Sociology Notes Week 12-15
Sociology Notes Week 12-15
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This 12 page Bundle was uploaded by Allison Harrell on Thursday January 8, 2015. The Bundle belongs to at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa taught by Megan Swindal in Spring2013. Since its upload, it has received 97 views.
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Date Created: 01/08/15
Sociology Week 12 Environment and Society Ecology o The study of the interaction of living organism and the natural environment Human ecology o The study of interrelationship between people and the environment Environment deficit o Long term harm to the natural environment caused by humanity39s focus on short term material affluence o Economic growth consumes finite resources Water pollution amp shortage o US rivers and streams absorb hundreds of millions of pounds of toxic waste a year o About 1 of Earth s water suitable for drinking o Many believe coming water shortage will lead to an era of civil unrest By 2025 40 countries in the Middle East and Africa will receive water shortage Air pollution o China and US examples We CAN reduce air pollution with concerted effort ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS Climate Change o Lasting change in the distribution of weather patterns over periods ranging from decades to millions of years o May be a change in average weather conditions or in the distribution of weather events more or fewer extreme weather events 0 Caused by a number of factors including human activity Climate changes human causes o Greenhouse gas increase from cars smokestacks deforestation etc o All major international bodies conclude that human causes are having at least some effect on climate o Disagreement is on what to do and whether all countries are equally responsi ble ENVIRONMENT AND SOCIETY Consumption and overconsumption Both modernization theory and decency theory agree that the high income countries consumer far more resources 0 Higher standards of living COMPARING COUNTRIES What about population 0 High fertility in lowincome countries What about the lack of environment regulation and enforcement in lowincome coun tries 0 Recent boom in elephant poaching in Kenya Tanzania etc Moreover shouldn t low income countries be able to develop the same way we did through resource use 0 Industrial Revolution 0 Cheap transportation 0 High input agriculture 0 Etc GROWTH AND ENVIRONMENT Witt pg 366 By 2025 the developing countries will have surpassed our greenhouse gas emissions Logic of growth idea that progress growth 0 Abundance of material items and increasing consumer choice is better for all 0 Technology will solve environmental problems 0 Optimistic Limits to growth idea that growth cannot continue indefinitely 0 Finite resources rising population and consumption a environmental deficit 0 Technology has not reduced overall resource use o pessimistic Health Care Systems Four basic models The Beveridge Model Socialized medicine UK Spain most of Scandinavia New Zealand Hong Kong Cuba 0 Health care provided and financed by govt through tax payments 0 Hospitals and doctors not usually private 0 Low cost per capita because gov t controls what doctors can do and charge The Bismarck Model Germany Japan France Belgium the Netherlands Switzerland some Latin American countries 0 Like US uses an insurance system usually financed jointly by employers and employees through payroll deduction 0 Health insurance plans have to cover everybody don t make profit 0 Hospitals and doctors tend to be private 0 Tight regulations gives gov t cost control The National Health Insurance Model Canada Taiwan South Korea 0 Uses privatesector providers but payment comes from gov t run insurance program that every citizen pays into 0 Costs are controlled bc insurance is nonprofit gov t can negotiate good drug prices 0 Often longer waits for specialized or elective procedures The OutOfPocket or direct Fee Model Most other countries in the world especially poor countries 0 Rich get medical care poor do not The US system a mix of all four 0 Veterans health care we re like Britian or Cuba socialized medicine o 65 on Medicare we39re like Canada single payer through private medical providers o Working people who get insurance through their job we39re like Germany o Those with no insurance 15 we39re like Cambodia or Burkina Faso direct fee Health Care in the US Problems with US system as of 2009 Highest cost in the world Lack of coverage 46 million Americans 15 without coverage Among lower average health outcomes in OECD Infant mortality US ranks 34 in 2009 The 2010 Health Care law o Expands Medicaid eligibility for the poor o Subsidizes insurance premiums for middle class o No denial of coverage based on preexisting conditions o Up to age 26 can stay on parents insurance o Individual mandate all must be insured June 2012 in a 54 decision US supreme Court found the law to be constitutional Sources of controversy should health care be a right of citizenship as education is o Can we afford to pay for it o Can we compel citizens to have insurance o Who loses out if more people are covered Health and Society Health is as much a social as a biological issue Patterns of well beings and illness are tooted in social organization Social inequality affects people s health Cultural patterns also define health cultural standards of health change over time Medicalization of society expansion of problems that can be treated as illness o Psychological problems in particular Medicalization amp Society Medical model Health is a function of host resistance disease vector amp environment Social model health is a function of social stratification order and the individual s ac cess to the social determinants of health 0 To a certain extent medical model of health competes with social model Medical Model vs Social Model Labeling theory when we label something as an illness it must be treated as an illness 0 For many years being gat was treated as an illness 0 Change in criteria for psychiatric diagnoses as culture changes Who s Healthy Social epidemiology 0 Study of how health and disease are distributed throughout a society s popula tion 0 Not only diseases but injuries drug addictions suicide etc Factors include 0 Age gender social class race Social Epidemiology Epidemiological transition from acute to chronic illnesses as a country s median in come rises o Lowincome countries acute illnesses like malaria cholera typhoid 0 High income countries chronic illnesses like heart disease cancer diabetes The exception AIDS Health amp Social Class Higher income and education boost health 0 Better nutrition and time for exercise 0 Better and more health care o Safer and less stressful surroundings More privileged people make healthier choices and have health insurance Cumulative health effects of class over time The Status Syndrome Why Japanese MLE higher than US MLE even though countries have similar economic levels The more unequal a society the lower the society s life expectancy Marmot Health follows a social gradient At every step on the socioeconomic ladder one gains health So heal of individuals depends upon how society is organized only marginally upon health care system and behavior Smoking drinking being overweight or sedentary are less strong than class in multi variate test o If we compare smokers and drinkers across social classes we see that there is still a health gradient Social status matter more than individual risk factors medical model flawed Not about absolute status rich vs poor but relative status Why Higher status more control over one s life circumstances Level of control a stress or reward Stress and sickness Stress activates alarm system within the body body must struggle to get back to set points Obesity and diabetes result in part from chronic activation of alarm system Roy 2004 o Low income are heavier because they eat less healthfully but also because they have more chronic stress The Status Syndrome Chronic stress and lack of control are bad for everyone s health and worse as we go down the SES ladder Race ethnicity and health higher morbidity and mortality rates among African Ameri cans Hispanics and Native Americans 0 Some effect from institutional discrimination but more an effect of lower so cioeconomic status MARMOT Not entirely it can be changed 0 Data show that major health improvements across classes are possible 0 Data show that health gaps between classes are not fixed 0 Some gradient is probably persistent bit it does not have to be so extreme Sociological Perspectives Functionalism a healthy society is an orderly society 0 Health care and medicine maintain society s health 0 Doctors patients have particular roles to play Interactionism meaning of health and sickness 0 Ideas of health and stress are socially constructed 0 How people define a condition might actually affect how they feel Conflict health and inequality 0 Access to medical care the effects of the profit motive and the politics of medicine WEEK 15 Seeing the world sociologically See general patterns in the behavior of particular individuals The general categories which we fall into shape our particular life experiences 0 Examples from last week the digital divide affect us differently based on race poor Asian Americans more likely to own a computer than any other poor racial group How do we identify these patterns Not always obvious to the eye Social science different from natural science Because people see the world different ly there are more opinions and fewer facts 0 Among research subject o Among social scientist themselves Observable evidence Poor Asian Americans more likely to own a computer than any other poor racial group Underlying cause We cant just point to income have to understand cultural values of Asian Americans Sociological research often focuses on why people think and act the way they do Method of Sociological Research o Define the problem o Does it pay to go to college o Define what we mean by pay operational definition If we mean do individuals earn more over their lifetimes if they have a college degree we need to measure income If we mean s there less crime in society when more people have a college degree we need to measure crime rates Defining the Problem Theory o A statement of how and why specific facts are related o For example ndividuals with more education have more skills that society compensates Two basic questions in building theory o What issues should we study o How should we connect the facts We can build theory from three general perspectives o Functionalism o Conflict o Interactionism Lit Review o Review the literature o What do we already know about the relationship between education and in come 0 New research can Investigate different relationships Replicate previous studies with new data 0 After our review we might narrow our definition of the problem Hypothesizing o Formulate a hypothesis 0 Hypothesis a testable statement about the relationship between two or more variables 0 Causal logic causeandeffect 0 Independent variable the cause 0 Dependent variable the effect Lifetime income years of education living in major city hours of workweek Variables can also be attitudes opinions values 0 Computer ownership income enthusiasm for new technology opinions on importance of education 0 Correlation change in one variable coincides with change in another variable 0 Usually caused by a third factor 0 A years of education coincides with A living in major city 0 Bring educated in itself doesn t make us prefer city living 0 Causal factor higherpaying jobs found in major cities Correlation is not the same as causation 0 Sleeping with your shoes on is strongly correlated with waking up with a head ache 0 Therefore sleeping with your shoes on causes headache 0 What s the real causal factor Select a Research Design Research design a detailed plan for obtaining data scientifically Quantitative Research o Numerical data good for understanding large samples o Use statistical analysis Qualitative research o Observational data good for in depth understanding of people s behavior o May use statistical analysis Approaches to Research Positivist sociology o Focuses on action o Sees an objective reality o Favors quantitative research Interpretivist sociology o Focuses on meaning o See reality as research subjects perceive it o Favors qualitative research Interpretivist Sociology Weber39s method of verstehen German word for understanding Interpreteivist sociologist s job o Observe what people do o Share in their world of meaning o Appreciate why they act as they do Can lack focus or rigor is everything relative Data collection and analysis Decide what will count as facts how data will be collected what method of analysis you will use Statistical analysis often used in sociology even for qualitative research o code your observations Likert scale Strongly agree 1 Agree 2so on and so on Validity Degree to which a measure truly reflect the phenomenon under study 0 Does household income really measure effect of education or should we look at individual income Reliability Degree to which a measure produces consistent results 0 Does strongly agree mean the same thing to all respondents Survey research provides feedback directly from people 0 Interview advantages are higher response rate more in depth 0 Questionnaire less expensive to administer easier to analyze 0 Problems people don t always tell the truth even if they don t realize it Sample Selection from a larger population that is statistically representative 0 Recent election polling controversy pollster talked to more democrats a not representative opinion 0 Random sample may give you more people in a certain group weighted sample can adjust this 0 Difficult of sampling respondents often selfselect Observation research immersion in a community to understand the world from mem bers perspective 0 Uses fieldwork to study society ethnography 0 Can better understand why people dosay what they do Example Do men discriminate against women in typically male jobs even though they don t think they do Experimental Research less common in sociology o Cant control social effects Secondary analysis make use of publicly available data usually collected by gov t o No ethical questions as in the other methods Research ethics Code of ethics in American Sociological Association 0 Confidentiality o Disclose funding sources o Value neutrality Weber suggested that values could guide what topics we chose to re search but not the conclusions we draw Developing a conclusion After analyzing the data to produce findings do findings support our original hypothe sis Refine hypothesis and introduce new variables o Control variables factors that are geld constant in order to test relative impact on an independent variable o Often demographic variables like gender Gender influences the cause and effect process o Women39s lifetime income may be different than men s despite years of educa tion living in major city and hours of work a week o To control for this factor may want to exclude women from your sample Practical use of sociological findings o Publish in sociology journals for other researchers to use o Policy analysis to help guide our leaders decisions example Alabama Arise o Internal research for businesses organizations governments
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