Limits of Freedom based on money
Limits of Freedom based on money SOC 110
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Josef Mechure on Saturday February 21, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to SOC 110 at University of Washington taught by Wender in Winter2015. Since its upload, it has received 72 views. For similar materials see Survey Sociology in Sociology at University of Washington.
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Date Created: 02/21/15
217 Money Credit and the Limits of Freedom How do personal nancial crises become public issues What insights can sociology offer in helping to understand our current national economic crisis Williams quotThe Remediation of Higher Education and the Harm of Student Debtquot 2014 Total Student Loan Debt 12 Trillion spread among 40 million borrowers Avg debt 30K per borrower Quadrupled since 2003 Exceeds all other forms of consumer debt including credit cards CoHegeloans Push Grad students are 14 of enrollment of 40 of debt Default rates private schools 7 state schools 13 forpro t schools 19 Translation marginal students are at higher risk of default No bankruptcy protection Cost of education has far outstripped in ation and wage increases Longterm social impact of highstudent loan debt personal relationships marriagefamily home ownership retirement savings consumer purchases etc Golden Age of Higher Education 19401960 College enrollment jumped from 14 to 60 million Notice shift in emphasis the value of a college degree used to be seen as having moral cultural social and political dimensions The arguments today are much more narrowly economic and sel sh total earning potential over a lifetime See connection to Simmel Key changes since the 19805 reductions in state funding increases in tuition increases in loan and resulting debt The quotPlastic Agequot of American higher education paying with loans and credit quotPostwelfare state universityquot focus on consumer choice and economic growth rather than social equality international stability etc Cost of Education How does the cost of education and your relationship to the university change your attitudes about your role as a student Your career options Advantages of credit you can spend more than you actually have Secured vs unsecured credit Doubleedged sword of credit spending beyond our means both sustains and harms the economy 0 The historic move from thrift to spending How much do you save What do you earn in interest vs what others earn 0 Debt for you pro t for someone else Remember some owns the money you borrowed More pro ts from default and collection 219 Strangers Urban Anonymity What is the nature of anonymous social interaction in modern cities 0 Robert Levine quotThe Kindness of Strangersquot Stranger quotAn unknown person a person whom one has not seen before a foreigner or alien a person not one39s kinquot OED Think Carefully what is anonymity and what are its implications for everyday social interactions Faceless Interaction see Sunday NYT article quotThe Epidemic of Facelessnessquot quotSay it to my facequot words do not have weight unless they are said in person and with meaning 0 C Wright Mills private troubles vs public issues Microlevel personal troubles individual actions that do not become public issues Individual student loan default Macrolevel public issues impact a large segment of society Largescale student loan defaults o How can we impact the world we exist in 0 Why today do students not take a stance for what they want as a larger whole instead of the current passive aggressive silence 0 Rather organize on Facebook than out on like Red Square More con dence online more inclined to say your actual feelings without the feeling of being bashed in your face about what you say 0 How to harness technology and use this to have people gather in order for a change to be made Lacking action due to fear of the real life consequences Protest in order to make a real change ex protesting on student debt Simmel quotThe Strangerquot Every human relationship is a quotunion of closeness and remotenessquot 1970143 In the case of the stranger quotone who is close by is remote but his strangeness indicates that one who is remote is nearquot 1970143 The simultaneous nearness and farness of the stranger creates a reciprocal tension 0 We tend to objectify and typify strangers rather than individualize them 0 Remember the modern urban dialectic between freedom and alienation 0 Physical and moral proximity go together physically close people are the ones you love distance changes meaningfulness o HookUp Culture physical closeness but taking away emotional closeness Misalignment between emotional and physical proximity Street episodes in New York vs Rangoon an evocative comparison but do you think it39s valid Like individuals cities have quotpersonalitiesquot Altruism unsel sh regard for others has environmental roots Simple acts of assistance and Levine s ve experiments dropped pen injured leg blind pedestrian make change and mail a letter Population density is the strongest predictor of helpfulness Higher density less helpful people A social paradox being alone in the crowd Density increases anonymity Remember Poe Urban life brings about both qualitative and quantitative increases in fear anxiety suspicion and loneliness Crosscultural comparison people in Spanish and Portuguese speaking cities were the most helpful The quotSimpatico Hypothesisquot pleasing sympathetic sensitive But remember that this can be a social quality without necessarily being a moral one General trends slower pace of life and lower economic productivity higher levels of helpfulness Less helpfulness doesn39t always equal less kindness Survival suspicion and skepticism excuses orjusti cations for being mean Helping is in uenced more by local environment and less by individual character or beliefs The New Yorker in Brazil and vice versa 0 We are all about ef ciency and less about the process
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