INTRODUCTORY SOCIOLOGY SOC 1010 ? SPRING 2010 Paul Kingston Office Hours: Tues. 11:00-12:00 547 Cabell Hall Wed. 11:00-12:00 924-6521 e-mail: HYPERLINK "mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org" email@example.com Thur. 11:00-12:00 & By Appmt. Objectives The central aim of the course is to develop your ability to think sociologically about the world around you. As suggested in the section headings, we will consider central concerns of the discipline. You?ll see the great scope of the sociological imagination. At the same time we will emphasize how sociologists think and not attempt to summarize the large body of sociological research. Although our sociological analyses will primarily be grounded in issues related to contemporary U.S. society, we will also consider historical, comparative and global material. Course Organization I assume the following: you read very well and can teach yourself a lot (hence, the lectures will complement the readings, not repeat them); you learn from lectures if they highlight a few points, pose questions, and probe ambiguities (hence, lectures will not attempt to summarize the field or relate specific facts to memorize); you learn how to think sociologically by actually doing sociological analysis (hence, projects will involve analyzing sociological date); you become a better sociologist by engaging others? views (hence, the expectation that all students are active participants in discussions); and you can do well in this course if you attend to all parts of it ? readings, lectures, and discussions. Requirements Reading Readings should e completed on the assigned dates. In my lectures I will assume that you are familiar with the material; lectures will complement the general concerns of the readings, not repeat them. Your TA will expect you to read carefully the assigned material for the discussion sections. Be prepared to identify central arguments and critically evaluate them. You?ll often receive discussion questions ahead of time to guide your reading. Discussion The TAs will lead the weekly discussion groups. These sessions provide an opportunity to ask questions, make comments, share views ? in effect, become actively involved in educating yourself. Attendance is required and regular participation is expected ? in your assigned section. From time-to-time you will have short, unannounced writing assignments in discussion sections: pop quizzes, your suggestions for discussion questions, and evaluative summaries of your class discussions. Tests You?ll have an in-class mid-term and final exam. Projects There will be two small projects which involve analyzing survey data. Essay You will write a short, analytical essay based on Elsewhere, USA Grading Participation in discussion section ? 20%; projects ? 10% each; essay ? 15%; mid-term ? 20%; and final examination ? 35%. Late Policy On the projects and paper, 5 points off if handed in on the due date after the beginning of section but before 5:00 p.m.; 10 points off for each subsequent late day (5:00 p.m. cut-off). (The weekend counts as one day.) I will grant extensions only if I hear a very compelling reason (almost always not including computer malfunctions and never the demands of other courses) before the due date. You must get this extension from me, not your TA. Make-up tests: None, except for excused absences. If, for good reason, you can?t make the test or exam, you must contact me beforehand if at all possible. (I realize that in a few instances you may not be able to contact me beforehand; in that case your obligation is to talk with me as soon as you can.) ?Good reasons? include illness, family emergencies, athletic commitments, and religious obligations ? not travel convenience. Unexcused absences will result in a zero. Religious Observance If your religious commitments preclude you from completing course requirements as scheduled, please see me beforehand so that we can make suitable accommodations. Excessive absences I reserve the right to withdraw you from the class for excessive absences in the discussion section. Four or more unexcused absences will result in a ?0? for the participation grade. Credit/no credit option To receive credit under the ungraded option, you must turn in all assignments, regularly attend discussion sections, and earn at least a ?C? in the course. Honor Commitment I strongly hope that you share my commitment to the ideals of our Honor system. We should all prize living in a community where we assume that everyone is honorable and trustworthy. I?ll do my best to uphold these ideals and urge you to honor your commitment to neither cheat nor tolerate cheating by others. Office Hours Please take advantage of my and your TA?s office hours. Questions, comments, suggestions, and criticisms are all welcome. I much prefer personal meetings and phone calls to e-mail. Readings The following books are required and are available at the U.Va. Bookstore. Sociological Insight: An Introduction to Non-obvious Sociology, Randall Collins. Elsewhere, USA, Dalton Conley. The Pursuit of Attention, Charles Derber. Other readings are on Collab, marked ?C?. Course Schedule 1/20 Introduction to Course Objectives Thinking Sociologically: Basic Concepts and Examples Discussion #1 ? 1/20-1/22 Getting Acquainted Free Will? (C) (bring copy to class) 1/25 The Sociological Imagination Collins and Makowsky ?Society and Illusion? (C) 1/27 Micro and Macro Analysis: Some Examples Nock and Kingston, ?Methods: Sociological Research And Public Issues: (C) Cole, ?Research Methods and the Logic of Proof? (C) Discussion #2 ? 1/27-1/29 ?The Non-rational Foundations of Rationality? Collins: Ch.1 2/1 Social Structure and Culture Becker, ?Culture? (C) Caplow, ?Rule Enforcement?? (C) 2/3 More on Structure and Culture Kanter, ?The Impact of Hierarchical Structures? (C) Discussion #3 ? 2/3-2/5 ?The Sociology of God? Collins: Ch. 2 2/8 Narcissism and Competition Derber, The Pursuit of Attention, pp. ix-88 Creating Social Life: Conformity and Deviance 2/10 Socialization: a Focus on Gender Roles Discussion #4 ? 2/10-2/12 ?Derber, The Pursuit of Attention, Review through p. 88; 89-104 2/15 Biology and Gender Udry, ?The Nature of Gender? (C) 2/17 Deviance Nock and Kingston, ?Deviance and Social Control: Drug Tests and Witch Hunts? (C) Discussion #5 ? 2/17-2/19 Paxton, ?Trust in Decline? (C) GSS: Connections and Trust (C) (bring printed copy to class) Project #1 Assigned: World Citizens? 2/22 Crime Collins, The Normalcy of Crime, Ch. 4 2/24 More on Crime (start reading Conley for discussion) Discussion of upcoming test Discussion #6 ? 2/24-2/26 Conley, Elsewhere, USA pp. 3-84 Essay Assigned 3/1 MIDTERM TEST (No blue books necessary) Discussion #7 ? 3/3-3/5 Conley, Elsewhere, USA pp. 85-124, 141-19 The Family: A Key Institution Families have been viewed as havens in a heartless world. Many people now see this institution in crisis. How have families changed? What is their future? 3/3 The family ? what is it? Collins, ?Love and Property,? Ch. 5 Discussion #8 ? 3/17-3/19 Constructing a Poor Family?s Budget (no reading: bring a calculator) Project #1 Due in section 3/15 Intimacy, Divorce, and Children Wilcox, ?The Evolution of Divorce? (C) Gerstel and Darkisian, ?Marriage: The Good, the Bad, and the Greedy? (C) McLanahan, ?The Consequences of Single Motherhood? (C) 3/17 More on Family Arrangements (no reading) The Great Divides: Class, Race and Gender Inequalities 3/22 How the pie is divided, why some have bigger pieces, and consequences. Fisher, Inequality By Design (selections) 3/24 Who Gets Ahead? Beller and Hout, ?Intergenerational Social Mobility: The United States in Comparative Prospective? (C) Discussion #9 ? 3/24-3/26 Review McLanahan, Wilcox and Gerstl Essay Due in section Project #2 Assigned: A Millenial Generation? 3/29 Poverty Gans, ?Positive Functions of the Undeserving Poor? (C) Rank, ?As American As Apple Pie: Poverty and Welfare? (C) 3/31 Ethnicity Lee and Bean, ?Beyond Black and White? (C) Zhou, ?Are Asian Americans Becoming ?White??? (C) Berbier, ?Why Are There So Many ?Minorities??? (C) Discussion #10 ? 3/31-4/2 Etzioni, ?The Monochrome Society? (C) 4/5 Institutional Discrimination; Race vs. Class T.B.A. 4/7 New Explanations of Inequality Jencks and Phillips, ?America?s Next Achievement Test? (C) Discussion #11 ? 4/7-4/9 Project #2 Due Hoover, ?The Millenial Muddle? (C) Review of Race Material 4/12 Gender and Sexism Reskin, ?Rethinking Employment Discrimination and Its Remedies? (C) Belkin, ?The Opt-out Revolution? (C) Politics: Power and Struggle Politics is the struggle over the allocation of scarce goods like money and honor. As a political sociologist, you want to know: who has power? What is the source of power? How does social position affect political behavior? How can political change and stability be explained? 4/14 Democracy and Participation: The Modern Citizen Gamson, ?The Success of the Unruly? (C) Verba, ?The Big Tilt? (C) Discussion #12 ? 4/14-4/16 GSS: Social Participation (C) (bring to class) The Fate of Community in a Globalized World 4/19 Social Capital: Social Cohesion and Public Purpose Putnam, ?The Strange Disappearance of Civic America? (C) Wellman, ?Connecting Communities? (C) Discussion #13 ? 4/21-4/23 Collins, ?Can Sociology Create an Artificial Intelligence?? Ch. 6 Review Putnam and Wellman 4/21 Globalization Sanderson, ?Globalization? (C) Barber, ?Jihad vs. McWorld (C) 4/26 A Global Village? Cowen, ?The Fate of Culture? (C) Chua, ?A World on the Edge? (C) Rethinking the Sociological Perspective The class should prompt some large questions, perhaps better appreciated now that you have considered many examples of sociological thinking: is sociology a science? Can you generalize about people? What does sociology say about freedom? 4/28 Stereotypes and the Denial of Freedom? Charon, ?Are Human Beings Free?? (C) Discussion #14 ? 4/28-4/30 Loeb, ?Village Politics? (C) (Ch. 8, Soul of a Citizen: Living with Conviction in a Cynical Time. 5/3 Science, Ambiguity, Values and Usefulness No reading ? Discussion of Final Exam FINAL EXAM: Tuesday, May 11, 2010 9:00-12:00 (no blue books necessary)
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