Society And Social Life

Technology Cultural Change
-Bryan Stephens

Cultural lag is basically the time it takes for society to catch up with changes in material technology. It is easier to quantify development of material society and so it is much easier to measure than the non material side and the development of non-material society is subject to more preference.

An example of the danger of cultural lag is the web site it basically illustrates what can happen when people utilize technology with out thinking of the implications of over sharing information. They ask the question if you share or post your exact location over the internet than people know where you are not. Rob my house because I'm not there. People are losing jobs because of posts they make on the internet as well as losing there families because of games they play. Maybe its time to wake up and realize that the cyber world is becoming more influential in our lives than just a get away or extra source for information. Streamlined flow of information makes it not only easier to share but easier to find out everything about everyone. Even though I might not share all of my information on a single site it is possible to put pieces of information together and form a road map of my daily activities and decisions.


We should always be aware of the information we give out however people are not keeping up with the different ways of gathering this data and how personal it can be. Take for instance a search query associated with an IP address thats less personal than a search query associated with an email address or name and address. How much personal information is being tied to each transaction and How will the recorded information be used. Google shifted from being a search engine to an advertizing company with the data they gather from people doing searches. The old statement that “information is power” is still true. People give out so much now the norm is personal transparency and we lost our private life held to such a high regard not so long ago. What is gained by this? Perhaps I get a few more advertizements more specifically catered towards my patterns of behavior. The people around me have more ready access to me.

I think the best thing each of us can do is be vigilant and aware of the changing ways we are influenced by the changing technology. Not just use the tool but know what we are using because the tools we now use are becoming aware of us. That wrench used to fix the car did not use to send data back to the manufacturer or communicate with the car itself but maybe soon it will. Not being aware of this is like sticking our heads in the sand and hoping no one sees us. Sure if we are not doing anything wrong than why worry about fixing our cars well who decides what is wrong maybe im not licensed to check my spark plugs maybe next time the car goes over the speed limit posted, its recorded and a ticket is automatically billed to your account. Red lights already automatically give us tickets if they are not obeyed. How much of our lives is going to be automated for “convenience and safety”.

To wrap it up I think as long as we keep educated on the changing forms of technology and there implications and impact on our personal life the gap called cultural lag will stay relatively narrow.

Chapter 3

By Bev Johnson


Large numbers of children experience maltreatment which includes physical abuse, sexual abuse, physical neglect and emotional mistreatment. This is of interest to sociologists because it impacts a child's social growth, behavior, and self-image which all develop throughout the process of socialization. Socialization is the lifelong process of social interaction through which individuals acquire a self-identity and the physical, mental, and social skills needed for survival in society. The parent-child relationship is a significant factor in the process of socialization. Socialization is not only essential for a person's survival and development but also for the survival and also the stability of society as a whole. A person's social environment, whether we are cared for properly or neglected, is a very crucial part of our individual socialization. Neglect is the most common form of child maltreatment and includes when a child's basic needs such as warmth, security, adequate shelter, food, health care, education, clothing, and protection, are not met.
There are several social psychological theories that focus on how the personality develops. Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) believed that human development occurs in three stages that reflect the different levels of the personality. The first stage is called the Id and includes all of the person's biological drives and needs that demand immediate gratification. The second stage, The Ego, is the more rational, realistic part of the personality that makes restrictions for the id part of the personality. The third, and final, stage is the Superego, or the conscience. This stage is in exact opposition to both the id and ego. Freud's theories made people aware of exactly how important early childhood experiences are. Jean Piaget (1896-1980) believed that there are four stages of cognitive development which are 1. Sensorimotor Stage, 2. Preoperational Stage, 3. Concrete Operational Stage, 4. Formal Operational Stage, and that children must go through each stage in sequential order. Lawrence Kohlberg (1927-1987) elaborated on Piaget's theories and came up with three sequential levels of moral reasoning. The three levels include the Preconventional Level, the Conventional Level, and the Postconventional Level. Psychologist Carol Gilligan argued for gender and moral development. She believed that people not only based moral decisions on abstract principles but also on principles of compassion and care.
Sociologists believe that there are four components that make up our self-concept, which is the total of a person's beliefs and feelings about themselves. These four components are 1. the physical self, 2. the active self, 3. the social self, and 4. the psychological self. Charles Horton Cooley (1864-1929) came up the theory of the Looking Glass Self which basically stated that a person's sense of self is made up of other's perceptions of them. George Herbet Mead (1863-1931) argued that there are three stages of self-development: 1. the Preparatory Stage, 2. the Play Stage, 3. and the Game Stage. Mead also believed in role taking which is the process of a person mentally assuming the role of another person or group in order to better understand.
Agents of socialization are the persons, groups, or institutions that teach us what we need to know in order to participate in society. Some of the most prevalent agents of socialization during childhood are family and school. Another is peer groups, a group of people who are linked by common interests, equal social positions, and usually similar age. Nobody argues that the following agent of socialization has a huge impact on children today and that is mass media. Mass media is defined as large scale organization that use print or electronic means, (such as radio, television, film, and the internet) to communicate with large numbers of people. Another theory that nobody argues with is that socialization continues to take place throughout the course of our lives.

Sociology in Our Times: The Essentials, Seventh Edition. Diana Kendall. @ 2010, 2007 Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

Anthony Luna Culture


When most people think of culture lots of different ideas may come to their mind. People have different meaning of the word but it the long run it all means the same and that’s pretty much your heritage being passed down from generations. From the book Sociology in our times by Diana Kendall the official meaning of the word culture is "the knowledge, language, values, customs, and material objects that are passed from person to person and from one generation to the next in a human group or society."

Culture is passed down from the past but also influences the future. Everything we do, say or eat comes from cultures, even the way we dress and the way we think. There are two major kinds of culture material culture and non material culture. Material culture is culture that consists of the physical or tangible creations like clothes, shelter and art. For example if someone from America is brought up eating only foods we would find in America and they are forced to live in another country it would be hard to adapt to anther's countries type of food because their culture didn’t involve food from other countries. The Native Americans that are among us today in our society still live in tribes and dress with Indian style clothing because their culture consist of these things.

Non material culture involves hand gestures, language, beliefs, and behavior. In American we use hand gestures to help communicate with people but what hand gestures mean in American sometimes doesn't mean the same thing in another country. The Language people speak come from their cultures whether it be Spanish, Chinese, French, or German that specific language came from culture and what languages were passed down to family to family.

The religions people believe today came from people from the past who taught their beliefs to generations after them and had made their way to our generation. To help understand about non material culture ill give an example using my culture. My culture comes from Mexican decent with American culture adding more and more. Growing up I ate a lot of Mexican food because that’s what’s my grandparents gave my parents and that’ what’s my parents gave to me, it’s in our family that gets past down every generation and that’s what I will pass down to my kids. Most Mexican families our Catholic and that’s what I was born into. Those are just some examples on some non material cultures are past down to generations of families and how different each culture is

In culture other good things that had been past down that people tend to forget is art and tools. The ancient cave paintings from cave men have allowed future artist to observe how cavemen created art and gave future artist influence to create more advanced art with mastering techniques. The tools ancient cave men used also have been passed down and also been advanced through generations.

Culture allows our future to become more and more advanced by each passing of culture through generations. It’s funny how culture is past by not changing historic beliefs, languages, values and so on but allows our future to take shape in different ways. Culture teaches us to never be ashamed of where you came from and how your life customs are different from others. From how you act to how you dress culture has inspired every bit of it. A man named Marcus Garvey once said “people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.”

• Kendall, Diana. Sociology in our times the essentials Wadsworth, Cengage Learning 2010 print
• Culture-Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia service 30 September 2010 web October 6, 2010

Anthony Luna Population and Urbanization


The United State of American, the nation we live in, has always welcomed immigrants to our land of opportunity. Our nation was built on immigration and people coming over for new hope in jobs, families, and life. Even though our nation was founded on immigrants now days most people can debate on whether or not we should allow them into our country. The United State is becoming more and more populated with immigrants is why some Americans are getting upset about foreign people coming over to live in the United States.

There are many different reasons why cities and countries grow in population. One of the major factors for wide spread growth of population was the industrial revolution in the 18th and 19th century. With this revolution new inventions allowed more work opportunities for low income people.

Jobs opened in agriculture, manufacturing, mining, transport, and technology immigrants came from all over the world to get a chance to work in American, some leaving families behind or some coming over with nothing but whatever they have in their pockets. Movements like the industrial revolution come every so often so people jump at the chance to find work when it is needed. From the book Sociology in our times by Diana Kendall it says "between 1870 and 1910 the population of New York City grew by 500 percent."

In the United States another movement is breaking through and its illegal immigration. Many immigrants are coming from Mexico and South American countries to the U.S for work. Why come here illegally? Because work here in the U.S pays better than the low economic countries they came from and it’s a long process to become legalized in the U.S. It is a controversial issue that politics debate about because Americans are claiming that immigrants are taking jobs away from "real Americans." With all these immigrants coming to America the national population is increasing every year. A statistic from Wikipedia demographic of the united states shows that Hispanic and Latino Americans accounted for almost half (1.4 million) of the national population growth of 2.9 million between July 1, 2005, and July 1, 2006. Immigrants and their U.S.-born descendants are expected to provide most of the U.S. population gains in the decades ahead.

I live in San Antonio, Texas it's the 7th largest city in the nation so I know how it is to have thousands of people around every day and the city is still growing. Cities like mine tend to still grow because of new businesses that open up and more job opportunities. The more land a city owns the more space it has for buildings, parks, or roads all of which need employees to make it work. So it is necessary to say that major cities in the United States will always grow in population because that’s where the most job opportunities are and that’s where the people will go so they have easier access to jobs. With huge corporations, businesses, and construction there will always be a need for employment in cities.

Population growth doesn’t only occur in the United States but all over the world. Kendall states that “in the 5 year span of 1995 to 2000, 21 percent of the entire world’s population increase occurred in two countries: China and India.”Around every 15 years the world’s populations grows by a billion people. Death rates are decreasing and birth rates don’t show any signs of slowing down. Garret Hardin once said “A finite world can support only a finite population; therefore, population growth must eventually equal zero.”

• Kendall, Diana. Sociology in our times the essentials Wadsworth, Cengage Learning 2010 print
• Demographics of the United States-Wikipedia the free encyclopedia service 5 October 2010 web 7 October 2010

+Teen Pregnancy
By:Courtney Bloski

Teen pregnancy has slowly become one of the most talked about topics of today’s teen generation. The United States of America has the highest rate of Teen Pregnancy in the Western Industrialized world. The United States has two times as many teen pregnancy’s as England, Whales or Canada and eight times more than Netherlands or Japan’s. Teen pregnancy is one of the most life altering and difficult changes a young person might ever experience. It not only affects the mothers schooling and life in general, but also her family’s life. Only a third of teen mothers receive their high school diploma and only 1.5% has a college degree by the age of 30.

Teen mothers account for 11% of all U.S births a year. Out of the 11% of births, 57% end up in births, 14% are miscarriages and 29% end in abortion. Black teen mom’s have the highest rate of teen pregnancy. 134 out of 1,000 black female teens will become pregnant each year, followed closely by 131 out of 1,000 Hispanics. A large drop of 48 out of 1,000 non-Hispanic white females finishes of the list. These numbers began to drop in the early 2000’s but are on the rise again.

Each year roughly three quarters of a million teens between the ages of 15 and 19 become pregnant each year. Out of all of these pregnancies 82% of them are unintended. This number is sadly really high. The media has a very strong influence on these high numbers. Sex is all over today’s media, it all over the internet, television, movies reality TV and even in the music we listen to. Reality shows such as “Teen Mom” make pregnancy and being a teen mom look simple, fun and exciting. Many teens watching don’t realize how dramatically life changing it really is.

There are four primary reasons to help to try explaining the high rates of teenage pregnancy. 1) Sexually active teens do not use any type of contraceptives. 2) Teens received little to no accurate information about with use of and problems associated with contraceptives. 3) Most males believe that females should be responsible for contraceptives. And 4) some teens believe getting pregnant will save their relationship or a way to gain adult status. A teenage father’s life is just as affected by teenage pregnancy. The relationship with their girlfriend and parents can add extra stress to their already stressful situation. Most teen dads do not go as far or do as well in school. This lessens their opportunity to have a good, steady job or career. It then leads to them making less money to support their new family. They feel a lot of pressure because now they have to not only support themselves but also their new child and mother. Not just financial support but emotional support as well.

Not only does teen pregnancy affect the mother and father, friends and family, it also affects the child. Children of teen mothers tend to have lower birth weights, are more likely to struggle in school and are at greater risk for abuse and neglect. This is only the beginning of what could be a vicious cycle. Girls born to teen mothers are 22% likely to be teen mom’s themselves and boys born are most likely to end up in prison. These statistics are very sad and discouraging.

A few friends and family member’s of mine have had their lives flipped upside down because had a baby in their teens. Life is extremely hard and definitely a lot more challenging and their priorities, dreams and goals in life have altered immensely. I do give a lot of credit to my friends and family member’s because they are some of the hardest working people I know, trying to support themselves and their child. I wish teen pregnancy didn’t have so many stereotypes. I feel people tend to look down upon pregnant teens and it’s not fair. Accidents do happen and it’s how we respond to them is what counts in long run.


Kendall, Diana “Sociology in out times.” 7thEdtion. Ed. Krapf, Rachael. 2010,2007 Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

By: Courtney Bloski

Poverty is a commonly mistaken as people who are unemployed or on welfare. Although many of these people may live in poverty, so do many hardworking people with full time jobs. Poverty surrounds us where ever we go. It is a part of every town, city, state/province and nation. There are three general categories of poverty; official, absolute and relative. Official poverty line is a federal income standard based on what is considered to be the minimum amount of money required for living at a subsistence level. Absolute poverty is categorized as a level of deprivation; not having the means to meet the basic necessities of life. People living in relative poverty may be able to afford the basic necessities but are unable to maintain an average standard of living.

The Nations poverty starting point for a family of four in 2004 was $19,157 or less, combined total earned a year. A family of two (with no children) is considered to be living in poverty if they make $12,649 or less a year. A person sixty-five or older making $9,060 or less lives in poverty. It is estimated that 50 million people live in poverty today. This means13% of the population is living without their basic needs being met. The U.S has the shameful position of the highest poverty rates in the industrialized world.

So who are the poor in America? According to age, America’s youth account for 35% of all Americans in poverty. 10% are senior citizens and the working class checks for 66% of all poor people work for some portion of the year. According to some stereotypes that people of color reside in most of the poor and almost all welfare recipients is true. The poverty rate for African Americans and Latin Americans is more than twice as high as that of the white Americans. Furthermore 4 million households without a father present live in poverty. Nine percent of the poor live in the suburbs; we see an increase of 14%in rural and 14% in the urban inner city.

What is even worse is that more than half of the families living in poverty are actually headed by an employed person and one third of those family heads works full time, so they are in poverty due to the low wages they are paid for their work. Someone who works full time at a minimum wage job cannot support a family of four. Not to mention people are being underemployed or just plainly unemployed , due to the fact that many big corporations are no longer investing in U.S. companies. They are instead beginning to shut down their American factories and investing in building in other countries because they want the cheap labor. Due to computers people with a special skill set that used to be a necessity in factories, are no longer needed. Many new jobs are located in the suburbs which would be inaccessible to central city residents.

Although the U.S. is currently engulfed in poverty it is constantly trying to find ways to find a solution to the problem. One of the most enduring solutions is the idea of social welfare. However analysts estimate a sum eighty percent of people that are paid welfare do not actually qualify as poor. This means that most of the people reaping the benefits of this program are elderly or middle and upper class people. However these people are usually not stigmatized or penalized for receiving the money even though their social status would probably actually deny them that right. It is completely ridiculous because poor women and children who receive the bare minimum benefits from welfare programs are stigmatized and even humiliated. Funny how we say we have compassion for the less fortunate.


Kendall, Diana “Sociology in out times.” 7thEdtion. Ed. Krapf, Rachael. 2010,2007 Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

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