Download Sociology for Dummies (ISBN - 0470572361) PDF

TitleSociology for Dummies (ISBN - 0470572361)
TagsFor Dummies
LanguageEnglish
File Size3.7 MB
Total Pages387
Table of Contents
                            Sociology For Dummies
	About the Author
	Dedication
	Author’s Acknowledgments
	Contents at a Glance
	Table of Contents
	Introduction
		About This Book
		Conventions Used in This Book
		Sociology is Controversial: Brace Yourself!
		How This Book Is Organized
		Icons Used In This Book
		Where To Go From Here
	Part I: The Basic Basics
		Chapter 1: Sociology: Getting Your Head Around It
			Understanding Sociology
			Seeing the World as a Sociologist
			Understanding Differences Among People and Groups
			Social Organization
			Sociology and Your Life
			Sociology for Dummies, for Dummies
		Chapter 2: What Is Sociology, and Why Should I Care?
			Figuring Out What Sociology Is
			Discovering Where Sociology Is “Done”
			Recognizing How Sociology Affects Your Life and Your World
		Chapter 3: Making It Up as They Went Along: The History of Sociology
			So . . . Who Cares about History?
			Thinking about Society before There Was Sociology
			The Development of “Sociology”
			Sociology’s Power Trio
			Sociology in the 20th Century
			Sociology Today
		Chapter 4: Research Methods: Because You Can’t Put Society in a Test Tube
			The Steps of Sociological Research
			Choosing a Method
			Analyzing Analytical Tools
			Preparing For Potential Pitfalls
	Part II: Seeing Society Like a Sociologist
		Chapter 5: Socialization: What is “Culture,” and Where Can I Get Some?
			Understanding What Culture Is — and Isn’t
			Studying Culture: Makin’ It and Takin’ It
			Paddling the “Mainstream”
			Socialization: Where You Connect in Culture
			Culture Paradox: Pulling Us Together and Pushing Us Apart
		Chapter 6: Microsociology: If Life Is a Game, What Are the Rules?
			Within You and Without You: The Paradox of Society
			Rational — and Irrational — Choices
			Symbolic Interactionism: Life is a Stage
		Chapter 7: Caught in the Web: The Power of Networks
			The Global Village: Seeing Society as a Network
			The Strength of Weak Ties
			Insights from Network Analysis
	Part III: Equality and Inequality in Our Diverse World
		Chapter 8: Social Stratification: We’re All Equal, But Some of Us Are More Equal Than Others
			Excavating the Social Strata
			The Many Means of Inequality
		Chapter 9: Gender and Ethnicity: I Know My Race, But Where’s the Finish Line?
			Bias and Discrimination: A Two-Sided Coin
			Race and Ethnicity
			Sex and Gender
			Race, Ethnicity, Sex, and Gender: Why They Still Matter
		Chapter 10: Getting Religion: Faith in the Modern World
			Understanding Religion in History
			Religion in Theory . . . and in Practice
			Faith and Freedom in the World Today
		Chapter 11: Crime and Deviance: I Fought the Law . . . and I Won!
			All Crime is Deviance, but Not All Deviance is a Crime
			Criminals in Society
			The Social Construction of Crime
			Becoming Deviant
			Fighting Crime
	Part IV: All Together Now: The Ins and Outs of Social Organization
		Chapter 12: Corporate Culture: The Study of Organizations (and Disorganizations)
			The Corporate Conundrum: Making a Profit Isn’t as Easy — or as Simple — as it Sounds
			Weber’s Big Idea About Organizations
			Rational Systems: Bureaucracy at its Purest
			Natural Systems: We’re Only Human
			Open Systems: The Whole Wide World of Work
		Chapter 13: The Rules of the Game: Social Movements and Political Sociology
			Government: Governing and Being Governed
			Sharing (or Not Sharing) Power in Society
			Social Movements: Working for Change
		Chapter 14: Urban Sociology and Demographics: (Ain’t No) Love in the Heart of the City
			Sociology in the City
			Changing Neighborhoods
			Life in the City: Perils and Promise
	Part V: Sociology and Your Life
		Chapter 15: Get Born, Get a Job, Get a Kid, Get Out of Here: The Family and the Life Course
			The Social Construction of Age
			Running the Course of Life
			Taking Care: Health Care and Society
			Families Past and Present
		Chapter 16: Future Passed: Understanding Social Change
			Why Societies Change
			What Comes Next?
			Sociology in the Future
	Part VI: The Part of Tens
		Chapter 17: Ten Sociology Books That Don’t Feel Like Homework
			Randall Collins: Sociological Insight
			William Foote Whyte: Street Corner Society
			William H. Whyte: The Organization Man
			Erving Goffman: The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life
			Elijah Anderson: Streetwise
			Arlie Hochschild: The Second Shift
			Viviana Zelizer: Pricing the Priceless Child
			Michael Schwalbe: Unlocking the Iron Cage
			Richard Peterson: Creating Country Music
			Katherine Newman: No Shame in My Game
		Chapter 18: Ten Ways to Use Sociological Insight in Everyday Life
			Think Critically About Claims That “Research Proves” One Thing or Another
			Beware of Unprovable Assertions About Society
			Understand Barriers to Effective Communication
			Know the Difference Between the Identity You Choose and the Identities Others Choose For You
			Understanding Art: If It Seems Confusing, That’s Exactly the Point
			Be Smart About Relationship-Building
			Changing Society: Be Optimistic, But Keep Your Expectations Reasonable
			Learn How to Mobilize a Social Movement
			Run Your Company Effectively
			Understand How We Can All Be Different, Yet All Be the Same
		Chapter 19: Ten Myths About Society Busted by Sociology
			With Hard Work and Determination, Anyone Can Get What They Deserve
			Our Actions Reflect Our Values
			We’re Being Brainwashed by the Media
			Understanding Society is Just a Matter of “Common Sense”
			Race Doesn’t Matter Any More
			In Time, Immigrant Families Will Assimilate and Adopt a New Culture
			Bureaucracy is Dehumanizing
			People Who Make Bad Choices Are Just Getting the Wrong Messages
			Society Prevents Us From Being Our “True Selves”
			There Is Such a Thing as a Perfect Society
	Index
                        
Document Text Contents
Page 1

97804705723651999.eps


Jay Gabler, PhD
Professor of Sociology, Rasmussen College

Learn to:
• Recognize the basics of how communities

work

• Analyze the cultural impact that race,
gender, religion, and sexual orientation
have on society

• Use and interpret sociological research
methods

• Identify the social construction and
impact of crime and deviance

Sociology
Making Everythin

g Easier!


Open the book and find:

• The history of sociological study

• Social movements and political
sociology

• The value and purpose of think
tanks and research institutes

• Tips for thinking about the world
in an objective way

• The lowdown on “Sociology’s
Power Trio” — Karl Marx, Emile
Durkheim, and Max Weber

• Methods for conducting socio-
logical research

• The roles race, sex, and religion
play in sociology

Jay Gabler, PhD, is a writer, editor, and college professor. Gabler received

his PhD from Harvard University and now teaches at Rasmussen College in

Minneapolis, Minnesota.

$19.99 US / $23.99 CN / £15.99 UK

ISBN 978-0-470-57236-8

Social Science/Sociology

Go to Dummies.com®
for videos, step-by-step photos,

how-to articles, or to shop!

Understand human and
social interactions in an
ever-changing world
Sociology is the study of human and societal interaction.
Whether you’re currently enrolled in a course or want to
learn how to apply sociological concepts to your personal
or professional life, Sociology For Dummies helps you under-
stand how to scientifically analyze social organization and
cultural structure.

• Discover the who, what, and where of sociology — wrap your
head around the basics of sociology to get a handle on what it is,
where it came from, and who practices it

• Put on your sociology sunglasses — learn how to look at society
through the eyes of a sociologist to get a better understanding of
culture, social networks, society and your place in it, and more

• Get a grip on the social status quo — find out how everything
from race to sex and gender plays a role in social equality and
inequality

• Organize (and disorganize) social organizations — discover what
sociology tells us about how corporations, nonprofits, govern-
ments, and social movements work (and sometimes don’t)

• Take a look in the mirror — understand how your life’s course is
inexplicably tied to your society

So
cio

lo
g

y

Gabler

spine=.7680”

Page 2

Start with FREE Cheat Sheets
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spine=.7680”

Page 193

173 Chapter 9: Gender and Ethnicity: I Know My Race, But Where’s the Finish Line?
✓ Sociologists of culture (see Chapter 5) are seeing a transition to “micro-

cultures,” where groups of people who identify with one another are
able to come together from across a range of social backgrounds. This
means that people who consider themselves, say, queer can share a
common culture that may be different than mainstream cultures.

✓ Sociologists of race and ethnicity (see earlier sections in this chapter)
have seen that “race” is losing legitimacy as a category people are born
into and that determines what they can or should do with their lives. Sex
is changing in the same way — it’s increasingly seen as something indi-
viduals can and should express for themselves.

✓ Sociologists studying social change (see Chapter 16), from Durkheim
to Weber, have all observed that individuals are increasingly seen as
having the right to say for themselves what they’ll do and with whom
they’ll associate. There’s no reason that association in bed should prove
to be an exception to that rule.

It’s often said that governments are getting “out of the bedroom,” but soci-
ologist David John Frank, who has studied international changes in sex laws,
says that that’s not exactly true. On the one hand, it is true that some sexual
activities that were once forbidden by law — for example, gay sex — have
increasingly been permitted by law in countries around the world. On the
other hand, some sexual activities that were once permitted — for example,
a husband forcing his wife to have sex with him — have been increasingly
made illegal. The common theme is that laws around the world have been
changing, for decades, in favor of allowing individuals to decide for them-
selves what intimate activities they are going to participate in, and when, and
with whom.

Race, Ethnicity, Sex, and Gender:
Why They Still Matter

If it’s true — and it is — that in societies around the world, all individuals
increasingly have the right to choose for themselves what they will do, with
whom they will do it, and what identities they will choose, are ideas like
race, ethnicity, sex, and gender outdated? Does it even matter what race or
ethnicity or sex or gender you are? Why even bother having an ethnicity or a
gender, or a particular sexual orientation? Some people feel this way; in fact,
there are people who identify their sexual orientation as “omnisexual,” claim-
ing complete freedom to be intimate with anyone they happen to be attracted
to. As people from different races and ethnicities mix more and more, maybe
“omniracial” and “omniethnic” identities will also increasingly be adopted.

15_572368-ch09.indd 17315_572368-ch09.indd 173 2/23/10 6:04 PM2/23/10 6:04 PM

Page 194

174 Part III: Equality and Inequality in Our Diverse World
That probably will happen, but sociologists believe that race, ethnicity, sex,
and gender aren’t “going away” any time soon. Those concepts are grounded
deep in the fabric of every society, and saying that they don’t matter any
more is simply false. No matter where you live, your physical features and
biological sex are going to influence how the people around you see you, and
they’re going to influence how you see yourself.

Ethnicity may be an “option” for some people, but although ethnicity (unlike
race) is not determined by how others see you, that doesn’t mean it’s easy
to renounce the ethnicity you were raised in — even if you want to. Novels
like The House on Mango Street (by Sandra Cisneros) and Portnoy’s Complaint
(by Philip Roth), films like Ang Lee’s Brokeback Mountain and Tyler Perry’s
The Family That Preys, and plays like Fences (by August Wilson) and Angels in
America (by Tony Kushner) movingly depict people’s struggles to reconcile
their personal hopes and dreams with the strengths and limitations of the
ethnic communities to which they belong.

Similarly, sex and gender are increasingly complicated categories that remain
just as meaningful to individuals as they were when they were simpler. Your
sex, your gender, and your sexual orientation are part of who you are, and
though societies increasingly allow you to decide how and when you will
express your gender and your sexual orientation — and, also increasingly,
forbid others to judge you by them — that doesn’t mean that your sex and
your gender don’t matter profoundly to you, and to others.

If you’re confused or frustrated trying to understand your own race, ethnicity,
sex, or gender, you’re not alone! Many groups exist to help people find sup-
port and advice about their identity, no matter what it is. A visit to a coun-
selor, a trip to the library, a quick Web search, or even a conversation with a
caring listener can help connect you with other people who are wrestling with
the same concerns you are.

15_572368-ch09.indd 17415_572368-ch09.indd 174 2/23/10 6:04 PM2/23/10 6:04 PM

Page 386

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Page 387

97804705723651999.eps


Jay Gabler, PhD
Professor of Sociology, Rasmussen College

Learn to:
• Recognize the basics of how communities

work

• Analyze the cultural impact that race,
gender, religion, and sexual orientation
have on society

• Use and interpret sociological research
methods

• Identify the social construction and
impact of crime and deviance

Sociology
Making Everythin

g Easier!


Open the book and find:

• The history of sociological study

• Social movements and political
sociology

• The value and purpose of think
tanks and research institutes

• Tips for thinking about the world
in an objective way

• The lowdown on “Sociology’s
Power Trio” — Karl Marx, Emile
Durkheim, and Max Weber

• Methods for conducting socio-
logical research

• The roles race, sex, and religion
play in sociology

Jay Gabler, PhD, is a writer, editor, and college professor. Gabler received

his PhD from Harvard University and now teaches at Rasmussen College in

Minneapolis, Minnesota.

$19.99 US / $23.99 CN / £15.99 UK

ISBN 978-0-470-57236-8

Social Science/Sociology

Go to Dummies.com®
for videos, step-by-step photos,

how-to articles, or to shop!

Understand human and
social interactions in an
ever-changing world
Sociology is the study of human and societal interaction.
Whether you’re currently enrolled in a course or want to
learn how to apply sociological concepts to your personal
or professional life, Sociology For Dummies helps you under-
stand how to scientifically analyze social organization and
cultural structure.

• Discover the who, what, and where of sociology — wrap your
head around the basics of sociology to get a handle on what it is,
where it came from, and who practices it

• Put on your sociology sunglasses — learn how to look at society
through the eyes of a sociologist to get a better understanding of
culture, social networks, society and your place in it, and more

• Get a grip on the social status quo — find out how everything
from race to sex and gender plays a role in social equality and
inequality

• Organize (and disorganize) social organizations — discover what
sociology tells us about how corporations, nonprofits, govern-
ments, and social movements work (and sometimes don’t)

• Take a look in the mirror — understand how your life’s course is
inexplicably tied to your society

So
cio

lo
g

y

Gabler

spine=.7680”

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