Displaying courses for Spring 2018
Log in to plan your semester and create a list of courses to bring to your adviser.
You may mix and match any of the browse option below.
Entries in grey have reached their registration limit.
|10380||SOCY 102.00||Social Dreamers|
This introductory course for first- and second-year students traces the development of modern social theory from the 17th to the 20th century. It begins by examining the fundamental social institutions and values that characterize modern society and the Enlightenment in the works of Descartes, Locke, Dickens, Weber and J.S. Mill: (1) rise of modern state, political democracy and utilitarianism; (2) market economy, industrialization and economic liberalism; (3) new class system and capitalism; (4) modern personality (self) and individualism; and (5) principles of natural science, technological reason and positivism. The course then turns to the dreams and imagination of Romanticism in the 19th and 20th centuries with its critique of modernity in the works of Marx (socialism), Freud (psychoanalysis), Camus and Schopenhauer (existentialism) and Nietzsche (nihilism). We will outline the development of the distinctive principles and institutions of modernity in the following works: Dickens, Hard Times; Marx, Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844; Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism and Science as a Vocation; Locke, Second Treatise of Government; Mill, On Liberty; Descartes, The Meditations Concerning First Philosophy; Freud, Dora: An Analysis of a Case of Hysteria and Five Lectures on Psychoanalysis; Camus, The Fall; Schopenhauer, The World as Will and Representation; and Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols. Students may take only one introductory-level course. Students are expected to take an introductory-level course to enroll in an area and core courses in sociology. Prerequisite: first-year and sophomore students only. Offered every year.
|MWF||10:10 am-11:00 am|
|Seats filled/limit: 23/24|
|10381||SOCY 103.00||Society and Culture|
This course introduces students to the field of sociology through studying the role of culture in society. We examine the connections between culture and society by following four major sociological traditions, and we combine theoretical discussions with concrete sociological studies. For the conflict tradition, we read Marx's writing on alienation as well as a study about the complex relationship between domestic help and their employers in contemporary America; for the Durkheimian tradition, we discuss Durkheim's view of religion and morality while reading about why women turn to Orthodox Judaism in New York City today; for the utilitarian and rational choice tradition, we discuss rational choice theory by examining a sociological and historical analysis of the rise of early Christianity; for the microinteractionist tradition, we explore the ideas of Goffman and Bourdieu through reading a French sociologist's ethnographic account of training to be a boxer in an African American gym in Chicago. This course helps students develop a sociological imagination, as well as familiarity with research methods and social theory. Students may take only one introductory-level course. Students are expected to take an introductory-level course to enroll in an area and core courses in sociology. Prerequisite: first-year and sophomore students only. Offered every year.
|TR||2:40 pm-4:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 25/25|
|10382||SOCY 107.00||Institutions and Inequalities|
This introductory course will analyze social structures and their impact on the experiences of individuals. We will look at the ways in which social structures construct and constrain reality for individuals and how society and social institutions shape individual values, attitudes and behaviors. The course will examine sociological concepts through an analysis of culture, social inequality, and social institutions. The first portion of the class will focus on understanding culture and how we become social beings. We will then move to an examination of social stratification and inequalities, paying particular attention to the impact of race, class, and gender on the lives of individuals in American society. We will look at recent changes in many social institutions and the impact these changes have had on individuals and society. By the end of the course, you should understand common sociological concepts and perspectives and be able to consider aspects of the social world through the sociological lens. Students may take only one introductory-level course. Students are expected to take an introductory-level course to enroll in area and core courses in sociology. Offered every year.
|MWF||9:10 am-10:00 am|
|Seats filled/limit: 25/25||Permission of Instructor Required|
|10383||SOCY 226.00||Sociology of Law|
This mid-level course examines the social conditions that give rise to law, how changing social conditions affect law and how law affects the society we live in. In the first few weeks, we focus on how classical social theorists -- the so-called founders of sociology -- viewed the law and its relationship to the rapid social change unfolding before their eyes in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In the following several weeks, we explore how social actors such as the environmental, civil rights and free speech movements attempt to use the law, litigation and legal institutions as instruments of social change. Turning this question around, we then look at how legal processes, actors and institutions -- criminal trials, lawyers, and the courts, to name a few -- interact with the media to shape public opinion, protest and collective action. We will also explore the diverse ways individuals experience and interpret the law, and why this matters for understanding how law operates in the real world. In the final weeks of the semester, we probe how broader cultural shifts in American society are radically redefining the role and scope of our legal system. This course counts toward the "institutions and change" requirement for the major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course. Offered every other year.
|MWF||12:10 pm-1:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 10/20|
|10384||SOCY 232.00||Sexual Harassment|
This mid-level seminar provides the opportunity for students to become conversant with the wide range of experiences that may appropriately be called sexual harassment. The course is guided by the principle that sexual harassment is not, as many seem to think, simply a byproduct of sexual desire or misguided attraction. Sexual harassment is about power gaining power or retaining power in institutional settings. We will explore this concept both as legal construction, calling for specific determinants, and as a normative concept that arises in casual conversation and lived experience. This course also satisfies a requirement of the African diaspora studies and law and society concentrations, and it may be counted toward the majors in American studies and women's and gender studies. This course counts toward the "institutions and change" requirement for the major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course, LGLS 110, or permission of instructor. Offered every two years, in rotation with SOCY 231.
|MWF||11:10 am-12:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 20/20|
|10385||SOCY 233.00||Sociology of Food|
This course explores the social world(s) we live in by analyzing what we eat, where it comes from, who produces it, who prepares it and how. In the first few weeks of class, we examine the patterned culinary choices of Americans; how American foodways are differentiated by gender, race/ethnicity, and class; and how political, social and historical forces have shaped these patterns in ways that are not necessarily obvious to the sociologically untrained eye. We then shift our focus away from ourselves and our own sociologically conditioned eating habits to analyze the local, regional and global processes and factors that bring food to our table. A major theme is the greater social and spatial distances our food travels from field, farm or factory to consumers in the United States and in other parts of the western hemisphere, and how these distances complicate and sometimes obscure the unequal power relations at the root of food production and consumption. Our exploration of the global ties that bind consumer and producer ends with a look at how social activists around the world have organized collectively to reduce these distances and inequalities. This course counts toward the "culture and identity" or "institutions and change" requirement for the major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course or permission of instructor. Offered every other year.
|MWF||3:10 pm-4:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 17/20|
|10387||SOCY 238.00||Environmental Sociology|
Environmental sociology embodies a broad, thoughtful application of sociological insights to investigating the ways we shape and are shaped by our surroundings. This course explores through a sociological lens how Western society and more specifically contemporary American society interacts with nature. It frames central questions with regard to differentiating between humans and nature, and explaining how interactions between the two vary, and it engages with current debates over conservation, sustainability, development, and social justice. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology
|TR||9:40 am-11:00 am|
|Seats filled/limit: 16/20|
|10388||SOCY 242.00||Science and Society|
The first part of this mid-level course will examine the underlying philosophical and sociological foundations of modern science and rationality. It will begin by examining the differences between the ancient Greek and medieval views of physics, causality and organic nature, and the modern worldview of natural science in Galileo, Descartes and Newton. We will then turn to the debates within the philosophy of science (Burtt, Popper, Kuhn, Quine, Feyerabend and Rorty) and the sociology of science (Scheler, Ellul, Leiss, Marcuse and Habermas) about the nature of scientific inquiry and the social/political meaning of scientific discoveries. Does science investigate the essential reality of nature, or is it influenced by the wider social relations and practical activities of modern industrial life? Does science reflect the nature of reality or the nature of society? We will deal with the expanded rationalization of modern society: the application of science and technological rationality (efficiency, productivity and functionality) to economic, political and social institutions. We will examine the process of modernization and rationalization in science, labor, politics, the academy and ecology. Finally, we will discuss the debates within the environmental movement between the deep and social ecologists as to the nature and underlying causes of the environmental crisis. Readings will be from T. Kuhn, M. Berman, H. Braverman, E. A. Burtt, M. Horkheimer, C. Lasch, F. Capra, and M. Bookchin. This course counts toward the "culture and identity" requirement for the major and the "culture, societies and environment" requirement for the Environmental Studies major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course.
|MWF||1:10 pm-2:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 13/14|
|10389||SOCY 251.00||Soc. Change, Dictatorship, Dem|
Why are some countries more democratic than others? What effects have industrialization and colonization had on developing world democracies? This course probes those questions from a comparative and sociological perspective. We will explore the relationship between political regimes and socioeconomic factors, like class relations, state-led development, and racial and ethnic tensions. To do so, we will look at the contrasting political and social trajectories of European nations, the United States, East Asia, and Latin America, using historical texts, sociological theory and in-depth case study research. This course counts toward the "institutions and change" requirement for the major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course or permission of instructor.
|TR||1:10 pm-2:30 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 19/20|
|10390||SOCY 262.00||Classical Trad to Contemp Thry|
The purpose of this course is to guide students to draw linkages from classical theory to the formation of contemporary sociological theory. Discussion will be guided by the personal biographies of the theorists: their family background, where they were educated, and what events or persons they were influenced by as they formulated the theories for which they are known. The emphasis is placed upon acquiring breadth of knowledge, rather than depth. For a more comprehensive understanding of many of the theorists discussed in this class, students are directed to SOCY 361 and SOCY 362. This course is not intended for seniors, although it is required for all majors. Students are advised, then, to enroll in this class as soon as they begin to consider majoring in sociology. This course counts toward the "theory" requirement for the major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course. Offered every year.
|WF||8:40 am-10:00 am|
|Seats filled/limit: 19/20|
|10391||SOCY 271.00||Methods of Social Research|
Knowing how to answer a question, including what constitutes good evidence and how to collect it, is a necessary ability for any sociologist, or for any student reading the sociological research of others. Our primary goal will be to learn to understand when and how to use research strategies such as survey questionnaires, interviews, fieldwork and analysis of historical documents. Students will conduct small-scale research projects using these techniques. This course is not intended for seniors, although it is required for all sociology majors. Students are advised, then, to enroll in this class as soon as they begin to consider majoring in sociology. This course counts toward the "methods" requirement for the major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course. Offered every year.
|MWF||10:10 am-11:00 am|
|Seats filled/limit: 15/15||Permission of Instructor Required|
|10392||SOCY 291.01||Special Topic: Languages of Power and Resistance|
Inspiring stories; dog whistles like “looters,” “thugs,” and “Real Americans;” authentic populists and out-of-touch elites; graphic images of torture and the ecstasy of jubilant crowds: these cultural features of our political world stoke our emotions and engage our senses. Do these feelings and experiences exist to manipulate us towards the goals of others? Or do the emotional and sensuous features of politics have power in and of themselves? This course explores culture and politics by looking at the sociological foundations of narratives, coded language, performances, and iconic imagery as they pertain to a variety of political phenomenon. Cases and applications to be explored include populist politics, social movements, civility vs. violence, identity formation, electoral campaigns, and the conduct of war and terrorism. This course counts towards the “culture and identity” requirement for the major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course.
|WF||2:10 pm-3:30 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 10/20|
|10668||SOCY 291.02||Special Topic: Gendered Institutions|
This course addresses how the gendered organization of action within different institutions in American social life shape systems of inequality, identity, violence and power. We will engage theories of gender, organizations and work, including theories of labor market discrimination, gendered power, intersectionality, violence, sexuality and embodiment to untangle and examine the gendered components of work, education and medicine, among other institutions in the contemporary United States. In the course, we will address current issues centered on the gendered nature of these institutions, including the work/family debate, transgender bodies at work, sexual harassment, service work, sex work, sexual assault on campus, incarceration, and gendered healthcare opportunities to illuminate the mechanisms by which systems of inequality around gender inform the action of individuals and groups within organizations and institutions. Students will demonstrate their knowledge through the development of discussion skills, oral debate, critical evaluation of empirical texts, and a major final written project. This course counts toward the “institutions and change” requirement of the major. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course.
|W||7:00 pm-10:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 16/15|
|10393||SOCY 362.00||Contemporary Social Theory|
Social theories offer systematic explanations of human behavior as well as insights into the historical moments in which they were created. In this course we will investigate some of the last century's major theories concerning the nature of society and the human social process. Most of these sociological theories are American in origin, but some new developments in Western European thought will be included as well. Specific theories to be considered include: (1) the functionalist theory of Talcott Parsons; (2) social behaviorism, as articulated by George Herbert Mead; (3) Peter Berger and Thomas Luckmann's sociology of knowledge; (4) the critical theory of Herbert Marcuse; and (5) intersection theory, as developed by Patricia Hill Collins. The consideration of the intellectual and social contexts in which these theoretical traditions have arisen will be central to our analysis throughout. This course will be of value to students interested in developing a systematic approach to understanding society and should be especially relevant to those concentrating in the social sciences. This course counts toward the "theory" requirement for the major. Prerequisite: SOCY 262 or permission of instructor. Offered every year.
|T||7:00 pm-10:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 8/15|
|10674||SOCY 373.00||Qualitative Research Methods|
This course focuses on learning to use qualitative methods to answer questions about social life. We will discuss individual and group interviews, observational techniques, and content analysis of documents and visual images. Students will practice using these techniques by carrying out a semester-long research project using these methods. We also will discuss the "nuts and bolts" of designing a research project, writing research proposals, collecting data, analyzing data and writing up qualitative research. Finally, we will contextualize this practical instruction with discussions of research ethics, issues of reliability and validity in qualitative research, the relationship between qualitative methods and theory-building, and the place of qualitative methods in the discipline of sociology. This course counts toward the "methods" requirement for the major. Prerequisite: sophomore standing and SOCY 271 or LGLS 371 or permission of instructor. Offered every two years.
|TR||2:40 pm-4:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 10/15|
|10395||SOCY 491.01||Special Topic: Queer Theory|
Queer theory attempts to understand social identity categories, institutions, and ideologies as they are created, maintained, and regulated across social contexts and institutions. In doing so, the field pays particular attention to the genealogy of their construction and the potential for their deconstruction. This course introduces students to foundational texts in queer theory, the development of the field, and the contemporary expansion, contestation, and empirical application of its concepts. While the course is primarily situated in scholarly conversations surrounding gender, sexuality, and desire, we will also engage queer theoretical interventions in race, crime, emotion, health and ability. Prerequisite: junior standing or permission of instructor.
|M||1:10 pm-4:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 6/15|
|10733||SOCY 491.02||Special Topic: What's in the Pipeline? The Sociology of Contemporary Energy Systems|
Students will explore current controversies in energy, awarding particular attention to debates around issues of sustainability and renewable energy through the lenses of environmental sociology, the sociology of science and technology, the sociology of culture and consumerism, and political sociology. In particular, the course engages with new and recent critical scholarship on globalization and the state, energy transitions, the risk society, consumption and consumerism and environmental justice. We will address several questions, including: Which social structures influence development and planning for renewable energy? Where is contemporary energy governance takings us? Who are the actors that initiate, frame and sustain our energy conversations? To what extent do our conversations take account of concerns for marginalized populations, ecological systems and future inhabitants of earth? Students will execute research papers on energy discourses related to a specific technology, or unfolding in a region or political domain of their choice. Prerequisite: 100-level sociology course and permission of instructor.
|M||7:00 pm-10:00 pm|
|Seats filled/limit: 2/15||Permission of Instructor Required|
|10396||SOCY 498.00||Senior Honors|
See the course description for SOCY 497.
|Seats filled/limit: 0/5|