Sociology and Ordinary Everyday Lives

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The major goal of this assignment is to encourage you to develop your sociological imagination and use it to examine you “ordinary” everyday lives. In doing so, you will be able to see the broader patterns organizing your own experiences. Rather than studying sociology as just another subject, the learning objective here is to work as apprentices of sociology. To do this successfully, you must draw on sociological concepts and theories, and ultimately “do sociology.” This assignment gives you the opportunity to use sociology to make sense of your everyday life. For this assignment, use the following “stem” (sentence starter) and write a 2-3 page essay describing how sociology can help you make sense of your social environment. This phrase should be included at the beginning of your essay: “All of the sudden I found myself thinking sociologically when I…” Your essay may be about an experience you participated in, an event you attend, a interaction you saw from a distance, a movie or tv show you watched, etc. Anything you wish to analyze is fair game.

The key to this assignment is to draw on important concepts from the class. The following questions will help to get you started. (not all question may be applicable to your particular paper). You should have AT LEAST 5 Concepts. Where are you? Who is there? What activity is taking place? What social groups do the people belong to (e.g., race, gender, age, etc). Who is doing what with whom or to whom? Why are people there (by choice, force, need, etc)? What do you see going on here sociologically? How are people interacting? How are people reacting to each other? Which course readings/materials, can be used to make sense of these observations? Which course readings, theories, films, discussion, etc apply to these observations? How can you relate this specific experience to larger patterns of interaction? What questions need to be asked to deepen your interpretations?...
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