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Concentric-zone theory - A theory of urban growth devised by Ernest Burgess that sees growth in terms of a series of rings radiating from the central business district.


Absolute poverty –A minimum level of subsistence that no family should be expected to live below

Agrarian society– The most technologically advanced form of preindustrial society. Members are engaged primarily in the production of food, but increase their crop yields through technological innovations such as the plow

Anomie– The loss of direction felt in a society when social control of individual behavior has become ineffective

Applied sociology –The use of the discipline of sociology with the specific intent of yielding practical applications for human behavior and organizations

Basic sociology – Sociological inquiry conducted with the objective of gaining a more profound knowledge of the fundamental aspects of sociological phenomena.

Bureaucracy –A component of formal organization that uses rules and hierarchical ranking to achieve efficiency.

Bureaucratization –The process by which a group, organization, or social movement becomes increasingly bureaucratic.

Capitalism –An economic system in which the means of productions are held largely in private hands, and the main incentive for economic activity is the accumulation of profits.

Class –A group of people who have a similar level of wealth and income.

Class consciousness –In Karl Marx’s view, a subjective awareness held by members of a class regarding their common vested interests and need for collective political action to bring about social change.

Classical theory - An approach to the study of formal organizations that views workers as being motivated almost entirely by economic rewards.

Class system - A social ranking based primarily on economic position in which achieved characteristics can influence social mobility.

Clinical sociology - The use of the discipline of sociology with the specific intent of altering social relationships or restructuring social institutions.

Closed system - A social system in which there is little or no possibility of individual social mobility.

Coalition - A temporary or permanent alliance geared toward a common goal.

Code of ethics - The standards of acceptable behavior developed by and for members of a profession.

Cognitive theory of development - Jean Piaget's theory that children's thought progresses through four stages of development.

Collective behavior - In the view of sociologist Neil Smelser, the relatively spontaneous and unstructured behavior of a group of people who are reacting to a common influence in an ambiguous situation.

Colonialism - The maintenance of political, social, economic, and cultural dominance over a people by a foreign power for an extended period.

Communism -As an ideal type, an economic system under which all property is communally owned and no social distinctions are made on the basis of people's ability to produce.

Community - A spatial or political unit of social organization that gives people a sense of belonging, based either on shared residence in a particular place or on a common identity.

Concentric-zone theory - A theory of urban growth devised by Ernest Burgess that sees growth in terms of a series of rings radiating from the central business district.

Conflict perspective - A sociological approach that assumes that social behavior is best understood in terms of conflict or tension between competing groups. Conformity - Going along with peers-individuals of our own status, who have no special right to direct our behavior.

Contact hypothesis - An interactionist perspective which states that in cooperative circumstances, interracial contact between people of equal status will reduce prejudice.

Content analysis - The systematic coding and objective recording of data, guided by some rationale.

Control group - The subjects in an experiment who are not introduced to the independent variable by the researcher.

Control theory - A view of conformity and deviance that suggests that our connection to members of society leads us to systematically conform to society's norms.

Control variable - A factor that is held constant to test the relative impact of an independent variable.

Corporate welfare - Tax breaks, direct payments, and grants that the government makes to corporations.

Correlation - A relationship between two variables in which a change in one coincides with a change in the other.

Correspondence principle - A term used by Bowles and Gintis to refer to the tendency of schools to promote the values expected of individuals in each social class and to prepare students for the types of jobs typically held by members of their class.

Counterculture - A subculture that deliberately opposes certain aspects of the larger culture.

Crime - A violation of criminal law for which some govenmental authority applies formal penalties.

Cross-tabulation - A table that shows the relationship between nor or more variables.

Crowd - A temporary gathering of people in close proximity who share a common focus or interest.

Cultural relativism - The viewing of people's behavior from the perspective of their own culture.

Culture - The totality of learned, socially transmitted customs, knowledge, material objects, and behavior.

Deindustrialization - The systematic, widespread withdrawal of investment in basic aspects of productivity, such as factories and piants.

Dependency theory - An approach that contends that industrialized nations continue to exploit developing countries for their own gain.

Deviance -Behavior that violates the standards of conduct or expectations of a group or society.

Dominant ideology - A set of cultural beliefs and practices that helps to maintain powerful social, economic, and political interests.

Downsizing - Reductions taken in a company's workforce as part of deindustrialization.

Dysfunction- An element or process of a society that may disrupt social system or reduce its stability.

Economic system - The social institution through which goods and services are produced, distributed, and consumed.

Elite model - A view of society as being ruled by a small group of individuals who share a common set of political and economic interests.

Ethnic group - A group that is set apart from others primarily because of its national origin or distinctive cultural patterns.

Ethnocentrism - The tendency to assume that one's own culture and way of life represent the norm or are superior to all others.

Evolutionary theory - A theory of social change that holds that society is moving in a definite direction.

Experiment - An artificially created situation that allows a researcher to manipulate variables.

Experimental group - The subjects in an experiment who are exposed to an independent variable introduced by a researcher.

Exploitation theory - A Marxist theory that views racial subordination in the United States as a manifestation of the class system inherent in capitalism.

False consciousness - A term used by Karl Marx to describe an attitude held by members of a class that does not accurately reflect their objective position.

Formal norm - A norm that has been written down and that specifies strict punishments for violators.

Formal organization - A group designed for a special purpose and structured for maximum efficiency.

Formal social control - Social control that is carried out by authorized agents, such as police officers, judges, school administrators, and employers.

Functionalist perspective - A sociological approach that emphasizes the way in which the parts of a society are structured to maintain its stability.

Globalization - The worldwide integration of government policies, cultures, social movements, and financial markets through trade and the exchange of ideas.

Group - Any number of people with similar norms, values, and expectations who interact with one another on a regular basis. (

Groupthink - Uncritical acceptance of or conformity to the prevailing viewpoint.

Hawthorne effect - The unintended influence that observers of experiments can have on their subjects.

Horizontal mobility - The movement of an individual from one social position to another of the same rank.

Horticultural society - A preindustrial society in which people plant seeds and crops rather than merely subsist on available foods.

Human relations approach - An approach to the study of formal organizations that emphasizes the role of people, communication, and participation in a bureaucracy and tends to focus on the informal structure of the organization.

Hunting-and-gathering society - A preindustrial society in which people rely on whatever foods and fibers are readily available in order to survive.

Hypothesis - A speculative statement about the relationship between two or more variables.

Ideal type - A construct or model for evaluating specific cases.

Income - Salaries and wages.

Industrial city - A relatively large city characterized by open competition, an open class system, and elaborate specialization in the manufacturing of goods.

Industrial society - A society that depends on mechanization to produce its goods and services.

Informal economy - Transfers of money, goods, or services that are not reported to the government.

Informal norm- A norm that is generally understood but not precisely recorded.

Informal social control - Social control that is carried out casually by ordinary people through such means as laughter, smiles, and ridicule.

In-group - Any group or category to which people feel they belong.

Innovation - The process of introducing a new idea or object to a culture through discovery or invention.

Instrumentality - An emphasis on tasks, a focus on more distant goals, and a concern for the external relationship between one's family and other social institutions.

Interactionist perspective - A sociological approach that generalizes about everyday forms of social interaction in order to explain society as a whole.

Interview - A face-to-face or telephone questioning of a respondent to obtain desired information.

Labor union - Organized workers who share either the same skill or the same employer.

Latent function - An unconscious or unintended function that may hidden purposes.

Life chances - Max Weber's term for the opportunities people have to provide themselves with material goods, positive living conditions, and favorable life experiences.

Macrosociology - Sociological investigation that concentrates on large-scale phenomena or entire civilizations.

Manifest function - An open, stated, and conscious function.

Material culture - The physical or technological aspects of our daily lives.

Mechanical solidarity - A collective consciousness that emphasizes group solidarity, characteristic of societies with minimal division of labor.

Megalopolis - A densely populated area containing two or more cities and their suburbs.

Microsociology - Sociological investigation that stresses the study of small groups, often through experimental means.

Modernization - The far-reaching process by which periphery nations move from traditional or less developed institutions to those characteristic of more developed societies.

Modernization theory - A functionalist approach that proposes that modernization and development will gradually improve the lives of people in developing nations.

Monopoly - control of a market by a single business firm.

Multinational corporation - A commercial organization that is headquartered in one country but does business throughout the world

New social movement - An organized collective activity that addresses values and social identities, as well as improvements in the quality of life.

Norm - An established standard of behavior maintained by a society.

Objective method - A technique for measuring social class that assigns individuals to classes on the basis of criteria such as occupation, education, income, and place of residence.

Observation - A research technique in which an investigator collects information through direct participation and/or by closely watching a group or community.

Operational definition - An explanation of an abstract concept that is specific enough to allow a researcher to assess the concept.

Organic solidarity - A collective consciousness that rests on mutual interdependence, characteristic of societies with a complex division of labor.

Personality - A person's typical patterns of attitudes, needs, characteristics, and behavior.

Postindustrial city - A city in which global finance and the electronic flow of information dominate the economy.

Postindustrial society - A society whose economic system is engaged primarily in the processing and control of information.

Postmodern society - A technologically sophisticated society that is preoccupied with consumer goods and media images.

Preindustrial city - A city of only a few thousand people that is characterized by a relatively closed class system and limited mobility.

Primary group - A small group characterized by intimate, face-to-face association and cooperation.

Secondary analysis - A variety of research techniques that make use of previously collected and publicly accessible information and data.

Secondary group - A formal, impersonal group in which there is little social intimacy or mutual understanding.

Small group - A group small enough for all members to interact simultaneously- that is, to talk with one another or at least be acquainted.

Social change - Significant alteration over time in behavior patterns and culture, including norms and values.

Social constructionist perspective - An approach to deviance that emphasizes the role of culture in the creation of the deviant identity.

Social control - The techniques and strategies for preventing deviant human behavior in any society.

Social inequality - A condition in which members of society have differing amounts of wealth, prestige, or power.

Social institution - An organized pattern of beliefs and behavior centered on basic social needs.

Social interaction - The ways in which people respond to one another.

Socialism - An economic system under which the means of production and distribution are collectively owned.

Socialization - The lifelong process in which people learn the attitudes, values, and behaviors appropriate for members of a particular culture.

Social mobility - Movement of individuals or groups from one position in a society's stratification system to another.

Social movement - An organized collective activity to bring about or resist fundamental change in an existing group or society.

Social network - A series of social relationships that links a person directly to others, and through them indirectly to still more people.

Social role - A set of expectations for people who occupy a given social position or status.

Social structure - The way in which a society is organized into predictable relationships.

Society - A fairly large number of people who live in the same territory, are relatively independent of people outside it, and participate in a common culture.

Sociological imagination - An awareness of the relationship between an individual and the wider society.

Sociology - The scientific study of social behavior and human groups.

Stratification - A structured ranking of entire groups of people that perpetuates unequal economic rewards and power in a society.

Technology - Cultural information about how to use the material resources of the environment to satisfy human needs and desires.

Transnational - An immigrant who sustains multiple social relationships that link his or her society of origin with the society of settlement.

Underclass - The long-term poor who lack training and skills.


Date: 2016-01-03; view: 2550

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