Sociological Imagination

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People often blame themselves for crisis in their lives such as the loss of job or dropping out of school. How would a sociological imagination help them understand the larger social forces influencing these events? The sociological imagination helps us see that often times we are not usually in control of the major events in our life. It teaches us to look at the bigger picture when analyzing our problems. In many cases it is our culture that shapes the happenings in our life. Our culture influences everything in our lives: how we learn; what we talk about, why we think a certain way, etc… If someone is blaming themselves for the loss of a job, they might be able to use a sociological imagination to understand why they aren't completely responsible. There are endless possibilities of things that could contribute to the loss of a job. Most often people lose jobs because of a lower demand for the product their company makes. This is usually out of their control. Our American culture has evolved to demand high wages and benefits which results in many jobs being shipped over to other countries where people are willing and able to work for less due to their environment. Even if a person is too incompetent and is fired, it might be that the individual was not offered a good enough education where they grew up or maybe their parent was an abusive alcoholic which deprived them of the opportunity to concentrate on school. The possibilities are endless. If a person is blaming themselves for dropping out of school, they might use a sociological imagination to see that they grew up in a family where dropping out was the norm. Or that the friends that they grew up with all dropped out of school. They might have been teased or harassed so badly for being different that they dropped out of school. I know some people that dropped out of school and their parents never really influenced them to do any different. For me dropping out would not be an option really because...
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