Dr. Ho Hon Leung
3 October 2012
SOCL 250 – 01
What is social change? Harper and Leicht’s definition from their popular textbook, Exploring Social Changes, states it as “the significant alteration in social structure and cultural patterns through time.” In layman’s terms, when things occur in ones society, the people in that society change because of that thing / event. We as a society need to take more notice of the things changing around us. While observing the rapidly changing society around us, we need to take note of how it impacts us. With the pace our society is developing at, it is hard not to look at it from an external point of view and wonder how we got to where we are now from ten or twenty years ago. Social researchers study various aspects of sociology, including social change for numerous reasons, some of which include witnessing how social changes that occur on the local and national level impacts the society on the national and global level respectively, and how social change would impact preceding, present and future generations alike.
Social change can impact anyone on any level of society. Something as small as creating awareness can have a huge impact on a national level. Some of the general public might call this “The Butterfly Effect” where if you get enough people to help with your cause, you can create change in the world. For example, gay marriage: what is gay marriage, what does it stand for, and why are so many against it? The issue of gay marriage has been in American society for several of decades, if not centuries. Recently in the last 5 years, the issue has been mainstreamed with different movements ranging from “Prop 8”, to the media aspect of it with artists and activists such as Lady Gaga, Janet Jackson and Madonna. This issue has gotten so much public spotlight because of these media influences, and this is just a miniscule aspect of social change. What happens when the social change...
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