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What is Sociology Essay Example

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What is Sociology

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In some cases, differences in the culture are very steep, and an example is the treatment of women in western nations with a Christian or western culture and that of Islamic culture. In the western culture, women have an equal role in the society, they can dress in the manner in which they want, while in Islamic cultures, women have to wear the Burqua, and conduct themselves in a special and restrictive manner. Sociology does not judge if a culture is bad or good, but examines the manner in which individuals behave, interact in a culture (Stolte 388).Stratification and inequality: Stratification is the hierarchical arrangement of people into different social classes, based on their wealth, religion, cultural, race, color, language, history, and other criteria. Society is arranged as per three classes, and these are upper class, middle class and lower class. There can be further divisions, based on the occupation, and other stratification criteria. The theory of structural functionalism, suggests that such stratification helps individuals to live among people of the same culture and background, so that they can earn a living, and live in the society in peace. Conflict theories on the other hand, suggest that a class struggle always exists in the stratified society with the upper class, the rich, and the educated, looking down on the lower class of people. The conflict theory points that mobility between the classes is difficult. However, there are several instances when the children of laborers and dockworkers have risen to positions of eminence or built business empires. Some examples are Mrs. Thatcher, the late prime minister of UK whose father was a baker, and Walton, who initially sold grocers and old clothes on a handcart and who later on went on to build Wal-Mart. History has hundreds of such people who rose from an improvised background to attain fame and wealth. Generally, stratification and inequality emerges from three variables, property, since it establishes a persons economic wealth and position in the society; prestige, and this is obtained by popularity, and wealth and power, where an individual accrues power by winning elections or by other means (Giddens 56-67).The study of sociology based on stratification and inequality is very important, since it helps the government to identify socially

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References

Earl, Babbie. The Practice of Social Research, 10th edition. Wadsworth: Thomson Learning Inc. 2003. Print.

Giddens, Anthony. Sociology, 5th edition. Cambridge: Polity. 2006. Print.

Mitchell, Geoffrey. A Hundred Years of Sociology: A Concise History of the Major Figures, Ideas, and Schools of Sociological Thought. New Jersey: Transaction Publishers. 2007. Print.

Seybold, Kevin. "The Role of Religion and Spirituality in Mental and Physical Health". Current Directions in Psychological Science, 10. 1 (2001): 21–24.

Stolte, John. "Sociological miniaturism: seeing the big through the small in social psychology". Annual Review of Sociology, 27 (2001): 387–413.

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