• How you know a Social fact: if you don't do it people are shocked- uh oh you didn't
follow the rule!
◦ Example of “Crime”
▪ Durkheim talked a lot about the functions of things in society that may or may not be
apparent they have functions for society
▪ The collective sentiment then decides what the rules are of society and puts in place
social institutions to follow the enforcement of those rules. Then to repair if the rules are
ever violated- potential function of the CJ system.
▪ Durkheim says that crime is necessary to hold society together- we all re-affirm our
common sentiment against the crime when we punish the person who did it- without that
we wouldn't have the opportunity to talk about this or that crime and how we would re-
act to it or re-affirm the majority agreement that this is the way to go.
▪ Crime enables society to defend it's moral boundaries.
▪ Penn State Example: crime so heinous social reaction was swift
▪ There will never be a society with no crime.
◦ Social Facts
▪ Can be material and non-material
▪ Physical structures are a part of social facts.
• The Division of Labor in Society
◦ This is part of the story (it's important)- society is always changing
◦ Think about primitive society- there weren't a lot of different jobs. There may have been
two or three categories (men, women, kids) depending on the structure of society. The
gender division of labor was egalitarian until we got to agriculture.
◦ People doing the same job will think alike and be cohesive (in primitive society) this holds
people together because everyone knows what you think because you think what they think.
Failure to do this is usually responded to swiftly and violently.- Banished or killed.
▪ We no longer have this
◦ Explaining Social Change
▪ History compartive approach to making comparisons keeping in mind primitive society
▪ Trying ot explain how far western Europe had come from primitive society
◦ Solidarity Holds Society Together
▪ The only way society survives at all is through unity • Mechanical Integration- repetitive- not thinking or questioning, low density
◦ Not a lot of abstract thought- very focused on what needed to be done.
◦ Little labor division
▪ Durkheim thinks there are essential social problems and the functions of society are put
together to try to solve them. Then societies evolve to try to solve the social problems.
▪ Examining how other societies work together and solve problems may be good to look
at in our day.
• Survival depends upon it
▪ Organic Integration- abstract, growing and changing
• Everything is thinking about new things in close proximity
• Lots of division of labor
• If the society functions properly to slot people into available roles based on their
natural abilities and inclinations then people can be different and do different things
and still think of them selves as a whole because they are interdependent.
◦ Hold complex society together- I do my job, they do their job- it all works
◦ Density and Transformation
▪ If you have hunter gathers in a territory and as long as they are not encroached upon
they will control the population. If suddenly more people survive you will have to
expand territory. Density can drive social evolution through wars because you are
battling for land for your people.
▪ Increasing density has the tendency to bring competition
◦ Division of Labor
▪ Lessens the density conflict
▪ Farmers keep farming, have and army, spear makers
▪ Things become more efficient- everyone is working in their specialization
▪ Specialization and efficiency for Marx is bad- but Durkheim says if people can pick and
are slotted according to abilities everything would be okay.
◦ Collective Conscience
▪ Is different in mechanical and organic solidarity
▪ Mechanical solidarity was held together by an extremely strong collective
consciousness- everyone was doing the same job
• people care deeply about things- they're living on the edge
• Tightly knit
• Obey rigid rules- get elevated to a religious level
▪ India article- he broke a social fact that religion is extremely important to it's inhearance.
Scientific explanations is not always necessary. He was assassinated to violating a
deeply held notion.
▪ E Pluribus Unum- “out of many one”Article- Krugman asks: are we still one? Or are we
so so riven by conflicts that we are losing our cpacity to feel as one?- This was
Durkheim's big fear that modern society would also produce feelings of seperation- we
would not longer feel like people.
9/4/13- Emile Durkheim- Suicide
• He was the one who made sociology a discipline- he mapped it out
◦ Sociology- things shared with a group- his first big idea
• Durkheim believes crime is necessary and useful- the conditions of the crime are indispensable.
• If we have high moral code against something, we are all likely to institute a law against it. ◦ Believe morality and law would evolve- they are not concrete
• Crime pushes the boundaries of morality and law so as things change and society evolves and
criminals push the boundary discussion will happen, and laws will change.
◦ Criminals are in some way innovators because they are pushing the envelope.
• Traditional societies- where everything is in stone is not susceptible to change- so for them to
change they need to accept that morality will change over time- this is an enlightenment
• Division of labor- Durkheim
◦ He takes on Marx and shows the broad scope of sociological gaze- we can't all do the same
thing, things have to be done.
◦ Once more, we are not all the same- we all have different skills and talents
▪ This is where division of labor comes in- people will slot in where they feel they fit.
But, they need to feel like they fit.
◦ It is possible for division of labor to go to far when people are forced into positions.
• Logistics: Essays- going to apply the concepts learned to a current newspaper article.
◦ Essays will need to be turned in hard copy and on carmen.
◦ Should be approximately 1500 words- may fall between 750-1500
◦ Application- what would the theorist say and why?- you are being the theorists here.
◦ Don't write it as answers to the questions listed on the instructions- they are a guide
◦ There is a draft folder to submit to check yourself on turnitin
• Logistics: Group Discussions
◦ Make sure to print out notes going over Durkheim/ religion to bring to the class.
▪ Include examples from the reading
• Can be in bullet points- phrases and sentences- not one word bullet points.
• Logistics: In-Class Quizzes
◦ Sept. 13 (Chapters 1-4)
◦ Nov. 1 (Chapters 12,14,15)
▪ Once these are taken they will not have objective questions on the exam
◦ Focused on concepts and terms listed in the back of each chapter and in the lecture notes for
◦ Will be scan-tron- bring a pencil.
• Durkheim- Suicide
◦ Durkheim said that in order for societies to survive at all they need to somehow cohere as a
collective- or else they will just look out for their own interests.
▪ We had to figure out how to work together.
◦ We came up with a number of things for us to be a collective
▪ We make social facts norms, taboos to facilitate the collective culture
▪ Hunters/ gatherers- without the cohesiveness they would die.
◦ Solidarity Holds Society Together
▪ Mechanical Solidarity held us together- out of choice or there was nothing else to do.
▪ Organic Solidarity- emerges based on the division of labor so we can do different tasks
and still feel like a collective.
▪ For society to survive we need to feel integration with every one else.
▪ Modern society is based on solidarity based on difference.
▪ If solidarity starts to break down in especially a pluralistic or high density environment it is like an organism getting sick- a social pathology
• Suicide can be thought of as an indicator of social pathology.
◦ If they commit suicide there must be something wrong with their connection to
• He wanted to look at this to show there were social patterns
• If just crazy people killed themselves why were there so many “crazy” people in a
particular municipality in 1883 than 1881?
• Suicide rates vary across ages, location, etc.- thinking there were just “more crazy
people” doesn't make sense.
▪ This is one of Durkheim's giant ideas
▪ If a situation is such that people don't feel the collective bond that feeling of not being
connected to society (social, law) can make a person feel morally adrift
▪ Anomie- kind of means without norms, no moral direction, not knowing what's
• EX: It is a norm, expectation, mutual sign of respect to leave the bathroom clean
when you leave it.
▪ Trust: IllAdvised in a DigitalAgeArticle
• Aguy who goes on and on about whether we are trusting too much on social media-
no trust would be anomie.
▪ In mechanical solidarity anomie really doesn't happen.
• But, in modern society where there is more options you can become unmorred from
◦ Suicide:ACase Study
▪ Socially pattern, individual decision.
▪ Durkheim felt that he had to explain things like the increases and declines in different
• See table on slide 19 of the lecture to see the numbers throughout Ohio from 2005-
▪ If it is socially patterned, then maybe it's related to social characteristics.
▪ Anomie is a possible explanation according to Durkheim
▪ He feels that if the cocoon of moral certainty- could be an explanation or a reason for
suicide for some
◦ Linking Rates to Groups
▪ Durkheim was in a battle with psychology trying to get sociology differentiated and get
it some differentiated- so lets take something psychology and make it social
▪ Suicide is enable when moral bearings are lost
◦ Types of Suicide: Modern Society
◦ Liberal professions have high rates
◦ losing position/ power shows to be reason for suicide, not necessarily money (does account
for part) when socially disrupted.
▪ Anomic- when moral bearings are lost or major social disruption (bad or good)
◦ Social control may break down due to the social disruption
◦ Social mobility- wealth being amassed by some and not others can effect
▪ Think about the great depression.
• Russian Federation- when soviet union broke up life expectancy plummeted (due to suicide rates).
◦ You can see vast differences throughout the world in suicide rates
• Having goals become unattainable can be a factor.
◦ Always needing more is asking for trouble- you are setting yourself up to be let
down and not attain the aspired goals
▪ Egoistic- unconnected loners, not integrated people
• Due to the individualization of society- think of suicide rates among divorced
• Mental alienation- being induced by social situations
◦ Could be a factor in suicide
◦ Suicide Rates in the Military
▪ Would expect that rate to be very low.
▪ However, these rates are rising- it is still lower than the civilian rate of suicide
▪ Starting to defy the collectivist logic
▪ Army and Marines are rising the most
• Marines plummeted in numbers- maybe they have got a grasp on it.
▪ Quicker deployments and stress on the family may be the factors behind the rise in
• It isn't necessarily the service persay, but the experiencing of the break up of the
▪ Difficult transition from combat service, being in a collective to going back to an
• This would be similar to being cast adrift---> looks like anomie
▪ The overwhelming bulk of suicides are not vets.
◦ Types of Suicide: Traditional Society
▪ Altruistic- too well integrated into a society that enables suicide
• Burning self in protest, suicide bombers.
▪ Fatalistic- excessive regulation- could be put into slavery
9/6/13- Emile Durkheim- Religion
◦ Quiz (9/13/13)- Multiple choice primarily focused on the concepts- may have some true and
• Religion is apparently a necessary part of social life- the societies that have survived all have
◦ Durkheim studies religion as a social institution
• Remember: the group discussion question will be on the mid-term in essay format.
• Functions of Religion:
◦ Comfort, Belonging
◦ Moral Code ---> Collectivity, mutual obligations, collectivity creates solidarity
◦ Authority Figure- gives someone to look up to and to follow
▪ Legitimate authority we obey based at the level of moral code.
▪ Helps maintain a power structure
◦ Creation of laws- commandments turned into laws.
◦ Modernization is secularizing society and reducing the important of religion and being
replaced by symbols and rituals that are civil. Meaning that they have lost their direct connection with religion.
▪ He believed that religion would be taken over by secularization
• How does religion create the functions?:
◦ Uses symbols that have a common meaning- like the cross on a necklace or in Catholic
hospitals- symbolizes people being brought together through the beliefs
▪ They remind us of the thing that keeps the group going between the get togethers.
◦ Rituals- active form of the symbol, a symbol that people actively do. The action still
symbolizes the meaning- but its not just something you look at- its something you do.
▪ People in unison to at least together doing the same thing.- everyone is involved with it
to celebrate what ever it may be. These repetitive rituals are incredibly important to eh
evolution of religion.
◦ Sacred vs. Profane
▪ Sacred- truly extraordinary
▪ Profane- the mundane, not bad or wrong; average everyday life, everything outside of
the religious rituals, symbols, and totems
• The Flag is an example of a profane symbol.- still brings people together.
◦ Durkheim says religion is the fundamental glue to society
◦ How do people with different moral codes come together through the religion?
▪ Its a tough detail.
◦ Religion is found in every society.
◦ Soviet Union
▪ Under the Soviet Union- there was a problem in the Soviet Union because they were
▪ Putin tried to create collectivity
▪ Putin is now trying to take advantage of ethnic connectedness and bring in religion
◦ Mystic Mechanics
▪ Is there a god gene?
• Durkheim used the term mystic mechanics to describe how the machine of faith
holds society together. Provides glue, the lubrication, gears and everything else to
get society to function.
◦ The Enlightenment
▪ Do people still have faith in science today?
• Yes- we have faith in medical science, climate science is questionable.
▪ It seems like faith in science can hit a cultural road block or cultural resistance that
proves the point that we can have all kinds of demonstrations but people can stil say “i
▪ Faith in a profane part of society is still faith in something.
• One has to have faith in something to believe it
▪ Tattoos- are they symbols?
• Are tattoos just art?
◦ Can be just art, but most have some kind of meaning behind it. Maybe they just
like this form of expression better.
• Talk just to those who know what it means.
• They are symbolic conversations among people who know what they mean- can be
art but it is a choice. 9/11/13- Weber- The Power of Ideas and Beliefs
◦ Quiz during last half hour on Friday 9/13/13- 35 multiple choice questions
◦ Groups: just make sure to check the group discussion to take quotes from only the theorist
and make sure to check slide 4 to have everything covered.
• Conflict Theory: Max Weber
◦ Marx: proletariat are the only ones who can lead a revolution.
▪ Agents of un-making and re-making
◦ Weber in Context
▪ Marx and Durkheim both have grand theories that explain everything
▪ Marx vision- conflict between social classes and this explains revolutions that end
▪ Durkheim vision- sympathetic to socialism but not marx's revolution, complex societies
are held together by the division of labor and things like religion. These things tie us
• Social Cohesion
▪ Weber Vision- Both Marx and Durkheim are nice but it is much more complicated and
it's neither either or, it's both. It's a complex process at not only the large level of social
factors but also within the hearts and minds of people.
▪ We still talk about these people because these ideas are still being debated today
▪ “Our Broken Social Contract”- website blog in class
• The feeling that a lot of people have that this social cohesion/ collectivity/ unstated
but implied agreement that Durkheim talked about that we will give up our own
personal desires that we can live together. There is an implied contract there- it's
okay we benefit from this.
◦ Durkheim says when this is pulled, Suicide is an answer for some.
• This shows that we are still talking about these theories that were created 100 years
◦ Even using the same language that the theorists we learn about use.
◦ Weber (1864-1920): Biography
▪ Was a troubled person, had anxiety disorder, somewhat reclusive even in his own home.
▪ Had a great work ethic- wrote volumes and volumes of thought out ideas
▪ Often sick as a child- he had to spend a lot of time alone
▪ His parents made his life more difficult.
▪ 1904- came toAmerica, the epitome of modern capitalist society, really concentrated his
thinking which lead to him writing the protestant ethic
▪ Page 149- gave an example of the sadness
• Prisoner's in the society of our day- worries that the future is somewhat doomed if
things are this bad today due to bureaucracies and it is going to get worse.
◦ Weber: What is Sociology's Job?
▪ The sociologists job isn't to understand the dynamics of relations and productions and
actively encourage the next revolution. ▪ You do not just look at large social facts from the outside.
▪ We need to understand what motivates people to do what they do- what motivates them
is the meaning of things around them.
▪ Not just forces or the ruling class, all people have ideas- the ideas themselves can bring
a certain organization of society about. Ideas spread and diffuse. Ideas in people's head
is what motivates them to do stuff.
▪ We are talking about subjective- people's motivation to do what they do
◦ Beyond Marx
▪ The working person was prohibited form fulfilling their right or human nature by the
structure of society- marx.
▪ They are in agreement that human nature is important but weber said there are no laws
on social evolution.
▪ Capitalism isn't to blame- there is nothing inherently wrong with capitalism. The
problems developed with ideas
▪ Capitalism's success in the west was enabled by rationalization and bureaucracies
▪ The historical comparative method was about the only game in town so if you're making
a claim that certain ideas and their result in social structures is related to capitalism's rise
in the west than you better have some case studies from attempts for capitalism to rise
out of the west. You have to make a logical argument by comparing the historical record.
• Weber did this- he had an elaborate explanation from when capitalism sprung up
• There were examples of capitalists in other places
◦ The “Ideal Type” as Method
▪ What you used to have to do is define terms and look at the documents your have from
various societies and see if you can find more or less of the attributes.
▪ Ideal Type- the attributes- no one has a perfect bureaucracy.
▪ Used for comparing.
▪ Weber made this up.
• Developed as a method across time to see trends based on the definition created
◦ Have to know it when you see it.
◦ Types of SocialAction: Motivation
▪ Weber wants to know how people understand their world and the meaning things have
• It's the underpinning of their beliefs, values, and attitudes.
▪ TraditionalActions (like with traditional societies)- sameness, no real division of labor,
habit and custom carries things form generation to generation
• Presuming all habits aren't questioned and rational- you're just doing it because it's a
▪ AffectiveAction- everywhere, every place, all times, all actions
▪ Rational motivation can be thought about two ways: cost- benefit, if I have to give up
hours a day sitting in the classroom, what's my pay off? Is it worth it for me to do that?
• Efficient pursuit of goals
• Calculate pros/cons to be more efficient when pursuing goals
• Instrumental- have a purpose to rational action
• Calculating means to get to the goal
▪ Value rational action • Still rational because you are doing it because it's right- even if it's in-efficient, it's a
value you- you don't necessarily question it.
◦ The way you do it is a mean within itself
◦ Major Concept: Rationalization
▪ -ization is a process to get to whatever the root word is
▪ How do you get from traditional to rational?
• He makes the claim that the traditional society is not rational but now we are
• The industrialization and the enlightenment is the time period he was focusing on-
all of this stuff beings to take on a life of it's own.
◦ Gave people faith in science- it can make better instruments, machines, people
had faith in science.
• As societies get more complicated we need rules, regulations, and procedures.-
◦ This is how we do something not why
• The Rise of Rationality
◦ Traditional societies just have family/ clans but leadership may or may not be a problem.
◦ Once societies get more complex you need a legitimate social stories for people to follow
▪ There's a story that legitimates the egregiousness of kings.
◦ There has to be a social story to under-pin power
◦ “Types of Legitimate Domination”
▪ Hereditary authority- without question the oldest song is the next king
• Stable over time if you keep people convinced
▪ CharismaticAuthority- always possible, leaders that just attract people- they tend to be
revolutionary because they are not part of the authority, and if they do become so it
undercuts the process.
• Who's going to be the succession?
▪ Rational- LegalAuthority- the one that became prevalent in the west.
• Legitimacy is not based on personality or authority, based on laws and elections.
• Regulated and defined procedures- the legitimacy is in the process
• The process, not the person
• The value is that we value laws- people are not above the law
◦ Distribution of Power: “Class, Status, Party”
▪ Looking at Marx from almost another generation- that Marx's thought did not reflect
capitalism in Weber's time.
▪ Weber said look, there is more going on than economics to describe power distribution
▪ Social classes, status groups (styles of life define a social hierarchy)
• it's the status- the power in the social realm that people value and recognize
• What can you tell about a person's style of life by just looking at them?
◦ Clothes (this is a biggie)
▪ Why does how your dressed give any explanation to social status?
• Can tell by the brands of clothes people are wearing
• The cost is shown in the obvious branding • You can buy your way into a style of life that is defined by the perceived
value or status- has to be in style as well.
• Consumption patterns different from the economic realm- tend to define modern
▪ The different distributions are all different, though they can come together.
• EX: you can get legal power without economic power
▪ Social closure: you get in and you make requirements to getting into your group- you
are defending your power.
◦ Social Classes
▪ Weber is directly arguing with Marx
◦ Status Groups: Most Important
▪ Astyle of life if kind of like a culture that people share
▪ Weber- these cultural groups grow and develop to hang together for a reason
• EX: Baby boomer banning together
• EX: Close friends you just feel comfortable with
▪ Ethnicity v. caste- The Jews (pg. 165)
• Why is this still applicable today?
◦ Amish- they are seen as being separate from the larger society
◦ Muslims- they are apart in society because society buts them aside be people
may think they are terrorists
◦ Parties: Power Groups
▪ Organize to get what you want
◦ The Rational State
▪ Required to hold up capitalism, the state needs to support this and uphold it in law
▪ The modern state has rational law, rational science, rational ethic that may come from a
particular religion, but it is now a secular ethic
▪ Some things may have started out as a religious ethic but have morphed into a secular,
▪ Part of the reason that capitalism rose in the west was the modern state preceded it, or
“affinity” there was a natural affinity.
• Feed on each other, multiply the effect of each other- capitalism and the modern
state worked together.
◦ Bureaucracy: Ideal Characteristics
▪ Is not the historical norm
▪ It's sets up functions, all part of rational legal authority. It is not the person with the
authority, it is the position
▪ There are functions bounded by rules and you have a specific sphere of influence
▪ You report up- hierarchy
▪ We have become bogged down with the technical aspects of things.
▪ Office Holders- the things you need to do your job
▪ Records are kept- vital for capitalism
◦ Bureaucracy: Org. Chart
▪ Example of some kind of organization
▪ How do this demonstrate rationality?
• Efficiency- structured and the work is divided • It's extremely efficient. Organized, and rational.
• Also, immutable and flexible.
9/13/13- Weber- The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism
• The Rise of Rationality
◦ Disagreed with Marx most importantly in the area of material determinism- that the means
of production determine society and history
◦ Marx thought their would be a communist utopia that was coming- so you might as well
believe him an follow anyways.
◦ Weber said it was much more complicated than this- although he still talked about
capitalism just like Marx did. Weber didn't see anything wrong with capitalism however, he
though rationality was the problem.
◦ Bureaucracy: Ideal Characteristics
▪ An org. chart is bureaucratic and rational because it breaks the work up- everyone has
their own function. There is a rigid hierarchy.
▪ Weber feared that bureaucracy bred the right of the thechno-crat class- the technical
means focus as opposed to what are the ends we are trying to achieve?
▪ Can't respond to inefficiencies if we do not have someone in charge
▪ Capitalism requires bureaucracy, bureaucracy fed off capitalism both require rationality
◦ Bureaucracy: Pros and Cons
▪ Weber felt it locked humanity in an iron cage of rules, regulations, and cost- benefit
• An example of a cost-benefit analyses for weber: national tragedy: katrina, 9/11-
when someone is due reparations for a lost life someone has to calculate the amount
of money that a life is worth.
◦ Someone that was a doctor would get more money sent to family than a
construction worker- they are worth more.
▪ The whole system is dehumanizing- virtually the same concept as Marx's alienation-
they have different means.
• What's more mind-numbing than bureaucratic assembly line work?
▪ It's well though out and planned, and makes sense in some function
▪ People are replaceable- promote, hire somebody, bring somebody in- the job stays the
same, people come and go
▪ Records are vital for capitalism, contracts, and private property.
▪ ---> He blames the bureaucratic society, not capitalism
▪ Can't deviate- think of recorded message example given in class
• The role of Religious Ideas in the Rise of Rationality
◦ ThinkAbout It
▪ Unlike Marx, who said your position in social hierarchy determines your thoughts,
feelings and ideas and that the head of the ideas were head of the dominate class.
▪ Weber believes the ideas in people's heads are a machine of themselves. Weber knew
that religious ideas or feelings can be extremely powerful- whether they tie groups
together to have values and styles of life and ways of thinking about what you should do and how you should behave- this is what he looked at.
▪ Capitalism had to win the fight against other forces (primarily those of traditionalism)
• Traditionalism is not based on cost-benefit analysis, it is based on a traditional based
that is handed down with not question- it because a habit, UN-questioned, not
always efficient. May not result in the best outcome.
• Capitalism did not survive in communities where traditionalism was strong
• Capitalism requires stability- traditionalism is not always stable
• Capitalism won through the back door with historical trends.
◦ The Battle with Traditionalism
▪ Piece Rate- paid based on how much work you get done
• EX: Paid $5 for every pair of shoes made
▪ If you want your workers to produce more, what might you do? (As a factory owner)
• Give them more money to get more done in the same amount of time- workers
should more or less respond to this
◦ In traditional society- this would not work- what worked yesterday will work for
▪ Can't motivate if it is not a part of their value system.
◦ This wanting more and having a reason to want more is not there in traditional
▪ Traditionalism is human nature according to Weber.
▪ If you can't get people to work more with piece rate capitalism would've never gotten
• This has to do with the history of protestantism in Eastern Europe
• People stopped thinking of their work as a way to get by- they saw it as a calling,
they were honoring God with their life's work.
◦ Changing Ethics (pg.143-144)
▪ Weber sees that in earlier centuries that profits were seen to be unethical because wealth
is not necessarily a sure road to heaven.
• Maybe the poor are more pure somehow.
• Makingthrofit off from other people's back is questionable- not prideful.
▪ By the 18 century, when Weber came to the US, profits were the cornerstone of
morality underpinningAmerica enterprise in Benjamin Franklin.
• Franklin had all these watchwords, sayings, etc. published everywhere
• Money is of the prolifit generating nature.
◦ All of these saying were theAmerican's underlying mindset.- No religious
underpinning found by Weber.
▪ Turning down paid work was throwing away money
◦ Importance of Religion
▪ The Protestant reformation was a reaction against the church interceding on behalf of
▪ We should be able to stand before God without having someone there on our behalf.
▪ You can devote your life to glorifying God on your own
• Started to underpin the idea in glorifying God in how you live your life.
▪ Puritans had morphed ideas
• The thought that you can't earn your salvation, that would imply God does not already know who's saved, but you can logically think about whether you are saved
◦ if you have found success and favor in life you are probably the one saved and
favored by God.
• If you love your work and it brings you wealth- another sign you've been saved.
• Hording money and spending on luxuries and flaunting you wealth- a sin
◦ This notion syncs up with re-investing in your enterprise- entrepreneurship
◦ This just clicked together, at the same time with capitalism
• These were extremely deeply held beliefs
• By the time of Franklin he exemplified the secular version ofAmerican
entrepreneurship of his day. You can hear these ideas in his speech.
◦ The Clear Conscience
▪ Profits are good, not bad, they are your duty- making profits does not make you a bad
• It motivates people to work for more money, if they offer you more money for your
work you are supposed to take it and work harder and make more- your opportunity
to get ahead.
◦ Protestant “Ethic”
▪ Weber says that initially it underpinned the monastic system (in Catholicism) of denying
yourself and living simply- an aesthetic lifestyle.
• Not a lot of frivolity
• By the time it came to the US it was the under ethic of all culture
▪ The Puritan wanted to work in a calling- they were forced to do so, have no choice,
locked into the resultant situation.
▪ You're sucked in to this machine- perhaps sit will so determine the lives of individuals
until the last ton of fossilized coal is burnt
▪ He sees where once people chose and were joyful in simple living- now everyone is
forced into the machine without choice and there is no joy in it.
▪ It wasn't class tensions it was a confluence of ideas that enabled it by accident- and they
started to feed on one another.
◦ Why only in the west?
▪ Weber says that is how it grew in the west- rationalization, protestantism, industrial
revolution, machines, bureaucratization
▪ Work hard and get ahead instead of work enough and have leisure time
▪ Just what we need wasn't good enough- we needed more, capitalism feeds on this.
• Products have a power over us that underpins our need for wanting more and more
◦ Religious Impediments
▪ Catholicism in Florence killed capitalism- profits were unethical
▪ China- Confucianism did not necessarily go along with capitalism
• If there isn't any notion of internal salvation- then the motivation can not be there.
▪ India- same as China; strict order, traditional thinking; riches are not of value in this
9/18/13- W.E.B. Debois: Of and For His Time
• In The News: Downsides of Bureaucracy
◦ One of Weber's biggest concerns about modern society was that people were caught in a web of bureaucracy- Iron Cage; thought it was creating a new class of elites (not
◦ Technocrats are hired and fired and trained to operate at a means level- how do we most
efficiently accomplish this goal (the most cost effective)
▪ They're experts on how to complete the goal efficiently
◦ Somebody should be out there asking if the ends are worth doing for us.
◦ First job of an organization in a bureaucracy: to not die, regardless of whether the goal
you're meant to achieve is long past necessary
◦ Agrees with Marx that there is something dehumanizing about society
◦ Durkheim suggested that when people find themselves in social situations where morality is
unclear they suffer from anomie
◦ Article in the Times (9/15/13)- The Banality of Systematic Evil
▪ in day to day life sometimes evil is there if you are focused on the means to the
exclusion of the goal
▪ To say that evil can be banal- that people just doing what they are supposed to be doing
may result in evil outcomes- if nobody steps back and says wait a minute is the goal her
▪ Moral dilemma with the wiki-leaks issues: manning, snowden, etc.
• Does supporting these mean we have loss or moral compass? No.
▪ Moral people in society has a moral reason not to follow immoral or unjust laws.
• Foundation ofAmerican Sociology
◦ W.E.B. DuBois' “position”
▪ From Mass, which is whiter than whiter
▪ As a child his dad abandoned the family and his mom became ill, the community took
on the family as a project- saw DuBois as being very intelligent
▪ Grew up in a white world until he went to college
▪ Grew up feeling to be a part of that white world, until he went to college
▪ he knows (almost) what it is like to be white, but he was black
▪ The beginning of his career has many different threads that are all tied together
• “The Philadelphia Negrgo” and “Soul of Black Folk”
◦ Two important writings by DuBois
◦ You can see an evolution in his thinking an approach through this writings
◦ W.E.B. DuBois (1868-1963)
▪ After defining his life's work after experiencing the solidarity with his people at Fisk (he
wanted to go to Harvard)
▪ This color line raised in a white community, and getting favorable approval, he didn't
feel what it was like to be the grunt of discrimination until he got to the south and
working in the rural part of Georgia
◦ Unique Position
▪ The Negro World found at Fisk awoke him- kind of like class consciousness that Marx
• You have interest in common, your purpose may be in common
▪ Came in contact with Weber, his approach is very much influenced by Weber
▪ Blacks weren't a minority in Germany- they were treated like anybody else, the jews
were the ones being treated differently.
• Was aware in his day to day being that nobody cared that he was black in Europe ◦ DuBois and Sociology
▪ About 14 millionAfricanAmericans- about 10% of the population, smaller proportion
▪ At Fisk and in later work- need to organize to win by the rules of the game played int
• The ticket to that was not manual training as a furniture repair man, but higher
education so you could talk toe to toe with the power structure.
• This was hard because of the reconstruction in the south
• The whole program didn't result in the re-distribution of any land at the time, it
didn't have a major effect.
◦ Had a bunch of freed slaves in the south, it had been illegal to educated them...
what do you do with them?
▪ Industrialization- there would be work in the north, those who could leave
left, and some stayed.
◦ One solution: teach them working skills so they can get jobs.
▪ This is where Booker T. Washington and the compromise on the south came
• compromise- if we can get training as tuskegee we will shut up about all
that freedom stuff (voting, representation in courts)
• He got support for this, helped solve the problem
◦ DuBois- all tuskegee does is live with the erosion of the freedom we were
supposed to get with emancipation, and blacks are never going to get anywhere
without educated leaders who can organize them to win back the vote, win back
equality in the courts, win back the right to ride any bus you wan tot ride, etc.
◦ There were enough already educated if they could keep it going- just had to be
◦ Explain to white people/ the public wha tis the basic problem of blacks in the
▪ Evade Inferiority Complex
• DuBois evaded the inferiority complex because he gained the favor of the white
people in his town- he was not less than a white person.
• Sociopsychological- if you are an obvious group and that group is frowned upon by
society then anytime you come in contact with anybody in the other group you feel
negative vibes- jim crow laws made this worse
◦ DuBois had none of this in his entire upbringing, he just simply didn't have it.
• Washington knew his place, DuBois did not- he did not have places- he had a place
as a human being.
▪ Foundational work in urban sociology
• The Philadelphia Negro
◦ Creating Social History
▪ The Philadelphia Negro
• Raising the veil (veil of ignorance)- the two races don't know what the other is like,
not necessarily their fault, they have been apart for so long how are they supposed to
• Surely all we have to do is a scientific study on social problems of society- we will
collect facts, figures, logic will be applied, historical perspective will be applied, finally then people will understand the real situation and all these problems will be
more easily solved
• Educated knowledgeable rational people should be able to agree how to solve the
problem once the facts are delineated.
◦ When Facts Fail, Represent
▪ The Souls of Black Folk
• Son died, he writes this, not a lot happens. He just feels like poinancy of this loss, if
it has some relationship to the discrimination (black doctor wouldn't come, white
doctor wouldn't come)
• He decides facts are good- they're objective, he wants to add another dimension, the
facts are out there.
• What if I tell them know what it feels like to be the “problem”
◦ this subjectivity is similar to Weber's verstehen
◦ DuBois says I'm going to give then the understanding of meaning now.
• All of the things going on are things people should know about- people should
understand the real situation.
• “Negro”- facts of black folks, “Soul” is about the soul of black folks
• He represents black folks a different way from the inside, the sort of emotional and
moral and ethical underpinnings or to give the general public a more complete view.
◦ The Souls of Black Folk
▪ Acompletely different thing that “negro” “negro” is scientific and looks at the state of
affairs and why it is the way it is
▪ Souls is looking more at the heart of the debate of Booker T. vs. the radicals
▪ Raises three key concepts: color line, double consciousness (he feels blacks in the north
have in the north), veil (social distance between the two groups so they can't seem to
◦ The Color Line
▪ Jim Crow
• There are structural aspects (jim crow, segregation, laws, literacy tests for voting,
etc.) that create this color line and are based on the color line
• He wants to highlight the existence of the color line
• Seeing yourself as others see you- inferiority complex
• Subjective feeling that makes him just about as made as compromising on
◦ Globalization and Colonialism
▪ The first world war and it's lead up where he was suggesting blacks to sign up (if they
perform their duty they will receive empathy, didn't happen)
▪ He noticed there is in fact a global color line in the global market place and global trade
based on the colonial powers
▪ The colonial powers- European, colonies inAfrica andAsia
• Europeans are white, the other two are not
▪ Saw color line with rich resources clustered in the tropics
▪ Th exports are taken from the tropics and taken to Europe, he believes with probable
cause that it is that colonial backing and forthing that was the cause of the meat grinder
▪ Therefore, this whole process was complicit in WWI ▪ Mad dash to carve up the dark world and get spoils to cart away- primary cause of WWI
◦ “Color Line” in the 21 Century
▪ Health disparities, now results not only in poverty but the primary disease burden is
disproportionately carried by the same people.
9/20/13- W.E.B. DuBois- The Philadelphia Negro
• DuBois is the first to take advantage of a negatively viewed position to champion it.
• Uses the disadvantaged position to address what knowledge would be useful for making and re-
making society- The Philadelphia Negro is an example of this.
• DuBois “Position”
◦ Penn hired him for a dead end job and wrote his Philadelphia Negro while there
◦ Basically, he collected AfricanAmerican information for the white professor he was an
◦ Article shows the man is in his place and the authorities are in charge.
• Creating Social History
◦ He lived in the 7 ward- which is not the worst of the slums, but it was a majority black
◦ He and his wife went door to door to interview 2,000 people of this area
◦ To find out the scientific plight of the negro in the urban environment
◦ To make the bulk ofAmerica aware of the true facts- popular media stuff was floating
◦ Helped make up the whole study of sociology inAmerica- especially race and urban
• The State of Negro Health in Philadelphia, 1896
◦ People were up in arm enough about the negro population that the university tried to get a
grip on the problem in the city at the time- poverty, crime, poor living conditions, etc.
▪ 40,000 or more people were currently in Philadelphia
◦ Asked about occupations, home, white relation and daily life of the average negro citizen.
◦ Meant to be a safe guide for the white population
▪ The introduction was reflective of Weber and Durkheim
◦ Acomplete social documentation of this group
◦ Starts always by talking about his data- he's scientific, he's going to give you facts and
◦ The 1870 census had found a startingly high death rate amongAfrianAmericans-
interpreted by many of an inferior race that couldn't survive emancipation and would die out
from there physical and other inferiorities.
▪ Trying to say that this is not a recent phenomenon and it's probably not explained by
emancipation, lets try to explain it.
◦ “consumption”- tuberculosis
◦ poor herditary physique- part of the popular explanation of what is going on in his day
• The Negro Death Rate:AMatter of Condition Living
◦ Compares the wards and their mortality rates (high bad, low good)
▪ In some wards they have a lower mortality rate than the whites
◦ He's starting to make a logical sociological comparison that let's us think more clearly about
the impact of social conditions on health outcomes
◦ Why would immigrants from the south have had higher mortality?
▪ They were still subject ot the worst conditions, so they brought with them the residual
bad health. • Compared to Whites in Same Wards
◦ You put them in the right conditions, they have the same rate as everyone else, terrible
conditions- high death rate
• HowAge Structure Impacts the “Great Differences” in Death Rates
◦ Under 15 is the death rate most due to living conditions
◦ What they die of matters, because it's related to infant mortality and living conditions
• We Have Side by Side in intimate Relationship inALarge City Two Groups of People
◦ Intimate relationships- think of the jobs (housekeeping, childcare,etc.)
◦ The work available forAfricanAmerican women was servants so they are in an intimate
relationship with whites in that regard
◦ For some reason, the foreign born are healthier than the whites
• It's the young people that can and need to make it
◦ These people are the strongest and heartiest anyways- self selected this way
◦ He's making a plea that popular wisdom aside, facts and figures show that contrary to dying
out- their physical health is what one might expect based on their living conditions- and is
worthy of being addressed an rectified.
• 1896 or 2013?
◦ You're not getting any good vibes when going to the hospital
◦ In 2013 we have a similar pattern with the fear of hospitals in the lower class of all people
• The PeculiarAttitude of the Nation
◦ So soon after emancipation with all the problems related to that that this is not a problem of
inferiority of a race, but social conditions that should be addressed
◦ He thought a lot of the negro problem was that whites didn't have the facts- he gave the
facts to them.
◦ Some of the patterns we see today are the same exact patterns DuBois saw in 1896
• When his son dies in 1903 (?) he writes and compiles Souls of Black Folk- he's concluded that
rational facts and figures aren't going to do this, what's required is to reach out to people's
hearts- try to explain how it feels to be part of this population- how is feels to be disparaged in
the society so that whites that now know the facts and figures can now know the heart of the
◦ Does a passionate plea of what the color line feels like
• He is an advocate of blacks enlisting in WWI in the hope that that with help also demonstrate
their rights to be full and proper citizens
◦ After this didn't happen he became more disappointed in the fact that their was a global
color line- not just in the United States.
▪ It's a bigger problem
• Why can he say that he is not foreign to whites?
◦ He grew up in the north around a lot of whites and the upper class families that helped him
◦ His formative years he was pretty much the onlyAfricanAmerican
◦ Europe and Harvard education- gave him a unique social position
• Wrote souls of white folks as he became more and more frustrated with the color line
◦ Much more radical and pointed and not particularly charitable • Chapter 7 Terms and Concepts
◦ Midterm will have multiple choice from DuBois, Parsons, Merton
◦ Talented Tenth- pg. 271, 264
▪ Primarily educated is a big deal
▪ The educated, potential leaders in the negro community
▪ Fisk is when he realized there is leadership potential in the negro world- it's already
◦ Submerged tenth- at the bottom, worst possible shape (criminals, etc.)
◦ Problem with Booker T. Washington
▪ Washington's strategy let's have mechanical and manual kind of training and he sold it to
the whites by saying let's give them manual jobs and we'll shut up about the fact that
when reconstruction went south emancipation never happened.
• Essentially, give me fund it will help dispell some unrest in the south and we'll shut
up about civil rights in the south
▪ DuBois- Booker T. institutionalized a servile class
• he was mad that they never get to vote, they would never get to change anything
• He was leading them into a position that they would never be able to get out of.
• Felt that the talented tenth had to be established and encouraged.
◦ To fight to get rights back by standing toe to toe with the whites
◦ By the end of WWII when the troops came back and theAfricanAmericans were left out of
the GI bill in many many ways what happened?
▪ Truman- desegregated military units
▪ Civil Rights movement lead by the Talented Tenth
• Talented tenth wasn't really there after WWI, was after WWII
◦ Interpretive Social Science
▪ Nexus of the souls of black folk feel- based on emotion and what it feels like as opposed
to facts and figured
▪ How do we know what we know?
▪ One of the sociological questions- thinking does your social position impact what you
think and what you know? If so it is a part of your epistemology and is how you see the
◦ The color line, double consciousness, the veil are very important
◦ Gradualist- accused Booker T. Washington of this
▪ DuBois suggestion that within the black community lighter skin people are thought of
better than the darker skinned people
• Felt this reflects the black community accepting the white view of the world that
lighter is better
◦ He finds this offensive
◦ Pan-African Movement
▪ Later career, after WWI with the global color line
▪ Global movement
◦ Interventionist Social Science- pg. 264
▪ Controversial even today in sociology • Should sociologists just state facts or should they said this is wrong, and we should
fix it (interventionist)
• People believe- if you're a scientist you should be objective
▪ Essentially playing the part of an advocate and advocating intervening in society in
▪ Promoting black freedom and justice
9/25/13- W.E.B. DuBois and the black church (group discussion number 2)
• Essay one is due on Friday 9/27/13 hard copy and in the drop box on carmen
• Next Wednesday we will be given the mid-term study guide, next friday is discussion number 3.
• Concept of “The Veil”
◦ Almost nothing had changed between the Philadelphia Negro and The souls of black folk
◦ Whites do not understand the negro problem with facts and figures- now he's going to tell
about the souls and maybe they will understand
◦ Criticize candidly “the leader”- Booker T. Washington
◦ The trade school plan was institutionalizing a servile class, need to go to school- you are
equal, go to school like the whites
◦ He's struggling with this talking past each other that he seems to perceive- there is some
disjuncture that blacks may have a problem seeing across but not as much so- they have an
intimate relationship with whites- they work for them.
◦ Wants whites to see the other side with some degree of empathy and understanding.
▪ He is saying that it's not their fault but they are not understanding
• Double Consciousness
◦ Subjectivity- not dissimilar to alienation and anomie that Marx and Durkheim used
▪ Talks about being black andAmerican (not comparable?)
▪ Why can't we just be both black andAmerican?
• Being an equal human being
• The Color Line
◦ Ahistorical objective demographic, seen in the Philadelphia negro
◦ The problem of the 20 century (pg. 275-276)
▪ The emancipation proclamation made it worse
◦ Let's go back and talk about how the negro problem started to really understand it
◦ The negro problem is a euphemism for crime and lawlessness
◦ We can never seem to talk about race
▪ The problem is we have a hard time seeing the impact of social structures on peoples
lives- especially our own.
◦ The legacy of the freedmen's bureau- let's put it in a context, in the social context- how was
it supposed to take land away from the southern people who went away to fight the war
when they return?- couldn't work and didn't work
◦ Sharecroppers in the south are now part of this negro problem
• Accepting Inferiority
◦ Essentially no higher education available- without this you can't get disenfranchisement or
civil inferiority back (the opposites)
◦ Rights were given in the constitution then taken away
• Role of the black church
◦ This is what motivates people- it is how his people became aware of the common plight of blacks in America
◦ Thinks the church is letting it's people down in the north and the south
◦ He's thinks religion has a social function
◦ What is the role of the black church in the ethical beliefs and values of the people who
▪ The essence of blackness- wasn't imposed
▪ Sees this as leadership potential
• Social History of Beliefs
◦ Slave traders would break people of the same towns, families, clans and groups up and then
sell them to different places
▪ Traditions were not lost entirely
◦ The vestiges or traditions that are some what remembered- you get folk leaders that have
served a function in slave communities before there was any Christianity
◦ Maybe Christianity would be a good thing- two sects then spread (Baptist and Methodist)
◦ Christianity is full of rituals- heavily ritually embedded tradition, many rights and rituals fit
right in and were easily adaptable.
◦ Notion of active with voice and body worship- together, feeding off each other
▪ Durkheim talks about this with primitive religions, the euphoria or excitement
• Inner Ethical Life
◦ Instead of the initial resistance which was viewed on the part of theAfrican as evil but with
the advent of Christianity it sort of reduces the likelihood of resistance
◦ If you focus on afterlife you will get a passive submission
• Abolition and Emancipation
◦ Some s