Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Will we ever come to a point where men and women are physically equal in terms of strength, speed, and size, given the basic evolutionary and biological differences which distinguish men and women?
Monday, February 23, 2009
What similarities do you see between W. E. B. Du Bois and President Barak Obama?
King, M. L. (1968). “I have a dream” address delivered at the march on Washington for jobs and Freedom. (August 28, 1963). http://www.stanford.edu/group/King/publications/speeches/address_at_march_on_washington.pdf. Accessed: February 22, 2009.
New York Times. 2009. Barak Obama’s Inaugural Address. (January 20, 2009). http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/20/us/politics/20text-obama.html. Accessed: February 22, 2009.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
“The individual possesses a self only in relation to the selves of the other members of his social group; and the structure of his self expresses or reflects the general behavior pattern of his social group to which he belongs, just as does the structure of the self of every other individual belonging to this social group.” (Mead, 1934 as cited in Appelrouth & Edles, 2008, p. 343)
Thus, Mead’s theory suggests that structural conditions are not directly involved with the formation of self; on the contrary, that the self only is formed through the continuous relationship within individuals who do not suffer the influence of the social structure they live in. This vision makes it difficult to analyze the pressure that the social structures, such as government systems or religious beliefs, play in the formation of the self. Furthermore, his assumptions would lead one to consider that structural social factors and global political interests are not relevant in the construction of societies.
Have religion, politic, or media a role to play in the formation of the self?
Monday, February 16, 2009
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Allan,K. 2007. The Social Lens: An Invitation to Social and Sociological Theory.
Thousand Oaks, CA: Pine Forge Press.
Can charismatic leaders change traditional or rational-legal authority only with their wonderful skills or do they need support from their people?
Monday, February 9, 2009
Sunday, February 8, 2009
The results of the Becker and Woessmann study (2007) show firstly that Weber was right; Protestants areas were more affluent in 19th century Prussia than Catholic areas. However, secondly, the study shows that it is the acquisition of literacy that accounts for the higher prosperity of Protestants, rather than work ethic and thriftiness. Regarding the issue of whether there is a relationship between religious domination and economic success, Becker and Woessmann (2007) are inconclusive, and assert that this is a difficult question to determine since the spread of Protestantism, and with it, literacy, came centuries before our time of observation, and individuals’ work ethics could have had many different influences (Becker and Woessmann, 2007).
How have work ethics from different cultures affected the Protestant Work Ethic?
Becker, S. O., and Woessmann, L. (2007). Was Weber Wrong? A Human Capital Theory of Protestant Economic History. Department of Economics, University of Munich. [Discussion Paper]. Retrieved from: http://www.hks.harvard.edu/pepg/PDF/Papers/ PEPG07-04_Becker_Woessmann.pdf. Accessed: February 7, 2009.
Faber, R. (1998). Martin Luther on Reformed Education. Retrieved from: http://www.spindleworks.com/ Library/rfaber/luther_edu.htm. Accessed: February 8, 2009.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
Because social systems are a form of bureaucratic administration, any social system put in place makes overall change harder to enact. Because of this, any imperfect form of socialism put in place will be nearly or perhaps completely impossible to change without a total failure of the system itself.
Socialism, therefore, can only be successfully implemented in one single motion; the entire system must be set up basically overnight before the system congeals, so to speak. It also will not be able to change in response to new situations once the system has been formed.
Based on this rationale, is a true socialistic system even possible? I have heard it said that we have never seen true communism, and that the communism of Lenin, Stalin, and Mao, are imperfect expressions of communism. But perhaps true communism is not possible, and all that is possible are imperfect systems that cannot then be improved upon?
Durkheim’s ideas of religion help to clarify its formation, but his ideas are incomplete because he does not consider how and why religions, after their formation, have been used and perpetuated. Although Durkheim’s gives a fair explanation of the formation of the sacred and in consequence the formation of religion, he is not taking into account Marx’s idea of religion as a domination tool. Furthermore, he considers that religion and society are linked tightly to one another, “If religion has given birth to all that is essential in society, it is because the idea of society is the soul of the religion” (Appelrouth & Edles 138). Thus, he is establishing a strong link between both religion and society. Durkheim’s concept of religion implies a power that is generated almost inherently from the collective experience. Those ideas are remarkably explicit when he explains the connection between rituals, symbols, and the sacred, “Rituals create high levels of emotional energy that come to be invested in symbols; such symbols are then seen as sacred, regardless of the meaning of the truth-value of the beliefs associated with the symbol” (Allan 85). In Durkheim’s theory, religion occurs as the natural outcome of living in community. He is emphasizing the idea that religions are formed from the people that join in a collective. Durkheim’s theory is naïve since is not taking into account the role that elites’ interests play in the support of certain religious pursues. Is religion a natural product of society or it is a tool of oppression?
Allan, Kenneth. The Social Lens: An Invitation to Social and Sociological Theory.
Appelrouth Scott & Edles Laura. Clasical and Contemporary Sociological Theory.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Sunday, February 1, 2009
However, as populations grow, their membership tends to become increasingly less similar, more diverse & "specialized in labor." This occurs as individuals work at "impersonal [selfish] companies" doing evermore efficient but mundane & unfulfilling jobs. This "specialized division of labor causes less self-reliance of people, and more dependence on govenment & society for the means of survival.