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Social Problems - 1.docx

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Western University
Sociology 2140
Darlene Balandin

Social Concern –  Economy  Unemployment  Crime Human Development Report – well-being of world populations based off of HDI Human Development Index – longevity, educational attainment and living standards Objective Element – existence of a social problem  personal troubles = larger social phenomena Subjective Element – particular social conditions are harmful to society and humans should change them. Claims-making Activities – strategies people take to define social conditions as social problems - Spector & Kitsuse: CMA are central to the development of a specific fact  not concerned with whether the issue actually exists  social activity = shared values = social good Social Problem – society views as harmful to members that are in need of remedy - def’n change over societies & historical periods - framework – knowledge of the concepts and methods accessing and analyzing social phenomena Social Structure – the way society is organized – distinct but interrelated  Institutions – established organization of societal relationships - family, religion, politics, economics and education - largest groups - social problems = inadequate  Social Problems – 2+ people with common identity, interact and form a social relationship - secondary: small # of individuals is task-orientated and characterized by impersonal and formal interaction - primary: small # of people with intimate and informal interaction  Statues – position a person occupies within a social group  largely define our social identities - ascribed: society assigns basis of no control - achieved: individual has some control - master: most significant * role – set of rights , obligations and expectations associated with a status Culture- meanings and ways of life that characterize a society Belief – def’n of what is assumed to be true  sociologists don’t accept beliefs as true but as sources that operate and influence Value – agreements considered good and bad Norms – rules of behaviour  guidelines for behaviours and expectations of behaviour of others Folkways – customs and manners of society Laws – formalized norms backed by political authority Mores- moral basis Sanctions – consequences for conforming and violating norms - positive -negative - informal -formal Symbols – represents something else - language - gestures - objects  Social structure and culture contribute to social problems Sociological Imagination- ability for connections b/w personal lives and social world - developed by C. Wright Mills - private troubles and public issues Structural – Functionalist  Interconnected parts that work together to maintain a state o balance for society as a whole
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