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Sociology essay and term paper samples

"How the two sides of Dorothy Smith's sociology pull and tug at each other explains a great deal about the professional sociology against which Smith wants to rebel without leaving sociology altogether. In our day, feminist sociology, though it was significantly invented within sociology, has become a critic of sociology. Feminism's complaint against sociology is that sociology has paid too little attention to the secret differences of women's experience from men's. Or, by evident implication, her complaint is that in sociology it is men's experience that is measured as though it were the universal human experience. Yet, as we see from Smith's account, her attempts to cook sociological data in a better way do not necessarily result in a measurement."

"Though he does not state it in so many words, what distinguishes the sociologist from the natural person is that the former is more aware of the interpretative nature of social discourse. The sociologist's job is to describe and explain the meanings of social life. This is obviously done with a great deal of caution. As a result, much of Blumer's writing reads like a general philosophy of social life. This is a requirement of a sociology trying to speak another's language. Whoever attempts to speak a foreign language is required, by the uncertainty, constantly to explain what he is saying. Therefore Blumer's texts seldom lack a philosophical introduction. He wants everyone to know that he is not speaking native sociology that he is speaking the language of the social world."

"Despite the contradictions inherent in the use of Marx, the simple message absorbed in the 1960s was that sociology was radical because it was Marxist. But this begs the question of whether Marx was a radical, a word notoriously difficult to define. Its obvious botanical meaning tends to confuse - certainly if the metaphor is pushed too far. Raymond Williams, as so often, is provocative rather than prescriptive. However in this case he is useful in uncovering a contradictory shift in interpretation, which parallels one I think I discern in sociology In the early 19th century, "Radical is a word in very bad odor here being used to denote a set of blackguards," and "the term Radical, once employed as a name of low reproach, has found its way into high places, and is gone forth as the title of a class, who glory in their designation," but, as Williams notes, "the word then had a curious subsequent history, and was by the second half of the 19th century almost as respectable as liberal."

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