Mrs. Vippy Yee
October 15 2013
• Sociological Perspective
i. The social context in which people live; how people are influenced by their
society and how social forces affect human behavior.
ii. Sociological Imagination: a term coined by C. Wright Mills which refers to being
able to look beyond common sense for explanations of why people act the way
they do. *Objectively, not subjectively.
iii. Social Location: the corners in life that people occupy. *Example: jobs, social
class, race, occupation, sex, religion, other demographics.
• Birth of Sociology 1800’s
i. The Industrial Revolution challenged traditional ideas about social life; a
systematic scientific method is applied.
ii. Auguste Comte: Father of Sociology. iii. Herbert Spencer: survival of the fittest. *Eugenics breeding desirable qualities &
iv. Karl Marx: Marxism; socialism is an economic system, communism is a political
v. Class conflict: groups compete for power where the proletariat is the working
class and the bourgeoisie is the wealthful class.
vi. Emile Durkheim: first to conclude we can find patterns in social behavior; social
forces lead to predictions. *Social Integration
vii. Max Weber: perspective of religion being the central force in social change where
beliefs and ideas shape society. *Protestant Ethic is tied to the riser of Capitalism.
• Sexism and Race in Early Sociology
i. Higher education was reserved for white men and wealthy.
ii. Jane Addams: social reform, came from a background of privilege.
iii. W.E.B. Du Bois: first African American to get a doctorate from Harvard.
• Theory vs. Reform; Talcott Parson and C. Wright Mills
i. Parson developed abstracted models of society.
ii. C. Wright Mills believed that our freedom was being threatened by the power
elite the top leaders of business, policies, and military. iii. Theory: a general statement about how some parts of the world fit together and
how they work.
iv. Perspectives and how a Sociologist views a social problem:
♦ Symbolic Interaction: individuals evaluate their own conduct by comparing
themselves to others. *Microsociological
*People change as symbols change.
♦ Functional Analysis: society as a whole unit which is made up of interrelated
parts that work together. Where: each part of society has certain functions that
must be fulfilled. *Macrosociological
♦ Conflict: groups competing for scarce resources, power, and authority.
• Research Strategy
i. Deduction: testing theories with natural scientific models.
ii. Induction: making observations from theories.
iii. Quantitative: deductive, quantifiable d