Discover Sociology

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Join Bill Chambliss and Daina S. Eglitis as they journey beyond the classroom to help students answer these questions with their groundbreaking new text, Discover Sociology. Chambliss and Eglitis inspire curiosity about the social world and empower students by providing the theoretical, conceptual, and empirical tools they need to understand, analyze, and even change the world in which they live. Every chapter in the book integrates robust pedagogical features and empirical research that illuminate the social roots of diverse phenomena and institutions, ranging from poverty and deviance to capitalism and the nuclear family. From exploring whether the use of "study drugs" should be considered cheating to an examination of research showing a correlation between rising student debt and declining rates of marriage, the book's chapter openers engage students in real-life applications of sociology. Going beyond theory and concepts, the authors also help answer the question, "What can I do with a sociology degree?"

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Editorial Reviews

Kim Mac Innis
“I loved the writing and comprehensive information on each topic. The essays are interesting and relate to current events . . . [T]he global and feminist themes are very important. Most texts don’t use them in the way the authors did (interlocking factors).”
Denise Copelton
“What I like about this book is the engaging writing style and clear integration of meaningful and lively examples throughout. . . The integration of detailed examples would give students a lot to discuss in class and offers a clear map of how to apply the ideas in the text to the real and complex social worlds that contemporary students inhabit. The overall length is not overwhelming and should permit instructors to cover most chapters.”
S. Michael Gaddis
“Discover Sociology invites students to do just that in a way that connects academic concepts with students’ real world experiences. Introductory sociology students often have basic questions about society that other textbooks fail to recognize, but the material in Discover Sociology addresses these issues in an easy to understand manner. One of this text’s strongest features is that it encourages students to think critically about the social world.”
Dionne Mathis Banks
“I really like the easy-to-read writing, the current examples, the commitment to helping the reader think sociologically, and the extensive examples.”
Klaus Heyer
“. . . I like the idea of “thinking sociologically” . . . the idea that sociology is not merely common sense is illustrated well in this book and is one of its principal strengths, and something that sets it aside from other introductory texts.”
Kim MacInnis

“I loved the writing and comprehensive information on each topic. The essays are interesting and relate to current events . . . [T]he global and feminist themes are very important. Most texts don’t use them in the way the authors did (interlocking factors).”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781412996204
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 7/30/2013
  • Pages: 471
  • Sales rank: 355
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 10.80 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

William J. Chambliss, professor of sociology at The George Washington University, was a critical sociological theorist whose research has ranged broadly from studies of law creation and the legal system to participant observation studies of juvenile gangs, organized crime, policing, and the impact of social movements on political and economic change. He served as president of the American Society of Criminology and the Society for the Study of Social Problems. He has received numerous awards for his research and teaching, including the prestigious Edwin H. Sutherland Award from the American Society of Criminology, the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Sociological Association, the Bruce Smith Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, the PASS Award from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Sociology of Law Section of the American Sociological Association. He has authored and edited over 35 books in sociology, criminology and criminal justice and numerous articles in social science journals.

Daina S. Eglitis is an associate professor of sociology and international affairs and director of the undergraduate program in the Department of Sociology at The George Washington University. Her research highlights sociological dimensions of change in the post-communist world, with a particular focus on stratification, poverty, and gender. She has been the recipient of Fulbright, IREX, and Open Society awards and is the author of several articles and a book on post-communist social change. She also writes for and about teaching in the undergraduate classroom and is the author of the article, “The Uses of Global Poverty: How Inequality Benefits the West,” and the Teaching Sociology article, “Performing Theory: Dramatic Learning in the Theory Classroom.”

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Discovering Sociology
A Curious Mind
The Development of Sociological Thinking
Sociology: One Way of Looking at the World - Or Many?
Principal Themes in This Text
Why Study Sociology?
Chapter 2: Discover Sociological Research
Researching The Consequences of the U.S. Prison Boom
Sociology and Common Sense
Research and The Scientific Method
Doing Sociological Research
Doing Sociology: A Student's Guide to Research
Sociology And You: Why Learn to do Sociological Research?
Chapter 3: Culture and Mass Media
Culture: Concepts and Applications
Culture and Language
Culture and The Mass Media
Culture, Class, and Inequality
Culture and Globalization
Chapter 4: Socialization and Social Interaction
Girls, Boys, and Toys
The Birth of Self Control
Agents of Socialization
Total Institutions and Resocialization
Social Interaction
Why Study Socialization and Social Interaction?
Chapter 5: Groups, Organizations, and Bureaucracies
When Groups Think . . . Groupthink
The Nature of Groups
The Power of Groups
Economic, Cultural, and Social Capital
Why Study Groups and Organizations?
Think About Careers
Chapter 6: Deviance and Social Control
What is Deviant Behavior?
How do Sociologists Explain Deviance?
Types of Deviance
Social Control of Deviance
Why Study Deviance?
Think About Careers
Chapter 7: Social Class and Inequality in the U.S.
Poverty and Prosperity in America
Stratification in Traditional and Modern Societies
Sociological Building Blocks of Stratification and Social Class
Class and Inequality an the United States: Dimensions and Trends
At the Bottom of the Ladder: Poverty in the United States
Why Study Inequality?
Chapter 8: Global Inequality And Poverty
Wealth and Poverty on the Road
Dimensions of Global Inequality and Poverty
Theoretical Perspectives on Global Inequality
Is There a Global Elite?
Why Study Global Inequality From a Sociological Perspective?
Chapter 9: Race and Ethnicity
A Dream Deferred . . .
The Social Construction of Race and Ethnicity
Minority and Dominant Group Relations
Theoretical Approaches to Ethnicity, Racism, and Minority Status
Prejudice, Stereotyping, and Discrimination
Racial and Ethnic Groups in the United States
Race and Ethnicity in a Global Perspective
Why Study Race and Ethnicity from a Sociological Perspective?
Chapter 10: Gender and Society
Sociological Concepts of Sex and Gender
Constructing Gendered Selves
Gender and Society
Gender and Economics: Men, Women, and the Gender Wage Gap
Classical Theories and Feminist Thinking
Gender in a Global Perspective
Why Study Gender from a Sociological Perspective?
Chapter 11: Families and Society
Some Concepts Sociologists Use to Study Families
Theoretical Perspectives on Families
U.S. Families Yesterday and Today
Socioeconomic Class and Family in the United States
Violence and the Family
Globalization and Families
Why Study Family Through a Sociological Lens?
Chapter 12: Education and Society
Education, Industrialization, and the “Credential Society”
Theoretical Perspectives on Education
Education, Opportunity, and Inequality
Issues in U.S. Higher Education
Education in a Global Perspective
Why Study Education from a Sociological Perspective?
Chapter 13: Religion and Society
How Do Sociologists Study Religion?
Theoretical Perspectives on Religion and Society
Types of Religious Organizations
The Great World Religions
Women and Religion
Religion in the United States
Religion and Global Societies
Why Study the Sociology of Religion?
Chapter 14: The State, War, and Terror
Theories of State Power
Power and Authority
Forms of Governance in the Modern World
The U.S. Political System
War, State, and Society
Terrorists and Terrorism
Why Study the State and Warfare Through A Sociological Lens?
Chapter 15: Work, Consumption, and the Economy
The Economy in Historical Perspective
Types of Economic Systems
Working On and Off the Books
Consumers, Consumption, and the U.S. Economy
Globalization and the New Economic Order
Why Study Economic Systems and Trends?
Chapter 16: Health and Medicine
Cultural Definitions of Health and Illness
Health Care in the United States
Sociology and Issues of Public Health in the United States
Developing A Sociology of HIV/AIDS
Global Issues in Health and Medicine
Why Should Sociologists Study Health?
Chapter 17: Population, Urbanization and the Environment
Global Population Growth
Malthus and Marx: How Many People are Too Many?
The Local and Global Environment
Why Study Population and Environment from a Sociological Perspective?
Chapter 18: Social Movements and Social Change
Sociological Perspectives on Social Change
Sources of Social Change
Social Movements
Why Study Social Change?

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