2014 Fall Sociology III


The Study of Society


Sociology focuses on identifying, explaining, and interpreting patterns and processes of human social relations. This introductory course is designed not just to teach you some of the major findings of sociology, but to help you master fundamental sociological skills, including the ability to think with a "sociological imagination" as well as integrate "technological fluency" with "informational literacy" utilizing basic computer-based data analysis—skils which have broad applicability in a range of educational and work settings.

Our goal in this class is for you to gain a different perspective of a diverse world often taken for granted and to gain new insight into the ways that society shapes people and the way people shape their society. Our objectives are directed at building competence as a critical thinker and change agent so that you will better able to raise relevant questions about the direction in which society is moving, interpret social trends, and examine significant social problems.

It is my hope that this hands-on experience of "doing" sociology will both enliven your interest in sociological analysis and help you develop practical skills that you can use in other contexts as well. We can best understand the process of social interaction when we understand the person in place and in time. Our syllabus sets the place, time and process of this course for you the person.

Welcome to my world, your world, our world.
Dr. Michael Thompson

Improper Placement of Essay

Zack Legleiter
20 Nov. 2014


culture and personality

culture refers to the shared values, beliefs and norms of a specific group of people. Culture, therefore, influences the manner we learn, live and behave. Because of this, many theorists believe that culture is an important shaper of our personality. One of the general assumptions asserting the effect of culture to personality is that people who are born and bred in the same culture share common personality traits.
Culture also can be defined as the ideas, behaviors, attitudes, and traditions that have been passed within a group through generations. Within a culture there are certain behavioral expectations. The researcher Gordon Allport considered culture to be an important influence on traits. He defined common traits as those recognized within a culture, which may vary from culture to culture based on differing values, needs, and beliefs.
Culture has been connected to gender roles and how they in turn influence personality and identity. There are differences in attitudes towards appropriate gender roles based on era and culture. In the U.S., aggression and assertiveness is shown as a positive trait in males, while submissiveness and deference are shown in females.
Cultural norms dictate what traits are considered important to personality. Positive and negative traits can be determined by cultural expectations: what is considered a positive trait in one culture may be considered negative in another, thus resulting in different expressions of personality.


Improper Placement of Essay

Improper Placement of Essay

Branson Addington
Mr. Thompson

Marrying for the Wrong Reason

The generation of 70's and 80's children were those who grew up with certain morals. Most of these morals were not a bad thing, but there is one which holds a large responsibility for the insane divorce rate in the Unites States. That would be due to couples getting married from an unplanned pregnancy.
According to the American Psychological Association, anywhere between 40 and 50% of marriages end up in divorce, and the rate is even higher for those who remarry. What could be worse than that? Almost 90% of marriages end in divorce within the first 6 years when the couples' marriage was because of an unplanned pregnancy.
There is a good explanation behind why people did this. It's simply because of the culture at the time. It was looked down upon to be pregnant and not married, it was looked down upon to get a woman pregnant and not marry her, and parents would show disrespect to their children for not marrying the person they are having a child with. These culturalistic tendencies are becoming less and less prevalent today, which is a good thing in my opinion. Nobody wants to see all the negative outcomes from a divorce.
So what exactly is the point of all this? It's simply to inform those in the future to not make the same mistakes of the generation before them. The worst matter of divorce is the effect it has on the children that have to go through it. Putting the amount of stress a divorce can carry on a small child is wrong, and can seriously affect that child's behavior and way of thinking. Infact, according to a study done of children with divorced parents, many children will blame themselves for a divorce.
Marriage shouldn't be done just because of a pregnancy. Marriage should only be considered when one person loves another and is willing to spend the rest of their life with their significant other. Marriage can be and should be a good thing, and statistically, those who are in a healthy marriage are happier than those who are not, and are considerably wealthier, too.

Sources: http://www.apa.org/topics/divorce/

Improper Placement of Essay

Gender Stereotypes
Austin Ihle


Gender stereotyping effects people everyday typically in the work force. When this issue comes to mind people general assume it is according to women however males face the same issues. Everyday millions of people apply for jobs in society. How many people are applying for jobs that aren't what they are actually interested in however? Also how many of them are not going after the job they really want because they are worried what society will think of them in that job position? This issue is becoming less prominent in modern day society thanks to persevering individuals that haven't backed down from their dream. The reality is that in the majority of cases this should never be a problem.

It only takes but a few minutes to rattle of jobs in the workforce that have gender stereotypes. For example, nurses, construction workers, librarians, firefighters, dress makers, truck drivers and the list goes on. This also can go for positions within companies or jobs as well, for example the boss, secretary, laborers, receptionist and once again the list goes on. Why is this? What says women or men can’t be in these roles and not be judged for doing so.

The theme is typically going towards that physical labor is for the men and the caring jobs are for women. It’s all because the masculine versus feminine comparison. However in society particularly in developed countries the need for masculinity is reducing in labor-intensive jobs is decreasing with the increase of capitol goods. The stereotype of femininity just being a trait of women is also reducing as society is changing. This is the same with the roles of a company. Just because men are stereotypically the bosses doesn't mean they have to be. Women are proven to be able to multitask better and care for their employees creating a better working environment. Nothing says they cant lead either. Finally countries are starting to exploit these positives with their political leaders, for example Australia elected its first female Primeinister in 2012.

The military in most countries has undergone the biggest change in number of female members over time. The equality and stereotyping still hasn't evened though. Still there haven't been any women in the SAS nor any women to pilot a fast jet fighter in the air force. The reasoning behind these are simply due to the physical requirements. Personally I believe these are the fields that women with the determination and their dreams focused on need to break into as the next biggest step for women in the workforce in modern day society.

For men the struggle is different. In society it’s more of an insult to be considered as feminine than it is for women to be considered masculine. This is where society is in the wrong. Employees now know to be equal with their choices and simply pick the best person for the job. Some inequality still occurs however its much better than what previous generations have had to undergo. Family roles are also better balanced as both people in the relationship work evenly and are respected. So why is there the harsh judgment over a man being feminine? Society needs to fully understand the physical make and aspirations of all men and women are different. Therefore the way individuals are treated should be un judgmental.

Individual and the workforce can only change so much to conform to the equity of everyone. Its now societies turn to adapt the fact that everyone is equal in rights and individual in their life aspirations therefore should be treated that way. I know the stereotyping will always remain, just like with every stereotype in society, it is just the treatment of those individuals that are outside of their stereotype that needs to be changed. Society is better in every way assisting equality yet it is still far from perfect and the issue must continually be addressed before society is truly equal.

Sources: http://www.wla.com.au


Eloy Sandoval


Culture, Knowledge and Belief
Culture is the entire way of life of a society as well as its products. Society is composed of individuals who share a certain culture. Members of a certain culture of a society share more than just being in the same culture; it’s engaging in similar patterns of though and behavior. For example; such as celebrating Thanksgiving and Christmas. Some cultures celebrate those holidays and some don’t. The ones that do may celebrate in a different way based on their culture, for example some go to church at midnight on Christmas day while others go on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning. We grow up in a certain culture, the way our parents raised us and taught us and the way their parents raised and taught them. Although out parents teach us as we grow up the culture we were born in there’s many factors that could affect it. Such as moving to a new neighborhood or school, you could be exposed to many different cultures. Being exposed to different cultures from many different places can raise questions for you. The knowledge you grow up is what you have learned from your family and the people around you. When you’re exposed to new cultures you being to take in new knowledge and this may question your belief on your culture.
Knowledge can also be described as justified true belief. This is a belief help by an individual that’s true and has some justification. Knowledge is what you believe and it’s true to yourself. You can’t just believe it with any questions asked; you need to have justification for the belief you have so you can back it up when you have questions asked. Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness or understanding of someone or something that can be backed up by facts, information, descriptions or skills. You can get your knowledge through experience or education. If it’s through experience your knowledge of that certain event may be different from others who have gone through the same or can related to the same experience. Your knowledge can affect your belief when you learn different things around you.
A belief is an internally accepted statement which can be a result of an observation or deductive product gathered from observed facts with reasoning processes. The justification for a belief is based on internal considerations concerning some of the qualities that produce your own belief. There could be any justification on any belief but it’s up to you and your knowledge of what you truly believe and that you think is true. You may grow up having one belief because they people around you do especially the people your close too but then when you grow up your knowledge of new things may raise questions on your beliefs and make you lean to believing something else. You belief can be influenced by many different things but if you truly believe something than nothing else around you or nothing else someone can say to change that. This can also go the other way, your belief and knowledge of a culture can influence how someone else see’s it and they may go to you for more questions to learn more maybe because they didn’t have that much knowledge of their belief and want to expand their hoizons.
These three things tie into each other because your culture is based on your belief and knowledge of your cultures and beliefs and your knowledge of other cultures. You can’t have one without the other because it’s unreasonable to believe something you know nothing about. We are born with these traits and they stay with us till we die.


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