Spring/Summer Course Guide

Courses in Sociology (Division 482)

Spring

Summer

Spring/Summer

Spring Half-Term, 1998 (May 5-June 23, 1998)

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Introductory Courses

100. Principles of Sociology. Open to first- and second-year students. Juniors are strongly encouraged to enroll in Soc. 400. Seniors must elect Soc. 400. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in 195 or 400. No credit for seniors. (3). (SS).
Section 101 Introduction to Sociology through the Study of Genocide.
The primary aim of this course will be to understand the precursors to and conditions under which genocide occurs. The course will be structured around several orienting questions: What is genocide?; In what ways has the term, "holocaust" been adopted to address many of the atrocities committed against humans in modern society? What is the role of hatred, race, gender, religion, and, most importantly, POLITICS in the commission of genocide? What makes some nations remain quiet while others try to help those in imminent danger? In what ways does the media perpetuate stereotypes and prejudices that inhibit aid? The course will begin with an investigation into the sociological relationship between politics and aggression and will delve deeply into the definition of genocide in several international realms, including Burundi, Iraq, Israel, North America, Sri Lanka, Germany (the Nazi Holocaust), Armenia, and South Africa. We will consider the roles of religion ,race, culture, and gender in instigation and perpetuation of genocidal activities. The second half the course will be devoted to the nomenclature associated with genocide, focusing specifically on the use of the term "holocaust". The course will culminate with an examination of the victims of genocide and the politics of remembrance. (Greene)
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202. Contemporary Social Issues I. (3). (Excl). Credit is granted for a combined total of eight credits elected through Soc. 102, 202, 203, and 401, provided that the course topics are different.
Historically the question of culture and history has been at the center of research on Black family life shedding light on such issues as the influence of African culture, Black families in slavery, and Black family structures. These themes continue to define contemporary work, however, the current context of this work has led to important theoretical developments and methodological transitions. The political push for "a return to family values", welfare reform and marriage rates among Blacks have incited work on single parent households, the role of Black men in families, male/female relationships and adaptive family strategies. This course aims to focus on these, and other, recent trends in Black family research. The goals of this course is to examine critically some of the literature published in the last five years in order to situate them theoretically and methodologically in the field. This course will attempt to address such questions as: How has sociological research on Black families changed in the last 20 years? What gaps have the recent literature filled? What issues do the recent literature leave unresolved? Although there is a strong contemporary emphasis in the course, the aim is to draw connections to classic research and the social-historical context. (Brown)
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For Undergraduates Only

303/CAAS 303. Race and Ethnic Relations. An introductory course in sociology or CAAS. (3). (SS). (R&E).
What do Benjamin Franklin and David Duke have in common? Would you identify Dean Cain or Keanu Reeves as a person of color? Is there a difference between race and ethnicity? Why is the American society so fascinated with race and issues around race? Does race really matter, and if so, in what ways? Race is continuously defined as a category that is concrete and essential as well as conceptual and contextual; through historical experiences of people of color in the U.S., as well as contemporary issues and debates, this course will examine the role that the social construction of race has played, and continues to play, in shaping and organizing our society, structure, institutions, identities, and everyday lives. (Kim)
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304/Amer. Cult. 304. American Immigration. (3). (SS).
Almost everyone in the U.S. today is either an immigrant or a descendant of immigrants a fact often forgotten in contemporary battles over immigration policy. In this course we will explore the experiences of various immigrant groups, including those from Europe, Africa, Asia, and South America. We will also examine the impact of immigrants on the U.S. both historically (e.g., the impact on Native Americans) and in the contemporary period. We will pay particular attention to the historical context in which immigrant groups entered America and what that context, as well as the resources they brought with them, meant to their success (or lack thereof). In addition, we will discuss current immigration controversies including California's Proposition 187, English-only laws, debates over what immigration and refugee policy should be, and inter-ethnic conflict. Discussion will be an integral part of the course and will be worth 20% of the final grade. Other course requirements: in-class midterm (20%), research paper (30%), and in-class final exam (30%). (Honeycutt)
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For Undergraduates and Graduates

415. Economic Sociology. One of the following: introductory economics, psychology, or political science. (3). (Excl).
Economic sociology is concerned with the social basis of economic behavior. It is one of the newest and most vibrant areas of sociology. While the field is in its infancy, some of the most interesting work in the social sciences is done by sociologists and economists who work at the intersection of the two fields. One goal of this course is to survey the literature that already exists and to develop a systematic conception of this developing field. We shall begin the course with a discussion of the differences between sociological and economic approaches, followed by samples of the classic works in both fields. We shall then discuss the rise of large corporations, focusing on both sociological and economic explanations. In the next unit, we shall examine the internal workings of the firm, business, and society and then move toward macro-level discussions of the relationship between business and society. Finally, we shall use economic sociology to address some social problems, such as ecological degradation. Other topics covered n the course include such issues as corporate control; the social meaning of money, production, and financial markets; mergers and divestitures; the role of national cultures in shaping economic behavior; and fundamental questions about the distribution of wealth and income, particularly in the context of trade globalization. (De Gannes)
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460. Social Change. (3). (Excl).
This course offers a critical look at political insurgencies in the Americas. We will study various 20th century social movements, including the Civil Rights Movement in the US and the Latin American Women's Movement. Our project will be to explore the how and why of social movement mobilization. How did people become movement activists? How successful were these movements? Why did people join the movement? These questions will guide lecture, class discussion, and writing assignments. The texts will include biographies of movement participants, scholarly journal articles, video news footage and film documentaries. Students will write weekly memos organized around an assigned question or topic. Two midterms and a final exam will test understanding of concepts, terms, and theories presented in the course. (Deerman)
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467. Juvenile Delinquency. (3). (Excl).
This course is an introduction to the sociological analysis of juvenile delinquency, a multi-dimensional social problem. Emphasizing a structurally-situated life course approach, the course explores the sociological origins of "delinquency", the politics of "punishment" and historical development of the American juvenile justice system, and the problem of recidivism among former youthful offenders. Throughout the course we will examine and discuss key theoretical contributions, empirical studies, juvenile offender biographies, and artifacts of popular culture which can enhance our understanding of these and other related issues. The objective of this course is to provide students with an opportunity to develop their "sociological imaginations" and critical thinking skills in the process of exploring the complexity of juvenile delinquency and juvenile justice. (Ward)
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447/WS 447. Sociology of Gender. (3). (SS).
This course examines social inequalities based on gender. It addresses competing theories of sex and gender, as well as explanations of gender inequality. We will study women's and men's experiences of unequal gender relations by focusing on several cites of gender inequality, including the family, the workplace, interpersonal relations, and the state. The course explores the way gender is socially constructed, as well as the extent to which other social categories such as class, race, and sexuality shape the meaning of gender. Throughout the course we ask critical questions of the scholarship we study and attempt to understand what is unique about sociological interpretations of gender. (Cunningham)
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463/Comm. 485. Mass Communication and Public Opinion. Comm. Studies 361 or 381 strongly recommended. (3). (SS).
The term "inequality" is used often, and with many different meanings behind it. In this course we will explore various forms of this phenomenon in the social world. Obviously this must begin by attempting to define what we mean by "social inequality". Who is unequal to whom? Is inequality measured economically? Is it about power? How do we measure that power?

The first half of the term will be devoted to trying to understand three traditional indicators of social inequality: race, class, and gender. We will start by discussing something of which we all have fairly strong opinions: race. Some believe that racial inequality does not exist in the US. Others believe it is only found in isolated events. Still other thinks it exists, but is the fault of those at the bottom. And a multitude of other opinions exists as well. We will take a few of these views, dissect them, then hold them up to the light and see if they have any guts. Next, we will problematize what we have found by looking at issues of class (or, if you will, socio-economics status {SES}. Then further problematize the whole thing by throwing gender into the mix.

The middle week of the term (week 4). We will be visited by some locked-out strikers from the Detroit Free Press and News to discuss inequality as it applies to the workplace.

The second half of the course is devoted to looking at the extreme complexity of the "race, class, gender" Holy Trinity, both in the US and elsewhere, and how issues of Nationalism, Nativism, Ethnicity, and Traditionalism further complete the issues. Every week we will view a full-length feature film (except week 4) and use it as a launching point for discussing the reading. (Fink)
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468. Criminology. (3). (SS).
This course will be organized around the following themes: (1) how do legal and sociological definitions of crime differ? (2) How do race, class, and gender shape the criminal justice system; (3) What are the main theoretical traditions by which criminologists understand why people commit crimes?; (4) How can we evaluate recent crime policies, such as mandatory minimum sentencing, "three strikes and you're out", the "War on Drugs", the death penalty, sentencing juveniles as adults, and community-oriented policing? The class will mix lectures, discussion of readings, analysis of FBI crime statistics, and student presentations (debates, comments on films, and comments on DPS ride-along). (Wright)
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475/MCO 475 (Public Health). Introduction to Medical Sociology. (3). (SS).
This course will explore social aspects of health, illness, and the health care system in American society. We will examine such issues as the social causation of disease, relationships between doctors and patients, the health professions, health care among women and the poor, and the current health care crisis. (Murphy)
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Summer Half-Term, 1998 (June 29-August 18, 1998)

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Introductory Courses

101. Person and Society: An Introduction to Sociology Through Social Psychology. Open to first- and second-year students. Juniors are strongly encouraged and seniors must take Soc. 400 or 401. No credit for seniors. (3). (SS).
This course is designed to give you an introductory overview of the social psychological perspective within sociology. In the first part of the course, we will discuss the different theories and concepts for understanding the nature and causes of human behavior, social interaction, and the relationship between individuals and society. The latter part of the course will focus more closely on how social-structural forces like race, culture, class, and gender influence a person's attitudes, behavior, sense of self, and social interactions. The general format of the course will be a combination of lectures, discussions, audio-visuals, and take-home exercises, and there will be two exams. (Lopez)
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202. Contemporary Social Issues I. (3). (Excl). Credit is granted for a combined total of eight credits elected through Soc. 102, 202, 203, and 401, provided that the course topics are different.
Section 101 Sociological Perspectives on Fitness, Dieting, and Eating Disorders.
Physical appearance is the individual's "presentation card." Even though a person's physical characteristics are, to a large extent, biologically determined, their meaning is socially constructed. This course will explore the factors that give rise to this social construction, including culture, social institutions, interpersonal relationships, and psychology. The course will also focus on the culture of thinness and how it affects gender and race differentially. Topics include: the social relevance of physical appearance; the body through a cultural prism; and the role of psychology, interpersonal relationships, and culture in shaping perceptions of the body. (Villanueva)
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For Undergraduates Only

210. Elementary Statistics. Sociology Honors students should elect this course prior to beginning the Honors Seminar sequence. Sociology concentrators should elect this course prior to their last term. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in Stat. 100, 265, 311, 402, 405, or 412, or Econ. 404 or 405. (3). (MSA). (BS). (QR/1).
The purpose of the course is to provide literacy in the evaluation of quantitative evidence as it relates to the world of alternative, testable ideas. Students are familiarized with a variety of descriptive statistics (interpretation of tables, measures of association, regression, etc.), inductive statistics (theory of sampling, significance tests) and the empirical origin of statistical data (surveys, consensus, observational studies). Several forms of decision-making based on quantitative and non-quantitative evidence are compared and contrasted. No special background or preparation is needed. Students capable of handling arithmetic have all the mathematical skills required for the course. Problem sets are routinely assigned to illustrate the concepts of the course. Additionally, the course will provide students with an introduction to statistical packages easily used on desktop computers. NO PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE WITH THIS TECHNOLOGY IS NECESSARY. This will provide an opportunity analyze and discuss some real data sets. Course grades are determined by performance on three major exams (including the final) and some quizzes given in the discussion sections. The new format generates four credit hours from two lectures and two hours of discussion per week. (Eyster)
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303/CAAS 303. Race and Ethnic Relations. An introductory course in sociology or CAAS. (3). (SS). (R&E).
This course focuses on the historical and contemporary structuring of racial and ethnic inequality in the United States. The course has two main goals. First, to provide students with a sociological framework for understanding both historical and contemporary racial dynamics. Secondly, to introduce students to the social history of racism in the United States. Central to this discussion will be the understanding of racism not as "prejudice", "ignorance", or an "attitude", but rather as a comprehensive historical system that has changed over time. The course will begin by highlighting the principal concepts sociologists use in their analysis of race and ethnic relations. Next, it will examine the historical and contemporary experiences of several racial minority groups in the United States namely, African Americans, Chicanos/Mexican Americans, Puerto Ricans, and Asian Americans. Finally, the course will conclude by discussing and critically assessing several public policies developed to address racial inequality in the Post-Civil Rights Era and the scholarly literature that has been written about them (e.g., Busing, Affirmative Action). (Forman)
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304/Amer. Cult. 304. American Immigration. (3). (SS).
That America is a nation of immigrants is one of the most common place yet truest of statements. In this course we will survey a vast range of the American immigrant experience: that of the Irish, Germans, Jews, Italians, Chinese, Japanese, Blacks, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, and Mexicans. Immigration to American can be broadly understood as consisting of four major waves; the first one, that which consisted of northwest Europeans who immigrated up to the mid-19th century; the second one, that which consisted of southern and east Europeans at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th; the third one, the movement from the south to the north of Black Americans and Mexicans precipitated by the two world wars; and the fourth one, from 1965 on, is still ongoing in the present, of immigrants mostly from Latin America and Asia. At all times, our effort is to understand the immigrant past of these ethnic groups, both for what it tells us about the past as well as their present and possible future. Course requirements: the written requirements for this course consist of two exams. Both the exams will be in-class tests, consisting of short answer questions that will draw from the lectures and our discussion of the readings. Each exam will be worth 50 points. (Dickerson)
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For Undergraduates and Graduates

458. Sociology of Education. One introductory course in sociology. (3). (Excl).
Any understanding of the issues currently confronting public schools in the United States must be linked to discussions of larger social issues. Understanding educational success and failure, both at the level of the school and the level of the child, requires understanding the political, social, and cultural context within which educational institutions operate. The course will explore the relationship between urban areas, urban families, and urban schools. Paying close attention to ways that social inequality are produced and reproduced in society, our goal is to analyze the issues confronting urban schools and members of urban school communities with an eye towards the role of schools a agents of socialization, stratification, and social control in American society. The goal is to develop an explanation of the current state of education in urban America using relevant theory. As we explore the problems encountered by urban schools, we will attempt to link theory to first-hand observations and published accounts. We will examine the effect on schools of several current issues, including the transformation and decline of cities; the impact of deindustrialization and the globalization of the world economy; the demographic changes brought about by suburbanization, migration, and immigration; and the effects of changes in federal and state policies. Similarly, we will examine how urban schools are affected at the local level by poverty, crime, and the deterioration of community institutions. (Lewis)
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465/Psych. 488. Sociological Analysis of Deviant Behavior. Introductory sociology or introductory psychology as a social science. (3). (SS).
This course utilizes a sociological approach to deviance to explore social organization and control. Examining the ways in which societies create deviance, we will review a number of theoretical perspectives to explain why and how deviance exists. We will then turn to the processes by which individuals become deviant, with close attention to social organization and institutions of control. Finally, we will investigate the various ways in which societies have tried to reduce deviance, usually with little success. Course requirements include weekly discussion papers, midterm and final exams, a term paper, and individual presentations. (Chimonas)
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468. Criminology. (3). (SS).
The purpose of this course is to cultivate an interest in the sociology of crime and deviance, while developing critical and analytic thinking skills. The topics are selected to: promote awareness of the political and ideological dimensions of criminology and crime control; examine crime and criminal justice with an eye to social inequality; appreciate difference in explanations of and responses to crime; and understand the organizational features of the criminal justice system and the dilemma of punishment. The course will explore a number of topics including: problems in defining crime and interpreting crime rates; theories of crime and deviance; the social control of crime (e.g., prisons and the juvenile justice system); race, class, and gender and crime; and the future of crime and deviance in the United States. (Rosales)
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470. Social Influence. One previous course in social psychology elected either through psychology or sociology. (3). (Excl).
This course examines systematically how people are influenced by their social environments and how they influence their social environments. The course advances students beyond the intuitively obvious idea that social influence matters to consider theoretically and empirically the several distinct processes by which different forms of social relationships exert effective social influence. Among the topics to be discussed within the framework of the course are love relationships, peer influence in juvenile delinquency, political media campaigns, and the acceptance of scientific discoveries. (Gold).
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Spring/Summer Term, 1998 (May 5-August 18, 1998)

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