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Sociology Chapter - Key terms.rtf

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Sandra Colavecchia

Sociology Terms: Chapter 1 Conflict theory: shows patterns of inequality in society produce social stability in some circumstances and social change in others Dysfunctional consequences: effects of social structures that create social instability Egoistic suicide: results from the lack of intergration of the individual into society because of weak social ties to others Ethnomethodology: the study of how people make sense of what others do and say in terms of norms that exist independently of individual social actors Feminist theory: patriarchy is important as class inequality determines a persons opportunities in life, male domination = not biological but shaped by structures of power and social convention Functionalist theory: human behaviour is governed by relatively stable social structure, underlines how social structures maintain social stability Global structures: patterns of social relations that lie outside and above the national level Globalization: process by which formerly seperate economies, states, and cultures are becoming tied together and people are becoming increasingly aware of their growing interdependence Latent functions: invisible and unintended effects of social structure Manifest functions: visible and intended effects of social structure Patriarchy: traditional system of economic and political inequality between women and men Research: process of systematically observing reality to assess the validity of a theory Social solidarity: the degree to which group members share beliefs and values and the intensity and frequency of their interaction Social structures: relatively stable patterns of social relations Sociology: systematic study of human behaviour in social context Symbolic interactionism: focuses on face-to-face communication in microlevel social settings, people help create their social circumstances and do not merely react to them The Democratic Revolution: suggests that people are responsible for organizing society and that human intervention can therefore solve social problems Industrial Revolution: involved large scale application of science and technology to industrial processes, creation of factories & formation of a working class Post-industrial Revolution: technology driven shift from manufacturing to service industries and the consequences of that shift for virutally all human activities Protestant ethic: religious doubts can be reduce, unintended effect of increasing savings and investment savings and investment and thus stimulating capitalist growth Scientific Revolution: encourage view that sound conclusions about the workings of society must be based on solid evidence, not just speculation Sociological imagination: quality of mind that enables a person to see the connection between personal troubles and social structures Theory: tentative explanation of some aspect of social life that states how and way certain facts are related Values: are ideas about what is right and wrong Chapter 2 Abstraction: human capacity to create complex sybols, including languages, mathematical notations, and signs in order to classify experience and generalize from it Consumerism: involves defining ourselves in terms of the goods we can purchase Cooperation: human capacity to create a complext social life by establishing norms Countercultures: subversive subcultures, oppose dominant values and seek to replace them Culture: the sum of socially transmitted practices, languages, symbols, beliefs, values, ideologies and material objects that people create to deal with real life problems. Ethnocentrism: tendency to judge other cultures exclusively by the standards of our own Materical culture: comprises the tools and techniques that improve our ability to take what we want from nature Norms: standards of behaviour or generally accepted ways of doing things Postmodernism: characterized by an eclectic mixing of cultural elements, the erosion of authority, and the decline of consensus around core values Production: human capacity to make and use tools, improves our abilty to take what we want from nature Rationalization: Max Weber term for the systematic application of standardized means to predetermined ends Rite of passage: cultural ceremondy that marks the transitition from one stage of life to another or from life to death Sanctions: are rewards and punishments intended to ensure conformity to cultural guidelines Society: involves people interacting socially and sharing culture, usually in a defined geographical area Subculture: anything that carries a particular meaning, components of language, mathematical notations and signs. System of social control: means by which members of society ensure people conform to cultural guidelines The rights revolutation: process by which excluded groups have obtained equal rights under the law and in practice Chapter 3 Adult socialization: process by which adults take on new status and acquire new and different social indentities Agents of socialization: individuals/groups/institutions that impart and from which we acquire the range of information required to interact effectively and participate in society Anticipatory socialization: involves beginning to take on the norms and behaviorus of a role you aspire to but do not yet occupy Game stage of development: children have developed a generalized impression of the behaviour people expect as well as awareness of their own importance to the group and vice-versa - 3rd developmental stage: Mead Generalized other: conception of how people in general will respond in a situation I: subjective or active part of self - Mead Imitative stage of development: children two years old and under who do not interact effectively with others because they cannot take the role of the other, they merely imitate the behaviour of others - 1st developmental stage: Mead Instinct: inborn patterns of behaviour that are often responses to specific stimuli Looking glass self: suggests that gestures and reactions of others are a mirror in which we see ourselves Me: objective element of self - Mead Peer group: comprises individuals who are usually of the same age and enjoy approximately equal status Play stage: children begin to adopt roles of significant others (ex: a sports celebrity, parent or storybook hero shifts from imitative to imaginative - 2nd developmental stage: Mead Primary group: small group that is characterized by intimate face-to-face association and cooperation Primary socialization: crucial learning process that occurs in childhood and makes us members of society Resocialization: deliberate attempt to correct particular values and behaviours in an individual/group Secondary socialization: learning that occurs after people have undergone primary socialization Significant others: people, such as parents who are of central importance in the developmental stage of the self Socialization: social process whereby people undergo development by interacting with the people around them Status: culturally and socially defined position a person occupies in an interaction Taking the role of the other: involves anticipating in advance how others will see and react to you, essential skill that children must develip The self: sense of individual identity, alows us to understand ourselves and differentiate ourselves from others Total institutions: settings in which people are isolated from the rest of the society for a set period and where all aspects of a persons life are regulated under one authority Chapter 4 Complusory heterosexuality: assumption that individuals should desire only members of the "opposite" sex Essentialists: male-female differences in sexual scripts, division of labour at home/work, mate selection, sexual aggression, jealousy, promiscuity, fidelity and so forth Gender: encommpasses the feelings, attitudes and behaviours that are associated with being male or females as conventially understood Gender identity: refers to identification with, or a sense of belonging to, a particular sex, biologically, psychologically and socially Gender roles: comprise the repertoire of behaviours that match widely shared expectations about how males and females are supposed to act Hostile environment sexual harrassment: involves sexual jokes, comments and touching that interfere with work or create an unfriendly work setting Quid pro quo sexual harrassment: involves sexual threats or bribery used to extract sexual favours as a condition of employment decisions Sexual orientation: the way a person derives sexual pleasure, including whether desirable partners are of the same or different sex Sexual pluralism: assesses sexual acts only by their meaning for the participants Sexuality: involves actions that are intended to produce erotic arousal and genital response Social constructionism: main alternative to essentialism, argue that gender differences are not the product of biological properties whether chromosomal, gonadal or homonal Sociobiology: human beings instinctually want to ensure that their genes get passed on to future generations Transgendered people: defy societys gender norms and blur widely accepted gender roles (ex: cross dressing) Transsexual: people who want to alter their gender by changing their appearance or resorting to medical interventiion Chapter 5 Alternative news sources: representatives of social movements and of social advocacy groups whose viewpoints often diverge from those of dominant social groups and their representatives Communication: denotes the transmission of knowledge, ideas, meanings and understandings Computer-mediated communication: refers to social interaction or information gathering through the use of computer techonology Critical perspective: view that media reinforce dominant idealogy and the position the dominant class and other powerful groups Cultivation analysis: examines the long term effects of television viewing on beliefs about social reality Cultural imperialism: sutation to which ones societys media exert an overwhelming and unilateral influence over another societies culture Dominant ideology: comprises the interests, perspectives, viewpointes and understandings of th
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