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Sociology Exam 2 Study Guide

by: Amneris Santiago

Sociology Exam 2 Study Guide 101

Marketplace > Old Dominion University > Sociology > 101 > Sociology Exam 2 Study Guide
Amneris Santiago
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This part of the semester we talked about Culture, Nature vs. Nurture, and Social structures, which are the roles that we all play everyday that make us who we are. I went into depth in all my resp...
Introductory Sociology
Mrs. Whitaker
Study Guide
socio, intro, exam, two, 2, study, guide, Study Guide, nature, nurture, sociology, social, structure, roles, help, studying
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This 7 page Study Guide was uploaded by Amneris Santiago on Wednesday March 16, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to 101 at Old Dominion University taught by Mrs. Whitaker in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 27 views. For similar materials see Introductory Sociology in Sociology at Old Dominion University.


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Date Created: 03/16/16
Old Dominion University Spring 2016 Sociology 201- Introduction to Sociology Dr. Ingrid P. Whitaker Exam 2 Study Guide Exam 2 Wednesday March 16 Exam 2 will cover Chapters 2, 3 and 4. These are the chapters on culture, socialization and social interaction. Chapter 5 will be covered on the next exam. From Chapter 2 1) Understand what culture is and what is meant by material and non-material culture. Culture is a way of life. Culture is the way of thinking, acting and the material objects that together form a people’s way of life. Nonmaterial culture: the ideas created by members of a society. Material culture: the physical things created by members of a society. -Culture is a human trait, although several species display a limited capacity for culture, only human beings rely on culture for survival. -Culture is a product of evolution, As a human brain evolved, culture replaced biological instincts as our species’ primary strategy for survival. -We experience culture shock when we enter an unfamiliar culture and are not able to “read’ meaning in our new surroundings. We create culture shock for others when we act in ways they do not understand. 2) Understand the major elements of culture: symbols, language, values, beliefs, norms (mores, folkways) Symbol: anything that carries a particular meaning recognized by people who share a culture. Language: a system of symbols that allows people to communicate with one another. Values: culturally defended standards that people use to decide what is desirable, good, and beautiful, and that serve as broad guidelines for social living. -Values can sometimes be in conflict with one another. -Lower-income countries have cultures that value survival; higher-income countries have cultures that value individualism and self expression. Beliefs: specific ideas that people hold to be true. Norms: rules and expectations by which a society guides the behavior of its members. Mores: (e.g, sexual taboos, like adults not having sex with children) norms that are widely observed and have great moral significance. Folkways: (e.g, greetings or dining etiquette, people often fail to pay as much attention to this.) Norms for routine or casual interaction. 3) Understand the differences between ideal and real culture as well as high and popular culture Values & Norms do not describe actual behavior so much as they suggest how we should behave. We must remember that ideal culture always differs from real culture, which is basically what actually occurs in everyday life. For example, most women and men agree on the importance of sexual faithless in marriage, and most say they live up to that standard. Even so, about 17% of married people report having been sexually unfaithful to their spouses at some point in their marriage. But a culture’s moral standards are important even if they sometimes broken, calling to mind the old saying, “Do as I say, not as I do.” High culture: refers to cultural patterns that distinguish a society’s elite. Popular culture: to designate cultural patterns that are widespread among a society’s population. -Common sense may suggest that high culture is superior to popular culture, but sociologists are uneasy with such judgments for two reasons. First, neither elites nor ordinary people share all the same tastes and interests; people in both categories differ in man ways. Second, do we praise high culture bc it is inherently better than popular culture or simply bc it’s supporters have more money, power and prestige? 4) Understand what is meant by subculture and how a subculture is different from a counterculture The term subculture refers to cultural patterns that set apart some segment of a society’s population. -Subculture is based on differences in interests & life experiences. (Hip hop fans & jocks are examples of youth subcultures in the United States) Ex: people who ride “chopper” motorcycles, traditional Korean Americans, New England “Yankees,” Ohio State football fans, the Southern California “beach crowd,” Elvis impersonators, and wilderness campers all display subcultural patterns. -Many people view the United States as a “melting pot” where many nationalities blend into a single “American” culture. Too often what we view as “dominant” or “mainstream” culture are patterns favored by powerful segments of the population, and we view the lives of disadvantaged people as “subculture.” Counterculture: Refers to the cultural patterns that strongly oppose those widely accepted within a society. -Counterculture is strongly at odds with the conventional ways of life. Ex: During the 1960s, a youth-oriented counterculture rejected mainstream culture as overly competitive, self-centered, and materialistic. Instead hippies, & other counterculturists favored a cooperative lifestyle in which “being” was more important than “doing” & the capacity for personal growth—or “expanded consciousness”—was prized over material possessions like homes and care. Such differences led some people to “drop out” of the larger society. **Cultural changes results from: • Invention (the telephone and the computer) • discovery(the recognition that women are capable of political leadership) • diffusion(the growing popularity of various ethnic foods and musical styles) 5) Understand the difference between cultural relativism and ethnocentrism Ethnocentrism: the practice of judging another culture by the standards of one’s own culture. Ex: Bathrooms lack toilet paper in much of rural Morocco, causing considerable discomfort to North Americans, who recoil at the thought go using the left hand for bathroom hygiene, as the Moroccans do. Some degree of Ethnocentrism is necessary for people to be emotionally attached to their way of life. But Ethnocentrism also generates misunderstanding and sometimes conflict. -Members of every cultural system tend to prefer what they know and are wary about what is different. Cultural Relativism:(Alternative to Ethnocentrism) the practice of judging a culture by it’s own standards. -Cultural Relativism can be difficult for travelers to adopt: It requires not only openness to unfamiliar values and norms but also the ability to put aside cultural standards we have known all our lives. Even so, as people of the world come into increasing contact with one another, the importance of understanding other cultures becomes ever greater. 6) Understand the basic arguments made about culture from a structural functional, conflict and feminist theory The Structural functional approach explains culture as a complex strategy for meeting human needs. This approach considers values the core of a culture. In other words, cultural values direct our lives, give meaning to what we do, and bind people together. Structural-Functional theory: views culture as a relatively stable system built on core values. All cultural patterns play some part in the ongoing operation of society. -The strength of structural-functional theory is that it shows how culture operates to meet human needs. Yet by emphasizing a society’s dominant cultural patterns, this approach largely ignores the cultural diversity that exists in many societies, including our own. The Social Conflict approach stresses the link between culture and inequality. Any cultural trait, from this point of view, benefits some members of society at the expense of others. Why do certain values dominate a society in the first place? -Many conflict theorists argue that culture is shaped by a society’s system of economic production. Social Conflict is rooted to Materialism, which holds that a society’s system of material production (such as our own capitalist economy) has a powerful effect on the rest of culture. Feminist Theory: highlights how culture is “gendered,” dividing activities between the sexes in ways that give men greater power and privileges than women have. From Chapter 3 7) Understand the arguments presented in the nature vs. nurture arguments Socialization is a matter of nurture rather than nature. A century ago, most people thought human behavior resulted from biological instinct. For us as human beings, it is our nature to nurture. 8) Be able to define socialization Socialization: the lifelong social experience by which people develop their human potential and learn culture. Socialization develops our humanity as well as our particular personalities. The importance of socialization is seen in the fact that extended periods of social isolation result in permanent damage. 9) Understand Freud’s id, ego and super ego and how the ego and super ego are related to socialization Sigmund Freud’s model of the human personality has three parts • ID: innate, pleasure-seeking human drives. • Superego: the demands of society in the form of internalized values and norms • Ego: our efforts to balance innate, pleasure seeking drives and the demands of society. 10) Understand George Herbert Mead’s concept of the self and Cooley’s concept of the Looking Glass Self Charles Horton Cooley used the term looking-glass self to explain that we ourselves as we imagine others see us. George Herbert Mead: The self is part of our personality and includes self-awareness and self image. The self develops only as a result of social experience. Social Experience involves the exchange of symbols. Social interaction depends on understanding the intention of another, which requires taking the role of another. Human action is partly spontaneous( the I) and partly in response to others (the me). We gain social experience through imitation, play games, and understanding the generalized other. Looking-glass self: Cooley’s term for a self-image based on how we think others see us. Generalized other: widespread cultural norms & values we use as references in evaluating ourselves. 11) Understand the major agents of socialization and how the contribute to socialization • Family: usually the first setting of socialization. Family has the greatest impact on attitudes and behavior. A family’s social position, including race and social class, shapes a child’s personality. Ideas about gender are learned 1st in the family. • Schools: give most children their 1st experience with bureaucracy and impersonal evaluation. Schools teach knowledge and skills needed in their life. Schools expose children to greater social diversity. Schools reinforce ideas about gender. • Peer groups: helps shape attitudes and behavior. The peer group takes on great importance during adolescence. The peer group frees young people from adult supervision. • Mass Media: have a huge impact on socialization in modern, high-income societies. The average U.S child spends as much time watching television and videos as attending school and interacting with parents. The mass media often reinforce stereotypes about gender and race. The mass media expose people to a great deal of violence. 12)Understand what a total institution is. Based on the example of Jones Town, understand the processes through which people typically “voluntarily” become members of total institutions that are cults Total institution: a setting in which people are isolated from the rest of society and manipulated by an administrative staff. Resocialization: is a two part process: 1. Breaking down inmates’ existing identities. 2. Rebuilding a new self through a system of rewards and punishments. From Chapter 4 13)Understand the social structures associated with social interaction: statuses and roles Status is a social position that is part of our social identity and that defines our relationship to others. A status can be either an: • ascribed status: which in involuntary( for example, being a teenager, orphan, Mexican American, or an • achieved status: which is earned( for example, being an honors student, a pilot, or a thief.) A master status, which can be either ascribed or achieved, has a special importance for a person’s identity, like being blind, a doctor, or a mother. Role: a behavior expected of someone who holds a particular status. Role conflict: results from tension among roles linked to two or more statuses, for example, a mother who is also the CEO of a company. Role Strain: results from tension among roles linked to a single status. For example, the college professor who enjoys personal interaction with students but at the same time knows that social distance is needed in order to evaluate her students fairly. 14)Understand what is meant by status set, master status, role set, role conflict and role strain, and role exit Status set: all the statuses a person holds at a given time. Role set: a number of roles attached to a single status. Role Exit: the process by which people disengage from important social roles. Understand what is meant by the social construction of reality and the factors that 15) influence how social reality is shaped. Social Constructive of Reality: the process by which people creatively shape reality through social interaction. -Through social interaction, we construct the reality we experience. For example, two people interacting both try to shape the reality of their situation. 16) Understand Goffman’s concept of the presentation of self in everyday life. What does Goffman say about the “performances” people engage in? Presentation of self: Erving Goffman’s term for a person’s efforts to create specific impression sin the minds of others. Dramaturgical analysis: explores social interaction in terms of theatrical performance: a status operates as a part in a play, and a role is a script. Performances: are the way we present ourselves to others. • Performances are both conscious(intentional action) and unconscious(nonverbal communication) • Performances include costumes(the way we dress), props(objects we carry), and demeanor(tone of voice and the way we carry ourselves.) Gender affects performances bc men typically have greater social power than women. Gender differences involve demeanor, use of space, and smiling, staring, and touching. 17) Understand the role social construction plays in emotions, gender and humor in our society. The social construction of Feeling, Gender, Humor. Emotion/Feelings: The same basic emotions are biologically programmed into all human beings, but culture guides what triggers emotions, how people display emotions, and how people value emotions. In everyday life, the presentation of self involves managing emotions as well as behavior. Gender/Language: Gender is an important element of everyday interaction. Language defines women and men as different types of people, reflecting the fact that society attaches greater power and value to what is viewed as masculine. Reality Play/Humor: Humor results from the difference between conventional and unconventional definitions of a situation. Because humor is a part of culture, people around the world find a different situations funny. Extra info: The Thomas Theorem: says that the reality the reality people construct in their interaction has real consequences for the future. -For example, a teacher who believes a certain student to be intellectually gifted may well encourage exceptional academic performance. Ethnomethodology: a strategy to reveal to assumptions people have their social world. Jean Piaget: believed that human development involves both biological maturation and gaining social experience. He identified four stages of cognitive development: • The sensorimotor stage involves knowing the world only through the senses. • The preoperational stage involves starting to use language and other symbols. • The concrete operational stage allows individuals to understand causal connections. • The formal operational stage involves abstract and critical thought.


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