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154 Cards in this Set

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What is the difference between quantitative and qualitative research? What are examples of each kind of research?
The primary difference between quantitative and qualitative research is the type of data analyzed. Quantitative research collects and objectively analyzes data that can be represented numerically. Survey research typically yields information that can be represented and analyzed quantitatively. Qualitative research emphasizes the uncovering of subjective meanings and ways people interact in everyday life through the use of descriptive data. Participant observation is a form of field research through which the researcher participates in the routine activities of group members in an attempt to understand the nature of their interactions and the meanings that they create and attach to those interactions. Case studies involve the study of people in their natural settings.
What is a variable? What is the difference between an independent and a dependent variable?
A variable is a concept whose value changes from case to case. Height is an example of a variable. This variable changes in value from person to person. Dependent variables, also called variables of interest, are variables whose values depend upon or are believed to be caused by another variable. Experiments seek to determine what causes those changes. Independent variables, also called explanatory variables, are variables that cause or produce change in the value of a dependent variable.
What is the relationship between a sample and a population?
A population is the group of people to whom the results of specified research are applicable. Examples of populations include women, college students, and retired people. Because populations tend to be very large, researchers use samples. A sample is a subgroup of the population from which the researcher will collect data. A representative sample is a subgroup of the population that accurately reflects the composition of the population, the distribution of aggregate attributes, and the characteristics that are important for the study. When a sample is representative of a larger population, the research results derived from the sample can be applied or generalized to the entire population.
Describe the main steps in the deductive model of sociological research.
There are four main steps in the deductive model of sociological research. The first step involves selecting a topic of interest, reviewing previous research that is pertinent to the topic, and developing a specific statement or hypothesis that one is going to investigate. The second step involves selecting the most appropriate research method and determining the most appropriate population and sample to use in the research question(s) or hypotheses. The third step consists of collecting the data through the appropriate method and recording and analyzing this data. The fourth and final step consists of drawing conclusions from the research and sharing these results with others.
Describe the main methods used to conduct sociological research.
There are four main methods of sociological research. Field research is the main qualitative research method. This involves the study of social life in its natural setting. There are also two quantitative research methods. Experiments are carefully designed controlled environments in which the researcher seeks to study the effect of specific variables on the behavior or attitudes of the experiment’s subjects. Survey research uses questionnaires or interviews to collect information from people that can then be statistically analyzed. Finally, the secondary analysis of existing data involves the use of research previously done by others to try and formulate answers to one’s stated research question(s). Secondary analysis of data can be used for both qualitative and quantitative research.
What is sociology? What is the sociological perspective?
Sociology is the systematic study of human society and social interaction. The sociological perspective holds that the behavior of individuals is shaped, influenced, and constrained by the larger social context in which it occurs. The sociological perspective sees the general (the larger social context) in the particular (the individual).
What are social facts? What two social facts that reflected substantive changes in the way societies were organized contributed to the development of sociology as a discipline in the social sciences?
Social facts are patterned ways of behaving, thinking, and feeling. Social facts are generated at the individual level by behavioral and attitudinal choices. When these choices are aggregated, they can be observed at the societal level as social facts. The two main social facts that influenced the development of the field of sociology were industrialization and urbanization. The transformation of societies from agriculture-based economies to manufacturing-based economies is called industrialization. Industrialization was accompanied by and encouraged urbanization—the movement of an increasing proportion of a society’s population to or near cities. These changes stimulated the development of sociological thinking.
How did Auguste Comte and Emile Durkheim contribute to the development of the field of sociology?
Comte is credited with first coining the term sociology. He believed that by applying the scientific method to the study of society, improvements could be made in social life. Durkheim produced one of the first studies that attempted to apply the scientific method to the study of society and social relationships. His examination of suicide was a seminal illustration of how rapid social change and the variance in the degree of integration among different groups, such as men and women, significantly influenced behavioral choices.
Compare and contrast the functionalist and conflict perspectives.
The conflict and functionalist perspectives are macro-level perspectives. The functionalist perspective emphasizes social stability, social cohesion, and the survival of a society. It also seeks to understand how social phenomena contribute to stability, cohesion, and survival. Functionalists view society as a relatively stable and orderly system composed of interdependent and interrelated parts. Each part is thought to serve a function that contributes to the smooth and continued operation of society. Society is characterized by widespread agreement on values, beliefs, and expectations for behavior. Rapid social change is viewed as a strain on the social system. Not surprisingly, the conflict perspective emphasizes the role of social conflict in society. This perspective sees society as composed of different groups that have clashing self-interests and are in competition with each other for scarce social rewards, such as high-paying jobs and social power. One group tends to have disproportionate control over valuable social resources, and it uses this power and control to shape society to its advantage. Conflict is viewed as positive because it can lead to the betterment of society.
What is the difference between manifest and latent functions? Provide an example.
Manifest functions are the intended, expected, or overtly recognized consequences of an activity or institution. Latent functions are the largely unrecognized or unintended consequences of an activity or institution. For example, the manifest function of attending college is to obtain skills and knowledge to better prepare one for success in the working world. Latent functions of attending college include gaining independence from one’s parents, developing a network of contacts and friendships, and identifying potential marriage partners.
What is the difference between micro-level and macro-level orientations?
Macro-level perspectives, such as the functionalist and conflict perspectives, examine large-scale social processes and institutions that shape society as a whole. The experiences of individuals are of little interest except as representatives of particular, recognized social groups, such as gender groups and racial groups. In contrast, a micro-level orientation, such as that found in the symbolic-interactionist perspective, focuses on the shaping of the self and what people do together. In particular, micro-level orientations focus on the dynamics, meanings, and interpretations of face-to-face interactions of people and small groups.
Describe the symbolic-interactionist perspective. How does it differ from the other perspectives in sociology?
The symbolic-interactionist perspective holds that society is a continuously produced through the everyday interactions of people and groups. This perspective emphasizes the manner in which individuals create subjective meanings and interpretations of social life and how these meanings and interpretations affect social interaction. The symbolic-interactionist perspective differs from the functionalist and conflict perspectives in substantive ways. While the functionalist and conflict perspectives employ a macro-level view and examine social institutions and large-scale social processes that shape society as a whole, the symbolic-interactionist perspective employs a micro-level orientation. Such an orientation focuses on the nature and meanings of face-to-face interactions between people and small groups. Another difference between symbolic-interactionism and the two macro-level perspectives is that symbolic-interactionism finds the perceptions and meanings of everyday interaction have a greater analytical interest than objective conditions and relations.
How does culture contribute to the survival of a society?
Culture contributes to the survival of a society in many ways. Group rules and laws provide the basis for social order and civilized behavior. Shared symbols allow people to communicate with one another and enable the transmission of culture from one generation to the next. Cultural values, norms, and beliefs provide people with acceptable goals to pursue and the proper behaviors to engage in to achieve those goals. The material components of culture provide the things people need to survive, such as transportation, food, and shelter.
Distinguish between material and nonmaterial culture. Provide examples of each.
Material culture consists of tangible objects, such as automobiles, computers, and art, as well as the technology of a society. These are the objects that members of a society use, share, and create. Material culture varies from society to society. Nonmaterial culture refers to the intangible parts of a society that shape people’s behaviors.
How does the use of symbols and language shape how people interpret the world and communicate?
People communicate using symbols. The meaning of symbols varies from one society to the next. Language is a system of symbols, which can be verbal and nonverbal. The Sapir-Whorf hypothesis states that people can only interpret, understand, and interact with the world around them in terms of the language that they use.
What are values? What are the core values of people in the United States? What is a value conflict? Provide an example from the core values of the United States.
Values are general, diffuse, evaluative standards by which a society determines what is good or bad, desirable or undesirable, and right or wrong. Values justify norms. The core values of the United States include the following:

* Freedom
* Progress
* Individualism
* Material comfort
* Achievement and success
* Science
* Democracy
* Health
* Education
* Privacy
* Efficiency and practicality
* Group superiority
* Racism
* Hard work
* Equality

Value conflict exists where there is a tension or contradiction between two culturally desirable values, such as the conflict between the American values of equality and group superiority.
What are norms? Distinguish between folkways, mores, and laws.
Norms are specific behavioral rules that indicate how a person is expected to act in a particular situation. Folkways are norms of little moral consequence that consist of customs for polite behavior. Opening the door for others and raising one’s hand in class when wanting to be called upon are examples of folkways. Mores are norms of important moral significance that carry serious consequences when violated. An example of a more is telling the truth. Laws are formal norms that have been enacted by the political authority of a society. Violations of laws are punishable by formal sanctions. In the United States, these sanctions include fines, incarceration, or even execution.
What is the difference between ideal culture and real culture?
Ideal culture refers to the values a culture professes to be important, while real culture refers to the actual values embodied in the day-to-day behavior of a society’s members. For example, the core cultural value of democracy is part of ideal culture in the United States. In reality, the majority of adults choose not to vote.
What are subcultures and countercultures? Give an example of each. How does heterogeneity contribute to the development of subcultures and countercultures?
Subcultures are groups within a society who possess some cultural patterns that distinguish it and set it apart from dominant culture. Examples include gangs, homosexuals, and Rastafarians. Members of each of these groups behave in specific ways, such as stealing to achieve material success or engaging in displays of affection and committed relationships with members of one’s own gender, that are in tension with the values and norms of dominant culture. However, the other aspects of the lifestyle of subcultural members conform to the expectations of dominant culture. In contrast, countercultures reject the values and norms of dominant culture and possess a distinctive way of life that is in extensive conflict with the larger society. The hippies were a counterculture, in that they rejected the norms of monogamy and chastity before marriage and the values of material comfort and prosperity, among others. Heterogeneity contributes to the development of subcultures and countercultures. In the United States, immigration has served to introduce cultural heterogeneity.
What is the difference between popular culture and high culture?
Popular culture refers to the cultural patterns that are widespread among a society’s working and middle classes, while high culture consists of those cultural patterns that distinguish a society’s elite from the working and middle classes.
What is the relationship between ethnocentrism and culture shock?
Ethnocentrism is the tendency to evaluate other cultures by the standards and values of one’s own culture. Ethnocentrism is based upon the belief that one’s culture and way of life is superior to others. When one encounters a new culture, the tendency is to evaluate that new culture by the standards of the culture with which one is familiar. This can lead to culture shock—the disorientation one feels when exposed to a way of life very different from one’s own.
Describe the functionalist, conflict, and symbolic-interactionist perspectives on culture.
The functionalist and conflict perspectives are macro-level perspectives, while the symbolic-interactionist perspective focuses on the micro-level. The functionalist perspective states that culture, especially popular culture, forms the glue that holds a society together. The shared norms and values of a culture are the basis for social unity, group identity, and social stability. Language enables the passing of these shared norms and values from one generation to the next. The conflict perspective argues that the elite of the society promulgate the dominant norms and values of a society in order to maintain their privileged position. A key way this occurs is through the development of an ideology that justifies the way power and privilege are distributed in a society. The symbolic-interactionist perspective focuses on the way culture is created, maintained, and changed through the everyday interactions of people in the society. This view emphasizes the way values and norms can be reinterpreted and changed through interaction.
What is socialization? How is it a process?
Socialization is a lifelong process by which individuals learn the culture of their society and develop their capacities for complex thought and action.
Why is socialization important?
Socialization is important for many reasons. Sustained social interaction with others is necessary to develop our human potential. Learning the values and norms of one’s culture helps guide an individual’s behavior, goals, beliefs, and values in socially approved directions. Socialization facilitates the development of self-identity and personality.
Describe the stages of moral development and how Gilligan’s theories and Kohlberg’s theories differ between genders.
Using a sample of just boys, Kohlberg identified three stages of moral development. Moral development begins roughly at age seven. In the preconventional level, children primarily experience the world in terms of what gives them pain or pleasure, with little consideration given to the concerns of others. In the conventional level, which begins at age ten, children evaluate behavior in terms of right or wrong, with reference to the expectations of others and their culture. Not everyone reaches the postconventional stage of moral development. In this stage, behavior is evaluated in terms of abstract principles and ethical beliefs that may transcend rules and laws. Gilligan extended Kohlberg’s analysis to girls. She found that boys and girls have different means of determining right and wrong, due to the fact that they are raised differently. Boys have a justice perspective that relies upon rules and laws. Girls have a care and responsibility perspective that judges actions on the basis of personal relationships and loyalty. Boys, for example, are likely to view stealing as wrong because it breaks the law and violates common morality. In contrast, girls are more likely to ponder the motives of why someone would steal; they would likely be sympathetic toward a person who stole to buy medicine for a severely ill child.
What are the four main agents of socialization? What role do they play in the socialization process and which has the greatest impact?
There are four main agents of socialization: family, peers, school, and the mass media. Families have arguably the greatest impact on socialization, as they teach children cultural values, norms, and symbols. They also locate children in the social structures of class, religion, and ethnicity. A child’s initial self-image develops in the family. The influence of peer groups is greatest during adolescence, providing children with a sense of belonging as well as an identity distinct from their family. Schools socialize children to specific skills, knowledge, and cultural values while enlarging their social worlds beyond their specific groups. The media exposes people to current events, controversial issues, and different cultures and people.
Explain the Freudian view of how personality and self-identity develop.
Freud believed the mind was composed of three elements—the id, the ego, and the superego. The development of self-identity and personality is shaped by the interplay of these three elements. The id represents basic biological needs and demands immediate gratification. The superego represents the moral and ethical elements of personality and is composed of internalized understandings of important cultural standards of conduct. Essentially, it is one’s conscience. The ego is the conscious and reality-oriented part of the mind. It attempts to balance the id’s need for immediate gratification with the superego’s need to restrain certain behaviors. The ego channels the id into socially acceptable outlets of expression.
What is human cognition? Describe Piaget’s model of how human cognition develops
Human cognition refers to how people think. Piaget believed that the capacity for human cognition undergoes four stages of development, beginning at birth. During the sensorimotor stage, children understand their world only through their five senses. During the preoperational stage, which begins at age two, children begin to interpret the world around them using symbols and mental images. The concrete operational stage begins at age seven. In this stage, children think in terms of specific events and objects and perceive causal relationships and can look at the world from the viewpoints of others. During the formal operational stage, which begins at age twelve, the ability to think abstractly and critically develops.
Distinguish between differential socialization, anticipatory socialization, and resocialization.
Differential socialization is the process whereby different members of a society (and even of the same family) are raised differently based upon the different roles they are expected to occupy as adults. It occurs along gender and ethnic lines. It can also occur by birth order, such that first-born children may be raised differently than latter-born children. Anticipatory socialization is social learning directed at achieving a desired position, such as spouse or employee. Resocialization involves the learning of new norms, values, and attitudes. It can occur voluntarily, such as by joining the military, or involuntarily, such as being incarcerated in a prison.
According to Mead, how does the sense of self develop?
Mead believed that the sense of self developed in three stages. Children largely imitate the world around them during the preparatory stage. During the play stage (ages three to five), children learn to use symbols, which enables them to take the role of the other—to see themselves as specific other people see them. This enables children to evaluate themselves more objectively, and this ability represents the development of the part of the self that Mead termed the “me.” During the game stage, which begins when children enter school, children start to view themselves and the world from the perspective of multiple different roles. The child develops a sense of the generalized other in this stage, which is the internalization of commonly accepted cultural norms and values.
How do sociological theories of human development differ from psychological theories?
Sociological theories of human development emphasize the role of sustained social interaction with others in the socialization process. Psychological theories tend to emphasize the aspects of development internal to the individual rather than the broader social context in which development occurs.
What are achieved and ascribed statuses? How do they differ? Provide an example of each.
An achieved status is a social position that one occupies voluntarily as a result of one’s effort, talent, or choice. College student is an achieved status. An ascribed status is a social position that is inherited at birth or acquired involuntarily later in life. Gender and the status of a felon are ascribed statuses. They are both recognized social positions that people occupy, though not as a result of personal choices.
What is the relationship between social statuses and social roles?
A status is a socially recognized position that an individual occupies, while a role is the set of behavioral and attitudinal expectations that someone in that position is expected to exhibit. We occupy a status and perform a role.
What are the differences between primary and secondary groups?
Primary and secondary groups can be distinguished based upon the degree of concern and intimacy their members have for one another. Primary groups are small groups of people who share strong emotional ties and interact frequently with each other. Primary groups are means-oriented, providing members with a sense of intrinsic satisfaction as a result of interacting with each other. Secondary groups are large and impersonal groups whose members interact with each other in pursuit of a shared goal or interest. Interaction with group members generally revolves around only their shared interests and pursuits, and group members have weaker emotional ties to one another than do primary group members. Secondary groups give members a sense of purposive satisfaction—pleasure derived from making progress toward or achieving their shared goal.
Why are primary groups important for social life?
Primary groups, such as the family and peer groups, are the first groups we experience in life. These groups are important in the socialization process—they provide individuals with a sense of identity and belonging and transmit important cultural beliefs, attitudes, goals, behaviors, and values. Transmission of these important cultural components provides a basis for unity and cohesion in society.
Compare and contrast gesellschaft with gemeinschaft.
According to Tonnies, The terms gemeinschaft and gesellschaft refer to the different nature of and basis for social bonds between preindustrial and industrial societies. Gemeinschaft describes preindustrial communities, in which social bonds are based upon the primary group ties of kinship and friendship. Gesellschaft refers to industrial societies, in which social bonds are more specialized and based upon self-interest, as these diminishes the extent of shared values.
How did Durkheim believe that preindustrial and industrial societies differed?
Durkheim believed that primary groups and their strong social bonds were characteristic of preindustrial societies. He viewed secondary groups and their correspondingly weaker social bonds as characteristic of industrial societies. He used the term mechanical solidarity to describe the social bonds of preindustrial societies, in which face-to-face, intimate relationships with other people produced a strong sense of similarity and likeness based upon shared values and morals, and a minimal division of labor. Organic solidarity is the term used to describe the social bonds characteristic of industrial societies, which have extensive divisions of labor and specialization and a high degree of mutual interdependence between people. He believed the erosion of primary groups in modern society occurred as a result of increased social and geographic mobility as well as the increased pace of social change that diminished the importance of tradition, resulting in anomie—a condition in which society provides little moral or behavioral guidance to individuals.
What are formal organizations? What are the main types of formal organizations?
Formal organizations are large, highly structured groups organized to efficiently achieve specific social goals. There are three main types. Normative organizations, or voluntary associations, are groups that people join by choice in pursuit of a goal, cause, or value they believe to be worthwhile and whose pursuit does not directly enable their personal material enrichment. Utilitarian organizations (such as the workplace) are also joined voluntarily, but for the pursuit of some direct, personal material reward. In contrast, coercive organizations, such as a prison, are formal organizations of which a person involuntarily becomes a member.
Describe a bureaucracy, its main components, and its shortcomings
A bureaucracy is a type of formal organization that is widespread in modern society; Weber believed it was the most appropriate organizational form for capitalist societies. There are five key characteristics of bureaucracies. These include the specialization of tasks; a hierarchy of offices and authority; a system of written rules and regulations that govern the functioning of the organization; the hiring and promotion of workers based upon technical proficiency and not upon personal contacts; and impersonality. In their ideal form, bureaucracies are designed to quickly, efficiently, and predictably achieve their designated goals. Michels pointed out that the iron law of oligarchy whereby a small group of people comes to dominate a bureaucratic organization. This group might engage in goal displacement, subordinating the stated goals of the organization to the goal of the continued survival of the organization or of the incumbent oligarchy.
Distinguish between in-groups, out-groups, and reference groups.
An in-group is a group that commands loyalty and respect, typically from its members. A peer group and the military are examples of in-groups. An out-group is scorned and ridiculed; it is a group with which one feels a sense of competitiveness, opposition, and disgust. Reference groups are groups taken as a frame of reference for making evaluations and decisions about others and ourselves.
What are the two different types of leadership? What three styles of leadership exist?
Leadership is found in both primary and secondary groups. There are two main types of leadership. Expressive leadership is concerned with the well-being and emotional support of the group members. Instrumental leadership is primarily concerned with the completion of tasks and attainment of goals. There are three main leadership styles. Laissez-faire leaders are minimally involved in decision making, allowing group members to make decisions largely on their own. In contrast, authoritarian leaders make major decisions themselves and assign tasks to members. Democratic leaders are expressive leaders who encourage group deliberation and involvement in decision making. Effective leaders frequently employ each style and type of leadership, depending upon the situation, though most leaders have a dominant leadership type and style.
Explain what deviance is and why sociologists argue that deviance is relative. Provide an example.
Deviance is any behavior, condition, attitude, or belief that violates cultural norms. Sociologists point out that deviance only exists in relationship to cultural norms that describe what is socially acceptable and unacceptable. Because cultural norms change over time and vary between societies, deviance is said to be relative—it exists only in comparison to the norms that exist at a given time in a given society. For example, marijuana was legal in the United States until 1937. People who used marijuana before then were not considered to be deviants, while people who use marijuana today receive that label.
Why do functionalists argue that deviance serves socially useful purposes?
The functionalist perspective argues that though deviance involves a violation of social norms, the violation of norms serves four useful purposes. Deviance helps to sustain and define the cultural norms of a society. By responding to deviance, society also clarifies the boundaries between right and wrong, good and bad. Punishing deviance also reinforces cultural norms and promotes a sense of shared commitment and unity among group or societal members. Finally, the breaking of rules can promote social change by expanding the moral boundaries of the group or society.
What is strain theory? How does it account for deviance?
Developed by Robert Merton, strain theory states that every society has socially approved goals that members are encouraged to strive for through socially approved means. In the United States, the approved goal is material success and the approved way to achieve it is through education and hard work. Strain is experienced when the approved goals cannot be achieved through the approved means. Deviance is the result of blocked or rejected means; those labeled deviant do not follow the culturally acceptable norms. The most common form of deviance is what Merton labeled “innovation”; the goals are accepted, but the means to attain them are blocked. People then use illegal or illegitimate means, such as crime, to attain the goal of material success.
How does control theory explain deviance?
Control theory focuses on the social factors that constrain people from engaging in deviance. People conform to accepted norms—they are constrained from deviance— when their social bonds are strong. People with weak social bonds are more likely to be deviant. There are four types of bonds. Strong attachments to others encourage conformity; weak attachments enable deviance. Strong commitments to legitimate means and accepted norms encourage conformity; weak commitments enable deviance. A high degree of involvement in conventional activities limits the opportunities to engage in deviance. Finally, the stronger a person’s beliefs are in the appropriateness of conventional norms, the less likely they are to engage in deviance.
Distinguish between primary and secondary deviance. What theory are these concepts associated with?
The concepts of primary and secondary deviance are associated with labeling theory. This theory views deviance as a socially constructed process. Primary deviance is the first act (or acts) of deviance that results in someone being labeled—or stigmatized—as a deviant. Secondary deviance is subsequent deviance that is a result of accepting the label and identity of deviant.
What is social control? How is it implemented?
Social control involves collective attempts to ensure conformity to societal or group norms. Control is attempted in two ways. The most common form of social control is informal social control. This form of social control is a byproduct of everyday interactions. Gossip, stares, and reprimands are all forms of informal social control. Formal social control involves agents of society, such as the police and the courts, in the apprehension and punishment of people believed to have broken laws.
Describe the six basic types of crime and give an example of each.
Crime involves the violation of formal norms called laws. Conventional (or street) crime refers to all violent crimes and certain types of vice and property crimes. Murder is a conventional crime. White-collar crime is the breaking of law by people of high social position in the course of their employment. Insider trading is an example of white-collar crime. Corporate crime refers to illegal activities engaged in by people acting on behalf of a corporation. Bid-rigging is an example of corporate crime. Organized crime is criminal activity engaged in for profit by an organized group, such as a gang. International arms smuggling is an organized crime. Political crime refers to illegal or unethical activities engaged in by members of the government or by people seeking to overthrow the government. An example of political crime is unauthorized eavesdropping by the government on its political adversaries. Finally, hate crimes are crimes against a person or group that are motivated by bias. Lynching, cross burning, and gay bashing are examples of hate crimes
How does the conflict perspective explain deviance?
The conflict perspective addresses why activities or conditions are defined as deviant rather than addressing the motivations of people engaging in deviance. This perspective argues that people with political and economic power are likely to define any type of behavior that threatens their interests and privilege as deviant.
What is punishment? What are the different motivations for punishment?
Punishment consists of attempts to extinguish or stop undesirable behavior. It frequently involves actions to deprive a person of things of value because of something the person is believed to have done. The four main motives for punishment are retribution, deterrence, rehabilitation, and societal protection. Retribution is the oldest motive and involves an attempt by society to exact suffering upon a criminal proportional to the suffering the criminal caused. Deterrence seeks to punish people in order to discourage future criminal actions. Rehabilitation involves the attempt to reform and resocialize people in an attempt to prevent their future engagement in crime. Societal protection involves the removal of a person from society in order to render them incapable of committing crimes for a period of time.
Explain the functionalist perspective on social stratification.
The functionalist perspective, especially as articulated in the Davis-Moore thesis, focuses on the inequality of rewards (such as pay and benefits) between different jobs and positions in society. This perspective argues that unequal rewards motivate talented people to strive to fill the most important positions in society. Because the functionally important positions require extensive training and specialized skills, the promise of greater rewards motivates qualified people to acquire these skills and training.
What is the difference between open and closed systems of stratification? Provide an example of each type of system. What type of system is characteristic of the United States today?
The difference between open and closed systems of stratification is the presence of social mobility (movement between positions in a stratification system). Closed systems, such as slave and caste systems, are characterized by the absence of social mobility. Statuses in closed systems are ascribed; one inherits their position at birth. Open systems, specifically class systems, are characterized by the opportunity for mobility and achieved statuses, though ascribed factors such as ethnicity and gender still influence the attainment of positions. The stratification system in the United States is a class system, which is the only open form of stratification systems.
What is social mobility? What factors influence social mobility? How is social mobility measured?
Social mobility is movement between positions in a stratification hierarchy. Such movement occurs as the result of two factors. The first is individual-level factors, such as educational credentials, skills, and experience. Ascribed individual characteristics such as gender and ethnicity also influence mobility. The second factor is structural social mobility, which accounts for the majority of mobility. This causes movement between positions as a result in changes in the basis of the economy and underlying distribution of jobs. Mobility is measured in two ways. Intragenerational mobility is movement between positions that occurs during the lifetime of an individual. Intergenerational mobility is movement experienced by family members from one generation to the next. There is more intergenerational mobility than intragenerational, because the period of time over which mobility is measured is longer (multiple generations versus a single generation).
According to Marx, how is class membership determined?
Marx believed that economic relationships were the foundation of all other relationships in a society. Accordingly, Marx believed that class position was determined by one’s relationship to the productive economic resources in a society, or what he termed the means of production. He labeled the people that owned these resources the bourgeoisie. He called those that owned only their ability to labor, which they sold to the bourgeoisie in exchange for wages, the proletariat. These were the only two classes that Marx believed existed in a capitalist society.
What are the three dimensions of stratification that Weber identified?
Weber extended Marx’s analysis of stratification. He argued that stratification was multidimensional rather than one-dimensional, as proposed by Marx. A person’s position or status in society was the result of the interplay of three factors: power, prestige, and property. By property, Weber meant the economic resources a person owned or controlled. Prestige refers to the social honor and respect an individual is accorded by others, often as a result of their occupation, kinship ties, and education. Power is the ability to get one’s way despite the resistance of others.
Describe the difference between status consistency and status inconsistency.
The concepts of status consistency and status inconsistency are derived from Weber’s multidimensional analysis of how status is determined in a stratification system. Weber identified three factors that shaped a person’s position in society: class, party, and status. He envisioned each as a continuum. Status consistency exists when one occupies comparable positions in each of the three continuums. Status inconsistency exists when a person occupies divergent positions in each of the three continuums. Status inconsistency is characteristic of American society.
How many social classes does the Weberian model identify in the United States? List the largest and the smallest classes.
There are six social classes in the United States: the upper class, the upper-middle class, the lower-middle class, the working class, the working poor, and the underclass. The lower-middle and working classes are the two largest classes—each containing about 30 percent of the population. The upper class is the smallest class—about 3 to 5 percent of the population.
What is the difference between income and wealth? Is there more income or wealth inequality in the United States?
Income and wealth are two different measures of economic inequality. Income represents cash flow into a household over a period of time, include wages, rents, alimony, and dividends. Wealth represents the net worth of assets, such as homes, cars, and stocks, at a point in time. Inequality of wealth is more pronounced than inequality of income. The top 20 percent of households in the United States received 50 percent of all income earned in the country, but they own 80 percent of all wealth.
How does economic inequality impact life chances?
Life chances are correlated with a person’s position in the social class hierarchy. As one moves down the class hierarchy, life expectancy and access to quality health care and prenatal care all decrease; infant mortality increases. Educational opportunities are also correlated with class position. Children born to more privileged parents are more likely to attend well-funded schools with academically enriched curriculums. Likewise, children born to poorer parents are less likely to attend college than comparably talented children of privileged parents. The reduced life chances experienced by the less-well-to-do diminish the quality of life experienced.
Distinguish between the three different ways poverty can be measured.
Poverty can be conceptualized and measured in three different ways. Official poverty is determined by the government based upon the income believed needed to live at merely a subsistence level. Absolute poverty exists when people are unable to secure the most basic resources necessary to sustain life from one day to the next. Relative poverty is poverty that exists in relation to some comparison group or standard. In the United States, relative poverty refers to people who may possess the resources necessary to live from day to day, but who lack the resources necessary to enjoy the average standard of living in a society.
What is the feminization of poverty?
The feminization of poverty refers to the trend during the last thirty years for women to be increasingly overrepresented among the poor, relative to men. Currently, over 60 percent of all poor adults are female. Several factors contribute to this trend. Divorce has become more socially acceptable in the United States. However, because women on average earn 60 to 70 percent of what men earn, women are more likely to experience economic hardship when divorce occurs (especially when alimony is difficult to secure). Moreover, if children are involved, women are more likely to gain custody because of dominant cultural norms. This added expense, combined with the likelihood that a woman is paid less than a man, contributes to the growing presence of women among the poor.
Of which ethnic or racial group are most poor people members?
Most poor people are white. Almost half (46 percent) of all people defined as officially poor are whites. However, a lower proportion of whites live in poverty than the proportion of any other ethnic or racial group. The reason a poor person is most likely to be white, rather than of some other ethnic group, is that whites represent roughly three-quarters of the population in the United States.
Name the ethnic or racial group(s) with the greatest proportion of members living in poverty.
Though most poor people are Caucasian, less than 8 percent of all Caucasians are officially classified as poor. Native Americans have the highest poverty rate of any ethnic group in the United States with an official poverty rate in 1999 of 25.9 percent. Between these extremes, 10.7 percent of Asian Americans, 22.8 percent of all Hispanics, and 23.6 percent of all African Americans are officially poor. To state it differently, Hispanics, African Americans, and Native Americans are three times more likely than Caucasians to live in poverty.
What are the three main sources of poverty?
Poverty may be related to several factors. One is the type of jobs that poor people work at. Most poor people work—they simply work at unstable jobs that pay low wages. A second factor is deindustrialization. This is the process by which the higher-paying manufacturing jobs in which middle- and lower-skilled people used to work are moved to countries where the wages are lower. These jobs have been replaced by lower-paying jobs, mainly in the service sector of the economy. Finally, job deskilling contributes to poverty. Job deskilling is the process by which the skills and proficiencies necessary to do a job are reduced, often through automation and computerization, accompanied by a corresponding reduction in wages.
What is global stratification?
Global stratification refers to the unequal distribution of wealth, power, prestige, and life chances between the different nations of the earth.
Describe the difficulties of studying global stratification in historical terms.
Early attempts to study global stratification used the three worlds approach. This approach intermingled Cold War politics with the assessment of a country’s level of development. First world countries were not just developed countries whose citizens enjoyed a relatively high standard of living; they also had political democracies and capitalist economies. Second world nations were those with moderate levels of development and standards of living and socialist economic and political systems. Third world countries were those whose economies remained largely based on agriculture and whose standards of living were heterogeneous. Many of these countries were governed by autocratic dictatorships. The end of the Cold War, combined with the recognition of the heterogeneity found among third world countries, stimulated the development of new approaches to studying global inequality.
What are the characteristics of high-income, medium-income, and low-income countries?
The World Bank, which specializes in providing economic aid to low- and middle-income countries, breaks the world’s countries into three different categories based upon a country’s GNP. High-income countries, such as the United States and the western European nations, are those that have a GNP in excess of $9,655 U.S. dollars per capita. Middle-income countries are those with a GNP between $785 and $9,655 U.S. dollars per capita. These include many of the countries in Latin America, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe. Low-income countries are those with GNPs below $785 U.S. dollars per capita. These include much of Africa and Asia. The majority of the world’s population lives in low-income countries.
How does global inequality influence the life chances of people in different countries?
The uneven distribution of resources, such as wealth and power, between different countries leads to widely varying life chances among the people of the world. Poverty, especially absolute poverty, is more prevalent and concentrated among the low- and middle-income countries. This results in severely circumscribed life chances among these countries’ citizens. Moreover, infant mortality is greater and life expectancy is shorter among the lower-income countries, and hunger, malnutrition, and inadequate health care are far more common. Women are more likely to be exploited in low-income countries, and literacy rates tend to be very low relative to high-income countries.
Summarize modernization theory and its shortcomings. With which major sociological perspective is it associated?
Modernization theory is associated with the functionalist perspective in sociology. Modernization theory explains global inequality in terms of the cultural and technological differences between countries. It identifies four stages in the modernization process: the traditional stage, the take-off stage, the technological maturity stage, and the high mass consumption stage. In the first stage, societies remain largely unchanged, but the pull of tradition and custom is gradually weakened by new technological discoveries that facilitate economic growth. The second stage is characterized by rapid economic growth, accompanied by a growing belief in individualism, competition, and achievement. Further technological advancement, as well as investment in new industries and further acceptance of the culture of high-income nations, characterizes the stage of technological maturity. During the final stage, citizens begin enjoying a high standard of living. Critics of this approach argue it is Eurocentric because it claims that countries must adopt the core cultural components of high-income countries (such as the United States) in order to develop. Critics also charge that modernization theory arbitrarily labels less-developed countries as backwards.
Discuss dependency theory and how it accounts for global inequality.
Dependency theory argues that global inequality is the result of higher-income countries exploiting lower-income ones. Lower-income countries are viewed as trapped in a cycle of dependency upon higher-income countries for capital and export markets for raw materials, much the way colonial territories were exploited by wealthier countries. This dependency limits the ability of lower-income countries to pursue economic self-determination. The poverty and immiseration experienced by citizens of lower-income countries is caused by their exploitation by higher-income countries; it isn’t caused by their lack of economic development. Exploitation, rather than underdevelopment, is seen as the cause of global inequality.
How does world systems theory differ from dependency theory?
World systems theory argues that global inequality is the result of the investment decisions of core or high-income nations and not as the result of exploitation. This theory conceives of a global hierarchy of nations based upon levels of industrialization, urbanization, and standards of living. Core nations are dominant capitalist countries with a high level of urbanization and industrialization that exert disproportionate influence over world trade and economic agreements. Semiperipheral nations are those that are less developed than core nations but more advanced than the peripheral nations. Semiperipheral nations exploit the resources and peoples of peripheral nations, while they themselves are exploited by the core nations. Peripheral nations have uneven patterns of urbanization and industrialization and are dependent upon core nations for capital.
With which major sociological perspective are both dependency theory and world systems theory associated?
Both dependency theory and world systems theory are associated with the conflict perspective. The conflict perspective views one group, or in this case set of countries, as dominant. The dominant group or countries use their superior power (economic, military, political) and superior economic resources to shape and influence global economic relations to best serve the interests of the dominant nations. While the mechanisms of domination vary between dependency and world systems theory, both view the high-income countries as dominant players in the global economic system. They both also view these dominant countries as using their relative superior power and influence to structure global economic relations to disproportionately benefit the dominant countries.
What is the difference between majority and minority groups?
A minority group is not necessarily one that is numerically smaller than other groups. Sociologically speaking, a minority group is any group that is assigned an inferior status in society and possesses less than its proportionate share of social resources, such as wealth, status, and power. The basic characteristic of a minority group is powerlessness. In contrast, a majority group may be smaller in numbers, but is a group that possesses more than its proportionate share of valuable social resources.
Why is it said that race is a socially constructed category?
Race is said to be a socially constructed category because the important physical traits thought to characterize a racial group are socially defined and vary between societies.
Describe the properties of minority groups that distinguish them from the majority group.
The main properties of minority groups include the following:

* Persons are treated unequally.
* Unfavorable treatment fosters a distinctive group identity based upon group members’ awareness of themselves as a minority group.
* Membership in minority groups is ascribed or inherited (usually at birth) and is not a status voluntarily assumed.
* Minority groups possess cultural and/or physical characteristics that are used to distinguish them from the dominant group.
* Minority group members tend to practice in-group marriage (endogamy).
What is prejudice? How is it different from discrimination?
Prejudice is a negative attitude about an entire category of people, while discrimination involves negative actions toward minority group members. Prejudice is based upon rigid and irrational generalizations and beliefs about an entire category of people (known as stereotypes).
In what ways do sociologists explain prejudice?
Sociologists explain prejudice in three ways. Cultural theories of prejudice emphasize that prejudice is an attitude learned through socialization. People learn which characteristics are socially defined as desirable and undesirable and that some groups are believed to possess more undesirable characteristics than others. It is further learned that one should keep more social distance from those groups believed to disproportionately possess undesirable traits. The frustration-aggression hypothesis states that prejudice is more likely to be found in and expressed by people who are frustrated with their inability to attain highly desired goals. This frustration leads some people to try and blame some other person or group for their failures. The frustrated person then begins to act prejudicially and aggressively towards members of the identified group. Theodor Adorno explained prejudice as a personality trait found in certain individuals, arguing that highly prejudiced people possess an authoritarian personality. Such a personality is characterized by rigid conformity to conventional expectations, submissiveness or obedience to authority, insecurity and intolerance, and stereotypical thinking. Such personalities are acquired through socialization within a family of dominating and cold parents who show little love and use physical punishment.
What is institutional discrimination? How does it differ from individual discrimination?
Institutional discrimination refers to the arrangements or practices in social institutions and their related organizations that tend to favor one ethnic, racial, or gender group over others. It isn’t necessarily the result of conscious intent; rather, it simply arises from the normal, day-to-day functioning of society.
Summarize the assimilationist and pluralist views on ethnic and race relations.
There are two main functionalist views on race and ethnic relations. Both models view ethnic and racial differences as ultimately contributing to the stability of a society, though the mechanisms differ. The assimilation model argues that the deprivation of minority group members encourages them to adopt the cultural characteristics of the dominant group. This is called cultural assimilation, and it serves to decrease the social distance between the subordinate and dominant group, often at the expense of the loss of the culture of origin of the subordinate group. Structural assimilation occurs when members of the dominant group extend acceptance to subordinate group members in everyday interactions. The second functionalist view is ethnic pluralism. This model argues that the equitable coexistence of a variety of different ethnic and racial groups within one society, involving the relatively proportional possession of social resources, contributes to social stability. However, pluralism can lead to an increase in social distance between groups if the cultural differences are viewed as barriers to social interaction.
Which conflict models of race and ethnic relations view the experience of African Americans as distinctly unique? Why?
There are four conflict models of race and ethnic relations. Two of them view the experience of African Americans as uniquely different from the experience of other minority groups: the caste perspective and the colonial imperialism model. The caste perspective argues that racial and ethnic inequality is a permanent feature of society and the experience of African Americans is unique because their mistreatment was legally sanctioned, both under slavery and the caste-like Jim Crow system. The stereotypes necessary to justify such harsh discrimination have become deeply embedded in the cultural beliefs and attitudes of dominant American culture, helping to maintain the distinctive experience of African Americans. The internal colonialism model is the other perspective that argues the experience of African Americans is uniquely different. From this view, however, the uniqueness derives from the forcible economic and political repression of African Americans by the dominant group, which lingers to this day.
Distinguish between the class model of race and ethnic relations and the split labor market model.
The class perspective on racial and ethnic inequality emphasizes the role of the capitalist class in the exploitation of minority groups. It is the profit motive and greed, not racial hatred and prejudice, that accounts for the continued exploitation of minority groups. African Americans, as well as other minority groups, represented cheap labor that could be used to create profit and wealth. The split labor market perspective extends the class model by noting that it is not just the capitalist class that benefits from the exploitation of ethnic and racial groups; white workers as a class also benefit from this exploitation and subjugation. From this perspective, the economy is divided into two segments. The primary sector contains the higher paying and more secure jobs mainly occupied by white workers. The secondary sector is composed of lower paying, less stable jobs that are taken mainly by ethnic and racial minorities. To restrict access to the primary sector jobs, whites use discrimination.
Which ethnic/racial group in the United States is considered the charter group?
A charter group is the group that sets the cultural tone of a society and establishes its cultural foundations. WASPs (White Anglo-Saxon Protestants) made up the charter group in the United States.
What is the difference between sex and gender?`
Sex refers to the biological and anatomical differences between males and females. These differences are constant over time and between societies, while the meaning of gender varies over time and within societies. Gender refers to the culturally constructed meanings, behaviors, and attitudes associated with what it means to be male or female in a given society.
What are gender roles? Provide some examples of the male and female gender roles.
Gender roles are the behaviors, attitudes, and activities that are socially defined as appropriate for each sex to exhibit. Men are expected to present themselves in one manner, and women are expected to act in a different manner. For instance, men are expected to be strong, rational, aggressive, independent, competitive, and insensitive. Women, in contrast, traditionally have been expected to be weak, emotional, receptive, dependent, cooperative, and emotional.
What is the difference between patriarchy and matriarchy? Which is more common?
Patriarchy is a form of social organization in which men dominate women through control of the economic, cultural, and political institutions of a society. In contrast, matriarchies are a form of social organization in which women dominate men through control of the major social institutions. Patriarchies are much more common historically than matriarchies. The United States is largely a patriarchal society.
What is the relationship between differential socialization and gender roles?
There are different gender roles for men and women. These different roles are learned through socialization. In this context, differential socialization refers to the process of raising boys and girls differently because of the different roles each is expected to play as an adult. Families tend to encourage more aggressive behavior in boys. Girls receive different types of toys and clothing than do boys. Peers transmit gender stereotypes to girls and boys about the way each is expected to behave. Schools also treat boys and girls differently, devoting more time, energy, and attention to boys than to girls. This reinforces the stereotype that boys are more important than girls. The media transmit different images about what it means to be male and female, frequently portraying men in positions of dominance and women in positions of submissiveness. The different messages that boys and girls receive from these agents of socialization serve to inculcate and reinforce the socially expected gender roles.
Why do sociologists consider women to be a minority group?
A minority group is any group that receives less than its proportionate share of valuable social resources, such as good jobs, leisure time, and fair pay. Sociologists consider women to be a minority group for several reasons. First, reflective of the patriarchal nature of social organization, men treat women unequally. Second, women experience several gaps in the way they are treated relative to the way men are treated. The wage gap refers to the fact that women receive less pay then men, earning approximately 75 percent of what men do for similar work. Women also experience a leisure gap. Even though most men and women now work full-time outside the home, women are expected to fulfill the traditional role of homemaker when she returns home, often while the husbands relax. Women do more of the domestic chores than men. Women also experience occupational sex segregation into subordinate jobs, such as secretary, nurse, and teacher, as compared to executive, doctor, and principal. All of these forms of unequal treatment lead sociologists to consider women a minority group.
How does the functionalist perspective account for the existence of gender inequality?
A minority group is any group that receives less than its proportionate share of valuable social resources, such as good jobs, leisure time, and fair pay. Sociologists consider women to be a minority group for several reasons. First, reflective of the patriarchal nature of social organization, men treat women unequally. Second, women experience several gaps in the way they are treated relative to the way men are treated. The wage gap refers to the fact that women receive less pay then men, earning approximately 75 percent of what men do for similar work. Women also experience a leisure gap. Even though most men and women now work full-time outside the home, women are expected to fulfill the traditional role of homemaker when they return home, often while the husbands relax. Women do more of the domestic chores than men. Women also experience occupational sex segregation into subordinate jobs, such as secretary, nurse, and teacher, as compared to executive, doctor, and principal. All of these forms of unequal treatment lead sociologists to consider women a minority group.
How does the conflict perspective explain gender inequality?
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How does the conflict perspective explain gender inequality?
What is feminism? Describe the types of feminist approaches toward and solutions for gender inequality.
Feminism is the belief that men and women are equal and should be treated equally. There are three ways in which feminism explains gender inequality. Liberal feminists accept the organization of society but argue that women should be accorded equal opportunity, equal treatment, and reproductive freedom. Socialist feminists believe that gender inequality is a result of capitalist forms of economic organization. A socialist revolution is believed necessary to free women from patriarchal subordination. Radical feminists believe that liberal and socialist feminists do not go far enough to eradicate gender inequality. In this view, gender inequality is rooted in the very notion of gender. To eliminate such inequality, the notion of gender itself must be eliminated. Doing this would involve the use of new reproductive technologies that would free women from the childbearing role. This would eliminate the basis for gender distinctions and would hence lead to an end of male domination.
What is gerontology? Why is the study of gerontology probably more important today than it was one hundred years ago?
Gerontology is the study of the elderly and of aging. It is more important to study gerontology today and to understand the aging process and how it affects people because the percentage of people aged sixty-five or over is three times greater today than it was one hundred years ago.
What is age stratification? Provide examples of age stratification in American society.
Age stratification refers to the unequal distribution of wealth, power, and prestige at different stages of the life course. In the United States, the elderly are no longer respected the way they were one hundred years ago. Today, the prestige one receives and the quality of one’s life both decline after age sixty-five. American culture now places a premium on youth and youthfulness. Older people are removed from positions of authority when they retire. This is most prevalent in business as opposed to politics. They also become more socially isolated when they retire; their spouses die, their children move away, and their same-age peers also are also experiencing declining health and abilities. Additionally, the likelihood of being poor increases after age fifty-five. Unequal treatment by age is not confined just to the elderly. Young people also experience unequal access to social resources. They are not allowed to legally drive until age sixteen, they cannot vote until age eighteen, and they cannot legally drink alcohol until age twenty-one. In addition, access to the best jobs is largely restricted until the mid-twenties or beyond.
Compare and contrast families in preindustrial and industrial societies.
Preindustrial families were characterized by extended family configurations that were patriarchal and practiced patrilineal descent. Patriarchal families are those in which authority resides in the eldest male (usually the father) who holds power over other family members. Patrilineal descent is the practice of tracing kinship and passing along inheritance through men. Families in industrial societies are more likely to be nuclear families that are more egalitarian (those in which both partners share authority and power equally) and practice bilateral descent (the practice of tracing kinship and passing along inheritance through both men and women). Nuclear families are smaller than extended families in that they contain only one or two parents and their dependent children.
Explain the difference between a family of orientation and a family of procreation.
The family of orientation is the family into which one is born or adopted and socialized. The family of procreation is a family that one forms, often with another adult, by having or adopting children. One may not choose one’s family of orientation, but one usually chooses one’s family of procreation.
In a matriarchal society, what patterns of residence, authority, and kinship would exist?
A matriarchal society is a form of social organization in which women dominate men as a result of their control of key social institutions. In a matriarchal society, one would expect to find patterns of residence where the family lives near the wife’s parents (matrilocality). Authority and power would be concentrated in the eldest female in the family, usually the mother. This is termed a matriarchal family. Finally, descent would likely be traced matrilineally (tracing kinship through women).
In a patriarchal society, what patterns of residence, authority, and kinship would exist?
A patriarchy is a form of social organization in which men dominate women through control of key social institutions, such as the economy, politics, and education. In patriarchal societies, one would expect to find patriarchal families in which authority resides in the eldest male (usually the father) who holds power over other family members. These families would practice patrilineal descent, which is the tracing of kinship and the passing along of inheritance through men. One might also expect to find patterns of residence where the family lives near the husband’s parents (patrilocality).
What is the difference between endogamy and exogamy? Give an example of each.
Exogamy is the practice of marriage outside of a group or social category. Most commonly, this means marrying someone outside one’s immediate family or kinship network. Endogamy is the practice of marriage within a group or social category. Frequently, this means marrying someone of the same religion, social class, or racial or ethnic group.
In an egalitarian society, what patterns of residence, authority, and kinship might one find?
In an egalitarian society (in which men and women are treated equally), bilateral descent and egalitarian families would be expected. Bilateral descent is the practice of tracing kinship through both men and women. Egalitarian families are those in which both partners share authority and power equally.
According to the functionalist perspective, what functions does the family serve?
According to the functionalist perspective, the family performs four functions necessary for social stability and survival. The first is socialization of children. The family is where children first learn patterns of their culture and develop psychologically. A second function of the family is sexual regulation. The incest taboo is a cultural norm that forbids sexual relations and marriage between certain family members, such as fathers and daughters. This taboo and the obligations of marriage direct that sexual activity can only occur between certain members of the family. Families also affect social placement. They confer upon children statuses (positions) in terms of race, ethnicity, religion, social class, and gender. Finally, families provide emotional support, economic support, and care to their members.
How does the conflict perspective assess the role of the family in society?
The conflict perspective on the family views the family as a social institution fundamental to the perpetuation of social inequality. Patriarchy and patrilineal descent are seen as contributing to the subordination of women, limiting their authority and access to economic resources. Endogamy directs people to marry within their social class and race or ethnic group. Endogamy is thus seen as serving to perpetuate the racial and ethnic hierarchy, as well as to perpetuate the class hierarchy. The class hierarchy is also maintained by the practice of handing down wealth and property within the family.
What is divorce? What factors increase the likelihood of divorce?
Divorce is the process of dissolving a marriage. Several factors contribute to this failure. Often, romantic love (and even sexual attraction) diminishes after marriage. Some choose to pursue the excitement of a new relationship over a relationship in which the initial excitement of romantic love has diminished. Divorce is also more common because the stigma once attached to divorce has lessened. The cultural emphasis in the United States on individualism also serves to undermine marriage by encouraging people to focus on their needs rather than the needs of their partner. The pressures, strains, and conflicts that accompany dual income marriages—both spouses work outside the home—have also contributed to the frequency of divorce. Working outside the home leaves less time and energy for family life. Working outside the home also reduces female dependence upon her male spouse for economic support, thereby reducing the need to remain in unsatisfying marriages. Divorce is currently most common among younger couples who married after a brief courtship and who experience economic hardship. It is also more common among dual career families and among people who have divorced previously.
Distinguish between the sacred and the profane. What is the relationship between faith and the sacred?
The profane is the secular realm of ordinary, mundane, everyday life. The sacred, in contrast, involves the realm of the supernatural and the extraordinary aspects of life that inspire awe and reverence in people. Because the realm of the sacred involves the supernatural, the existence of faith is necessitated. Faith is the acceptance of beliefs based upon conviction rather than scientific evidence. A belief in a god is rooted in faith and not upon scientific evidence.
How is theism different from transcendent idealism?
Theism refers to religions, such as Christianity, that believe in one or more gods. Not all religions, however, believe in a god or gods.

Transcendent idealism refers to religions and systems of belief that do not posit the existence of one or more gods; instead, they emphasize the existence of sacred principles of conduct and belief, such as compassion and truth.
What is religion? What is the relationship between secularization and religion?
How does religion contribute to the functioning of society?
Describe the conflict perspective on religion.
The conflict perspective on religion does not view religion as a positive influence in society. Instead, this perspective examines the manner in which religion serves to legitimize and promote social inequality in a country. Conflict theorists point out that most religions are patriarchal in organization and encourage the submission of women to the will of men. This maintains the gender hierarchy. In addition, the enslavement of Africans and the persecution of Native Americans were legitimated by the argument that members of those groups were uncivilized heathens, because they didn’t believe in the Christian conception of God. Finally, the belief in an afterlife, and that rewards come in that afterlife, encourages people to accept their position in this world. This helps to maintain the class hierarchy.
How does the symbolic-interactionist perspective analyze religion?
The symbolic-interactionist perspective on religion emphasizes how religious practices and beliefs are socially constructed and reinterpreted through everyday interaction. This perspective also emphasizes the meanings that people attribute to religion and religious practices and symbols in their daily lives. Rituals, such as daily prayer, the reading of religious text, and celebrating religious holidays, serve to maintain the boundary between the sacred and the profane, while also serving as a source of meaning for the practitioners. Religion and its norms serve as a reference group for people, allowing them to compare their everyday behavior to that expected by their religion. The proliferation of the “WWJD” (What would Jesus do?) bumper stickers and bracelets illustrate how religion can operate as a reference group.
What is a church? What is a sect? How do churches and sects differ from each other? What is the relationship between the two?
Why do people from the lower classes tend to affiliate with sects, while people from the upper classes tend to affiliate with churches?
What is a cult?
A cult is a religious organization that is outside the dominant religious tradition of a society. For instance, Buddhism, Scientology, and the Unification Church would all be considered cults in the United States. Most religions begin as cults.
What is the difference between education and schooling?
Education is a social institution that provides members of a society with important knowledge of their culture and transmits basic job skills. Schooling is formalized education and the transmission of knowledge and skills under the guidance of specially trained teachers. The key difference is that schooling is the formalized and specialized delivery of knowledge and skills, whereas education can occur anywhere—in the family, from the media, in church, and from our peers, among others.
What are the manifest functions of education?
There are four manifest functions (intended and recognized consequences) of education. Education and schools are agents of socialization from which children learn social and political history, citizenship skills, and job competencies. Schools also socialize children through transmission of core cultural values and norms such as the work ethic and individual responsibility. This helps to integrate people into the dominant culture. A second manifest function is social placement. Education prepares people for placement into socially recognized and approved roles. The third manifest function of schools is social control. By teaching core values like respect for authority, obedience, and discipline, schools shape and constrain the range of behavior that is acceptable. Finally, schools are sources of cultural innovation and change. Schools investigate new forms of knowledge and new ways of learning and knowing that contribute to the further development of society.
What are the latent functions of education?
There are four latent functions (largely unrecognized and unintended consequences) of education. The first is the creation of networks of relationships. In school, we meet people who may become our spouse or may be able to help us at some later time with jobs, housing, advice, and other assistance. A second latent function is to restrict one’s engagement in certain activities. Compulsory education keeps kids from working full-time, keeps them off the streets, and prevents them from engaging in illegal activities. With the growing number of single-parent households and dual-income families, a third latent function of schools is child care. Finally, because children learn information at school that may be in tension with what they have been taught at home, schools contribute to the creation of a generation gap.
How does schooling contribute to the reproduction of the class structure?
Schooling contributes to the reproduction of the class hierarchy in four ways: cultural capital, the hidden curriculum, unequal school funding, and access to higher education. Cultural capital refers to socially advantageous values, attitudes, and abilities, such as proper language skills, proper ways of dressing, socially approved manners, and knowledge of both high and popular culture. Cultural capital contributes to obtaining a quality education, in part because standardized tests, such as the SAT, measure cultural capital. Children from upper- and middle-class families are more likely to possess greater amounts of cultural capital, meaning they likely will receive a better education, such as college. This differential in possession of cultural capital contributes to the perpetuation of the class hierarchy. The hidden curriculum consists of certain cultural values, such as obedience to authority and conformity, that are transmitted through the rules and structuring of schooling. Studies show that students from working- and lower-class families are those most negatively affected because they learn they are expected to submit to the authority of others in the workplace, where they will work at less challenging and less rewarding jobs than their more well-to-do peers. The manner in which schools are funded contributes to the perpetuation of the class hierarchy. Because schools are funded locally based upon the value of taxable property, students who live in poorer neighborhoods are more likely to attend schools that are poorly funded. Receiving less funding means that the quality of the schooling that poor children receive is likely to be inferior to that received by children who attend schools in middle- and upper-income neighborhoods. Finally, college attendance is correlated with income. Talented, lower-income students are less likely to attend college than their comparably talented counterparts from higher-income families due to the cost of college. This limits their occupational opportunities and contributes to the perpetuation of the class hierarchy.
How does schooling contribute to the reproduction of the race/ethnic hierarchy?
Schooling reproduces the racial and ethnic hierarchy in several ways. Studies have shown that, even when controlling for talent, non-Caucasian students are more likely to be tracked into the less-challenging academic programs than whites. This limits their chances of attending college (as does the cost of college for many non-Caucasian students) and gaining occupational opportunities. The unequal manner of funding schools, described in the preceding answer, also contributes to perpetuating the racial and ethnic hierarchy. Finally, it has been found that the achievement differences between Caucasians and African Americans increase with each year of schooling. This also suggests that schools reinforce and reproduce the racial and ethnic hierarchy.
What is the symbolic-interactionist view of education?
The symbolic-interactionist view of education emphasizes classroom dynamics and the production of meanings and interpretations. For instance, if a teacher perceives some students to be less likely to learn (because of the students’ social class or color, for instance) they may direct less time, effort, and attention to helping them learn. As a result, the child learns less. This is an example of the self-fulfilling prophecy. Also, labeling students as slow learners or overachievers, often as a result of IQ tests, may lead to students internalizing labels and defining themselves according to a label.
Describe and distinguish between the main sectors of an economy. Which sector is most prominent in the United States today?
There are three sectors to an economy. Though all three sectors are present at the same time, each sector is correlated with a stage of societal development. The primary sector of the economy is engaged in the extraction of raw materials and natural resources from the environment. The primary sector is most important in agricultural societies. The secondary sector involves the transformation of raw materials and natural resources into finished products. This sector is most important in industrialized societies. Finally, the tertiary sector involves the creation and delivery of services. This sector is most important in postindustrial economies such as the United States.
What are some of the basic characteristics of capitalism?
Capitalism is an economic system characterized by the private ownership of natural resources and income-producing property. There are four distinctive features of capitalism. The first is the private ownership of property. The second is the right of individuals and groups, such as corporations, to pursue profit. The third feature is competition. People and companies compete in the marketplace for economic advantages and profits. In the ideal form of capitalism, people are believed to regulate capitalism through their decisions as consumers. The fourth and final feature of capitalism is the lack of government intervention in the operation of markets.
What are some of the basic characteristics of socialism?
ocialism is an economic system that is characterized by the public ownership of natural resources and income-producing property. Socialist systems consist of three main attributes. First, the state or a collectivity owns income and wealth-producing property for public benefit. Second, socialism emphasizes the pursuit of public or collective goals and limits the private individual pursuit of profit. Finally, socialist economies are command economies; economic decision making is centralized in the state or collectivity. Such decision making is done with the interests and needs of society and its people in mind.
Why can it be said that ideal capitalism does not exist in the United States?
Ideal capitalism does not exist in the United States or any other country on earth (nor does an ideal form of communism). There are several reasons that ideal capitalism does not exist in the United States. One is that the government does intervene in the economy, most often for the purpose of helping businesses. Government aid to businesses includes restricting competition from foreign goods and services through the use of trade restrictions and tariffs. Government also provides price supports to some industries and allows tax dollars to be used by private corporations for research and development. Competition is also limited by the presence of oligopolies in many industries. An oligopoly exists when a few firms dominate an industry such as the automobile industry. Conglomerates (large corporations whose businesses span several industries) also serve to lessen competition. Finally, interlocking directorates (members of a company’s board of directors also sitting on the boards of other companies) serve to reduce competition. All these factors allow one to say that capitalism in its ideal form does not exist in the world today. However, the economic system of the United States is widely viewed as becoming the closest of any to the ideal form of capitalism.
What is the difference between the primary and secondary labor markets? In which market are college graduates likely to find employment?
Sociologists view jobs in the United States as falling into two broad categories. The primary labor market consists of relatively high-paying jobs that provide extensive benefits, job security, and the opportunity for advancement. Professions and upper-level corporate positions are found in this labor market. College-educated workers are likely to be found in this market as well. The secondary labor market consists of low-paying jobs that offer workers limited benefits, little job security, and few opportunities for advancement.
Describe the basic characteristics of professions.
Professions are prestigious jobs that require advanced training. There are five key features that distinguish the professions from other occupations. Professions possess abstract and specialized knowledge acquired through advanced educational training. This specialized knowledge is the basis for the greater autonomy that professions enjoy. Autonomy is the ability to rely on one’s own judgment in making decisions. A third feature of professions is that they act altruistically in that they are expected to put the interests of their clients ahead of their personal self-interest. In exchange for acting altruistically, society allows professions to be self-regulating. Professions do this by developing and enforcing codes of ethics and credentialing requirements. The fifth feature that distinguishes the professions from other occupations is that professionals enjoy a high degree of authority. Because of their specialized expertise, professionals are entrusted to make important decisions and can expect compliance with their decisions.
Identify and describe some of the changes that have been occurring in employment in the United States.
There are several changes that have been occurring in employment and the world of work in the United States. There has been a decline in the presence and influence of labor unions, as the percentage of workers who are unionized has declined from a high of about 33 percent in the 1950s to a low of about 13 percent today. In recent years, there has been an increase in contingent work, such as temporary workers and adjunct university faculty. This is part-time, temporary, or subcontracted work that allows employers to reduce their labor costs by providing fewer (if any) benefits, lower pay, and the ability to more easily shed workers when necessary. Another trend is deprofessionalization. This is a process whereby certain characteristics of a profession, such as autonomy, are eliminated.
What is the difference between power and authority?
Power is the ability of a group or person to achieve their aims despite the resistance of others. Power can take many forms, the most basic of which are emotional coercion and physical force. However, many people do not view the exercise of such power as legitimate. Authority is the form of power that people recognize as legitimate.
What are the three forms of authority? Which is most common in industrialized societies?
There are three main forms of authority. Traditional authority is power legitimized by long-standing cultural customs and habits within a society. Charismatic authority is power legitimated by the extraordinary characteristics or accomplishments of a person that inspire awe and obedience among others. The most common form of authority in industrialized societies is rational-legal authority. This is a form of authority in which power is legitimized by law or written rules and regulations. This type of authority is often rooted in a socially recognized position, such as president of the United States, senator, or judge.
What is politics? What is the relationship between government and political parties?
Politics is the social institution in a society through which power is organized, distributed, and exercised by some people and groups over others. The government is the formal organization that has the legal and political authority to direct the political life of a society. Political parties are formal organizations of people that seek to acquire, occupy, influence, and control positions in government. Essentially, political parties seek to influence the politics and the exercise of power in society by controlling the government.
Describe and differentiate between the four main types of political systems.
There are four main types of political systems found in the world.

Monarchies are political systems in which a single family rules society and whose power is transferred across generations through lines of inheritance; being a monarch, such as a king, is an ascribed (inherited) position.

Totalitarianism is a political system in which many aspects of people’s public and private lives are closely monitored and regulated by the government, such as China’s one-child policy.

Authoritarianism is a political system in which people are denied the ability to participate in government, but in which the government does not attempt to intrude into and regulate the important aspects of citizens’ day-to-day lives.

Democracy is a political system in which the people as a whole exercise power, either directly or indirectly through elected representatives.
What are special interest groups? What is their relationship with political action committees?
Special interest groups are coalitions of people who share an interest in a specific issue or policy. If such a group seeks to directly influence the election and decision making of public officials, they may form a political action committee (PAC). A PAC raises money to help elect and lobby public officials.
Distinguish between the two forms of the elite model of politics.
The elite model of politics, associated with the conflict perspective in sociology, views power as concentrated in the hands of a small group of elites. The majority of people remain relatively powerless. There are two forms of the elite view. In the power elite view, the elite group comprises the top leaders in the military, government, and business. Control of vast resources gives this group its power. This view sees the masses as largely remote from and unable to influence the exercise of power. The ruling class view sees the elite as the corporate rich, whose vast wealth is the basis for their inordinate influence in politics. This ruling class influences power and politics through the process of candidate selection, appointment to government regulatory bodies, and participation in the special interest process through contributions to political action committees and lobbying efforts. This view, however, holds that the masses have the ability to influence power by organizing themselves into widespread social movements, such as the civil rights movement, that advocate for social change.
How does the pluralist model describe the distribution of power in the United States?
The pluralist model (associated with the functionalist perspective) views power as widely dispersed and balanced between many different special interest groups competing for representation and power. Because there are many of these special interest groups, and because their interests are narrowly focused, negotiation and compromise is commonplace. This ensures a balanced distribution of power while limiting its abuse. Moreover, power is not seen as cumulative. Gaining representation on one issue is not seen as increasing a group’s advantage in subsequent policy discussions.
What is the difference between health care and medicine?
Health care is any activity that is undertaken to improve health. Health care can take many forms, ranging from exercise to visiting a health care professional. Medicine is one form of health care. Medicine is an institutionalized system providing for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of illness and the improvement of health.
Describe the difference between acute and chronic diseases. Which ones are elderly people more susceptible to?
Acute diseases are diseases that occur suddenly and cause a dramatic decline in one’s daily functioning, such as the flu, severe colds, and stomach viruses. Chronic diseases are diseases that develop and exist over a long period of time (sometimes beginning at birth). High blood pressure, arthritis, and osteoporosis are examples of such diseases. Older people are more likely to experience chronic diseases.
Why can health be considered a social issue?
Health can be considered a social issue for at least two reasons. First, as the symbolic-interactionist perspective points out, what we consider our cultural beliefs and behaviors determine health. For instance, the growing prevalence of eating disorders, such as bulimia and anorexia nervosa, among women in this country has been linked to the cultural emphasis on thinness as an indicator of attractiveness. Second, health is a social issue because it is linked to social statuses. For instance, social class influences both the lifestyle one leads and one’s access to the health care system and the quality of treatment one receives.
What is the relationship between lifestyle and health?
Lifestyle influences health in three main ways. Diet and exercise influence health. Growing attention has been paid to the nature of people’s diets, and a number of people try to reduce the amount of saturated fat they consume and increase their consumption of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Having unprotected sex can result in the contraction of sexually transmitted diseases such as AIDS, which in turn can negatively impact one’s health. Finally, the use of alcohol and tobacco has been linked to extensive medical problems. Making changes in one’s lifestyle can improve one’s health.
What are the different ways in which citizens of the United States can access health care?
The United States is the only leading industrialized nation whose citizens do not have access to some form of universal health care. Instead, the United States has a direct-fee system—people pay for their health care at the time they receive treatment. People can access the health care system in several ways. They might purchase private insurance that enables them to make unlimited visits to a physician in exchange for payment of a regular fee. These visits are usually for treatment and not preventative reasons. People can also pay a regular fee and join a health maintenance organization. This entitles them to comprehensive health care with an emphasis on prevention. Managed care is yet another way people access health care. Managed care is any system of health care that closely monitors and controls decisions by health care providers about treatment and patient services in an attempt to contain costs. Finally, public health insurance is available for the poor (Medicaid) and the elderly (Medicare). However, both of these programs have been experiencing financial difficulty.
Describe the sick role. With which sociological perspective is it associated?
The sick role is associated with the functionalist perspective. Analysts from this perspective argue that sick people can impede the smooth operation of society unless they are dealt with properly. There are three main attributes of the sick role. First, it is presumed that people do not choose to be sick. When they are, they should not be held responsible for performing daily responsibilities. Second, people who are sick are presumed to want to get well. Third, a sick person is expected to seek competent help from health care providers in order to regain their health. The health care provider determines whether the person is entitled to the sick role and, if so, what should be the proper course of treatment.
What is medicalization?
Medicalization is the process by which nonmedical problems come to be defined and treated as an illness. It is associated with the symbolic-interactionist perspec
What is a population? Describe the processes that effect change in a population.
A population is a group of people who occupy a specific geographic area. Three processes can create change in a population: fertility, mortality, and migration. Fertility is the level of childbearing in a population. The crude birth rate is a measure of fertility that counts the number of births in a year for every one thousand people in the population. Mortality is the incidence of death in a population. The crude death rate is a measure of mortality that counts the number of deaths in a year for every one thousand people in a population. Migration is the movement of people into or out of an area, country, or region. Increases in immigration and the fertility rate can create pressure on social services, the availability of affordable housing, and the availability of jobs. Emigration and mortality can diminish a population.
Explain demographic transition theory and its stages.
Demographic transition theory states that the population patterns of a country reflect the country’s level of development. This model identifies four distinct stages of development for countries. Each stage affects the mortality and fertility rates, and hence population size, of the country differently. First is the preindustrial stage, in which high birth rates are offset by high death rates, resulting in limited population growth. Early industrialization is the second stage. During this stage, the birth rate remains high while the death rate drops due to improvements in health, sanitation, and nutrition. This leads to rapid population growth. The third stage is advanced industrialization. In this stage, the birth rate declines in large part because children are economic liabilities in industrial societies; the death rate remains low. This results in very slow, if any, population growth. The fourth stage is postindustrialization, which occurs as a society shifts from an industrial- to a service-based economy. The birth rate continues to drop in this stage as women postpone or forgo childbearing in pursuit of career development. The death rate remains low. Very slow to zero population growth also characterizes this stage.
What is the sex ratio? How is it related to the population pyramid?
The sex ratio is the number of males per every one hundred females in a population. A sex ratio of less than one hundred means there are more females than males, while a sex ratio over one hundred indicates there are more males than females in a population. The population pyramid is a graphic representation of the distribution of a population by sex and age. The population pyramid will graphically represent the sex ratio of a population by age category. For instance, a population pyramid of the United States would reveal that the cohort of Baby Boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) comprised about 30 percent of the population in the year 2000.
What is the Malthusian view of population?
The Malthusian view notes that population increases exponentially, while the supply of food expands only arithmetically. Malthus theorized that the more rapid increase of population meant that population would exceed the available food supply at some point, resulting in the deprivation of some members of the population (if not all). Population growth could be checked positively by events that cause mortality such as wars, famines, and disease. Preventive checks on population growth include birth control and abstinence. This view draws our attention to the dependent relationship between a population and its food supply.
What is urbanization? How do industrial, preindustrial, and postindustrial cities differ from each other?
Urbanization is the process through which an increasing proportion of a country’s population comes to live in urban areas instead of rural areas. Preindustrial cities were the smallest in size, limited by the fact that most were walled cities. Their size was also limited by their reliance upon nearby farms to produce the foodstuffs necessary for urban dwellers to survive. The Industrial Revolution changed many things about cities. The presence of factories in cities attracted large numbers of people in search of economic opportunities. This resulted in tremendous growth in the size of cities, which made them impersonal living environments with rising crime rates. The layout of cities changed as well; winding streets were supplanted by wide, straight streets that could accommodate both public transportation, such as trolleys, and the private automobile. Beginning in the 1950s, industrial cities in the United States began to decentralize as more affluent residents emigrated from the central city to surrounding suburbs. Postindustrial cities perhaps are best characterized by sprawl, as they cover more territory than industrial cities. They also are characterized by a lack of a distinct central city.
What is human ecology?
Human ecology examines the relationship between the physical environment of the city and the people who live and work there. Human ecology investigates how both features of the natural environment (such as lakes, rivers, and mountains) and the economic and social activities of the citizens influence the layout and growth of a city.
Explain the concentric zone model of urban growth. What are invasion and succession?
The concentric zone model of urban development is associated with the functionalist perspective. It views the process of urban development as occurring in a series of circular zones around a central city. A different type of land use characterizes each zone. The central city is zone one. Zone two is adjacent to the central city and contains housing formerly occupied by the wealthy (now occupied by poorer people, immigrants, and light industry). Such a changeover in residents and use has led to the second zone being called a zone in transition. Zone three comprises working-class families and smaller businesses, while zone four contains white-collar workers and their residences. Zone five, an outer ring, contains smaller towns and cities that circle the urban area. This zone is often called the commuter zone because many of the residents of this area commute into the central city (or to other areas) to work. Communities in this zone are labeled by some as bedroom communities. Two key processes affect land use and the composition of each zone. Invasion is the process by which members of a new group or a new type of land use arrive in a zone already occupied by a group or type of land use. Succession occurs when the new group or type of land use displaces the group of people or type of land use that formerly characterized the zone.
What is the political economy model of urban growth?
The political economy model of urban growth emphasizes that urban growth is the product of both political and economic decisions that benefit some groups of people while disadvantaging others. This model emphasizes three key features of urban growth. First, it notes that both political and economic decisions affect urban growth. Second, it notes that urban land has both a use value and an exchange value. The final feature of urban growth is that it entails both structure and agency. Structure refers to how social institutions and their organizations are involved in the urban development process. In this context, structure is taken to mean the roles political, economic, educational, and community organizations have (if any) in determining appropriate development. Structure also refers to the rules, regulations, and laws that shape and structure how land use decisions are made. For instance, structure would include required public hearings and mandated environmental impact studies. Agency refers to the people involved in land use decision making. These people exert power and influence over land use decisions. They are disproportionately interested in land use that offers the greatest economic return or profit. Agency includes developers, venture capitalists, bankers, economic development officers, and government officials. Thus, this model views urban growth as shaped by the investment decisions of capitalists, the actions of government, and the power and resource inequality that exists between leaders of business and government and common people.
Does the symbolic-interactionist perspective interpret urban living as uniformly negative?
Not all analysts from the symbolic-interactionist view see urban living as uniformly negative. The symbolic-interactionist perspective examines the experience of urban living. Simmel, an early observer, believed that because urban living was so stimulating and fast-paced, people developed a blasé attitude. By this, he meant that people begin to tune out and become insensitive to the events around them. This leads to a lack of emotional involvement with others. For Simmel, urban living was a negative experience. Wirth viewed urban living the same way. He extended Simmel’s analysis by stating that secondary group memberships replace primary group memberships in urban environments. He believed this led to urban dwellers being more alienated, lonely, and powerless because they lived in an area that lacked a sense of community. In contrast to Simmel and Wirth, Gans argued that some people find urban living a pleasant and positive experience, while others experience it more negatively. Gans identified five forms or categories of adaptation to city living among urban dwellers. Cosmopolites are professionals, students, and artists who live in the city for proximity to vibrant cultural opportunities. Ethnic villagers live in ethnically segregated neighborhoods that provide them with a greater sense of community and belonging. Unmarried adults and childless couples live in the city for its convenient access to work and entertainment. People who adapt to urban living for the three aforementioned reasons, Gans argues, experience urban living as a positive experience. However, he identified two forms of adaptation among people who experience city living in negative terms. The trapped are those people who desire to leave the city but, for financial and other reasons, remain unable to do so. The poor are those people with few financial and educational resources. Their poverty renders them unable to leave the city and relegates them to less-than-satisfactory living conditions.
Distinguish between a crowd and a mass.
A crowd is a temporary gathering of a large number of people who share a common focus of activity or attention and who influence each other. A mass is a large number of people who share a specific interest or activity but are spatially dispersed. The key difference between a crowd and a mass is that the mass is spatially dispersed, while the crowd is spatially concentrated. For example, attending a Madonna concert is an example of a conventional crowd, while being a member of Madonna’s fan club is an example of mass behavior.
What are the different types of crowds?
There are five basic types of crowds: protest, expressive, acting, casual, and conventional. A protest crowd is an organized group of people acting together and whose activities are directed toward the achievement of specific political aims. An expressive crowd is a crowd that provides the opportunity for people to express pent-up emotions, such as those found at celebrations, religious events, and sporting events. An acting crowd is a collectivity that gathers and focuses its attention so intensely that it may erupt in displays of violence or destruction. There are three forms that acting crowds can take: a panic, a riot, or a mob. A casual crowd is a relatively large number of people who happen to be in the same place at the same time, though they may interact with each other little (if at all). A shopping mall is an example of a casual crowd. Finally, a conventional crowd is a group of people who come together for a scheduled event such as a graduation ceremony.
hat is mass behavior? Provide some examples.
Mass behavior is collective behavior among people who are spatially dispersed from one another. It can take several forms. A rumor is a form of mass behavior. A rumor is unsubstantiated information that is spread informally. An example of a rumor was the expressed concern that Y2K would lead to widespread computer failure and massive disruptions in banking services and electrical supplies. Fads are another form of mass behavior. A fad is a form of behavior that is widely and enthusiastically copied and lasts only a short period of time, such as Beanie Babies and Pokemon trading cards. Mass hysteria is another form of mass behavior. It is similar to a panic, except the participants are spatially dispersed. Mass hysteria is collective behavior whereby people respond to a real or imagined threat with irrational and self-destructive behavior. One example is the fear of AIDS. This fear developed when the disease was officially identified in the early 1980s, but its mode of transmission between people was still undetermined.
How can the behavior of crowds be understood?
There are three main approaches to understanding the behavior of crowds. Contagion theory argues that crowds provide a cloak of anonymity to their members, enabling them to abandon personal responsibility and engage in irrational and irresponsible behaviors that they wouldn’t otherwise engage in. This theory views crowds as characterized by the absence of shared normative orientations and hence the presence of uncivilized behavior that people would not otherwise engage in, whether alone or in small groups. Convergence theory argues that people bring like-minded behavior into crowds. Crowds don’t induce the behavior so much as people that are disposed toward a particular behavior and enter or form a crowd to carry out the behavior. In this way, crowds behave rationally. Finally, emergent norm theory emphasizes that the behavior of crowds is varied and difficult to predict, though it notes that crowd members are drawn together by similar interests. These shared interests enable the emergence and expression of distinctive patterns of behaviors, or norms. Crowd members themselves determine these norms and rules through their interaction with one another.
What is a social movement? How is it different from crowd or mass behavior? What different forms can social movements take?
A social movement is an organized group that acts collectively and intentionally to promote or resist social change. Movements are different from crowds and mass behavior. Social movements are more organized than crowds or masses and their group behavior persists over a longer period of time than that of crowds or masses. Movements also have specific and shared goals that motivate their activities, and they tend to act together in concert, such as at a protest demonstration, rather than being spatially dispersed as masses are. There are four basic forms that social movements assume, varying by the nature of their goals and the scope of change they seek to achieve. Reform movements seek a specified (though limited) change in a society that would apply to all members of that society. Mothers Against Drunk Driving is an example of a reform movement. Some reform movements seek to promote a new cultural pattern or policy, while others are reactionary and seek to prevent or undo social change. Revolutionary movements seek widespread social change and typically work outside established, institutional channels in an attempt to thoroughly remake society. Examples in the United States include the Aryan Nation white supremacist movement and its attempt to create an all-white homeland in the Northwest that would secede from the United States. They may engage in terrorism to achieve their aims. Expressive movements seek to produce substantive change within individuals rather than in society at large. Examples include the Hare Krishnas and Alcoholics Anonymous. Alternative movements seek limited changes within individuals or in some aspect of their behavior, such as vegetarians and the Women’s Christian Temperance Union.
What are the typical stages of development in a social movement?
There are four identifiable stages of development that most social movements go through.

The first stage is emergence, during which concern and dissatisfaction exist among a group of people who believe that change is both necessary and possible.

During the second stage of coalescence, the movement begins to develop a coherent set of goals and strategies for achieving them. They may engage in public demonstrations as a way of bringing the issue to the attention of the public.

The third stage is institutionalization (or bureaucratization), during which the movement becomes formalized and professionalized organizationally. Defined offices and functions emerge, often discharged by paid staff members.

The final stage, when a movement begins to dissipate, is decline. Decline occurs for a variety of reasons, including repression, goal displacement, achievement of goals, and diminishing support.
According to structural strain theory, what factors are needed for the emergence of a social movement?
The structural strain (or value added) theory of social movements is associated with the functionalist perspective in sociology. It identifies six factors that contribute to the emergence of a social movement. Structural conduciveness is the first stage; for movements to arise, people or groups in society must begin to recognize that there are substantive problems that need to be addressed. Structural strain is the next stage and occurs when people experience discontent or strain at society’s inability to meet people’s expectation that something be done about the problem they have identified. Generalized belief is the third stage. This stage involves the development of clear statements of the causes and acceptable solutions to the problem. Precipitating factors is the fourth stage, which notes that some type of triggering or precipitating event is necessary in order to channel the generalized discontent into specific action. Mobilization for action occurs in the fifth stage, as leaders and events organize and spur people to action. Finally, weakened, ineffective, or an absence of social control is necessary for collective action by the movement to emerge and be sustained.
Compare and contrast the relative deprivation theory of social movements with resource mobilization theory.
The relative deprivation theory of social movements states that movements emerge among groups of people who feel disadvantaged compared to some other group(s) in society. From this view, people join movements because they feel they are not getting their “fair share” of societal rewards. As the gap between expectations and reality widens, the stimulus for a social movement to emerge develops. The resource mobilization model argues that strain, conflict, and deprivation are ever-present phenomena in a society. In order for this discontent to be translated into a social movement, resources are necessary for people to effectively act together. Resources include time, money, people, alliances, and access to the mass media, among others. Acquiring resources enables people to meet, plan, and organize plans and activities believed necessary to accomplish their aims.
An antigen in the typical Streptococcus cell envelope, for which humans usually produce antibodies.
C carbohydrate
Antibodies induced by Mycoplasma in the patient that are useful for
diagnosing pneumonia.
cold agglutinins