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Reading Sociology notes

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Lorne Tepperman

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READING SOCIOLOGY NOTES Reading Sociology Part 7: Work • Rather than working to gather our own resources directly, we are embedded within a complex set of social relationships that organizes labour and resources Chapter 26 Suck it Up Buttercup:Culture of Acceptable Workplace Violence Group Homes • Workplace violence- act in which an employee is abused, threatened, intimidated or assaulted during course of, or as a result of employment threatening behavior (ie shaking fists, destroying property or throwing objects, verbal or written threats), any expression of intent to inflict harm, harassment, swearing, insults or condescending language, physical attacks • Simonowitz- workplace violence is a major problem in US and most measures taken to address problems of societal violence have typically been after fact, punitive, and poorly aimed at reducing workplace violence in particular • Montgomery and Kelloway- most frequent forms of workplace violence hitting, kicking, biting Path from front-line worker to manager depends largely on one’s response to daily workplace • violence; those who ‘suck it up’ and take their medicine without a whimper are precisely those who are promoted upward through ranks • Apparent increase in intensity of violence experienced during daytime shifts...may be both a higher frequency of violence as well as an increased intensity of violence during these shifts in particular, simply because this is a moment of increased activity, as residents tend to gather for collective mealtimes during these shifts (need more staff during daytime shifts) Chapter 27: ‘Let’s Be Friends’: Working within an Accountability Circuit • Focuses on county-level determination of eligibility for benefits in chronic care strand of US Medicaid program, which provides financial support for health care for people w/ low incomes • Argue that strategies adopted by local administrators have had effect of inventing a new kind of public-private partnership • Institutional ethnography approach, shows how front-line wok activities both are shaped by ‘ruling relations’ and also activate those relations in ways that are consequential elsewhere • Medicaid is one of major entitlement programs that has contributed to an increasingly unsustainable budget deficit in US, and program undergoes continual scrutiny and revision with an eye to cost containment • Local reformers are working within two accountability circuits- on one hand, accountable to ‘boss text’ of program legislation (must work within parameters of enabling regulations); on other hand, have responded to a different set of local accountabilities, working with those in other organizations also charged with provision of care for elderly Chapter 28: Profession: A Useful Concept for Sociological Analysis? Profession typically refers to paid employment or any occupation; sociological usage to refer • to special kind of occupation with status/privilege appears divorced from social reality • Some argue professions are in a state of decline, becoming subordinate and indistinguishable from other forms of export labour • Defining professions isn’t a simple task, 1950-60s followed a ‘trait approach’, providing a list of characteristics that distinguished professions from other occupations • Vollmer and Mills (following Foote) stressed work required ‘a specialized technique supported by a body of theory’, pursuit of careers supported by professional associations, and ‘status supported by community recognition’ • Freidson Johnson- what distinguished professions from other occupations was practitioners’ ability to control their occupation, their work, and labour of those who worked with them • In Weberian sense, professions are status groups; occupational status groups emerge when people sharing a status situation- ‘a position of positive or negative privilege in social esteem’ associated with their lifestyle and occupation- form an association, claim status, and typically pursue ‘certain special monopolies on grounds of their status’ • Two different types of status have traditionally been crucial for professions: 1. ‘social status’; successful professions are (on avg) held in high esteem by members of public 2. Legal status: in Canada and other Western countries, most groups studied as professions by researchers and regarded with high esteem by public are regulated by state • Study: focused on legislation regulating professions and occupations passed in 5 Canadian provinces from time of Confederation (1867): Nova Scotia, QUE, ONT, Saskatchewan, BC; two questions: 1. What professions were regulated historically, and when were they regulated? 2. What factors appear to differ professional regulation from regulation of other occupations? • Only two characteristics were universal across ‘professions’: 1. Establishment of a regulatory body, at least partially composed of practitioners, to govern profession and 2. Limitation of right to practice or to utilize a restricted title to those with a demonstrated level of competence Chapter 29: Work Hard, Play Hard?: A Comparison of Male and Female Lawyers’ Time in Paid and Unpaid Work and Participation in Leisure Activities • Time availability perspective suggests more time spent in one role,less time available 4 another • Role strain- often used in examining difficulty in simultaneously fulfilling competing demands associated with work and family roles • Hypothesis 1: greater time spent in paid and unpaid work will be negatively related to participation in leisure activities • Amount of time spent in paid and unpaid work and leisure may differ for men and women; societal expectations of women’s commitment to domestic sphere can influence their participation in leisure activities • As a result of their heavier caregiving responsibilities, women experience not only less total leisure time than men but also lower quality leisure time; women have less time to relax from demands of paid and unpaid work, and time they do spend in leisure often involves other activities that are related to primary responsibilities of housework and child care • Hypothesis 2: women will spend more time in household and child care activities than men, whereas men will spend more time in paid work and participate in more leisure than women • Women continue to spend roughly seven hours more in these unpaid activities per week • Hypothesis 3: greater time spent in paid and unpaid work will result in a stronger negative relationship with leisure for women compared with men • Women who are married participate in less passive and social leisure than unmarried women, whereas married men participate less in social leisure but participate to same degree in active or passive leisure as unmarried men • Women with preschool-aged children are less engaged in active or passive leisure than women without young children, whereas whether men have preschool-aged children is unrelated to their leisure activities • For both men and women, health is positively related to participation in active and social leisure and age is negatively related to active leisure • Marital status and presence of preschool-aged children are differentially related to leisure for women and men; for women, being married or having preschool-aged children is negatively related to their leisure activities, but for men these family status variables are less relevant or unrelated to their leisure • One explanation for pattern that unpaid obligations are either unrelated or positively related to men’s leisure but negatively related to women’s may be because men ‘earn’ more leisure time when they help out around house; husbands and wives may believe that men’s contributions deserve more praise, appreciation, and rewards • Limitations: data are cross-sectional and we must be cautious in making causal claims • Men spend more time in paid work and leisure and women spend more time in housework and child care Reading Sociology Part 10: Inequality and Stratification • Technically, any human trait that is variable could be subject to stratification, though not all are • Humans are stratified by traits in various ways; one of most obvious of these is distribution of material resources, another way of measuring inequality is by considering stratification of social power- ability of those who are empowered to control and shape lives of those who lack power Chapter 37: Pay Equity: Yesterday’s Issue? • Pay equity- equal pay between men and women; based on comparisons of work predominately done by women with work predominately done by men • Supports continuing segregation of labor force that leaves women doing women’s work at women’s wages • Gender wage gap- a difference between a man and woman’s fixed regular payment earned for work or services, typically paid on a daily or weekly basis • Evidence of women’s low wages and poor conditions, combined with their growing activism and their work during WW1 that led to intro of min wages and conditions for women Chapter 38: Red Zones, Empty Alleys, and Giant TVs: Low-Income Youths’ Spatial Account of Olympic Host Cities • Bourdieu understands social spaces to be distinguished by relative accumulation of economic, cultural, and social capital of those inhabiting spaces • Hosting of Olympics by global cities such as Vancouver results in particular reorganizations of space, that have specific and concrete implications for low-income young people living within host cities • Two fieldwork periods: a year before Vancouver 2010 games, and during; during both fieldwork periods, focus groups were conducted with 33 youth (ages 15-24) in first phase, 27 in second, also conducted interviews with ‘key informants’ (people associated with topic) • Effects of urban development that have been widely recognized as a consequence of hosting mega-events and symbolic and material consequences policing practices during events • City changed by relentless gentrification that accompanies such global events (ex condos, new retail developments) • Spatial practice utilized by police, called ‘red zoning’, a red zone is an area that police have designated as ‘out of bounds’ to particular youth who have been banished by police for partaking in illegitimate (though not always criminal) behavior aka ‘clean up the streets’ • Zone of prestige- culturally impressive institution of space (Newman) that a city uses to boost its reputation both nationally and globally • Spatial effects can be seen through the ‘emptying’ of some spaces, and, paradoxically, the ‘filling’ of others, as global cities attempt to capitalize on such ‘prestige projects’ Chapter 39: Parents and Traffic Safety: Unequal Risks & Responsibilities to & from School • Parental traffic safeguarding- ways in which parents protect their children’s diverse mobilities from dangers of motorized traffic in variable social and automobilized environments- and complex ways this phenomenon relates to production and reproduction of automobility system • Examine how auto-dominated urban environments intertwine with social inequalities to produce unequal risks and responsibilities in parental traffic safeguarding practices -illustrates ways in which automobility system shapes parenting and how traffic safeguarding, as part of work of parenting, constitutes automobility and its illusion of safety • 10 parents from East Side school and 12 parents at West Side School, almost all parents at WS were mothers and at ES 4 mothers and 6 fathers involved Truck routes heighten parental worries about safeguarding ex not being able to trust traffic • lights and never allowing their children to walk by themselves to school (ES) • Greatest worry for WS parents was risk posed by parental traffic at school entrance; free-for-all -mothers not fathers were primarily involved in chauffeuring and traffic safeguarding their kids • Key difference between traffic safeguarding practices at two schools is that ES school mothers were less available as chauffeurs, escorts, or school volunteers due to (ex) employment schedules, shift work, families less modeled on two-parent Anglo, male breadwinner family than at WS school, WS school usually mothers creating greatest concerns about traffic dangers Chapter 40: Municipal Malaise: Neo-liberal Urbanism in Canada • Neo-liberal urbanism- a range of uneven processes unfolding in urban environments in which we live and work; include privatization, restructuring, and elimination of public goods and municipal services etc • In response to current economic slump, Toronto, Vancouver, Ottawa are all struggling to simultaneously cut costs, meet increasing demands on city services, and keep taxes low • Public sector unions generally have been on defensive since beginning of crisis, and will likely remain targets to be squeezed for some time • Pressure on public workers has been fueling increasingly bitter labour conflicts (ie TTC strike, Zellers Warehouse strike, HandyDart strike) • To counter trend, must make a strong public sector ponce again part of common sense, but requires struggle: recent economic crisis provided an opportunity to dislodge neo-liberal common sense; but didn’t change it automatically • Urban consciousness- individuals’ state of being cognitively aware of and alert to their situation in relation to their city Reading Sociology Part 11: Sex and Gender Chapter 41: Gold Diggers and Moms: Representations of Women’s Identities in Fort McMurray in Chatelaine • Feminist post-structuralist (a doctrine that rejects structuralism’s claims to objectivity and emphasizes plurality of meaning) discourse analysis, which Gavey describes as ‘careful reading of texts...with a view to discerning discursive patterns of meaning, contradictions, and inconsistencies) • Chatelaine magazine article in question draws heavily on discourse of frontier masculinity- including adopting vernacular commonly associated with popular representations of frontier times- to make sense of numerous phenomena in Fort MucMurray -Preville’s depiction of community and nearby oil industry as a ‘male space’ where construction of opportunities and challenges are distinctly gendered • Casinos, bars other sites of debauchery are presented as a necessary vice for hardworking men who have limited time and opportunities to escape brutal physical labor demands of their jobs In article, women constructed as having very little access to employment and income-earning • opportunities afforded by resource boom • Women serve as background characters, restricted to two opposite roles: the helpmate (or ‘good woman’) and the whore (or ‘bad woman’) ROLE STRAIN. Their identities are inherently defined by their sexualized relationships with men • Bad woman on frontier is described by Wright as ‘socially tainted because of her independence; she is too cavalier about sex, she acts like a market competitor, she associates with questionable men, she seeks wealth and property’ • Bad women defined by their independence and sexuality, good women devoid of sexuality and defined by their steadfastness • Any women displaying personal ambition over commitment to family and community are conflated with gold diggers (term applied to women who are perceived to associate with or marry a rich man in order to get valuables from him through gifts or a divorce settlement) • Good women play down any notion of economic ambition or sexuality • Media representations of women’s identities in Fort McMurray (ex in Preville’s article) don’t simply erase women’s experiences; they replace them with marginalized subject positions that reinforce primacy of masculine protagonist • Frontier masculinity is primary organizing frame through which gender relations and identities in community are constructed and represented to outside world Chapter 42: Hyperheterosexualization, Masculinity, HIV/AIDS Challenges in Caribbean • Objective=understand how cultural ideas of manhood and masculinity affected HIV/AIDS education in caribbean • 47 men interviewed in Trinidad and Tobago (some gay men) • Some lie about having HIV/AIDS to partner so they won’t leave them, they want to be loved...lying to find love despite their HIV status is understood not as unethical or immoral, but rather as a condition for survival and acceptance in a hetero-patriarchal and homophobic society (where gay and young heterosexual men are prisoners of a particular system of ideological thought and oppression that teaches all them not to tell truth about selves) • AIDS epidemic claimed an est 24,000 lives in Caribbean in 2005, making disease leading cause of death among adults aged 15-44 Most older men didn’t identify themselves as gay because they feminized younger men in their • relationship; they were thus able to act out a heterosexualization ( process in which individuals are socially conditioned to adopt heterosexual practices by ignoring and suppressing their sexual feelings toward same sex and then using these suppressed emotions toward opposite gender...hyperheterosexualization is an excess of this) and heterosocialization of masculinity • Power plays important role in social construction of masculinity...wealthy black men can subjugate black working class men in same-sex relationships without negotiation • Hegemonic discourses of masculinity clearly shape way wealthy black men think about themselves as men and as providers; this self-perception is shaped by their class, age, income, education, argot, and sexuality • Main reason young men say they engage in unsafe sexual practices is because they fear losing older, more financially secure man who is providing for them...goal is to be given food, shelter, clothing, cared for by older man who has a house, job, car • Risks of acquiring HIV/AIDS are driven upward by a lack of legal and sexual protection, rampant homophobia, and an openness to having multiple partners.. Result=serious health care problem for men and for society as a whole • Homophobia in Caribbean occurs within a particular system of ideological thought and practice (has highest HIV/AIDS rates outside of sub-Saharan Africa) • Homosexuality must be legalized and multi-layered hypermasculine gender roles and sexual taboos, embedded in a traditional colonial system, must be challenged, changed, and unlearned in order to develop successful human rights and HIV/AIDS education that gets message across hypermasculinity doesn’t discourage homosexuality- it drives it underground, this raising risks of STD infection, especially from HIV/AIDS • Fight against HIV/AIDS will also have to involve a fight against homophobia RS 12 Immigration, Race, and Ethnicity Bridging understandings: Anishinabbe and White Perspectives on the residential school Apology and prospects for reconciliation ―Today we recognize that this policy of assimilation was wrong, has caused great harm and has no place in our country.‖ –Prime Minister, Steven Harper - apology to aboriginal people of Canada for residential school system as a tool of aboriginal assimilation - most residents view this apology as necessary, the whites see it as a final act of closure, while the aboriginals see it as one step in an ongoing healing journey - most agree monetary compensation cannot make up for the pain of residential school survivors, whites think it is excessive while the aboriginals feel it is insufficient - whites: forget the past and move on - aboriginals: offer practical healing methods i.e. enhancing cultural and language programs - ultimately dominant white frame reflects laissez-faire or colour-blind racism –an ideology that justifies racial inequality, avoids responsibility, and defends dominant group interests without sounding racist • Findings 1. Framing the Apology -Responses to the Apology -Table 46.1 (pg 258) -Most aboriginal highly emotional and engaged while a number of whites were indifferent -Intergenerational: -responses differ -tone of whites tends to be defense and negative 2. Framing the Settlement -difference in responses to monetary settlement as well -meaning of the compensation differs -some aboriginals view it as a positive gesture, others take it as not enough, ―hush money‖, to buy them off - Tone of whites tends to be defensive yet again - Minority of whites disagree for... a) Why should they as taxpayers pay for their ancestors mistakes? b) Residential school teachers presumably had ‗good intentions‘ c) Aboriginals story of abuse are exaggerated d) Residential school attendees are all dead now anyway - for most aboriginals it is not about the money, it is about seeking recognition for wrong doing, acknowledgement of guilt and acceptance of responsibility -healing emotional and spiritual wounds, and working toward reconciliation 3. Next Steps -Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC): 5 year mandate to witness, support, promote and facilitate truth and reconciliation events and create as complete an historical record as possible of the residential school system for public use and study -Biggest gap in understanding emerges around the question of next steps The Informal Settlement Sector: Broadening the Lens to Understand Newcomer Integration in Hamilton • Settlement: • Some main challenges newcomers face when integrating into Canadian society i.e. language barriers, educational/credential recognition, Canadian work experience, and translating experience prior to coming to Canada into comparable jobs in Canada • Interested in how newcomers face these challenges through participation in religious/ethnic specific associations • We conceive settlement as a process through which newcomers interact with a variety of individuals, formal and informal organizations in order to live and work in a new land • Formal settlement sector: those organizations that receive government or foundation funding to provide services to newcomers - SISO: Settlement and Integration Services Organization: formal face of settlement services in Hamilton • Informal settlement sector: consists of those organizations that play a role in the settlement and integration of newcomers without government or foundation resources • Support Provided by the Informal Settlement Sector - Important to recognize the informal support services offered by religious institutions and ethno-cultural association established by immigrants themselves to help newcomers - Faith Based Institutions and Social Integration: o Offer emotional and spiritual comfort, along with guidance and networking opportunities o Recommend people for jobs o Meeting own people, people you can communicate with, talk about same difficulties creates comfort o Religious centers open to anyone, they are more trusted by newcomers than a formal institution • Ethno-Cultural Associations - Some critics argue that Canadian immigration and multiculturalism weaken the countrys social fabric - Immigrants presumably are able to cling to their past instead of gradually creating a Canadian identity - These association help secure employment for newcomers - Help each other out, theyre all on the same boat. - Remain a primary source of information The New Relationship between the Social Sciences and the Indigenous Peoples of Canada • First Nations: • Social Change - Immense population growth of first nations people over past 30 years. - Many left reserves and have now integrated into urban areas, increasing their presence in mainstream Canadian society - Increase in first nations students‘ participation in post secondary education - Spread across different disciplines is improving, not clustered around social work and education anymore, but representing fields such as engineering, law, business and medicine • Economic Change - Increasing their involvement in mainstream economy, owning businesses across the country - Creation of first nations banking institutions - Businesses might not have been funded before due to risk, are now attractive by investors and corporations • Political Change - Earned seats in mainstream politics - Self government acts i.e. Sechelt Indian Band Self Government Act • Legal Change - Same human rights as other Canadians - Right to own land • Curriculum - Must integrate information on first nations peoples and their issues into post secondary curriculum - This will make students more aware - Course readings must be updated regularly - Professors must speak of the diversity of First Nations rather than identifying them as a homogenous group - Keep a balance of what negative/positive aspects are being taught about the first Nations Going on field trips or inviting first nation guest speakers will allow students to connect and experience their tradition and culture • Research - Academics who wish to conduct research in the first nations community must invest time, money and energy to build a relationship with the community - The community‘s perspectives must also be reflected in the resulting reports/ publications - Research should be community driven rather than agenda driven - Practical questions over theoretical ones - Research needs to be relevant to community - Some communities have implemented their own research protocol which include approving of all research projects by the chief and council - Others have adopted the National Aboriginal Health Organizations principles for research which include OCAP (ownership, control, accessibility, and possession) of data - This means community is not just the subject, research WITH the community not just ON them • Publishing and Dissemination of Data - One OCAP principle is Accessibility;; research must be formatted in a way that is easily obtained by members of the community - Must also be disseminated in a terms that are understandable to people who have been studied - Social scientists need to ensure, the community‘s voice comes through, they are able to recognize themselves in publications about them Changing Cndn Immigration and Foreign Worker Programs: Implications for Social Cohesion • Canada welcomes many foreigners, but it is also clear that it promotes a mix of welcome/stay out policies, all those admitted are carefully selected • Some less skilled workers are only admitted temporarily to work under conditions most Canadians would not accept • New Developments 1. The 1960‘s and Following Decades -main immigration program operates through a Points System -selecting immigrants regardless of their country of origin, initially points system was designed to select immigrants based on their skills relevant to industrialization programs in Canada -Dependent parents and other family members may be sponsored -Refugees: -Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program -Live-in Caregiver Program -Canada has a long history of granting visas to foreign students -Social Cohesion: 2. The 1990‘s -shift in selection criteria to privilege the immigration of highly educated workers -refugees and family class immigration was reduced since they were not selected due to their skills 3. 2005 and Following -employers given state approval to hire more temporary f
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