Personal Sociology

Personal Sociology

Personal Sociology

Personal Sociology

Synopsis

Acknowledgments Introduction by Paul C. Higgins It's Good for 'Em: Object Lessons in Youth Sports by Jeffrey E. Nash Social Roles and Interaction by Louis A. Zurcher Growing Up Among Ghetto Dwellers by Stanford M. Lyman The Sociologist as Stranger: The Power Games of Race Relations by John H. Stanfield II Battered Flesh and Shackled Souls: Patriarchal Control of Women by Kathleen J. Ferraro Rationality and Practical Reasoning in Human Service Organization by Jaber F. Gubrium Work and Self by Jeffrey W. Riemer Political Activist as Participant Observer: Conflicts of Commitment in a Study of the Draft Resistance Movement of the 1960s by Barrie Thorne Bibliography Index About the Contributors

Excerpt

Paul C. Higgins

Art "comes from the life of the artist -- out of his own life, his own environment."

David Smith Painter, sculptor, draftsman

You and I create the social world in which we live. Through our thoughts and actions, both individually and collectively, we develop and give meaning to the practices and products which constitute our world. In starring roles and in bit parts, on important stages and makeshift platforms, and before appreciative audiences and those who leave early, we "perform" the dramas of our lives. Without our involvement, whether it be willing or reluctant, recognized by us or not, the dramas of family, education, politics, community, religion, art, work, athletics, love, hate, friendship, growing up, growing old, and so much more, which constitute the social world, would not be possible. Yet, while we create that social world, we are also constrained by it. Social worlds created by others (and ourselves) in the past, the present, and in anticipation of the future set the stage upon which we act. And our own actions become part of the social world with which we must further contend. Therefore, while the dramas of life are not nearly so scripted as are plays, the actors do not perform those dramas anew. Instead, given the conventions of their times -- the scenery, props, costumes, scripts, and such -- the actors create and recreate the dramas of life and, in doing so, transform those conventions and themselves.

Sociology seeks to understand that creation, constraint, and transformation. Yet, ironically, almost incredibly, sociology has been increasingly . . .

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