Sociologuy

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The Sociological Perspective: Assignment One

Sociology is more than describing the culture, norms, religions, and beliefs of individual societies. The intent of those who study sociology is not to change or convert foreign ways of life, but to wonder, question, understand and appreciate the unfamiliar. Sociologists yearn for discovery and are intrigued by the notion that things are not what they seem. In Peter Berger’s article, Invitation to Sociology, he suggests that the obscure ways of life exist closer than realized. Traveling is not necessary to experience new and underlying mechanisms of social structures. Berger writes, “ the experience of sociological discovery could be described as “culture shock” minus the geographical displacement” (Berger, 6). Culture shock usually refers to the impact of a totally new culture upon a newcomer (Berger, 6). The process of debunking the seemingly normal, repetitive, and mundane aspects of ones life leads to shock about ones own culture. By exploring the familiar and native surroundings, the many layers and meanings of previously considered axiomatic truths are revealed. The sociological perspective requires looking beyond the officially defined goals of human action, and recognizing that social reality is far more complex than flawed self-evident truths. Social reality consists of multiple layers, layers that must be peeled away.

Everyday I witness at least one woman wearing high-heeled shoes. Some women I see exude confidence while strutting in five-inch heels. Other women, including myself, display consciously discreet fear while praying they don’t trip, fall, or break something while wearing heels. Embracing my new sociological perspective, I started to question the taken-for-granted practice of using high-heeled shoes. Why do women subject themselves to the physical pain and restraint of walking on their toes, which are squished into uncomfortable material? Why don’t men wear high-heels? Who and what in social...
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