Clashing Views on Social Issues / Edition 14

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More About This Textbook


Taking Sides: Clashing Views on Social Issues, Fifteenth Edition, is a debate-style reader designed to introduce students to controversies in sociology. The readings, which represent the arguments of leading social scientists and social commentators, reflect opposing positions and have been selected for their liveliness and substance and because of their value in a debate framework.

For each issue, the editor provides a concise introduction and postscript summary. The introduction sets the stage for the debate as it is argued in the "yes" and "no" readings. The postscript briefly reviews the opposing opinions and suggests additional readings on the controversial issue under discussion.

By requiring students to analyze contradictory positions and reach considered judgments, Taking Sides actively develops students' critical thinking skills. It is this development of critical thinking skills that is the ultimate purpose of each of the volumes in the widely acclaimed Taking Sides program.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780073514963
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Higher Education
  • Publication date: 3/31/2006
  • Series: Taking Sides Ser.
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 14
  • Pages: 432
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Part 1 Culture and Values 1
Issue 1 Is America in Moral Decline? 2
Yes: from Slouching Towards Gomorrah: Modern Liberalism and American Decline (Regan Books, 1996) 4
No: from "Our Changing Culture: Abandoning the Sixties," Current (June 2004) 11
Issue 2 Does the News Media Have a Liberal Bias? 22
Yes: from Coloring the News: How Crusading for Diversity Has Corrupted American Journalism (Encounter Books, 2001) 24
No: from "The 'Left-Wing' Media?" Monthly Review (June 2003) 31
Issue 3 Is Third World Immigration a Threat to America's Way of Life? 42
Yes: from "Shields Up!" The American Enterprise (March 2002) 44
No: from "Immigration Is Good," The American Enterprise (March 2002) 51
Part 2 Sex Roles, Gender, and the Family 61
Issue 4 Is the Decline of the Traditional Family a National Crisis? 62
Yes: from "The American Family Crisis," National Forum: The Phi Kappa Phi Journal (Summer 1995) 64
No: from "Can Marriage Be Saved?" Dissent (Summer 2005) 72
Issue 5 Should Mothers Stay Home with Their Children? 80
Yes: from "The Case for Staying Home," Time (March 22, 2004) 82
No: from The Mommy Myth (Free Press, 2004) 88
Issue 6 Should Same-Sex Marriages Be Legally Recognized? 98
Yes: from "Answers to Questions about Marriage Equality" (HRC's FamilyNet Project, 2004) 100
No: from "Questions and Answers: What's Wrong with Letting Same-Sex Couples 'Marry'?" (Family Research Council, 2004) 107
Part 3 Stratification and Inequality 117
Issue 7 Is Increasing Economic Inequality a Serious Problem? 118
Yes: from "Does Inequality Matter?" Daedalus (Winter 2002) 120
No: from "The New Wealth of Nations," Commentary (October 1997) 128
Issue 8 Is the Underclass the Major Threat to American Ideals? 134
Yes: from "And Now for the Bad News," Society (November/December 1999) 136
No: from "Capitalism, the Market, the 'Underclass,' and the Future," Society (November/December 1999) 142
Issue 9 Has Affirmative Action Outlived Its Usefulness? 154
Yes: from "Racial Preference Versus Nondiscrimination," Society (March/April 2004) 156
No: from "Inequalities that Endure?" in Maria Krysan and Amanda E. Lewis, eds., The Changing Terrain of Race and Ethnicity (Russell Sage Foundation, 2004) 164
Issue 10 Are Boys and Men Disadvantaged Relative to Girls and Women? 174
Yes: from "The New Gender Gap," Business Week Online (May 26, 2003) 176
No: from "Reversing the 'Gender Gap'," Political Affairs (March 2004) 183
Part 4 Political Economy and Institutions 189
Issue 11 Is Government Dominated by Big Business? 190
Yes: from "This Is the Fight of Our Lives," Timeline (September/October 2004) 192
No: from "Citizen Groups and the Changing Nature of Interest Group Politics in America," The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science (July 1993) 198
Issue 12 Should Government Intervene in a Capitalist Economy? 208
Yes: from "Bull Run: Capitalism with a Democratic Face," The New Republic (March 22, 2004) 210
No: from "The Real Cost of Regulation," Imprimis (May 2001) 218
Issue 13 Has Welfare Reform Benefited the Poor? 226
Yes: from "Understanding Welfare Reform," Harvard Magazine (November/December 2004) 228
No: from "Off the Rolls: The Ground-Level Results of Welfare Reform," Dissent Magazine (Fall 2003) 234
Issue 14 Is Competition the Reform That Will Fix Education? 242
Yes: from "The Key to Closing the Minority Schooling Gap: School Choice," The American Enterprise (April/May 2003) 244
No: from "Think the Unthinkable," Educational Horizons (Summer 2004) 249
Issue 15 Should Biotechnology Be Used to Alter and Enhance Humans? 260
Yes: from Beyond Therapy (Regan Books, 2004) 262
No: from "The Case Against Perfection," The Atlantic Monthly (April 2004) 269
Part 5 Crime and Social Control 281
Issue 16 Is Street Crime More Harmful Than White-Collar Crime? 282
Yes: from "The Aggregate Burden of Crime," Journal of Law and Economics XLII (2) (October 1999) 284
No: from The Rich Get Richer and the Poor Get Prison: Ideology, Class, and Criminal Justice, 5th ed. (Allyn & Bacon, 1998) 292
Issue 17 Should Drug Use Be Decriminalized? 304
Yes: from "Commonsense Drug Policy," Foreign Affairs (January/February 1998) 306
No: from "America's Longest 'War,'" The World & I (February 2000) 314
Issue 18 Does the Threat of Terrorism Warrant Curtailment of Civil Liberties? 320
Yes: from "Liberty and Terrorism: Avoiding a Police State," Current (December 2003) 322
No: from "Your Every Move," The Humanist (January/February 2004) 329
Part 6 The Future: Population/Environment/Society 337
Issue 19 Is Mankind Dangerously Harming the Environment? 338
Yes: from "Pushing Beyond the Earth's Limits," The Futurist (May/June 2005) 340
No: from "The Truth About the Environment," The Economist (August 4, 2001) 347
Issue 20 Is Globalization Good for Mankind? 356
Yes: from "Three Cheers for Global Capitalism," The American Enterprise (June 2004) 358
No: from "Globalization and Its Discontents," Philosophy & Public Policy Quarterly (Spring/Summer 2001) 366
Contributors 374
Index 381
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