SOCI 101S 01&02 Introduction to Sociology
This course will serve as a foundation for the development of the sociological perspective. Our goal is to understand society, and, in doing this, we will apply sociological concepts, theories, and methodologies to a broad array of important social issues. Sociology is a discipline that promotes a broad understanding and appreciation of the structures and processes that constitute social order and contribute to social change. It informs us about the forces that impinge on our private experiences while also providing insight into how those experiences are linked to the existence and maintenance of social institutions and society as a whole. Institutions and the issues of race, ethnicity, and other dimensions of inequality within social structures are analyzed in the context of multicultural societies and increasing global interaction. Basic sociological principles and research findings are used to support the analyses of social issues. Throughout this course, the development of analytical thinking skills will be emphasized as we explore systematically and critically how individuals, institutions, culture, and social structure interact to shape society and human behavior. These sections of Sociology 101 will have a lecture and discussion format. Grades will be based on three examinations, an essay, and several graded activities.
SOCI 101S 03 Introduction to Sociology
This introductory course in sociology will serve as an overview of the field, emphasizing the social construction of human reality and the social structural forces underlying human social interaction, social problems and conflict. Special focuses will be given to issues of social stratification and oppression. Sociological theory and concepts will be presented through readings, lectures, exercises, films, and discussions.
SOCI 110C/S 01&02 Cultural Anthropology
Pre-requisites : None
This course introduces students to key concepts, methods, and approaches in cultural anthropology. Topics addressed include culture theory, fieldwork, language, ethnicity, tourism, media, popular culture, globalization, gender relations, social change, war, peace, development, and religion, among others. As this list suggests, anthropology is a discipline that draws on many other fields, and our course readings reflect that cross-disciplinarity. A special focus on indigenous peoples of the world and humans rights issues will be explored. Course will include some opportunities to participate in applied anthropology projects and research. Ethnographic setting explored in this class range from the contemporary United States to Africa, Latin America, Asia, and Europe.
SOCI 201S/LANG230 01 Language and Society
This course will look at language as it creates and responds to its cultural and social environments. Our main focus will be on the variation in one language, which results from different social statuses and purposes. We will seek to explain as well as describe such facts. Why do regional varieties of U.S. English continue to exist after years of mass media influence? Why does one variety of a languge gain and maintain great prestige (the so-called standard variety)? Why are we prejudiced against some varieties of language, and what reasons do we offer for those prejudices? Why do men and women speak differently? Is English a sexist language? If so, what linguistics facts support such an interpretation?
These are some of the questions we will be asking in this course. We will focus on language variation in English but will also read some articles on Japanese language variation to see if these variation patterns hold among different languages.
SOCI 201 02 Topics in Sociology. Social Movements
2 Credits (First half semester)
From labor protests in the era of industrialization through civil rights, womenâ€™s and GLBT movements today, social movements have shaped the culture we live in. This course will explore major social movements using sociological approaches. We will ask how social movement patterns have adapted as societies move from industrial to post-industrial conditions. (Can we have a virtual social movement on the Internet?) Special attention will be given to patterns of mobilization and techniques for success.
SOCI 250S 01 & 02 Sociology of Deviance
Sex, violence, insanity, fear and loathing! This course focuses on public perceptions and responses to behavior that is considered a violation of societal rules. Sociological theory, research, and case examples will be employed to help the student understand the causes and consequences of a variety of behaviors labeled as deviant. The emphasis will be on examining the patterns of interaction within which deviant behavior emerges, the impact of certain types of deviance on others, as well as attempts to prevent or reduce these behaviors by agents of social control. Of paramount concern will be our effort to understand the meaning of deviant behavior from the perspective of both the deviant actors and the audience that expresses disapproval.
SOCI 277 C/R 1W & 2W Islam and Islamic Societies
This course will provide a broad introduction to the religion of Islam, accompanied by an examination of the connections between Islam and the varied life of Muslim societies and of Muslim minority communities in non-Muslim societies. Given the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the Westâ€™s military reprisals and subsequent reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan, the war in Iraq, the ongoing struggle of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the devastation of the 2004 tsunami in Indonesia and elsewhere in the Indian Ocean basin, and other problem situations, knowledge of these issues has become of highest priority. We will seek to understand the complex sources of conflict in areas in which Islam is implicated in some way; we will also try to become acquainted with the rich cultural life of Muslims. We will consider Muslim societies all over the world, but, in support of the minor in Africana Studies, we will give a special emphasis to Islam in Africa and to African American Islam.
Course format: lecture/seminar, with much group discussion. Graded Requirements: A variety of writing exercises throughout the term, oral presentations, examinations and a term project. This course is Writing Intensive (W) and can be taken for either "C" or "R" credit in General Education. Prerequisite: None.
SOCI 280S 01&02 Animals and Society
Increasingly, social scientists are focusing on the ethical, environmental and social consequences of human treatment of other animals. This course will examine how human societies have viewed and treated other animals and how the interactions and the structure of the relationship between humans and other animals affect both those animals and human social organization. For example, some scholars argue that cultural practices that define and use nonhuman animals as food contribute significantly to various forms of environmental devastation. Human health research indicates that high rates of heart disease and cancer in many cultures can be attributed to the consumption of animals. Others suggest that human perception and treatment of nonhuman animals are related in significant ways to such enduring problems as racism, sexism and violence against vulnerable groups of people. This course will examine the causes of human exploitation of other animals and the issues that frame the animal rights debate.
SOCI 301 01 Special Topics. Eastern Orthodoxy: Tradition Meets
2 Credits (Second half semester) Modernity and Globalization
Pre-requisites: 3 Credits in SOCI or RELI or RCEP
Over 250 million people are part of the community of Eastern Orthodox believers, but most Americans know very little about this major branch of Christianity. Greece, Russia, Romania, Serbia, and many other countries have majority populations who are Orthodox, and groups of Orthodox faithful are found in most countries around the globe. There are more than 4 million Orthodox Christians in the United States.
If you would like to learn more about the history and sociological dimensions of this great faith tradition, consider taking this two-credit half-semester course on Eastern Orthodoxy during the second half of Spring Semester.
Note: As part of this course, we will attend the midnight service for Easter in an Orthodox Church. The date for Eastern Orthodox Easter in 2009 is April 19.
SOCI 301W 02 African American Philosophy
Pre-requisites: One prior course in Sociology or permission of instructor
African American Philosophy has been described as "philosophy born of struggle." This course will think about the role of struggle in relation to the formation of a philosophical perspective. We will study important works in African American philosophy, from its beginnings with W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington through to contemporary philosophers such as Lucius Outlaw, bell hooks, Leonard Harris, Tommy Lott, Charles Mills, Adrian Piper, and Patricia Hill Collins. We will study also study how African American philosophers have engaged with traditional philosophical areas such as ethics, epistemology, social justice, identity, and aesthetics by engaging mainstream philosophy and by developing their own theoretical frameworks. The course is writing intensive and will consist of weekly quizzes, book reviews, presentations, and a final paper.
SOCI 307 1Z Research Methods
Pre-requisites: SOCI 101S or SOCI 110C/S and minimum math placement 23 and
a stats class. Note: Stats may be taken concurrently with SOCI 307.
This course will introduce students to the design and implementation of various social science research methods. The course examines every phase of the research process including the development of testable research questions, integration of theory into the empirical process, choosing effective methods for study, and various techniques for collecting, analyzing, interpreting, and reporting data. Students will construct and implement research designs using various quantitative and qualitative methods, primarily in preparation for the completion of their independent senior thesis project. This is a required course for sociology majors.
SOCI 340 1W Sociology of Religion
Pre-requisites: One prior course in Sociology
Religion exists in two realms, the spiritual (or supernatural) and the human (or mundane). As social scientists, we do not presume to analyze the supernatural realm, but we try to apply our methods and perspectives to understand the human, social side of religion.
Investigation of the social side of religion involves examining the organization of religious groups, their cultural settings, their political and economic correlates, and their capabilities as agents of social change. In general, we examine the interrelations between religion and other institutions of society.
In addition, the social scientific study of religion focuses attention upon the mechanisms by which particular religious groups seek to stimulate and sustain the religious impulse and to channel it into the favored mode of expression. Sociologists of religion are interested in how religion contributes to the values of culture and assists in their creation, invigoration, alteration, and demise. We ask both: how does religion influence society? and how does society influence religion?
Course requirements include field visits to local religious institutions, oral presentations, several short papers and three examinations. This course is writing intensive.