Contemporary Society: An Introduction to Social Science / Edition 13

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Overview

An integrated social science view of the world

This best-selling text emphasizes that social and cultural changes are the pervasive realities of our era.

One of the main themes of Contemporary Society is that the transition from an industrial to a post-industrial order in the modern world is fraught with difficulties, as was the transition from an agricultural to an industrial order in an earlier era. Within this framework, we can observe the increasing fragmentation of the social order, which tends to lead people away from community and a common purpose and often invites conflict and disunity. At the same time, countervailing social forces are also at work, providing some stability, some shelter in the storm. Finally, societies are faced with the rapid and transformative power of information technology, a fact that propels separate groups of people into a global entity.

Teaching & Learning Experience

  • Personalize Learning — MySearchLab delivers proven results in helping students succeed, provides engaging experiences that personalize learning, and comes from a trusted partner with educational expertise and a deep commitment to helping students and instructors achieve their goals.
  • Improve Critical Thinking — Boxed features provide topics for classroom discussion and encourage students to think like social scientists.
  • Engage Students — Emphasis on social and cultural change and how they impact social order.
  • Explore Theory — An integrated social science view of the world.
  • Support Instructors - Written activities and assessment in MySearchLab offer instructors supplemental materials to help their students succeed.

Note: MySearchLab does not come automatically packaged with this text. To purchase MySearchLab, please visit: www.mysearchlab.com or you can purchase a ValuePack of the text + MySearchLab (at no additional cost). ValuePack ISBN-10: 0205201458 / ValuePack ISBN-13: 9780205201457

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205020898
  • Publisher: Pearson
  • Publication date: 7/13/2011
  • Series: MySocLab Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 13
  • Pages: 600
  • Sales rank: 210,127
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents


IN THIS SECTION:

1.) BRIEF
2.) COMPREHENSIVE


BRIEF TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Chapter 1: Through the Lens of Science
Chapter 2: The Beginnings of Life
Chapter 3: Culture: Product and Guide to Life in Society
Chapter 4: How Is the Social System Organized and Structured?
Chapter 5: Becoming a Person: The Birth of Personality
Chapter 6: Deviance
Chapter 7: The Great Divide: Ranking and Stratification
Chapter 8: Majority–Minorities Relations: Defining the Terms
Chapter 9: Minority Status: Age, Gender, and Sexuality
Chapter 10: From the Plow to the Computer: Change, Collective Behavior, and Social Movements
Chapter 11: Population, Urbanization, and Environment
Chapter 12: Pivotal Institutions: Marriage and the Family
Chapter 13: Pivotal Institutions: Religion
Chapter 14: Pivotal Institutions: Education
Chapter 15: Government: The Institution and the Theories and Ideologies That Underlie It
Chapter 16: The Government of the United States of America
Chapter 17: We The People: Democracy in Action
Chapter 18: The Economy: Concepts and History
Chapter 19: Principles of Economic Behavior: Microeconomics and Macroeconomics
Chapter 20: Nation among Nations: Perspectives on International Relations


COMPREHENSIVE TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Chapter 1: Through the Lens of Science
The Social Sciences
The Scientific Method
The Social Science Disciplines
Research Methods in the Social Sciences

Chapter 2: In the Beginning
The Beginnings of Life
The Emergence of the Theory of Evolution
Genetics
The Long Trek: Human Evolution
Modern Humans: The Road to Homo Sapiens
Agriculture: Cultivation and Domestication
The Evolution of Human Nature

Chapter 3: Culture: Product and Guide to Life in Society
Culture: Concept and Importance
The Symbolic Nature of Culture
Language: The Most Important System of Symbols
The Content of Culture
The Components of Nonmaterial Culture: Cognitive and Normative
Pivotal Institutions
Ethnocentrism and Cultural Relativity
Cultural Differences and Universals

Chapter 4: Group Interaction: From Two to Millions
How Is the Social System Organized and Structured?
The Multiplicity of Statuses and Roles
Groups
Primary and Secondary Groups
Society
Interaction and Social Processes
Formal Organizations
Bureaucracy

Chapter 5: Becoming a Person: The Birth of Personality
Personality
Becoming Human: Socialization
Theories of Socialization
The Self and the Unconscious: Freud
The Transitional Self: Erikson
Developmental Theories: Piaget
Moral Development: Kohlberg
Agents of Socialization
Socialization through the Life Cycle

Chapter 6: Deviance and Criminality: The Need for Social Control
Deviance
The Relative Nature of Deviance
Explaining Deviance
Personality Disorders That May Cause Deviant Behavior
Psychological Explanations
Explaining Deviance from a Sociological Perspective
Crime: Deviance That Hurts
Crime Statistics: How Much Crime, and Who Commits It?
The Criminal Justice System

Chapter 7: The Great Divide: Ranking and Stratification
Social Differentiation, Ranking, and Stratification
Stratification
Theoretical Views on Stratification
Dimensions of Stratification: Class, Status, and Power
Systems of Stratification
Determining Social Class: Occupational Prestige and Socioeconomic Status
Social Classes in the United States
Social Class and Its Consequences
Social Mobility

Chapter 8: Majority—Minorities Relations: Defining the Terms
Common Characteristics of Minorities
The Making of Pluralist Society
Majority and Minorities: Processes of Coexistence
In the Way: Obstacles to Pluralism
Racial Minorities
Ethnic and Religious Minorities
The New Face of America

Chapter 9: Minority Status: Age, Gender, and Sexuality
The Aging Society
Women: Differentiation According to Gender
The Cultural Construction of Gender
Sexuality

Chapter 10: From the Plow to the Computer: Change, Collective Behavior, and Social Movements
Society and Change
Processes of Social and Cultural Change
The Industrial Revolution
Modernization
Collective Behavior
Social Movements
Revolutionary Movements

Chapter 11: Population, Urbanization, and Environment
Demographic Processes: Dynamics of Population Change
Characteristics and Composition of a Population
Population around the World
The Urban Society
The Industrial Revolution and the Growth of Cities
Metropolitanization and Megalopolis
The Urban Crisis
Attempts to Reclaim the City
The Natural Environment

Chapter 12: Pivotal Institutions: Marriage and the Family
The Basic Institution: The Family
Marriage
Divorce
The New American Family
Some Unintended Effects of the Changing American Family

Chapter 13: Pivotal Institutions: Religion
The Great Religions of the World
Religion in the Social Sciences
Religion and Social Control
Religion in America
Contemporary Trends

Chapter 14: Pivotal Institutions: Education
Education
Characteristics of American Education

Chapter 15: Government: The Institution and the Theories and Ideologies That Underlie It
The Institution of Government
Government and Politics
Political Power: Legitimacy and Authority
The State
The Nation-State
The Ideologies Behind the Nation-State
Autocratic Ideologies
Democratic Ideologies: Democracy
Socialism

Chapter 16: The Government of the United States of America
The Constitutional Convention
What Is a Constitution?
The Constitution of the United States
Separation of Powers
The Presidency: The Executive Branch
Congress: The Legislative Branch
The Supreme Court: The Judicial Branch
The Importance of Limited Government

Chapter 17: We The People: Democracy in Action
American Democracy
How Is America Governed?
Interest Groups
Political Parties
The High Cost of Campaigning
Voting
Political Opinion Making

Chapter 18: The Economy: Concepts and History
The Economic Institution
Contemporary Economic Systems: How Choices Are Made
Western Economies in Historical Perspective
Aspects of Industrial Capitalism
Diversification and Multinationalism
The Nature of Work in the Industrial Society
The Corporate Bureaucracy
The American Labor Movement
American Labor and the Global Economy

Chapter 19: Principles of Economic Behavior: Microeconomics and Macroeconomics
The Small Picture and the Large Picture
Market Mechanisms
Market Forces
A Macroview
Instruments of Public Policy
Fiscal Policy
Monetary Policy
Incomes Policy
Economic Problems and Government Response
Business Cycles
Fitting into the Global Economy

Chapter 20: Nation among Nations: Perspectives on International Relations
Regions of the World
Interaction among Nations
Participants in the International System
The Goals of States
Means of Achieving Goals: Foreign Policy
The Role of Ideology
Who Makes Foreign Policy Decisions?
Instruments of Foreign Policy
Diplomacy and Diplomats
Power
The Balance-of-Power System

References
Photo Credits
Index

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