Create Stage Instructions: Below, you will find five writing prompts. Choose two (2) of the prompts for your responses.
The goal of this exercise is for you to provide a short-answer essay that contains all of the key elements involved in strong academic writing, namely:
a clear and direct thesis statement or argument that directly addresses the prompt;
the demonstration of the logical development of the steps involved in your logic or thought process, or how you came to your answer;
the presentation of the evidence used in your thought process as well as how your reader should understand the evidence; and
clean professional writing, including spell- and grammar-checks and proofreading.
The intent here is not to write for your teacher. Instead, you should assume that you have no idea at all as to who Your Dear Reader is – maybe a student, maybe a professor, maybe a toddler, maybe an axolotl… Ensure that your thought process is clearly conveyed to your reader and that you demonstrate an understanding of all the conceptual elements needed to build your answer to The Big Question.
The suggested length for each of your essay responses is about 250-300 words; writing more that fully explains your thinking can be helpful, but writing more for the sake of more or writing less than this guideline will probably not be terribly successful. Be sure to use the readings to support your claims and cite your sources properly and appropriately whenever referring to something specific; (Author, Page) will be fine for now. Do not use direct quotations.
The Prompts – choose two (2) for your responses. Be sure to specify in your submission/creation which questions you are answering. No need to copy them; just put the Q#.
Q1. How does a person’s relationship to social structure during settled times (when things are calm and we know how to act) differ from their relationship with it during unsettled times? Discuss this in terms of the embodiment of culture, socialization, and the idea of social facts.
Q2. All social institutions are, according to Wade, comprised of two parts: an idea, and a set of practices. How would one of Durkheim, Marx, or Weber (RS chs. 3-5) explain the idea of social institutions, their broader relationship with culture, and social structure? What do you think your chosen author would say in response to Schaffer’s persistently annoying “bug”/“feature” question?
Q3. We have talked about structural violence in the form of inequalities (among other things) between persons and groups, depending on their position in the social structure. Discuss how understanding these kinds of results of societal processes requires working between the ideas of “structures as actors” and “individuals as actors.” What is it that justifies or legitimates these forms of structural violence and the particular actor you think is responsible, and how?
Q4. In what ways are beliefs, values, norms, and ideologies similar? How do they differ? And knowing what you know now of sociology, why do you think these similarities and differences matter?
Theres a book called “Terrible Magnificent Sociology” by Lisa Wade if you would like to look there for more information.