"Sociology / Society" Essays

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Diner, Gjerde and Takaki Term Paper

Term Paper  |  10 pages (2,865 words)
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¶ … Diner, Gjerde and Takaki

Looking at the documents in Gjerde, Chapter 10, and the article by Stephen Meyer on the "Americanization Program" at the Ford Company, compare and contrast how Progressive Era Americans from different backgrounds defined what being an American actually should entail. Which definition seems to be the most beneficial to the country, and for what… [read more]

Global Civil Society Thesis

Thesis  |  1 pages (306 words)
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Global Civil Society

Since the forces of globalization remain a relatively new concept to the modern day individual, it is only natural for the legislation of globalization to be found in an ongoing process of development and adaptation to the current features of the modern day society. The legislative approach to trade masters, human rights and the environment has suffered numerous modifications throughout the past years, but the general trend has been that of ensuring that the multinational corporations comply with the regulations of each country where they conduct business. In terms of human rights and the environment, the trend has been that of ensuring their protection. The best evidence in this sense is given by the raising living standards across the globe due to the creation of more jobs or by the better protection of the environment through the free circulation of green technologies.

Relative to the effects that international law's approach…… [read more]

Conflict Theory Thesis

Thesis  |  10 pages (3,377 words)
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Conflict Theory

In the study of sociology, conflict theory states that the society or organization functions so that each individual participant and its groups struggle to maximize their benefits, which inevitably contributes to social change such as changes in politics and revolutions. The theory is generally applied to explain conflict between social classes in ideologies such as socialism and… [read more]

Wealth in American Society Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (540 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


¶ … Wealth in American Society

Wealth is a concept that is subject to different definitions largely base on cultural values and societal beliefs. In certain human societies, wealth is hardly even considered simply because the everyday reality of existence is so difficult that all of the efforts and concerns of individuals are dedicated, of necessity, to acquiring the most basic needs in the realm of personal safety and minimal nutritional and other health issues. In other human societies, particularly since the Industrial Revolution, the acquisition of basic necessities is no longer an issue, leaving the individual to focus on other things, including concepts of personal wealth and success.

The Psychological Basis of Motivation for Wealth:

To a large extent, perceptions of wealth are strictly relational, having value only in the relative availability or exclusivity of various lifestyles or acquisitions. In that regard, they are substantially illusory, having the greatest value only while they are elusive; the moment measures of wealth or success become available to the masses, they are no longer regarded as signifying wealth or social privilege by the wealthiest segments of society who enjoyed them initially.

In fact, much of the social preoccupation with wealth is a measure of personal insecurity and the need for attention and admiration of others, even strangers. In many respects, that preoccupation was responsible for the societal themes and values that eventually manifested themselves in the collapse of the American economic system in 2008.

The Illusory Nature of Comparative Wealth in the United States:

In principle, almost all middle class and even lower middle class Americans are exceptionally wealthy by any objective…… [read more]

U.S. History 1865 to 1945 Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (1,059 words)
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U.S. History from 1865-1945

Mark Twain coined the term "Gilded Age" in 1873 to refer to not only the name of his novel, but to the excessive greed and corruption he witnessed during that time. "Gilding" referred to adorning something further that is beautiful to begin with -- in other words, in Twain's mind -- excessive and wasteful, which characterized the era in the U.S.

The greater part of the nineteenth century saw significant change in the United States, perhaps the last third of that one hundred year period most of all. The country began that time period as an agrarian, unpopulated, spread-out, local-oriented, isolated group of individual states.

By 1900, the U.S. grew to be one of the great powers of the world -- industrial, urban, modern, and national-oriented country of states spread from sea to shining sea. (Calhoun, 2006, p.1)

The growth of big business represented the dominant economic fact of the era. An expanding railroad network brought the nation together and created a national market. In the process, the railroads emerged as the nation's first big business. They employed thousands of people, created bureaucratic structures to carry on their operations, and posed large policy issues for the political system. The iron and steel, petroleum, and electrical industries all loomed large in the economy. Consumers used processed foods in tin cans, ready-made clothing, and telephones. http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1O119-FarmMachinery.html" Farm machinery spurred productivity in the agrarian sector. (Boyer 2, 2001)

Mass Society

The definition of mass society from The Encarta dictionary is: A society in which the national or global nature of the influences on life, e.g. mass production and the mass media, has stripped the population of its diversity.

Alexis deTocqueville toured the U.S. during the gilded age of the 1800's. His classic description of what he found he described as: "mass society has echoed through the whole subsequent history of social theory: '...an innumerable multitude of men, all equal and alike, incessantly endeavoring to procure the petty and paltry pleasures with which they glut their lives.

Nineteenth-century sociologists shared many of de Tocqueville's concerns about the emerging culture of industrial societies. (Marshall, 1998)

On the farms of the South and Midwest, populist protest erupted over the power of the railroads, the financiers, and the middlemen who in the eyes of angry farmers were nothing but parasites who fed off their harvests. (enotes.com, n.d.)

In 1890, twelve per cent of the population controlled eighty-six per cent of the growth, while the top two per cent earned fifty per cent of all income in the U.S. In this climate of growing social disparity, "reformers" did the work of the wealthy who wished to keep the wages of the workers low and their own profits high. Misery and impoverishment became evident at levels never seen before in this country. (Friedman, 2007, p.252)

The last quarter century was an era of big business domination, expanding railroads, huge steel factories, and rampant oil production. Mass production and mass distribution lowered price levels. Deflation and… [read more]

Christmas Carol and Karl Marx Essay

Essay  |  5 pages (1,770 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 3


Dickens and Marx

The England depicted by Charles Dickens in his a Christmas Carol was also the world that influenced Karl Marx, for he was living in England when he wrote the Communist Manifesto and certain other works along with Friedrich Engels. What Marx had to say about the nature of capitalist society and about the struggle between classes can… [read more]

Book Analysis of Honky by Dalton Conley Research Paper

Research Paper  |  4 pages (1,126 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


¶ … Honky" by Dalton Conley

Race and Downward Mobility in Honky by Dalton Conley

Sociological history stems from two realities that inevitably influence the individual: his personal history and his social environment. Indeed, the past and the present combine to create the unique individual -- one part created by personal history, and another part developed by the social environment (primarily, the individuals and groups comprising the society the individual lives with). History and sociology combine to help a person make sense of his self, of what he was and has become through the years.

This is the reality that author and sociologist Dalton Conley discussed in his book, Honky. His book documents not only his personal history, but he also puts this personal history in the context of sociology. In Honky, he talks about his gradual 'awakening' to the realities that marginalized groups in the society, like the African-Americans, experienced before the rise of the civil rights movement of the 1960s. As a white American who grew up in a dominantly African-American community, Conley experienced what it was like to live as the 'minority' of his community, a reversal of role where the white American becomes marginalized, and African-Americans the dominant group in the society.

This reversal of roles between white and black Americans in Conley's community and personal history illustrates the sociological phenomenon called downward mobility. Downward mobility occurs when there is "a movement to a lower position in the stratification hierarchy" (Renzetti & Curran, 2000:209). The author's history manifests this phenomenon, as his family appeared as 'deviants' who chose to live 'below' the hierarchy than what was expected of them as a white American family. The discussion that follows delves into the phenomenon of downward mobility as it relates to Conley and his family's experiences in the Projects at New York. This paper posits that Conley, in his discussion of downward mobility, implied that this phenomenon is but a description of the social inequality and prejudice held against the marginalized African-Americans, as American society moved towards the period of eventual rise of the civil rights movement.

This thesis stems from a general observation of American social dynamics during the 1960s, wherein

Racial and ethnic minorities...have historically experienced obstacles to upward vertical mobility. Although civil rights legislation dating from the 1960s resulted in some improvement, the threat of downward mobility is still much greater for racial and ethnic minorities than for White Americans (ibid, 210).

From this passage, it becomes apparent that a dominant theme and issue in Honky, particularly its third chapter, aptly entitled, "Downward mobility," was the racial inequality between white and black Americans. In Conley's history, the status quo was that African-Americans were the minority and belonged to the lower class of the American class hierarchy. White Americans, meanwhile, were the majority group, and dominated the middle to upper classes in the society. This was, at least, the status quo in the society that existed outside of the Projects, where the author lived and spent… [read more]

Sociological Imagination the Importance and Utility Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (1,021 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


¶ … Sociological Imagination

The importance and utility of Mills' theorizing on the sociological imagination is undeniable. Budding sociologists and those interested in the field of social sciences understand the fundamentality of this work. But indeed, what is sociological imagination all about?

For Mills, sociological imagination is one's capacity to "understand the larger historical scene in terms of its meaning for the inner life and the external career of a variety of individuals" (Chapter 1, par. 8). To imagine is to see beyond the confines of the mundanity of life; to transgress the very limited spheres that we live in and the limited options that we have - this is the gist of sociological imagination. Further extending, it can be said that in order to apply sociological imagination, we have to understand the interrelatedness of history and biography (par. 10) - of our personal situations and constructions in the light of the larger and more dynamic scheme of things. It is to understand that our present-lived realities are influenced by the underlying dynamics and principles of the society that we live in.

Mills breaks down sociological imagination into several components: the structuralist / social order standpoint, or the understanding of the way the society is structured; social change, or the mechanism by which a particular society is undergoing change; human nature, or the understanding of the kind of varieties of men and women living in the particular society (par. 11). More importantly, one must be able to shift from one particular perspective to another (par.12) - this entails one's understanding and acceptance of the multiplicity of perspectives.

The dichotomy between issue and trouble also occupied a fruitful and significant discussion in Mills' work. A trouble is something that occurs within the immediate, inner environment of the individual while an issue occurs beyond that. Either way, both issue and trouble occurs because cherished values are being threatened (par. 15-16).

Having said that, this discussion now turns to the introduction of three concepts / theories on sex / gender and later on the application of sociological imagination in this domain will be demonstrated.

According to Gilligan (in Clifton et al., 2008, p. 686), females "are more likely to define themselves in terms of interpersonal relationships with others and to be concerned in with social discourse, intimacy, and care-giving, while males are more likely to define as autonomous from others and to be concerned with individual attainment and status." Still in line with gender differential, Durkheim's sexual division of labor maintains that the reproductive role of women confines them to the home, or the private sphere. Hence, they are perceived to be nurturing, obedient, and submissive because of the socialization process that they go through. (Entwistle, 156-158).

On the other hand, current empirical studies have shown that there has been a significant departure from traditional gender roles, particularly in the American society (Miller & Stark, p.1408).

Miller and Stark's theory was a result of a cross-cultural empirical study which showed that "gender socialization… [read more]

Deviance and Social Control Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (1,002 words)
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Deviance and Social Control

Deviance is any act or thought (especially when expressed) that goes against the idea of the culture's social order. Deviance can develop into crime, though this is not necessarily the case. Deviance can be described as anything that verges on deviant, or divergent from the standards and traditions of a culture and can be different among cultures, though there are several issues of deviance (almost always defined as crime) that are universal to most cultures, such as the crime of unmitigated murder of another human being or incest as both of these issues are considered harmful to the individual and culture involved. (Bridges & Myers, 1994, p. 27)

Deviance can serve the function of defining the norm, as deviant behavior even in the most banal form can be used as an example for others of what not to do or how not to act. One example of deviance that is culturally specific is such things as facial tattoos. In most cultures (though there are exceptions) facial tattoos are considered a form of self imposed deformity and people will likely develop preconceived notions regarding an individual who has such. To expand this example one might consider how an individual parent might warn their children never to tattoo their own face, or might visibly pull their children away from such "deviants" in public. Individuals who are more "mainstream" i.e. normal can also perpetuate the idea that tattoos are a symptom or a social mark of other deviant behaviors (such as having been in prison) and thus teach their children these lessons as forms of social control of the next generation. (Hewitt, 1997, p. 69)

Another example is open display of homosexual affection. In most cultures (though again there are exceptions) it is still relatively unacceptable i.e. deviant to be homosexual and openly displaying affection to someone of the same gender is considered especially deviant. Individuals in public might do something as simple as avoid eye contact with individuals engaged in open homosexual affection or be more obtrusive and shout at or throw something at the couple. Either way their example is set for anyone watching that this behavior is not acceptable to them. Neither of these forms of deviance are crimes (or enforced crimes) but there is still a certain stigma associated with both that holds allowable social control functions up to the public if they choose to make such a decision. (Bridges & Myers, 1994, p. 27)

Another equally important function of deviance is to challenge the "norm" of a culture so it might expand its conception of "normal." Political deviance and social deviance that challenges traditional accepted forms of acting and being have served as the force for social change for as long as man has lived in community. Deviance such as social protest, say of war or representation has served as an agent for change that has expanded human rights. It therefore becomes up tot the members of the culture to gain greater tolerance for… [read more]

Are There Any Obligations Science Has Towards Society? Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (2,136 words)
Style: Harvard  |  Bibliography Sources: 8


¶ … obligations science has towards society?

All human knowledge in the past and present were painstakingly acquired for the benefit of mankind. Though the ancient philosophers sought knowledge for its own sake, they also took care to see that what they gained was disseminated among the masses. Ancient inventions and discoveries, from fire, wheel and those simple things we… [read more]

Social Theory the Wide Diversity of Human Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,801 words)
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Social Theory

The wide diversity of human behavior in a social setting for thousands of years makes it imperative to study these societies to better understand their properties. What are the similarities and differences of this behavior? What are the causes? How do humans differ than other animals in their social development? These questions have been asked by theorists for… [read more]

Emotionally Charged Concepts Reaction Paper

Reaction Paper  |  2 pages (821 words)
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"We are an eclectic bunch spanning every imaginable cross-section of society, and we battle an equally eclectic mix of obsessions and compulsions. Some of us obsess about contamination, others about hurting people, and still others about symmetry" (Bell 2008:1).

This deviance is not chosen, like a physical disease, but it can affect the individual's entire character from an early age, unlike being diagnosed with cancer or AIDS. Individuals with this psychological disorder (that may have its roots in a chemical imbalance or genetic tendency or a combination of both) are not necessarily 'unified' like members of other socially deviant categories who lobby to have their deviancy accepted. Instead, therapists try to treat OCD in a way that they hope changes the biological 'wiring' of the brain that contributes to OCD by slowly exposing suffers to different anxiety-fraught situations.

Regardless, OCD manifests itself in a way that will be read as socially deviant by observers. Some people with OCD in a restaurant will demand to examine the waiter's hands for scratches, in case the server's blood might contaminate their food, or have to rotate through several tables to find one that does not wobble (Bell 2008:1-2). These rituals, as they become increasingly difficult to replicate, can make living in 'normal' society increasingly difficult.

Thus some forms of deviance can be beneficial to the individual, like musical talent, or inconsequential, like sexual orientation, and are only a liability if society penalizes such traits. Even normalized traits, like drug use in some communities, can be a liability if the 'normal' person damages his or her body through such abuse. But for other deviant traits, like OCD, treatment rather than tolerance might be better for the sufferer and can enable people like Bell, in his words, to "take back his life" from the deviant disorder. With medication and therapy Bell can lead a more fulfilling existence that is not hemmed in by compulsions and rituals. In fact, one could argue that at its extreme the deviant behavior of OCD is itself intolerance of any deviance from a particular routine, and is an example of how tolerance and leaving one's personal and cultural comfort zone can be a positive experience.

Works Cited

Bell, Jeff. (6 Feb 2008). "When Anxiety is at the Table." The New York Times. Retrieved 6 Feb 2008 at http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/06/dining/06obsess.html?ref=health

Henslin, James. (2005). Sociology: A…… [read more]

Sociological Perspective Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (787 words)
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Sociology - Sociological Perspective


Structural Formalism in Seinfeld: Structural formalism or "consensus structuralism" is the sociological theory according to which common social understandings and basic moral agreements play important roles in society, keeping it in a social equilibrium, the most natural state of society (Henslin 2002). It is a concept repeatedly represented in the Seinfeld television series, most often by George Costanza. In several different episodes, George becomes angry with strangers for violating what he perceives to be a common moral rule of societal expectation and decency. Those scenes always end with his angry exclamation

You know, we're living in a society." The first time this happens is in the episode titled "Chinese Restaurant" when George loses the race to use a public telephone. He had been waiting for it already, but a woman in the restaurant picked up first because she was closer to it when it became available. George tries to explain to her that he was waiting for it, to which she responds,

Well if you were here first, you'd be holding the phone" George says very angrily shouts, "You know, we're living in a society! We're supposed to act in a civilized way," purposely directing his voice for everyone to hear. The issue comes up again in the episode "The Limo" when George asks a stranger for the time in the airport. The man refuses to tell George the correct time despite the fact that he is wearing a wrist watch. Eventually, George tries to grab the man's wrist and the man pulls away, calling George "some kind of nut." George responds, "You know we're living in a society!" The implication, in both cases, is that a common social understanding exists in society about common courtesies in matters like waiting for one's turn for telephones and in accommodating ordinary polite requests for information like the time of day, even when the request comes from a complete stranger.

Symbolic Interactionism in Seinfeld: Symbolic Interactionism is a sociological theory according to which people tend to ascribe specific meaning to arbitrary things, to interpret those meanings through their social interaction with others, and to modify those meanings in relation to their perception by others (Gerrig & Zimbardo 2005). In the series episode "The Shoes,"

Elaine's Boticelli shoes become the focus of another character's envy. Elaine finds out through…… [read more]

Beliefs and Deviance Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (933 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+



From the beginning of the study of society or sociology, sociologists have been interested in the definition of society and other similar question. For example, Talcott Parsons in Harvard's Department of Sociology, dealt with major concerns that of interest from sociology's beginnings: What keeps a society together? What is the relationship between beliefs and institutions? How do these beliefs change? Other sociologists, such as Robert Merton, who looked at the structure of society, and Paul Lazarsfeld, who helped developed quantitative methods, asked similar questions. George Herbert Mead integrated sociology and psychology and looked more closely at American urban life (Straus, 1994).

Emile Durkheim, often known as the "Father of Sociology," Durkheim saw society in two different ways. First, he defined society as an interdependent set of beliefs and ideas, linguistic symbols, religious beliefs, moral norms and legal formulas. Second, he also viewed society as a structural system composed of individuals or subgroups. In each case, the individuals in the social group or subgroup share similar interests. Culture is the systems of knowledge and communication shared by a relatively large group of people. Some of its shared areas include skills, knowledge, attitudes, values, and motives. The meanings of the symbols are learned and purposely continued from one generation to the next through the institutions and education. In every society there are those individuals who do not fit in, for one or more of myriad reasons. These people are considered deviant or nonconforming to the ideas that are accepted by most of society (Pickering, 1991)

Society also differentiates between deviant beliefs/thoughts/ideas and deviant behavior. Although some people have beliefs that are considered unusual or strange, they may be ignored, stigmatized or laughed at without any further action being taken. At this point they are not considered a major threat. However, when the threat becomes more imminent and the society's way of belief is threatened, action is most often taken. The person can be banned, punished or even killed. Throughout history, for example, individuals with different religious beliefs have been victimized by a range of persecution from name calling to mass destruction. Deviant behavior, or when ideas become acted upon, can be seen as very threatening and give society more cause for retaliation. A person who defiles a church will surely be punished for his or her actions.

Prejudice evolves from judging those individuals or a group of individuals, because they share different thoughts or behavior. Racism or religious prejudice, for example, includes fearing or hating members of other groups and assuming the worst about them because of stereotypes. It also consists of refusing to change one's negative and irroneous judgment regarding an individual or group based on firsthand experience to the contrary. Discrimination goes another step beyond prejudice, because people act out on their beliefs and values…… [read more]

Compare and Contrast Theories Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,760 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4



Compare and contrast Theories

This paper discusses the social learning theory at the outset, and analyze the statement of whether social learning does have an impact on criminal activities and on deviant behaviors. Next, the paper will analyze the culture conflict theory, with suitable example, to find the inter-relationship that may exist between culture conflicts and criminal behaviors. The… [read more]

Robert Bork Anthony Giddens and Lenin Term Paper

Term Paper  |  6 pages (1,772 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 3


Communitarianism liberal society seeks not to impose a single way of life, but to leave its citizens as free as possible to choose their own values and ends, and it therefore must govern by principles of justice that do not presuppose any particular vision of the good life. The communitarian vision, on the other hand, is based on the philosophy… [read more]

Georg Simmel Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (934 words)
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Georg Simmel, one of the first professional sociologists, was born in Berlin in 1858. By the time he became a teenager, his home city had burst into the manufacturing and production arena, and the city was coming alive with the Industrial Revolution. Hundreds of thousand of people were already living in this German metropolis, and the population still continued to grow.

In his essay, "The Metropolis and Mental Life," Simmel wrote that some of the worst problems of present-day modern life came from individuals who were struggling to maintain their individuality against overwhelming social odds, historical heritage and external culture. "The psychological basis of the metropolitan type of individuality consists in the intensification of nervous stimulation which results from the swift and uninterrupted change of outer and inner stimuli," noted Simmel. "Man is a differentiating creature. His mind is stimulated by the difference between a momentary impression and the one which preceded it." Although increased technology promised greater freedom, the nineteenth century rise in industrialism also demanded greater specialization of work; this specialization decreased differentiation and made one person similar to another. It also made each individual all the more directly dependent on the supplementary activities of others.

Although Berlin was nothing compared to what it is today. Simmel had already seen some of the trends that were coming with the changing society. His essays, "Fashion," the Stranger," and even "The problem with sociology," reflected the changing times. In "Fashion," Simmel wrote how the clothing worn derives from a basic tension specific to the person's social condition. On one hand, everyone has a tendency to copy or imitate others. On the other, all people also have the tendency to distinguish themselves from others. Naturally, this is a continuum, with some people doing everything possible to imitate and emulate their favorite role models and thus to conform to what they feel is most accepted by their society. While others go to the opposite extreme and do everything they can to be different -- yet not so different that they are considered "overly strange" or get into trouble for not confirming to laws (such as nudity, etc.) Simmel argued that humans are driven by the two instincts of one side pushing them to imitate their neighbors and the other pushing them to distinguish themselves. From one side, individuals will try to copy others they admire, and from the other, attempt to distinguish themselves from people who they do not like or respect.

Fashion has always been a way for people to differentiate themselves from others, as well as indicate their status in a class society. In the early 1900s, for instance, women outwardly delineated their role in life by what they wore. Working women, who were proud of their autonomy although disliked by many people of both genders, enjoyed…… [read more]

Sigmund Freud With George Herbert Mead Compare Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,319 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 4


¶ … Sigmund Freud with George Herbert Mead

Compare and Contrast Max Weber and Karl Marx

Nature of an individual is a concept we are all at least familiar with regardless of the fact whether how much we actually understand it. Though different branches of knowledge have attempted to explain this concept in the light of their respective fields, the Psychology has earned a reputation for extensive work in this arena. Today we shall briefly discuss the nature of an individual from the perspective of two eminent names in psychology; they are Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) and George Herbert Mead (1863-1931).

Freud saw the nature of individual through the spectacles of unconscious domain; that is he considered unconscious state of person as instrumental in forming nature of individual (Freud, 1963). Thus he advocated that unconscious dynamics are the real cause of human nature and these unseen forces are predominantly restructured and shaped by factors such as society and culture or general environment. Further elaborating his view point he suggested that nature of the individual is classically molded by initial upbringing, hence strong and healthy atmosphere in the early part of individual's life when maximum is absorbed to reflect back takes place is highly important in formation of desired nature.

Mead another well-respected figure in social psychology essentially endorsed the same premise free of Freud's influence in slightly different manner. He presented human nature as being developed from the realms of social interactions. It means that nature of the individual is significantly influenced by the social set up, language medium, experience and surrounding conditions. According to him the features of human nature emerge as the person undergoing such frame gains from these factors and consequently come in terms with them. His theory propagates that behavior of individual is largely drawn from the experiential bouts undertaken by the person and language helps in great deal to relate everything around and communication is imperative for social interactions.

Freud being the founder of psychoanalysis (Kriegman and Knight, 1988) was very prolific in explaining the abstract world of unconscious mind. He was able to derive loads of information by deciphering the seemingly meaningless words often downplayed by regarding them as slip of tongue but Freud argued such unintentional utterances tell a great deal about the actual state of person's inner self. He concluded that most of the time these inner feelings are intimate in nature (Freud, 1963) and hence cannot be shared or accorded overt acceptance and therefore suppressed and form subject of self denial such feelings are often forced into the world of oblivion whereas its never obliterated and is added to unconscious state where it remains till its brought out without the consent of conscious mind and the very fact these are uncontrolled, unprepared give a good indicator of person's nature.

George Herbert Mead is regarded among the founding members of pragmatism in psychology, according to him the behavior of an individual can be understood only in terms of the behavior of the whole… [read more]

Moral Panic Over Asylum Seekers Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,967 words)
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Moral Panic Over Asylum Seekers

In every country around the world, there always come a time when asylum seekers and refugees flock inside the country. This so happens because of various reasons such as:

there are numerous and uncontrollable problems from the origin country and people would want to free themselves from these problems people found out that the country… [read more]

Japanese Culture Past and Present Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,595 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


¶ … post-modern Japanese cultural society and its effects. It looks at the similarities of the culture that existed in the past and present. The paper also takes a look at cultural deviations that did not exist in the past.

Japanese culture is known to be quite unique as it is a mixture of old cultural values and new beliefs.… [read more]

Sociological Paradigms: Structural Functionalism, Conflict Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (506 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


Social conflict theory was especially applicable during the modern period, where capitalism is the dominant ideology and socio-economic order in most societies/nations. It proposes that in a capitalist society, inequality among people is inherent and inevitable; thus, in a capitalist socio-economic order, poverty thrives in the same way as wealth increases for the elite class or bourgeoisie. Unless a new social order emerges (such as Socialism), this inequality would continue, with the elite class dominating and controlling the working class.

Symbolic interactionism is a paradigm that was the result of social scientists' pursuit of a more people-centered theory-building in explaining a social phenomenon. Under this paradigm, social phenomena is understood by studying, analyzing and interpreting the social actions, interactions and symbols that people engage with everyday. Symbolic interactionism paved the way for understanding human individual and group behavior, taking into account that there are ideas that cannot be generated through the structural functionalist or social conflict paradigms alone.

Among these paradigms, I consider symbolic interactionism as a more efficient paradigm to use in order to understand social actions and behavior. Its flexibility and consideration of the 'human element,' putting into context the role and influence the individual has over society, and vice versa. Understanding both individual and societal behavior is essential in creating a holistic picture of how a social phenomenon occurs and prevails in human societies.


McClelland, K. (2000). "Theoretical perspectives in Sociology." Available at http://web.grinnell.edu/courses/soc/s00/soc111-01/IntroTheories/IntroTheoriesIndex.html.… [read more]

Hans Lenk Technological Responsibility and the Humanities Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (730 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Technology & Society

Keeping the humane side of technology: the state and future of technology in today's techno-centric society

In the article entitled, "Technological Responsibility and the Humanities," author Hans Lenk discussed the state of technology in today's society, a period where techno-capitalism prevails as the dominant political, cultural, and economic order. As the most dominant and prevalent state of today's society, techno-centrism -- more specifically, techno-capitalism -- has penetrated people's cultures, influencing the way they conduct their lives and develop their beliefs and attitudes about their realities. These observations became Lenk's foundation in developing an argument that proposes the state of technology in the future. Moreover, he applied his discussion of technology and its future on the role that humanities play in these socio-cultural changes in human society.

In discussing and analyzing these issues, Lenk presented two objectives from his discourse. The first objective established the characteristics that technologies will have in years to come. Technology in the future will, generally, have increased interaction among people, be technically synthesized, and improve human society's acknowledgment and practice of their privacy, security, and identity. The second objective consequently illustrates the future of human society in the midst of an ever-changing technology. The future of technology will depict human society as becoming more complex yet human-centric as technologies will be used for the improvement of one's quality of life and practice of freedom.

These objectives, when synthesized, result to the article's general argument, which showed how the development of technology actually leads to the establishment of a more humane yet rationalized society. In the texts that follow, these objectives are presented with support from information discussed in Lenk's article.

Lenk's idea of the future of technology was best summed up in his thirty (30) "structural characteristics." Among these characteristics, those that pertain to technologies' interactivity, ability to synthesize, and capability to improve human conditions emerged as the most important traits that technology can potentially have. In terms of its interactivity, Lenk discussed the development of new inventions that would help shape the social order of the future. The future of technology would involve the creation of an "information-technological historicity" and "systems technocratic tendencies." These concepts referred to…… [read more]

Sociology of Waste Putting Term Paper

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As paper became more abundant, wastage further increased as a result of increased production of paper. However, high paper production does not mean that there is an abundance of trees, which are the primary sources of paper. Despite the fact that trees have depleted, paper consumption and wastage has increased. The continued wasting of paper despite the rapid environmental degradation illustrates how most people considered biodegradable and useful paper waste as "worthless or obsolete."

Another insight I had from this sheaf of papers as trash is how easily people can use paper for a specific purpose, then not using the paper for that purpose after all. Evidently, these papers were photocopied readings, with the owner intending to read these readings for a subject or course. The action of throwing away readings and notes does not only mean paper wastage, but the 'trashing' of knowledge and vital information embedded within the texts contained in these papers. Thus, not only do material objects such as papers become trivial and superficial in the process of throwing this sheaf of papers, but information and knowledge as well. By considering these papers as "worthless and obsolete" the student who just finished his/her course and threw these papers (readings and notes) away also considered the information and knowledge contained within these papers as "worthless and obsolete."

The thinking that people "must buy (consume) as they use" is indeed the mantra of today's consumer society. As with the example of the sheaf papers that was considered trash by a student, s/he felt that his/her use of the papers (readings and notes) was only a matter of necessity for the semester, and not intended for long-term use (i.e., notes and readings for succeeding courses over the year or the following semester).… [read more]

Role of Deviance Term Paper

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This list provide practitioners a basis with which to create prevention and counseling programs for individuals who are at risk for dropping out of school (Campbell pp). To participate in a prevention program, one has to meet at least two of the markers, "i.e., a black male receiving free and reduced lunch and has a history of school detentions, just… [read more]

Martin Luther King &amp George Term Paper

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Rather, what constituted an ethical society was found in the principles Gandhi, which he described, " ... The superman philosophy of Nietzsche, I found in the nonviolent resistance philosophy of Gandhi." It is therefore King's stance that an ethical society is an egalitarian society that is able to transcend the limits of a value-laden culture of humanity, provided, of course, that this ethical society already knows the clear distinction between right and wrong actions and behavior. Orwell, meanwhile, represented his notion of what society should not be like through the evidently unethical nature of the British-controlled Burmese society. An unethical society for him was one where there are no clear distinctions between right and wrong; wherein decisions made by the individual were based not on ethics but on the constant pressure of a society that is stricken with injustice, discrimination, and poverty, such as the Burmese…… [read more]

Sociology Erving Goffman and Stigma Term Paper

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Another way that people can respond to stigma relates to discriminating against the person on the basis of assumed factors that go beyond their perceived stigma. This refers especially to social stigmas. For example, an individual's drug addiction may be a stigma. A person noting this stigma might dehumanize this person by separating themselves from the person. They might assume that the person is of a low social class and so not related to them. This becomes a factor that allows a person to account for the behavior of the stigmatized individual and to justify the rejection of that person. The individual with a drug addiction may also be assumed to be a weak person, a criminal, or to be mentally ill. These beliefs can be attached to the person based on the observed stigma. This is used by the observer to explain the behavior of the stigmatized person, to separate themselves from the stigmatized individual, and to justify judging and rejecting the stigmatized individual. This can even be extended to a point where an individual can justify the rejection of the person on the basis that they are protecting their own safety. For example, a person judging a drug addict might convince themselves that the drug addict must also be a criminal, must not have any ethics, and must be a risk to their safety. This effectively dehumanizes the person because they become defined only by their stigma, while also allowing people to justify their rejection of the individual.

Goffman's views on stigma draw on the work of George Herbert Mead and Georg Simmel, but also add more contemporary ideas. Mead's views are based on the idea of human interaction as basically social. According to Mead, social life requires a shared understanding of what is expected of others. The culture of a society then produces accepted roles for people, with individuals in society judging others based on whether or not they meet the roles and expectations that society has accepted as normal. Goffman's view describes this same process, where people are judged based on perceptions of individuals, with perceptions compared to a social norm. Goffman's ideas offer a more contemporary perspective because he also recognizes the psychological aspects of how people respond to those that don't meet the accepted norm and why people respond in the way that they do. Mead suggested that human interaction is a combination of people reacting to social norms, while also reacting as individuals. However, Mead did not go into detail about the individual's thinking in the process, only noting that it plays a role. Goffman makes the link and extends Mead's ideas to include more detail on how and why people respond as they do to people who break social norms via any kind of stigma. Simmel's ideas are also similar to Goffman's. This relates especially to Simmel's ideas on the stranger, which he describes as someone considered to be outside of society's norms. This is similar to the way that Goffman considers… [read more]

Sociological Perspective on the Reality TV Show Survivor Term Paper

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Sociological analysis of the reality TV program, "Survivor"

Television as part of the mass media institution had been instrumental in providing information and entertainment for the audiences or the public. Through TV and its programs, people were exposed to various forms of entertainment; a particular development in TV programming is the creation of reality TV, wherein programs feature individuals depicted in real-life situations and challenges. "Survivor," a reality TV program by CBS, is one such example of ordinary or non-Hollywood personalities competing and undergoing a series of real-life challenges in a remote area or island in order to win $1 million.

As a reality TV show, "Survivor" is filled with tension and pressure, a feeling that is understandable, with each contestant knowing fully that each vies for $1 million. Thus, in order to ensure that the contestants will get the prize money, different strategies were created and developed, which include deceptions, formation of allegiances, and inevitably, conflicts between the two tribes and eventually, among the final group of Survivors.

This nature of the program "Survivor" reflects the interplay of two important paradigms in sociological analysis: the conflict and symbolic interactionism paradigms. These paradigms help explain the dynamics that happen in the show, from the special challenges to the daily interactions of the contestants with each other. In line with this argument, this paper posits that "Survivor" reflects conflict theory through the contest between the two Survivor tribes and among the Survivors themselves, while symbolic interactionism is evident in the daily conduct of activities among the contestants as they thrive to "survive" in the remote area or island where the challenge is being held.

Conflict theory, a paradigm that developed with the introduction of Karl Marx's analysis of capitalism and social class conflict, posits that human society in the modern or capitalist period is inherently unequal. That is, this paradigm argues that because of inequality among people, particularly between the elite and working classes, there emerges a conflict between the privileged and marginalized classes. This results from a power struggle, wherein the privileged class will continue to exert its control by oppressing the marginalized class. The marginalized class, in turn, will struggle against this oppression and seek to emancipate their plight from the power and control of the privileged class.

A similar scenario is seen in the rules of the reality series "Survivor." Two kinds of power struggle occur…… [read more]

Can an Individual Be Stronger Than the Society in Which He or She Lives Term Paper

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¶ … Shooting an Elephant by George Orwell, and the essay "Doublespeak" by William Lutz. Specifically it will discuss the question: "Can an individual be stronger than the society in which he or she lives?" Both of these works look at aspects of society that are sometimes difficult to comprehend. "Shooting the Elephant" illustrates a character who hates the society that condemns another, but he must conform to it to ensure his own survival. "Doublespeak" discusses our society's need to create "gobbledygook" for communication to cover up and confuse a myriad of societal issues. What do these works say about choice in our society? They say choice is difficult, and sometimes impossible, and that a society that ultimately provides few choices is a society that will not survive.

In the end, it is true that most individuals can indeed be stronger than the society where they live. If society is oppressive, there are always those who will hope to change it. Martin Luther King, Jr. And Gandhi are two relatively modern day examples of individuals who have been stronger than the society that oppressed and condemned them. Are Luther and Gandhi so different from the rest of society? Perhaps. It is not hard to see that in these two works; society seems stronger than the participants in the drama. In Orwell's short story, the narrator despises the British imperialistic government, but when surrounded by an angry mob of natives (society), he realizes that he must do something he does not want to do, (shoot the elephant), or the mob will probably murder him. However, it is clear this man is weak because his biggest worry is that the mob will "laugh" at him. Thus, this narrator is not as strong as the society that surrounds him. Some people might be able to persuade the mob to come around to their way of thinking, but it seems the narrator is not that strong, and so, in this case anyway, the society is stronger than he is, and he must submit to society's wishes, rather than his own.

In "Doublespeak," the author feels that society is weakening itself by using incomprehensible language that covers up clear communication and the real meaning of words,…… [read more]

Mediterranean Hospitality the Purpose Essay

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¶ … Mediterranean Hospitality

The purpose of "hospitality" in Mediterranean households, according to the author of "In the Rustic Kitchen: Real Talk and Reciprocity?" is to affirm group associations of commonly shared ethnic identities. Unfortunately, according to the author, the groups discussed in the article receive a barrage of negative visual and representation of local identities, which are often presented in T.V., newscasts, and newspaper stories to the larger world in a seemingly never-ending drumbeat of doom and gloom.

This saturation of negative representations creates a dynamic of 'us against them,' within the community. In this community, there is little sense of a striving for true sense of integration in a larger so-called 'common American' community culture that extends beyond the kitchen and the Mediterranean community. However, Tracey Heatherington states that the discourse of the larger media of television and newspapers is subverted through the maintenance of a community subculture of shared language, heritage, and yes, of course, of food and hospitality.

For the community chronicled by Heatherington, hospitality means that wherever one goes in the community, one is at home in the house of a member of one's community. Within these communities, there are far fewer social barrier of privacy, and the family is an extended rather than a nuclear family. The closeness of neighborhoods and living spaces can create a sense of social strain; of course, when money is tight, and when younger members of the community gain different senses of personal space and boundaries in schools and other common sites of cultural sharing. But because of the negativity of neighborhoods and cultural associations, there is less of a sense of integration than might occur with other ethnic groups.

Work Cited

Heatherington. Tracey "In the rustic kitchen: real talk and reciprocity." Ethnology, Fall 2001. V. 40 (4), p329 (17). Retrieved 25 Feb 2005 at http://infotrac.galegroup.com/itw/infomark/126/528/35630064w4/purl=rc1_EAIM_0_A85107870&dyn=7!xrn_26_0_A85107870?sw_


Pan-ethnic identities

Some of…… [read more]

Darwinian Ideas Term Paper

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Darwinian Ideas

How much influence did the work of Charles Darwin have on Herbert Spencer, William Graham Sumner, and Lester Frank Ward? And who has made the better case in terms of plugging Darwin's evolutionary concepts and theories into late 19th Century American Society? This paper examines the ideas presented by Spencer, Sumner, and Ward, and offers the opinion that Spencer had the greater influence on the future of American thought and social values. There are many so-called "experts" on cultures and religion that invoke the word "evolution" (in putting down evolution as a scientific theory in order to promote a "creationist" agenda), it is worthwhile to look to the past for thinkers' views on Darwin and evolution.

Meanwhile, the same year that Herbert Spencer - a nineteenth century social scientist - published his much-heralded essay on school curriculum ("What Knowledge is of Most Worth"), Charles Darwin published his earth-shaking, scientifically revolutionary title, Origins of the Species. And it is clear that "evolutionary thinking was entering into scientific discourse" (Silberman, 2003), and as a result, the concept of evolution (on many levels) was "transforming our understanding of man's place in the natural order..." Silberman writes in the Journal of Education.

As for Spencer's use of Darwinian thought, the social scientist's work reflected a "relentless effort to formulate an overarching theory of evolution and to bring it to bear on all matters human."

Evolution (social and biological evolution), in the view of Spencer, "is fundamentally a process of integration and differentiation..." Even the gestation of a living creature, Spencer believed, "is an evolutionary process whereby an initial undifferentiated mass is transformed into a complex organism, each part distinct from, but related to, the other parts," Silverman wrote. Spencer was apparently seen as a genius in terms of understanding - and putting into words and concepts - that just as "human history provides evidence for the specific laws of social evolution and must, in turn, be understood in light of such laws.

William Graham Sumner - who was, according to the Journal of Libertarian Studies, a "pioneering sociologist" and "astute historian of the early American republic" - critiqued democracy in 20th Century as "plutocratic, paternalistic, and imperialist" (Trask, 2004). He saw the western nation-states as "too geographically extensive, populous, and diverse" to ever achieve democracy; he saw the "great mass" of Europeans and Americans as "incapable of self-government"; and further, he believed the "plutocrats in America" would become imperialistic and "warlike, and would gradually extend paternal protections to the masses.

Around the year 1876, Sumner began reading Charles Darwin, Thomas Huxley, and Herbert Spencer, and Trask asserts that in particular, Spencer's books, Social Statics, First Principles, and Study of Sociology "exerted enormous influence on his thought." It was from this point on that Sumner became more and more interested in social theory, and in the mid-1890s, began devoting "his full attention to sociology."

How influenced was he by Darwin's work? Scholars and critics have "mistakenly cited Sumner as the leading Social Darwinist…… [read more]

Dimensional Man Term Paper

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The Critical Theory of Herbert Marcuse seems not have avoided the essence of topicality with the resulting crisis of the society that is also a crisis of the left and of Marxism. Conversely the degeneration of Soviet-system has revealed that the capitalism is not the better substitute that indicates the 'socialism' and also the western forms of capitalism are not… [read more]

Shakespeare in Today's Society Term Paper

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Shakespeare in Today's Society

The tragedies of Shakespeare are the encyclopedia of humanity's life. Through the traits of his characters the famous author shows the virtues and evils of common men depicting the feelings of love, hatred, envy, jealousness, kindness, devotedness and friendship. His dramatic works will be actual and immortal, even though that the humanity changes dynamically but the nature of the man had not changed at all through it's long history. In most of ways we still remain the same as we did four hundred years ago or as we were in Bible times.

The movie by Michael Almereyda describes the events not of mediaeval Danish kingdom, but events of modern day realities. The events that take place in Manhattan help us to better understand the core of human relations, human nature and the world we live in. Almereyda had changed the place of action, by taking main heroes of Shakespearean tragedy to modern New York. Still there had been changed not that much since the times of the Globe. Mercantile interests of human dominate over his virtue nature, betrayal and vice are common characters of modern realities and what is more important that money had created human alienation, as everyone tries to hide real nature in order to achieve his very purposes and ambitions. These relations full of bigotry, stereotypes and human vice form the atmosphere not just of human alienation and existence of people being "on different planets' but they also show moral crisis of modern society. And the message of Michael Almereyda is quite powerful and urgent: modern life, led by interests and ambitions of certain groups leaves nothing humanistic and ethical for the development of a descent man, who lives under the natural laws and moral principles. Modern world's war is not the war of ideas or principles; it's a more pragmatic and cynic war of financial corporations, war of big business and war of money, war that makes people to betray their moral principles destroying the most human trait of personality, his conscience. Almereyda states that society has to change its attitude towards reality otherwise the crisis is unavoidable.

In the situation of this kind when everything seems to be cynic, mean and full of hypocrisy, there appears…… [read more]

Symbolic Interactionist Perspective of the Sidewalk Term Paper

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¶ … symbolic interactionist perspective of the Sidewalk of New York's Greenwich Village booksellers

See the men on the sidewalks, selling books. Most passers by simply regard this as an unsavory aspect of local culture, a way that homeless people make a living. But to the sociologist Michael Duneier, this is a vibrant and vital aspect of local culture. The individuals, most of whom formerly drug dealers, make use of the first amendment's allowance to freely purvey printed material. But they also function as counselors and mentors for many of the dissolute and desperate young men of the neighborhood, particularly one man named Hasan, who can cross reference different texts, chapter and verse, that the young sociologist is studying. Throughout his text, Michael Duneier reaffirms the value of symbolic interactionism, showing a sensitive portrayal of these usually black men who live on the margins of society, yet communicate and construct a subculture on the streets through the sidewalk life of selling books.

The sociologist Duneier must be commended as not existing as a mere observer to this sidewalk culture -- he became a functional part of it and achieved a level of acceptance, though his participation. He was not initially fluent in the symbolic language of these reformed drug dealers in his "religion (I am Jewish and most of them are Muslim or Christian), level of education (I hold a Ph.D. In sociology and attended two years of law school, whereas some of them did not graduate from high school), and occupation (Duneier, 1999, p. 6). Yet after becoming friendly with Hasan, albeit one of the few street book sellers who was neither homeless nor an addict Duneier gradually gained a point of entry into this life and began to get know most of the street's other vendors.

Duneier, over the course of his experiences, becomes aware of a society of many symbolic layers of interaction and hierarchies. For instance, in addition to the most respected booksellers like Hasan, there are also scavengers, illegally dumpster diving through recycling bins…… [read more]

Traditional and Modern Societies Term Paper

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e., specialization of work/functions is prevalent. The shift from a traditional to a modern society requires a change in the structure of the society; thus, a change from the self-sufficiency to specialization of work happens, which is the nature of capitalist or modern societies.

This change has successfully occurred in the Western societies, who are the pioneers of capitalism at the turn of the 19th century. Non-Western societies, on the other hand, have remained traditional, and still subsisted to the self-sufficient and collectivist orientation of their societies. The failure of non-Western societies to adapt to changes in modernization is, in fact, not a manifestation of the non-responsive nature of societies in the region. What occurred is a different reaction from that of the Western societies, since non-Western societies have a radically different culture from that of the Western societies. Because of these cultural differences, "...the types of international systems that developed here were rather new and unique..." changing the nature of modernization in non-Western societies (193).

Thus, the rise of socialism, according to the author, is "a reaction to the tension between the ideals of the French Revolution and the outcome of the Industrial or capitalist revolution... It is wholly based in European tradition and experience" (195). In this statement, the author seeks to reconcile the seemingly contradicting patterns of change between Western and non-Western societies with the onset of modernization. In effect, Elsenstadt argues that despite its contradictions to the principles of capitalism, socialism is nevertheless a product of modernization, wherein the fusion of traditional society and non-Western societies' adherence to collectivism and rituals led to the creation of a new kind of society. Since non-Western societies have an altogether different economic, political, and social organization from the Western societies, the effect of modernization ("European expansion") is also different in the non-Western experience. Instead of capitalism, socialism became the most popular and preferred system of society.

In sum, the rise of socialism in non-Western and spread of capitalism in Western societies are both fruits of modernization, and differed only because of the contradicting nature of both societies, resulting to varied outcomes, with Western nations adopting the capitalist system, while the non-Western nations subsisting to socialism.


Elsenstadt, S.N. "European expansion and the civilization of modernity"… [read more]

Karl Marx and Wrote Term Paper

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As the capitalist mode of production grows, small business owners face many challenges, as they can no longer compete with the modern bourgeoisie. According to Marx, "the lower strata of the middle class - the small tradespeople, shopkeepers... all these sink gradually into the proletariat, partly because their diminutive capital does not suffice for the scale on which Modern Industry is carried on... partly because their specialized skill is rendered worthless by methods of production (p. 479)."

Marx and Engels viewed class conflict as inherent in capitalist societies. Thus, they believed that the social, legal and political aspects of the workplace needed to change over time. To promote these changes, the working class would form trade unions. According to Marx, "thereupon the workers begin to form combinations against the bourgeoisie; they club together in order to keep up the rate of wages (p. 480)"

The final stage of the class conflict is the working class' formation of a political voice, as

Marx describes as "the organization of the proletariat into a class, and consequently into a political party... It compels legislative recognition of particular interests of the workers, by taking advantage of the divisions among the bourgeoisie itself (p.481)."

Basically, in a capitalist society, as Marx and Engels describe in the Manifesto of the Communist Party, the rich will exploit the working class to benefit themselves. By forcing the working class to work for little money, the rich make even more money because their costs are minimized. The gap between the rich and poor increases, as it has in the United States. As a result, we have class conflict.

Marx and Engels envisioned a society in which individuals work for the well being of society rather than for personal gain. Society is improved because of a group effort for a higher quality of living. In effect, they believed that communism would eliminate class conflict. Basically, even in a capitalist society, Marx and Engels felt that the working class would eventually overthrow the bourgeoisie and achieve a classless society where the group works for society.

Many of Marx's ideas can be seen in the U.S. today. A key concept in Marx's critique of capitalism is that labor has been reduced to the status of a commodity, meaning that its value is equivalent to its cost of reproduction. Marx's ideas on labor value are very much alive for many organizations working for social change. In addition, it is apparent that the gap between the rich and poor is widening on a consistent basis. In the United States today, according to a Federal Reserve Board report, one percent of the population has more wealth than the bottom 90%, and it is far, far more unequal than it was in Marx's day. In this light, many of the theory's predictions ring true.


Marx, Karl. Manifesto of the…… [read more]

Spencer How Would Herbert Term Paper

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Post-modern thought does not search for such a progression and denies such a linear purposefulness to history.

However, post-modernism also has a deterministic tendency that is reinforced by some of Spencer's concepts. Ideas have a sense of inevitability of cultural production in post-modern thought, because they are viewed as the products and combinations of other ideas. Spencer, of course, because of his biological emphasis, might see post-modernism as a progression from the modernist emphasis upon the alienated self. While modernism viewed the sense of disconnection with despair, post-modernism formed as a reaction to view this despair with humor, and to view fragmentation as a positive rather than a negative development. Although Spencer would not have seen fragmentation as a positive himself, he would still see post-modernism's stress upon non-linearity of cultural production, its stress upon societal fragmentation, and its stress upon discursive thought as an evolution from an earlier era and a psychological, biological defensive technique of the human mind. Out of the need to view the alienation of human life with humor, post-modernism was generated by the animal mind as a defense mechanism, and spawned a functional culture that made dysfunction 'normal.'… [read more]

Comte and Tonnies Compare Term Paper

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It is interesting to contrast these two philosophers, because Comte views society as moving forward in terms of a quest for understanding. Although materialistic in its emphasis upon phenomenon that has an objective existence, as noted by both Ritzer in his comparative work on sociological theories, Comte's stress is upon the mind's ability to focus and comprehend, and the limits and reasons for human mental structures to have evolved as they have. Comte's stress upon human understanding in the individual is quite different from Tonnies' focus on human existence as the exercising of a variety of drives in the context of groups, rather than individual minds. Tonnies stresses the impact the human drives and human goals have upon the world. He does not see the quest for understanding as the basic human framework through which societal relationships are created. Given the broader view of society taken in recent years that tends to de-emphasize theology and the intellect as a cultural product of philosophy's location in the academy, the German philosopher's explanation ultimately emerges as more persuasive.… [read more]

Durkheim Were Alive Today Term Paper

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Even the seasons with a particular area force one to adopt commonly shared rituals that differ from Southern California to Minnesota.

Human biology may explain mechanical solidarity, as well as a human drive to conform and to seek to be 'normal.' However, the fragmentation of the post-industrial world, and the increased ability to travel from one's family and home, despite the mechanization of life, leads to a different form of solidarity, an organic solidarity based on an interrelationship of shared but varied tasks -- as someone who is served by a waitress every night at a diner feels a solidarity with her, or even two individuals from different backgrounds share the same sense of music and the same television program.

The ritualized nature of the 9-5 workday and the standardization of post-industrial life may keep the rituals of mechanical solidarity alive, even in an ethnically and vocationally diverse society. But it is more and more incumbent upon the individual to seek organic solidarity as these trends render such mechanical solidarity less meaningful, and more commercially rendered, rather than produced by a common ethnicity, an old culture, and an equally shared sense of communal space.… [read more]

Separation of the Society Term Paper

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(Bougle, 1992) Similarly some became landlords or businessmen, again a Vaisya occupation. The Brahmins also accepted lower castes that became rich as marriage partners. An example is the Nair women of Kerala who were rich and owners of property due to the matrilineal system they followed. Thus it is clear that the original Varna system was only a system to keep order in the system by assigning certain occupations to certain varnas have failed in the purpose, but that does not alter the objective of the system.

Now let us look at the present day United States that has a 3-class system. The first of these classes is the dependent class with a few sub-classes within it. These people are dependent on the Government help and support. They are manipulative and demanding and do not think about the future. They do not bother about the consequences of the action they take. They are "arrogantly and militantly irresponsible with little social or personal conscience or degree of introspection." (Kocher, 1999) Their philosophy is being street smart and saying that they are psychologically pre-destined to do whatever they are doing anyway.

The second class in America are the producer class, who work seriously from day-to-day and build the small and medium businesses that provide the jobs to the millions of Americans. The last group of people is the conflict managing class. They pit the producing class against the dependent class and use the fight to survive. They provide the rational for the dependent class to keep on being dependent. Since they have a large number of people in their hold, the producers also must keep them happy and depend on their senses so that the conflict does not destroy the entire society. Some say this class has neither conscience nor sense. Well I do not really know whether this analysis of the American class system is right or wrong, but it can be easily seen that this is based on assigning certain jobs to certain groups of people. In that sense it is another sort of a caste system based on separating the society into different groups based on occupation. Today, the occupations are not so clear and that is why the pre-occupations have been taken up instead of occupations.


Social stratification is in itself useless. Men cannot be divided and each man will live up to his own personal potential, irrespective of what caste or class one tries to put him in.


Srinivas, M.N. "Social change in modern India" California: University of California Press (1966)

Bougle, C., "The essence and Reality of the Caste System." In D. Gupta, ed., Social Stratification. Delhi: Oxford University Press (1992).

Kocher, Robert L

Political Economy 301: The American Class System; Prerequisite: Healthy Realistic Iconoclasm 300 Fundamental Issues, Part…… [read more]

Lewis Sinclair's Babbitt- American Society Term Paper

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Even the language that he uses to converse with others businessmen is typical of our suburban class. When he greets his friends at the Zenith Athletic Club, we can't ignore the style of interaction, which is so very typical of this class. 'How's the old Botsheviki? How do you feel, the morning after the night before?' 'Oh, boy! Some head! That was a regular party you threw, Verg! Hope you haven't forgotten I took that last cute little jack-pot!' Babbitt bellowed...'That's all right now! What I'll hand you next time, Georgie! Say, juh notice in the paper the way the New York Assembly stood up to the reds?' 'You bet I did. That was fine, the? Nice day today.' (49)

Babbitt is a shallow figure for most part of the novel. While he is not entirely incapable of real friendship (Monarch Notes, 1963), still he is also guilty of the same shady ethical standards practiced by the other businessmen for selfish financial gains. His ability to remain friends with a complete opposite Paul, and his acceptance of dubious ethics highlight the conflict that marks this important character of Sinclair's novel. Babbitt is a classic representative of American business class society and helps in bringing their problems, confusions, ethical standards, moral sense and desires to the fore. American business class is always looking for a way to rise to the next rung in the social ladder. It is never completely satisfied with what it has and this is the major source of discontentment in this class, which is adequately captured by Lewis through Babbitt. Sinclair appears to believe that somewhere in the beginning very businessman in the United States must have been motivated by power of his own idealism than materialism. But along the road, he lost all sense of purpose and began gathering all kinds of high social status symbols including expensive watches, luxury cars, exquisite decoration items etc. In his pursuit to be counted as an important member of the society, he lost all sense of direction and this resulted in deep resentment and discontentment, which Babbitt's character signifies perfectly.


James M. Hutchisson, Sinclair Lewis: New Essays in Criticism. Whitston Publishing. Troy, NY. 1997.

Works of Sinclair Lewis: General Commentary., Monarch Notes, 01-01-1963.… [read more]

George Herbert Mead Term Paper

Term Paper  |  6 pages (1,657 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Mead's formulations on the controlling effects of society do not sufficiently account for these differences.

These limitations, however, does diminish the importance of Mead's writings regarding the social nature of a person's individual "self." By explicating the social forces that determine a person's roles, behavior and values, Mead was able to show how individuals are constantly shaped and affected by their greater social surroundings. In doing so, Mead laid important foundations for much of sociology as the discipline is practiced today.


The continuing influence of Mead's ideas can be seen in a wide variety of fields. In sociology, his work on the effects of social forces on individual psyche can be seen in the Philip Zimbardo's "prison" experiments in Stanford University 1972 and in Stanley Milgram's electrocution experiments in Yale University during the 1960s.

In this vein, Mead's writings can help to illuminate the nuances of peer pressure and social control that underlie the various instances of "hazing" that have occurred among college and even high school campuses across the country.

Other related fields have benefited from Mead's writings as well. His writings on socialization and the importance of symbols could have much to offer feminist theory. Feminist theorists have studied how children are "socialized" into prevailing social ideas regarding masculine and feminine roles.

Building on Mead's ideas of symbol-laden gestures, anthropologists like Edward Hall later explored how body language and other forms of non-verbal behavior regulate much of interpersonal communication. As the interconnected global economy gives rise to greater cultural interaction, Mead's writings on symbolic interaction have much to contribute to understanding the collisions and potential commonalities between diverse beliefs and values.

Works Cited

Coser, Lewis. Masters of Sociological Thought: Ideas in Historical and Social Context. New York: International Thomson Publishing, 1977.

Mead, George Herbert. Mind, Self and Society from the Standpoint of a Social Behaviorist. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1967.

Mills, Charles Wright. The Sociological Imagination. New York: Grove Press, 1961.

Rosenthal, Sandra. Mead…… [read more]

Living in the Industrial ST Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (647 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Because people are able to earn on their own means, the become empowered to pursue other achievements, such as the attainment of education, which in turn results to a better position in the society, wherein power and prestige becomes available, thereby guaranteeing an individual to move upward in the social mobility scale. Because of new opportunities presented by the Industrialist type of society in the 21st century, people are able to break out of the lower class levels in the social, political, and economic areas of society. Another benefit is the betterment of human living conditions as a result of the Industrial Revolution and development. Because of new technological innovations spurred by inventions and scientific research and development, the 21st century society has access to better medical treatment and knowledge about important information about human beings and other organisms in this world, better transportation and communications due to technological developments, and special studies that focus on the improvement of the environmental conditions of the planet Earth. Thus, because of these developments in the 21st century society, people are now able to live in both leisure and hard work, and they have the ability to answer sufficiently to their own wants and needs in life. It goes without saying that because of better living conditions, humankind in the Industrial society has achieved a prolonged life expectancy, and birth rates have so far exceeded the death rates in societies. And because of this, the essential function of humans, which is to perpetuate the human species on this planet, is achieved as a result of the benefits and vital functions that the 21st century society has brought to human civilization.… [read more]

Rules America?' by G. William Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (745 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


Who Rules America also contains some elements of structural functionalism. He sees American society as relatively stable and patterned - a key component of structural functionalism. Further, Domhoff's America is made up of a number of independent but interrelated segments, each governed by specific mores and beliefs. Like a true structural functionalist, Dumhoff sees society in terms of statuses that are interconnected to form institutions that are in turn dependent on larger society. In this book, the author sees individual actions as clearly determined by the larger society.

Certainly, Domhoff's assertion that America is largely controlled by the upper class goes strongly against the democratic nature of our society. The existence of a power elite is truly against the founding principles of this country, and yet Dumhoff makes a clear case for the existence of this sort of power structure.

Ironically, Dumhoff notes that the large number of Americans believe that the general public exerts control of American politics and finance. In blatant disregard of this assertion, almost 25% of private wealth and close to 50% of corporate stock are held by the upper class. Dumhoff notes that power in America ultimately comes from works of these few people.

Dumhoff does not find his work demoralizing or depressing. In fact, he argues that a through understanding of the social and economic realities of the United States is absolutely necessary to achieving some sort of power for average Americans. He notes that the elites are in power because of better organization, and that Americans may be able to change the balance of power using America's democratic process.

In conclusion, Who Rules America is an insightful book that reveals a great deal about social, economic, and political inequality in the United States. Dumhoff argues that America is ruled by a power elite whose influence suggests that all forms of social inequality ultimately stem from their power. The presence of this elite contradicts America's strong belief in democracy and individual choice, but Dumhoff argues that Americans still may have some say in the balance of power in America by using their democratic freedoms to affect change.

Works Cited

Domhoff, G. William. Who Rules America?…… [read more]

Self-Image and Significant Others Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (878 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


This separates the significant other from a role model. This theory comes into play when I examine the role of my parents as significant others.

My mother is a huge part of who I am. She is both a significant other and a role model to me. I see myself as an extension of her, and since I admire her, my self-image is positive. I mimic her ways, including gestures, eating habits and moral views. If she approves of me and shows confidence in me, I feel good about myself. If she admonishes me or disapproves of my behavior, I see myself as unsuccessful or unworthy. In my opinion, my confidence, honesty and kindness come from her influence on me.

A love my father, although I do not aspire to be like him. He is far less of a role model than my mother. However, he is a significant other in my life, so he has an effect on my self-image. Since he frequently judges my behavior, he is an important source of feedback on who I am and what I am doing. His views of me affect my own views of myself. Often I feel insecure because of his judgment.

According to Mead, "by taking the role of another, we become self-aware." The self, then, has two parts. As subject, the self is active and spontaneous. Mead called the subjective side of the self "the I." However, this self is also an object, as we imagine ourselves as others see us.

Mead called the objective side of the self "the me." All social experience has both components: Most people initiate action (the I-phase), and then continue the action based on how others respond to us (the me-phase). (Aboulafia, 1986) I believe this theory to be true. If I buy a new dress than I think look amazing in the store and then wear it to school and everybody laughs at me, my self-image will change. I will feel less attractive and believe that I have bad taste.

The effects of significant others on my self-image are extraordinary, and I believe that this is true for everybody. It is easier for me to change my self-image based on what other people think than it is to change my self-image based on what I think.


Aboulafia, Mitchell. The Mediating Self: Mead, Sartre, and Self-Determination. Yale University Press, 1986.

Adorno, Theodore. Introduction to Sociology. Stanford University Press, 2000.

Situating the Self: Gender, Community and Postmodernism in Contemporary Ethics. Routledge, 1992.

Barrat, D. & T. Cole)…… [read more]

Death: Suicide, Euthanasia Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,931 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


The is also the consideration of impact this practice will have on society and the way society may devalue life when it becomes a commodity that can be taken rather than cherished at all costs. The appearance of control and dignity may also be misleading, as the pain caused to those left behind may be immense, especially if they have… [read more]

Karl Marx, the Founder Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,641 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


In addition to his studies Marx is busy with the workers' movement as well as one of the founders of the International Working Men's Association, which has been the center of attention recently and has already shown in more than one place in Europe that it is a force to be considered with. Thus, to believe that as far as the workers' movement is concerned, epoch-making organization the German element goes specifically and just to Marx that still holds the influential position which is its due (Karl Marx, German social Philosopher and Revolutionary).

Marx Theories Contribution in Sociology

The term communism came into use in the 1840s to indicate loosely militant leftist form of sociology that was linked with the writings of etienne Cabet and his theories of common ownership. However, later, Karl Marx used it to describe the movement that supported class struggle and revolution to establish a society of cooperation (Engels, 1868).

Moreover, in 1848, Marx and Engels wrote the famous Communist Manifesto, in which they set forth the principles of sociology and also argued the historical certainty of revolutionary conflict between capital and labor. Marx in all of his works attacked the socialists as theoretical utopian dreamers who ignored the need of revolutionary struggle to apply their doctrines (Socialism: Marxists and Gradualists).

Thus, in the environment of disappointment and bitterness that more and more passed through European socialism, Marxism became the theoretical basis for most socialist thought. However, the breakdown of the revolutions of 1848 caused a decline in socialist action in the following two decades (Engels, 1868).

Works Cited

The Life and Work of Karl Marx. Outstanding Dates. www.marxists.org

Karl Marx, 1818-1883. History Guide. www.historyguide.org

Karl Marx, German social Philosopher and Revolutionary. The Windows Philosophers. www.trincoll.edu

Engels…… [read more]

Population Studies and Stratification Measures Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (943 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


Stratification and Methods of Stratification

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Given the differences present in a population, it is imperative to categorize the various subsets of a population to be able to study and understand the existent characteristics. The categorization of inequalities within a population is what stratification entails. According to (Henslin, 2014), stratification refers to a hierarchy of relativity guided by property ownership, power and prestige. In every form of society, there lie different strata that each member of the society is classified.

Stratification comes from a complex interaction with the social and institutional systems that give rise to the observable difference among members of a society. The institutional systems facilitate value creation and desirability of the resources within a society. Social systems define the rules for allocating the resources, as well as linking individuals through mobility to positions and possession of these resources (Henslin, 2014). The degree of stratification in each society is different and yields inequality within the very society. The prevailing inequalities bring out social stratification and, the different measures of stratification between societies caution the need to apply relativity in making comparisons between societies.

Methods of Stratification

There are different methods of stratification in a society that occur naturally and through the forces of mankind. The different methods of stratification are guided by the composition of the society, resource possession and allocation within the society, the social institutions present and the people's socialization. Some of the major forms of social stratification are caste, class and slavery -- claiming ownership of people. The universal cross-cutting measure of stratification within a society is gender.

Caste stratification classifies members of the society according to their birth lineage. Caste stratification stands as the oldest form of society stratification, and it draws a line in the society by groping individuals according to their family tree and the influential position they hold in the society. The caste stratification tends to place certain members of a society at a higher hierarchy and others at the bottom. Class stratification is primarily based on wealth possession and entitlements of the members of the society. Material possessions and entitlements present an opportunity for members of a society to move up or down depending on the wealth held. Slavery stratification defines stratification where higher caste individual owns the lowest caste individuals in the society. This form of stratification has however been abolished although still exists in other forms. Gender stratification is a universal cross-cutting method of stratification where members of a society are classified according to their biological makeup. Until recently resource allocation and hierarchical placement in most society has been biased favoring the male gender.

Stratified American Society and Comparisons

In the 2013 census report for American household incomes, it is evident that the median income for Hispanic households, households maintained by persons aged 15-24 or those older…… [read more]

Marx and Weber's Theories of Class Essay

Essay  |  1 pages (363 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


¶ … segmentations of society and how they are divided. It is important because different classes have different interests. Marx believed that the class lines could be drawn by the means of production. Those who sold their labor would represent one class and those who owned the means of production would represent another class. These classes have different interests and different political and social ambitions. The upper classes tend to work to concentrate their power while the lower classes can only retaliate through their collective efforts.

When Marx was alive the society was less complex than it was today. There were basically the land owners and the workers. The production methods were brutal and he witnessed the exploitation of workers in fairly extreme conditions. Marx thought that the class struggle was the central point in history as different classes engaged in constant confrontations. He believed that the interests of the classes were well-defined and virtually static -- they could not be changed and they would not evolve but would always lead to a revolution.

Weber's theory of class was similar to…… [read more]

Distribution of Resource Surplus Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (564 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


Distribution of Resource Surplus in Relation to Northwest Coast Society

People across the globe depend on various means of production, distribution, and consumption so as to ensure the provision of food and other necessary goods in life. The modes of distribution vary from one culture to another because of the respective traditions and customs of the specific culture. Distribution is basically defined as the movement or transfer of manufactured goods or products through various means to the customer or consumer. The concept of distribution of resource surplus can defined as the transportation or transfer of excess resources to other places in the society. Given the difference in modes of distribution across cultures, the Northwest Coast Society has a distinct definition and process of the concept of distribution of resource surplus.

According to Ames, culture in Northwest Coast Society have had an integral place in anthropology that is distinguished on the existence and socio-economic development of complex hunter-gatherers and the emergence and growth of permanent forms of social inequality (p.209). Social inequality in these cultures is a by-product of temporal and spatial resource distribution and resource ownership. In this society, the concept of distribution of resource surplus means the production and transportation of extra resources to the society given the prevalence of social inequality in relation to resource ownership and distribution.

Traditional communities in Northwest Coast Society were based on the production of surplus food and resources through the use of labor that was arranged along extended family lines (Industry Canada, par, 4). The communities also instituted potlatch, which was a major unifying important of cultures in Northwest Coast. Potlatches were significant social gatherings that were used to commemorate major events in life…… [read more]

Continues to Confound Our Society Research Paper

Research Paper  |  3 pages (1,102 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


The second is that the word "disability" inherently, in its construction, biases us towards the negative, and no definition can change the way we think, because of how the word is constructed. Once these two arguments are understood, the case against the use of the word disability will be clear, and the call for a definition of disability moot.

Davis understands disability as a deviation from the norms, but there are no norms. Aside from twins, there are no identical humans. We are all different -- shorter or taller, brighter or dimmer, thinner or stockier -- and in that there is no norm from which one can deviate. As a society, we perceive a bound of normality, but that perception is not always accurate, and not everybody fits within that bound who we might think fits. The reality is that we are all different. It makes no sense to label a blind man disabled, and avoid using that same label on the racist. Both conditions reflect an individual with a condition that holds them back, the latter probably more so. We all have abilities and disabilities, none of us are without imperfection, and in that it makes no real sense to single out some for stigma and others to be viewed as "normal."

If we must define others in some way, it surely cannot be in a negative way. Ability is a positive trait in our society -- to be able to do something, and especially to do it well, is viewed favorably. The negative prefix "dis-" implies inability. Yet, the number of people who truly have no ability to do anything are few indeed. There is nothing but cruelty in labelling some people whose abilities are unlike our own perceived abilities as "disabled." The negativity implied by the prefix in part creates the stigma. The stigma cannot be fully removed until the negativity is removed. Sir Philip Craven, head of the International Paralympic Committee, agrees with this position regarding the inherent negativity of the term (Gibson, 2012). We can redefine "disability" a million ways to Sunday but ultimately the word is still constructed of a negation to a positive trait, and anybody carrying that label will be viewed similarly. The word "disability" simply needs to be removed from our language to bring us to a place of true, effortless compassion and kinship with all of our fellow humans.


In conclusion, the word "disability" is a negative term, and can never shed its negative connotation. It should therefore be eliminated, and not used to describe any person. Positive terminology is encouraged, in particular terminology that recognizes the reality that there is no one true "norm" by which people are judged, and that we all have different sets of physical and mental abilities. The use of exclusionary terminology to separate one group of people from the rest of society is anathema to eliminating barriers and creating a truly just and compassionate society.


Barnes, C. & Mercer, G. (2010). Exploring… [read more]

Color Purple, Symbolism Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,305 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4


They are sometimes illusory in nature, and chasing after something better does not necessarily result in you being a better person.

Struggling with society is something that a lot of artists seem to deal with. Part of this is because they see the world a little bit differently than other people, and that makes it harder for them to relate to those other people. Society comes with it a certain set of expectations, and these can be a challenge for artists. These writers have both written elements of this struggle to fit into society into their characters. Celie has to overcome certain misconceptions about her as a person based on race and gender, but also about sewing, which is something that she loves. Miss Havisham is one of many example in Great Expectations where someone is of high social standing but does not conform to the norms one might expect of that element of society. Dickens is neither the first nor last writer to poke fun at the upper class for the benefit of a lower class audience wanting to see that their preconceptions about class are more or less baseless; such a message was certainly important in Dickens' day.

Different genres provide different means by which the writers can express different themes. Dickens uses a lot of characters to express his themes about class in Great Expectations. This book was first published in serial format, which allows for a certain narrative style emphasizing short bursts of changes in character. Themes in particular need to be repeated week after week in order for the reader to remember the subtle details. Dickens cannot simply express in a brief anecdote that Miss Havisham is stuck in the past, he must create a meme in the wedding dress that expresses this over the course of two years, because that is how long a reader would originally have taken to read the novel.

Alice Walker did not work with serialization and so was able to use more conventional forms to express her themes. She was able to build her central character Celie over the course of Celie's life, but the transformations can take place more quickly because of the format of the story.

It is worth noting that both of these novels cover the changes of the main character's life over a long period of time. Walker uses this opportunity to illustrate the changes in her main character, while Dickens uses the Pip character to reflect back his themes, as they are expressed via the secondary characters. Miss Havisham is stuck in time, and remains so, dying in her wedding dress. Estella's meanness is only broken through years of abuse. Magwitch's redemption is also a long time coming, especially as his role as benefactor is not revealed until late in the novel.

The struggles with society that both central characters experience has lot to do with their deviation from the norms expected of people like them, so black and female for Celie and poor… [read more]

Social and Social Policies Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,644 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


It is easy to see that the spirit of the authors went well with notions of social capital, grounded civic society, participatory democracy, inter-organizational synchronization, and collective effectiveness (Reisch, & Andrews, 2014). As is often the case with such notions, details about the structure of the community center, inter-service coordination, assumptions about community solidarity and evidence of effectiveness of collective intervention are sketchy. In all these fronts, a variety of concrete precedents could be explored to move the author's ideal model closer to one that is open to experimentation.

The authors have set themselves an ambitious challenge in producing a book that focuses on various social theorists. They seek to examine the relevance of these social theorists in social work as a professional practice, academic subject and as a response to issues that will possible emerge under the current society. The strength in the two chapters lies in the authors' evident passion for the topic and their observations of the theories under discussion. When reading the chapters, there were times that I wished to read about their thoughts on issues like penal policy and probation officers: the probation service remains the second biggest employer of social staff. Therefore, I feel this contribution might have made a significant impact. Moreover, I am curious because the authors failed to draw on masculinity theories and their relationship to the practice of social work.


Barusch, A.S. (2009). Foundations of social policy: Social justice in human perspective. Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole.

Finn, J.L., & Jacobson, M. (2003). Just practice: a social justice approach to social work. Peosta, Iowa: Eddie Bowers Pub. Co..

Leiby, J. (1978). A history of social welfare and social work in the United States. New York: Columbia University Press.

Lundy, C., & Lundy, C. (2011). Social work, social justice, & human rights: A structural approach to practice. North York, Ont: University of Toronto Press.

Reisch, M., &…… [read more]

You Lab Report

Lab Report  |  3 pages (797 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


I hated it and I hated individuals doing it, but I also seemed to understand it -- I considered that this was part of society. Both the fact that I've accumulated a significant amount of knowledge through the years and the fact that things have changed for the better across time made me understand that violence is wrong regardless of circumstances.

Do you think society perceived the practice differently in the past from how it perceives it now?

Yes, like I previously mentioned, one of the reasons why domestic violence was more common in the past (at least from my perspective) was that people were more accepting of the practice.

How do you think change happened and what do you think about it -- did it represent a form of progress for society as a whole?

Change happened as the whole world changed. People became more educated and moral values started to see growing interest, with the general public becoming better acquainted with the difference between right and wrong. Although domestic violence is still common in some communities, from what I've seen, things in the community I have interacted with have changed significantly. Now most people there consider that domestic violence is horrible and that it needs to be punished severely.


Domestic violence was perceived as a relatively common concept in the past and even with the fact that the person I interviewed was born in 1943, he saw a very different world from the one we see today. During the 1950s women were still struggling to improve their social status and were fighting with discrimination. Blue collar families in particular contained individuals who had a limited understanding of the difference between right and wrong. Violence was perceived as more of a solution back then and individuals were unhesitant about using it in their families in situations when they were unable to consider other options.

The interview I devised follows a course leading interviewees from the moment when they could gain a complex understanding about why domestic violence occurred in their communities to the point where they can look back and analyze the concept from the perspective of someone who is more experienced and who can easily comprehend why it was wrong.

Works cited:

Burton, M. (2008). Legal Responses to Domestic Violence. Routledge.

Groves, N., & Thomas, T. (2013). Domestic…… [read more]

History of Social Policy Article Review

Article Review  |  3 pages (995 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Such a legislation directly assists gay and lesbian parents by making it less difficult for them to integrate society without being criticized for their sexual preferences (Haney-Caron & Heilbrunn 23).

Bisman, J.E. (2012). Budgeting for famine in Tudor England, 1527 -- 1528: social and policy perspectives. Accounting History Review Vol. 22, No. 2, July, 105 -- 126.

Parenthetical in-text: (Bisman 2012)

Bisman's article discusses with regard to social welfare being applied during the famine of 1527-28. The fact that Bisman emphasizes a series of reforms that made it possible for people to experience a less problematic recovery demonstrates the degree to which organization and accounting can assist social welfare programs. The unique budget designed to solve the issue effectively addressed the famine problem and helped people in spite of the limited resources they had available.

Aja, A., Bustillo, D., Darity, W., & Hamilton, D. Jobs Instead of Austerity: A Bold Policy Proposal for Economic Justice

Parenthetical in-text: (Aja et al.)

Jobs instead of austerity provides an intriguing view into the 70s and discusses about the government installing programs aimed at helping African-Americans experience fairer opportunities. With conditions being critical during the period as a consequence of the economy seeing significant trouble, African-Americans were among the groups that suffered the most and that thus needed social assistance in order to be able to cope with those conditions.

Ford, M., Acosta, A., & Sutcliffe, T.J. (2013). Beyond Terminology: The Policy Impact of a Grassroots Movement. INTELLECTUAL AND DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES Vol. 51, No. 2, 108-112

Parenthetical in-text: (Ford et al., 2013)

This article relates to the way that people with disabilities in the contemporary society risk being ignored by the authorities. The article also emphasizes how things have changed during recent years with the government installing harsher legislations meant to make both public institutions and the masses adopt more sympathetic attitudes toward people with disabilities.

Haney-Caron, E. & Heilbrunn, K. (2014). Lesbian and Gay Parents and Determination of Child Custody: The Changing Legal Landscape and Implications for Policy and Practice. Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity Vol. 1, No. 1, 19 -- 29.

Parenthetical in-text: (Haney-Caron & Heilbrunn 2014)

LGBT rights have seen much progress in recent years and this article contributes to making it possible for readers to see matters from an objective viewpoint. By addressing social welfare in a context involving lesbian and gay parents trying to get custody of their children, the article serves to prove that one can easily be inclined to discriminate even with the fact that he or she has a limited understanding of the individuals he or she is discriminating.

Freudenberg, N. Evidence, Power, and Policy Change in Community-Based Participatory Research.

Parenthetical in-text: (Freudenberg)

With social welfare having seen significant progress during recent years, many strategies need to experience a restructuring process in order for people to be able to still use these respective strategies. Freudenberg's…… [read more]

Rational Choice Theory Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,509 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4


Rational choice theory is a paradigm for understanding and modeling social and economic behavior within groups or systems. It is sometimes referred to as rational action theory, often interpreted as ways to assume behaviors in microeconomic models as "wanting more" of something rather than less -- goods, services, overt political control, etc. (Allingham, 2002) It became even more popular as… [read more]

Mitchel Duneier. Farrar, Straus Book Report

Book Report  |  2 pages (649 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


In the first story of the book the reader gets to meet 42 years old Hakim Hassan, a book vendor and street intellectual who had his stall at the intersection of 8th Street with 6th Avenue. For two years Duneier lived around the corner where Hakim was set up and initially he wanted to write only about Hakim in his book, but at Hakim's advice he chose to further extend his observations and reveal more stories. In the appendix of the book the reader finds out that, as an appreciation of his wit and knowledge, Duneier invited Hakim to be his assistant teacher for a sociology course at the University of California.

Besides Hakim's story the reader can find 19 other stories, each one of them shedding a new light on the struggles, aspirations or rationalizations constructing the background that brought them there in the first place and how it fit into broader context of division of labor and social cohesion. Through anecdotal illustrations and personal interviews, the reader develops a thorough understanding of the social dynamics that are in play from a narrative perspective.

From an ethnographic point-of-view Sidewalk represents a valuable tool for understanding the dynamics of exclusion and stigmatization on the basis of race and class in relation to usage of the public space and its conversion into an informal economical market. It also emphasizes the power of social institutions and social stigma to dictate one's path and to limit the possibilities of climbing on a social ladder for people born in specific circumstances. However, Sidewalk is constructed as an eloquent and persuasive argument for the view that the street vendors are not just a group of homeless, deviant people fighting for survival, but a well-defined community, with its own rules, hierarchy and sense of order and with a significant social importance…… [read more]

Media Image Women Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (1,010 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


This works against what women have been fighting for these past decades. The disintegration of the family exacerbates the problem of raising boys who can break free from stereotypes, because men at that point become the stereotypes that society expects them to be. But a society where boys are raised with few if any positive male role models is going to be dysfunctional, overly violent, where males in leadership positions in particular behave in juvenile ways unconducive to good governance and those outside of leadership positions drift through life unable to serve any real purpose other than work. At its worst, an absence of male role models increases the likelihood of antisocial and criminal behavior.

It is almost refreshing at this point to find a character on television on in the movies that breaks the stereotype. I like the character of Angel on Dexter as a good example of this. The character is a Cuban-American, and he is initially portrayed in a fairly stereotypical manner as a womanizer and partier, devoid of responsibility even though he is well beyond his twenties. At a point, he becomes married (to his boss) and this forces him to reevaluate a lot of his upbringing and the pre-defined gender role that is expected of him. He is challenged in particular by the idea that his wife is his boss, since he is expected to be the dominant member of the household. Redefining his own gender ideals is something that reminds me directly of Diaz's book, which also feature a Latino male seeking to re-learn about women and relationships as an adult, to break out of his gender stereotype. The subject is not often addressed in the mainstream media, and certainly not tackled with a character that is supposed to be overtly masculine. Usually, as Macnamara notes, any incidence of a positive, caring male is branded as "feminine," which makes the Angel character's struggles more unusual in mass media, because that "back-handed compliment" is not made in that instance.

There is little doubt that males face stereotyping in the media. There is something appealing, apparently, in society, in portraying men as philanderers, doofuses or worse. Males are not allowed to be complex, and over time this has created unrealistic images for boys growing up. There is the risk that if the negative images of men are not corrected, society could begin to suffer some of the negative consequences of a generation that grows up unable to relate to women and incapable of seeing themselves as relevant to the family.

Works Cited:

Macnamara, J. (2006). "Men become the main target in the new gender wars." Palgrave MacMillan. In possession of the author.

Petersen, S. (2013). Dumbing down dad: How media present husbands, fathers as useless. Deseret News. Retrieved October 14, 2013 from http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865574236/Dumbing-down-Dad-How-media-present-husbands-fathers-as-useless.html?pg=all

Wecks, E. (2012). This is how you lose her by Junot Diaz is a difficult but illuminating tale of failure and growth. Wired. Retrieved October 14, 2013 from http://www.wired.com/geekdad/2012/11/junot-diaz/… [read more]

Bowling for Columbine Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (913 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


The scene that most impressed me in the film was a short and somewhat comical cartoon explanation of why Americans are such a violent people. (52:45) The cartoon explained that it was fear that was at the heart of the American people's obsession with violence. It was fear that caused them to immigrate to America, and it was fear that made them exterminate the Native Americans. Fear made them import African slaves and fear of the slaves caused them to invent new and better guns. The connection between the NRA and the KKK is disclosed as one group promoted the use of guns while the other ensured that only whites would have this right. And finally the white exodus to the suburbs is explained through the fear white Americans have of those non-whites in their society. This scene can be seen as a microcosm of causes of gun violence in America.

The film "Bowling for Columbine" explores the American fixation with violence and guns by asking a number of excellent questions. But does the film answer those questions? Ultimately Moore's answer to the question of violence in American society lies with the fear that has plagued America from its founding. The original fear of the first settlers has transformed into a fear of anything that is not "normal" in terms of average white society. Minorities especially have become the targets of white America's fear. But this fear has also manifested itself in other ways including the violent reaction by those who are part of American society but feel they are being ostracized for their differences, as in the case of the Columbine massacre.


1. Whether there is a connection between money and guns is one of the questions that Michael Moore explores in his documentary "Bowling for Columbine."

2. Moore feels that white Americans fear minorities because the media concentrates so much on violence within the minority community.

3. Although there are many examples of violence in other industrialized societies, no other nation has the number of violent homicides each year as the United States.

4. Americans must solve the underlying question of fear before they can address the problem of violence in society.

Works Cited

Moore, Michael. "Bowling for Columbine (2002)." YouTube. 3 Sept.…… [read more]

Social System, Institutional Values Book Review

Book Review  |  4 pages (1,148 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


As such the will use the norms common within the society and push against them to the extent necessary to ensure that they work in their interests. However, when the norms of the society do not work in their favor and frustrate them to an extent that they no longer feel useful, and then subject to values they attach to social relationships, such individuals will employ methods outside the norms and codes they would in other circumstances wish to apply to such behaviors (Burton, 1965). Society will subsequently label them deviants. This doesn't deter them because they are prepared to pay any price to fulfill their needs. In fact, terrorists are more than prepared to pay the ultimate prize even if it means sacrificing their own lives.

Burton's answer to maintaining a healthy situation is functional cooperation. He posits that right and wrong are irrelevant notions in a conflict situation. He avers that conflict resolution should be based on functional arrangements which are designed to meet specific set of social, economic, or technical needs. Burton (1979) is convinced that legitimate functional arrangements can establish a control mechanism by building up and maintaining valued relationships in a society.

Human needs can only be pursued by individuals and social groups regardless of the social consequences. Just as had been elaborated earlier in this text unfulfilled human needs culminate into conflicts that may be manifested in the form of terrorism. That societies have social classes, is a traditional thing that has lived with the human race from time immemorial (Burton, 1979). Elite groups and structures supported by them which gain through maintenance of status quo thereby resisting the demands of other groups that may feel like lesser humans can potentially lead to emergence of conflicts if institutional values do not work towards taking care of human needs of all groups within a society. Human needs do not therefore lead to conflicts (Burton, 1965). Conflicts emerge from the frustration caused by unfulfilled needs. Needs are original and constructive because they include a potential for a harmonious society. Conflicts arise after disruption of societal institutional arrangements. These disruptions destroy originality.

I find Burton's line of thought that dysfunctional conflicts and deviant behavior are physical signs that there are unfulfilled human needs in the society so compelling. Conflict, like the symptoms of a disease, is not malignant, since it is just a sign of structural failings on the part of authorities the needs of people. International conflicts originate from domestic level (Burton, 1979). It is interesting how Burton demonstrates how conflicts can be a symptom. He, first of all, considers conflict to be endemic in the sense that it can be found regularly in human relationships. Secondly, he assumes that functional conflicts can be differentiated from dysfunctional conflicts. Because he believes conflicts are endemic, he endeavors to retain conflict that has functional value and control it to avoid perversions which are destructive of human enjoyment and a widely held social interest. To him, conflict is the… [read more]

Australian Indigenous Identity End Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,274 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 4


They utilized every possible technique to overcome the Aboriginal identity. They labeled them on the basis of study and biasness that I would rather call biased. Every culture has its own colors but some colors, if not violent, can be left as they are without labeling them. But the Aboriginal identity was somehow ridiculed so that they may accept the white's identity. The Aboriginals were thus defined by the state such that they original identity was erased by making the white identity superior. The actual discussion about the cultures should be how rich the cultural heritage is or is not rather than telling how typical or atypical the culture is (John, 1998, p: 355). The truth about the cultures lies in the fair understanding without the hidden agendas. Even the most illiterate societies have some traditions of family that can be adopted anywhere in the world since they are based on centuries of experience. But making has someway become obsessed with making everything "cultured" and "civilized."

If a society is to be dominated by the intruders socially and culturally, the best way to do so is to corrupt their international image. This is something worst that can be done to a community that is unable to represent its true self in the international arena. Besides the social isolation, the society is ignored by state level discrimination against them. The aboriginal identity was limited internationally by not giving them true and fair representation in the international events and scholarships (Dodson, 2003, p. 29). Since the Aboriginals used to live in the tribal social setup, it was easy to ignore them since they were unorganized thus unregistered. There were no state level efforts to have records about these Aboriginals so that probably it can be taken as a defense against not offering them international exposure. Their illiteracy was a weapon against them since the illiterate people have low self-identity as per "civilized" standards.

Mankind is very delicate yet it can be very cruel to its own fellow beings. It can take away the identity of people and not help and offer them support for their betterment. This was done to the Aboriginals too. They were less civilized than the colonizers yet they had a rich trial culture that could be used as well as modified to introduce them to the world and tell the world about the actual identity of Australia. Though the world today knows, at least in written if not popularly, that the Aboriginals were the actual inhabitants of Australia, the natives are quite less in number than they could be if they were preserved and well introduced to the world so that they could cope up with the modern challenges of the world. The Aboriginals are only one of the minorities in Australia today (Davis, 2004, p. 2). The time cannot be travelled back through the time tunnel and the actual inhabitants of Australia cannot be fully given their right back, there are many responsibilities of the state as… [read more]

Cultures Have Customs and Traditions Essay

Essay  |  5 pages (1,545 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


Individuals who perform it are in a controlled environment and consider that scars are an effective method to achieve a specific appearance. While it only recently came to be present in the Western World, scarification is not as new as some might believe, as it has been around on some cultures for thousands of years. "Some of the earliest tattoos were cuts with ash rubbed into them, which formed blackened scars." (Scarification: Ancient Body Art Leaving New Marks) Scarification is particularly common in aboriginal Australians and it can represent one's physical power in the case of men and beauty in the case of women.


Body modifications are very common in the present because people in recent centuries have slowly but surely come to consider particular activities are being less taboo than they seemed. Tattoos, piercings, scarifications, breast implants, and eye surgery turning people in super-humans are supported by the contemporary social order.

Works cited:

Leone, Lori, "The Art and History of Body Modification," Retrieved August 25, 2013, from http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/nonfiction/the-art-and-history-of-body-modification/

Miah, Andy, "Make me a superhero: The pleasures and pitfalls of body enhancement," Retrieved August 25, 2013, from http://www.theguardian.com/science/2009/may/01/body-enhancement-cosmetic-surgery-genetics

"Illegal ink: reading meaning in criminal tattoos," Retrievd August 25, 2013, from http://mindhacks.com/2008/02/03/illegal-ink-reading-meaning-in-criminal-tattoos/

"Scarification: Ancient Body Art Leaving New Marks," Retrieved August 25, 2013, from http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/07/0728_040728_tvtabooscars_2.html

"The History of Body Modification Around the World," Retrieved August 25, 2013, from http://www.fragrancex.com/Fragrance-Information/the-history-of-body-modification-around-the-world.html… [read more]

Research Paper

Research Paper  |  4 pages (1,136 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 4


Individuality vs. The Collective Good

The United States finds itself historically and perpetually locked into a philosophical and ideological debate over the notions of individuality and self-determination. On one hand, we are culturally predisposed to value these concepts, to pursue our own personal versions of happiness and to promote relative free thinking and creativity. These are the features that make capitalism such an attractive template for pursuing individualist aims. And yet, because this arrangement does also produce stark evidence of inequality, we find that it opens the door for regular criticism by those who choose a more collectivist worldview. Specifically, there is a notion that all of our ambitions should be channeled toward advancing the greater good and that the emphasis on individualism often undermines this advancement.

Valuing Self-Determination:

The notion of self-determination as an expression of individualism is a concept which has frequently been subject to debate in philosophical history. Many of the world's greatest thinkers have measured the question of individual entitlements against the importance of a strong unifying culture and, even beyond that, a shared sense of morality. Indeed, morality is often posited as the strongest argument in favor of the collective good and is generally enforced through a combination of cultural norms and regulatory or legal conditions. The contention is that humanity is beholden to certain social expectations, the adherence to which is determinant of nothing less than the stability, viability and longevity of a society. According to the text by Paul (2009), this is known as the 'social contract.'

As Paul indicates, though, the degree to which individual and shared interests are represented by the social contract is debatable. According to Paul, "philosophers through the ages such as Locke, Hobbes, and Hume have basically argued for the importance of a 'social contract' which stems from 'natural law' (for this one can go back as far as Aristotle but also Aquanis and Hobbes). This 'social contract' is provided only by the consent of individuals as natural law doesn't apply to the society as a whole but to the individual. In other words, the 'social contract' does not exist without the individual rights aligning themselves with the contract first." (Paul, p. 1)

This is an important distinction because it allows room for individual resistance. The persistence of free will denotes that in spite of the presence of natural law, we may be given over to individual points of disagreement with the collective. Or we may, out of necessity and survival, be motivated to act in contradiction to 'natural law' as a matter of self-interest. This is important because just as frequently as the social contract has been utilized to maintain necessary and positive social order, it has been exploited to serve authoritarian interests, to sustain power for select groups and to quell the impulse toward ethical resistance within a given society.

The United States is an excellent embodiment of the role that individuality plays in shaping a more ethically oriented and progressive society. A nation with a… [read more]

Social Organization of Work and Inequality Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,266 words)
Bibliography Sources: 6


Social Organization of Work and Inequality

This study addresses the socio-historical conditions linking work and inequality from the industrial period to today. Over the past 200 years, changes in social and economic policies have orchestrated to the rise in social and economic inequalities across the world. Research findings have repeatedly indicated that such inequalities have had adverse impacts on social… [read more]

Debord, the Yes Men Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (692 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


Literally, fighting back and destroying the system from without is part of the strategy. Another, and likely the more subversive tactic, which the Yes Men employ, is to destroy the society of the spectacle from within by means of excessive, blissful participation in the system.

Debord contends that for those of us who are aware of this type of society and wish to escape it, we can fight the system directly, and we can also fight the system indirectly. If conscious members of society, as well as (and probably more importantly) ignorant members of society blissfully participate in the system to the point of excess, the system will freeze or shut down because of overload. This is the same kind of tactic proposed by the hacker/activist group of the 21st century, Anonymous, who once threatened to shut down Facebook by means of precisely time, excessive participation.

The Yes Men heartily engage in their roles as peers of the most powerful and greedy men on the planet in their quests to hoard resources, wealth, and power. By means of the Yes Men's excessive participation in the capitalist system ridden with avarice and lack of empathy, they expose the actions of these executives in more effectively and with more depth than they would have, if they had, say, taken the approach of a Michael Moore type documentary, which typically confronts "the bad guys" in a more direct, less subtle manner. This approach taken by the Yes Men, as prescribed by Debord, additionally allows for the very men they are antagonizing to inadvertently participate in the protest against them and their actions. This tactic employed by the Yes Men and developed by Debord is known as detournement.


Debord, Guy. The Society of the Spectacle. New York: Zone Books, 2006. Print.

Engfehr, Kurt, Bonanno, Mike, & Bichlbaum, Andy. (directors) The Yes Men Fix the World. Starring Kurt Bonanno and Andy Bichlbaum. Renegade Pictures, Charny/Bachrach Entertainment, USA, 2009.… [read more]

Edible Woman Article Critique

Article Critique  |  3 pages (938 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


¶ … Gender and the Edible Woman

In the Edible Woman, by Margret Atwood, the main character Marion MacAlpin feels she is being oppressed by men. Simone de Beauvoir argues this urge to oppress others is at least in part a result of treating the 'other' as though he or she is only a material thing, rather than a free and thinking human being. De Beauvoir argues in the Second Sex that women have historically been made the 'other'. In the Ethics of Ambiguity, she emphasizes that we must recognize the dual nature of the human condition not only in ourselves, but also in those we perceive as other (Moore). In Western culture the male stereotype is the dominate figure in society. Typically this image is masculine, macho, and active in its connection to culture. This way of thinking has a propensity to sort society into groups in terms of class, race, psyche, and gender. The "logical" thought of domination has constructed prejudice in society (Warren).

One theory put forth a theory about the logic of domination is that people have developed beliefs about the nature of society. These beliefs are a form of law developed and put together by society as a product of ourselves and not reality. These beliefs included the idea that dualisms have been created and the logic of domination tells us which side of the dualism is superior. Society is structured by its own made institutions of power and each of us falls in one dualistic category, or faces punishment for being in between. The functions of these beliefs are hidden and people do not understand why or how these they came into being. Nonetheless, these beliefs lead to societal conventions. People are stigmatized for not fitting into one of these dualistic divisions and penalize for falling into the less dominate group. These societal oppressions of domination, place the white heterosexual male above everyone else, causing controversy and discrimination (Warren).


Atwood's novel explores the oppression brought forth not only by society, but also from the protagonist Marian's fiancee. The novel begins by painting a portrait of a woman dominated by the expectations of society who submits to the values and beliefs the predominate culture imposes women. The book assets woman are supposed to dress a certain way, be thin, weak and vulnerable. Atwood uses girdles as both a figurative and literal symbol of this conformity. Girdles shape woman into the accepted form, creating an image of sliminess. Despite the fact girdles are dangerous to a woman's well-being, social conventions demands they be worn. These norms dominate Marian's thinking and she finds herself wanting to be like an edible woman. Her desires to be sweet and enticing just like cake stem from her need to find herself the right husband.

Because of this Marian…… [read more]

Edible Woman Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (1,005 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 0


Margaret Atwood's novel "The Edible Woman" was written in the 1960s, a time period when society favored patriarchal attitudes and when it was perfectly normal for men to be the dominant members of the social order. It is very likely that she designed this novel in an attempt to raise public awareness concerning the wrongness associated with sticking to traditional gender roles. Atwood practically wrote this text with the purpose to have her readers understand that society had reached a level where it was much more complex than it had been in the past and where people needed to change their attitudes in order to be able to be an active part of the social order.

Most characters in "The Edible Woman" have the tendency to take on traditional gender roles when they interact with other characters. Even with this, the fact that these characters lived in a society that had experienced much change enabled them to look at their roles from a different perspective. Atwood actually tries to emphasize how some of her characters experience a more or less graduate change and how they tend to go from being inclined to assume traditional roles to having the tendency to break away from conventional behaviors with the purpose of changing a lot about who they are.

In contrast to her friend Ainsley, Marian (the protagonist) has trouble finding her personal identity. The central character appears to believe that there is no realistic possibility for her to change the person society wants her to be and concentrates on adopting a series of controversial attitudes in order to compensate for the suffering she experiences as she acknowledges that she needs to take on the stereotypical role of a female. While her roommate transcends society's boundaries concerning gender, it is more difficult for Marian to do so and she comes to believe that it would be in her best interest to provide Peter with the authority he needs in order for their relationship to be in agreement with socially acceptable behaviors.

Simone de Beauvoir's "Logic of Domination" emphasizes how individuals are taught to regard gender roles as perfectly normal. As a consequence, one can easily understand why Marian takes on the attitudes she does, taking into account that she has been taught that this is the role she needs to play as an active member of the social order. It is likely that Atwood designed Marian with the purpose of emphasizing how people accept particular attitudes because they believe that it is important for them to support societal legislations in order for people, in general, to make sense of the world.

To a certain degree, one might be inclined to believe that Atwood's portrayal of Marian's refusal to eat stands as a protest to how women are discriminated. "I always thought eating was a ridiculous activity anyway. I'd get out of it myself if I could, though you've got to do it to stay alive, they tell me." This idea can be considered… [read more]

Concept of Free Labor Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,452 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


¶ … Free Labor

The majority of people that settled in America were of Catholic Protestant origin. The protestant ethics that each man was destined to work to his 'calling', the divine aspect of his/her occupation. The Republicans fervidly rallied for the cause of free labor. There existed a visibly significant divide in the lives and customs of Northern and… [read more]

Karl Marx Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (1,107 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Due to the lack of products, there will not be enough products to sustain the society sufficiently. This utter chaos and rebellion would lead to the destruction of the society and the downfall of that civilization. The people would be starving and no longer able to function to allow the people of that country to lead healthy lives." (McHenry, 2005, p.1) The Theory of Population posited by Karl Marx held that population increase "must be interpreted in the context of the capitalist economic system. A capitalist gives to labor as wage a small share of labor's productivity, and the capitalist himself takes the lion's share. The capitalist introduces more and more machinery and thus increases the surplus value of labor's productivity, which is pocketed by the capitalist." (AAG Center for Global Geography Education, nd, p.1) The difference between the productivity of labor and the level of wages is the surplus. The pay of a worker is less than the value of the worker's productivity. The introduction of machinery resulted in the increase of unemployment and this resulted in the creation of a labor reserve. When this happens the wage level drops and the result is that parents are so poor that they are unable to raise their children and a large percentage of the population becomes a virtual surplus resulting in poverty and hunger as well as other social ills all created by the "socially unjust practices associated with capitalism." (AAG Center for Global Geography Education, nd, p.1) Therefore, in the view of Karl Marx, population growth is "not related to the alleged ignorance or moral inferiority of the poor, but is a consequence of the capitalist economic system." (AAG Center for Global Geography Education, nd, p.1) Low food production in a country, in the view of Karl Marx arises due to "landlordism, unfavorable and high man-land ration, uncertainty regarding land tenure system…" and other such ills. Population growth is only a problem, according to Karl Marx, "where the production of food is not adequate." (AAG Center for Global Geography Education, nd, p.1)

Summary and Conclusion

Karl Marx and his theories have been widely studied although his theories are not such that are held as sound as a whole, his theories have been widely discussed by scholars and politicians as well as philosophers who examine society and the various forms of government and classes within society. In light of today's societal and economic woes, it may be that another look at the theories posited by Karl Marx is in order, as it appears that Karl Marx predicted much of what has been witnessed to occur in the capitalist society.


Freedland, J. (2013) A Man of His Time "Karl Marx" by Jonathan Sperber. The New York Times. 29 Mar 2013. Retrieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/31/books/review/karl-marx-by-jonathan-sperber.html?ref=karlmarx

Karl Marx's Theory of Population (nd) Population and Natural Resources: Conceptual Framework. AAG Center for Global Geography Education. Retrieved from: http://cgge.aag.org/PopulationandNaturalResources1e/CF_PopNatRes_Jan10/CF_PopNatRes_Jan109.html

Karl, Marx (1818-1883) (2013) Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Retrieved from: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/marx/

McHenry, R. (2005) Encountering Commuism:… [read more]

Global Perspective Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,483 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4


Global Perspective: United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights

How do the principles of this declaration relate to the core value of community?

According to the core values of the community, the community is developed by using hospitable Christian learning communities everywhere. The core values foster a spirit of belonging, unity, and interdependence. They are based on mutual trust and… [read more]

Nozick Rawl and the Argument of Difference Principal Essay

Essay  |  5 pages (1,389 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Nozick, Rawl & the argument of difference principal

The Difference Principle as seen from Robert Nozick's perspective

Robert Nozick would object to John Rawls' difference principle by emphasizing that society supports privileged individuals regardless of the fact that some people prefer to take on ignorant attitudes regarding the idea of liberty. Social status is and has always been a determinant factor differentiating between particular groups of people and it would be impossible for someone to claim that he or she is rational and to deny particular individuals the right to be privileged as long as they hold a series of attributes allowing them to be so.

Difference Principle Definition

John Rawls' 1958 essay "Justice as Fairness" promotes the idea that strict equality does not necessarily have to be considered a dominating concept in society, as by adopting its rulings individuals are likely to deny particular groups the right to experience progress alongside with the rest of the world. Rawls highlighted the fact that society creates situations involving individuals being born in entrepreneurial communities having an advantage when compared to people who are born in groups of unskilled laborers. While this is generally accepted as a logical inequality, he believed that it would be wrong for someone to support it and he accordingly devised the difference principle in an attempt to provide the world with the opportunity to look at matters from a different perspective. The difference principle states that the worst-off in society need to be provided with a fair advantage as long as there are a series of inequalities making it possible for particular individuals to distinguish themselves from the rest and to experience a smoother road to success (Cohen 1048).

Argument 2

The fact that Nozick is in support of the concept of inequality as long as it is based on logical facts would practically mean that he considers Rawls' conclusion that "those starting out as members of the entrepreneurial class in property-owning democracy, say, have a better prospect than those who begin in the class of unskilled laborers" (Cohen 1048) to be perfectly rational.

Although Nozick most certainly acknowledged that some people are born in privileged environments, he did not hesitate to emphasize that all people basically have equal opportunities as long as they go through great efforts in order to experience success. Nozick practically believed that "whatever comes about the voluntarily consent of people who do not violate the rights of others is just" (Christiano 1061)

Nozick believed that the general idea of liberty needed to be accepted as one of the most important values in society and that it was essential for its members to accept this in order for them and the masses as a whole to go through a positive experience while cooperating with each-other. The idea of equality was, from Nozick's perspective, connected with the concept of liberty and it would have been a direct violation of the right to freedom to attempt to address people's right to own property that advantaged… [read more]

Friday Night Lights Social Issues and Coaching Ethics Essay

Essay  |  8 pages (2,499 words)
Bibliography Sources: 6


Friday Night Lights

The movie that I have selected i.e. Friday Night Lights is based on the town of Odessa in Texas, USA. The movie portrays good examples of the social issues and coaching ethics. In this movie, the town has shown to have a poor economy and is obsessed with their football team's performance known as the Permian Panthers.… [read more]

Five on the Black Hand Side Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (668 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


¶ … Black Side response

Five on the Black Side is a 1973 comedy by Oscar Williams that investigates the social and familial tensions found within the black community during the late 1960s and into the 1970s as individuals were attempting to establish their identities within society. In the film, Mr. Brooks is an example of the man every black man aspired to be; he was married, educated, disciplined, and owned his own business. However, Mr. Brooks's character and ambitions are met with resistance as his wife, Mrs. Brooks, and children, Shariff, also known as Booker T. Washington; Gail; and Gideon resist conforming to Mr. Brooks's expectations and attitude.

Throughout his life, Mr. Brooks has worked hard to become a successful and respected man in the community, however, in the process of attaining and working towards his success, he has alienated his family and turned his back on his heritage and culture. Mr. Brooks is stuck in his ways; he is domineering and expects everyone to conform to his beliefs. The film does a good job demonstrating how conflict manifests itself within the black community because this conflict does not focus on racial differences, but rather questions identity and the individual within the community.

The first example of tension occurs in the relationship Mr. Brooks has with Mrs. Brooks. The way the two are presented makes it difficult to initially determine that the two are married as Mr. Brooks's personality dominates Mrs. Brooks's personality. While Mr. Brooks is shown to be strong-willed, Mrs. Brooks is meek, almost as though she was a servant and not a wife. Ironically, through the married couple, Williams demonstrates that although blacks have broken away from subjugation by whites, the power dynamic within the community is still skewed. Furthermore, the film also demonstrates that in Mr. Brooks's attempt to become a successful man, he has inadvertently and subconsciously adopted behaviors and attitudes of his white counterparts and continues to propagate inequality within the community. In the film, Mrs. Bates…… [read more]

Eras in Human Services Application Essay

Application Essay  |  2 pages (630 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


Although the needs of immigrants had always been given special consideration, now the needs of a wider array of communities were honored. "In 1963, President Kennedy inaugurated federal support programs for the construction of University Affiliated Facilities to offer a complete range of services for people with developmental disabilities and to serve as a resource for the clinical training of physicians and other specialized personnel, including social workers, needed for research, diagnosis, training or care" (The 1960s - Mental Retardation and Mental Health Construction Act of 1963, 2013). Social workers had become a more integral part of federal policy during the New Deal, and once again they were called upon to provide critical assistance enabling the federal government to achieve its objectives, now specifically to deal with the needs of special populations. Social workers no longer bestowed 'charity' or even community empowerment, but were used to orchestrate social change in highly specific ways dictated by federal policy.

The role of social workers continued to expand during the 1960s in the form of Lyndon Johnson's Great Society. The Economic Opportunity Act (EOA) created such programs as the Job Corps, Upward Bound, and Head Start, all of which required social workers to fulfill these new agencies' missions. "Social workers played key roles throughout the 1960s in various anti-poverty and community-action programs and helped train individuals in new organizations like the Peace Corps and VISTA" (From charitable volunteers to architects of social welfare, 2013, University of Michigan).


The 1960s - Mental Retardation and Mental Health Construction Act of 1963. (2013). Timeline.

Washington.edu. Retrieved:


From charitable volunteers to architects of social welfare: A brief history of social work. (2012).

The University of Michigan. Retrieved:


The Settlement Movement. (2013). Columbia Federation of Settlements. Retrieved:

http://www.cfsettlements.org/The_Settlement_Movement.html… [read more]

Management Karl Marx Is Highly Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,589 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 9


In this instance, as in the case with unions, the supply of labor is controlled by the individuals in society. As such, both the Unions and the Occupy Wall Street movement serve as a check and balance against the loss of labor control. Marx during his period did not have the organization of unions that capitalism today has. In many… [read more]

Double Safety Standard Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (879 words)
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Double Safety Standard

Individuals are often singled out for different treatment, sometimes in good ways but often in bad ways. There have long been institutionalized examples, and the example of Israel is good because the Arabs who live in the state of Israel do not have the same voting rights and the schools and hospitals in their areas are of lesser quality, to say nothing of the people in the West Bank. In a reverse, people with Israel passports cannot go to Arab countries, something that only happens to them. Sometimes, the different treatment is not institutionalized, but happens in an informal way.

The glass ceiling for women is an example. While there is no legal reason a woman cannot be a business executive, there are often unseen barriers that prevent this from happening. Some are direct, like people not wanting to hire a woman for the job, but others are indirect, such as guiding girls into professions that are unlikely to lead to business leadership positions. In this situation, the different treatment comes from businesses. Even if the government of a land recognizes all people as being equal under the law, it is reasonable that private entities will recognize people based on whatever attributes are best-suited for their needs. Some discrimination will naturally occur, but should be matter of conscience for all concerned -- the best person should be hired regardless.

Another example is with veteran's status. Veterans get certain rights that other do not get, such as medical care. This is essentially part of the agreement when they go to war for the country, that they will receive additional privileges afterwards. The problem of course is that when a separate system is created, it allows for that system to also vary in quality, not always for the better. Sometimes veterans seem to be treated worse, not better, and that makes little sense. However, it is for each society to determine what makes sense. In the U.S., treating veterans differently is something that the entire society agrees is right, so it occurs. When society doesn't want to do this, they do not. However, the issue is whether this different treatment is agreed by all, or just some. Slavery in the U.S. was agreed to by white men, same with apartheid in South Africa. When the entire population agrees, like with veterans' treatment it is acceptable. Where only some in the society have agreed, then the different treatment is unjust.

Different treatment in the narrative is not a matter of human rights but a matter of pragmatism, and there are certainly cases where pragmatic considerations guide the different treatment.…… [read more]

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