Introduction to Sociology
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Introduction to Sociology







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Introduction to Sociology. Kathy Edwards Lecture 4. Cultural Lag. When some parts of culture change, and other parts do not. Material culture often changes first. Cultural Lag.
Introduction to Sociology

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Slide 1

Introduction to Sociology

Kathy Edwards

Lecture 4

Slide 2

Cultural Lag

When some parts of culture change, and other parts do not. Material culture often changes first.

Slide 3

Cultural Lag

  • Technology, science, and economics are the engines that drive our society, non material culture or our ideas lag behind.

Slide 4

Cultural Lag

  • Example: The public school system, most are on a 9 month term, this is from the early 19th century, and has not caught up with new patterns of work, and living.

Slide 5

Technological Determinism

The view that technology is the new determinate of our culture, that technology has life of it’s own, forcing humans to follow it’s lead.

Slide 6

Cultural diffusion/assimilation

Groups that adapt part of other people’s way of life, remaining open to changes. This occurs via increased contact with others: travel & communication

Slide 7

Cultural Leveling

The process by which cultures become similar, through industrialization, technology, capitalism

Slide 8

Cultural leveling

  • Western culture: Radio shack, McDonald’s, Disney, Coca Cola, rock music, clothes

  • The incorporation of Western culture into the world via globalization

  • Eventually, everyplace starts to look like every other place.

Slide 9

Values

  • Values determine for us what is desirable in our life;

  • If we learn other people’s values we learn about other people;

  • Values underlie our preferences, our choices, indicate what we deem as worthwhile in our society.

Slide 10

Values

  • Values are “general” rules for behavior and perceptions we hold in a society.

  • Norms develop out of our values.

  • Norms are the expectations, rules of particular behaviors which come out of our everyday life.

Slide 11

Values

  • Norms are particular ways that we act, and prescribed behavior and rules governing our everyday life.

  • With Norms come sanctions, rewards, punishments - you receive approval or disapproval for upholding or violating norms.

Slide 12

Norms

  • Positive and negative sanctions, rewards, or punishments occur that are social consequences if we adhere or violate a norm.

  • Rewards are smiles, claps, hugs, high 5, prize, trophy, money; negative sanctions or punishments are frowns, stares, fists, harsh words…norms become laws!

Slide 13

Norms

  • Regulation of appearance and behavior

  • Define and maintain boundaries

  • Norms support cultural values.

  • Desirable behavior is attached to an actual expectation with social consequences.

Slide 14

Norms

  • There are norms that govern us in everyday life.

  • How do you act at Church? A ballgame? Greeting someone? A rock concert?

Slide 15

Types of Norms

  • Folkways: These are norms that are not strictly enforced, we expect people to comply, but if they don’t we don’t make a big deal about it. Situational: Walking on one side of the sidewalk, going up and down stairs, elevator behavior

  • Customs, habits, commonly accepted practices

Slide 16

Types of Norms

  • Folkways: Usually involve unimportant matters: table manners, accepting your place in line rather than cutting ahead, wearing appropriate clothing.

  • Few restrictions, and mild sanctions.

Slide 17

Types of Norms

  • Mores: Means “manners” in French. Mores are norms that are essential to American Values, close to legalistic.

  • Attitudes from the past, habituated, very little deviation allowed

  • Duties, obligations, common to cultural morality

Slide 18

Types of Norms

  • Mores: The fundamental ideas about what is right/wrong, virtuous and sinful.

  • Important because they involve moral vision based on social cohesion, continuity, and community in human life.

  • Mores eventually become LAWS.

  • Part of social life, not changing.

Slide 19

Mores

  • Strict enforcement, and insistence on conformity, we learn through socialization via our institutions in society.

  • Examples: “prescribed” gender roles; Americans eat beef, not horse, dog, cat; you do not expose your genitals in public

Slide 20

Mores

  • Part of moral behavior which includes the following:

  • not in self interest

  • command/obligation to do right

  • desirable, satisfactory

  • sacred authority

Slide 21

Taboo

  • A taboo is a norm so strongly ingrained that to violate it creates disgust, revulsion, horror - the thought of it makes people sick:

  • Eating human flesh - cannibalism

  • Incest - having sex with relatives

  • Pedophilia - adults having sex with children

Slide 22

Law

  • Laws are norms with strict and formal sanctions, punishments - to violate a law is to violate society itself.

  • Codified, and enforcement is reserved for those in positions of authority.

  • Formal legal codes are necessary to manage relationships in interdependent, self interested, contractual societies.

Slide 23

Laws

  • Criminal law has to do with formal, clear definitions, specialization, and enforcement. Prohibits behaviors such as murder, fraud, desecrating sacred objects or places.

  • Civil law has to do with social relations, disputes, compensation, loss through negligence - example family law.

Slide 24

Laws

  • All societies have some form of law the prohibit certain behaviors.

  • Law comes from mores.

  • Most societies have similar laws and mores, but the rule of sociology is:

  • “One culture’s mores are another group’s folkways, and another group’s laws!”

  • (cultural and ethical relativism)


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