Sociology and Its Aim

Sociology is the scientific study of society and human behavior. This
is the most basic definition of sociology that one would find. Getting a little
more in depth, it is the study of humans in groups and how they interact with
one another. A scientist in this field, a sociologist, would look at these
groups by means of the sociological perspective. This involves looking at a
certain behavior like you have never witnessed it before. If done correctly the
sociologist should be able to gain a new level of understanding of the behavior
or social reality.
The term group could refer to a lot of things as far as groups of people.
It could be two people but for the purpose of sociology it should be a lot more.
There are demographic variables used when defining the group. These are things
such as race, religion, sex, social class, and so on.
When a sociologist studies behavior the most important aspect they view
is the interaction of people both within the group and with people that fit into
other groups. This action can be what the individuals verbally say to one
another or simply their nonverbal messages. There are many hand signs, both
good and bad, that people exchange as well as facial expressions in reaction to
an event or statement. Now that I have some of the terms described lets look at
an example.
I hate lawyers. This is a personal opinion of mine and a lot of other
peoples. Its nothing personal against any one of them, I don\'t like the way
they operate and the way they have set the system up for their own benefit.
They have made it impossible for anybody to navigate their way through even the
simplest of legal matters without their assistance. I also believe that there
lack of values and ethics are responsible for a lot of problems in this country.
This is what\'s called a level 1 perspective. It\'s my view of a group of people
in our society, their behavior, and how their behavior interacts with society.
The aim of sociology is to study this behavior and see it in a different
way. Perhaps if I looked at lawyers and what they do through a lawyer\'s eyes I
might catch something I didn\'t notice. If I were to give more thought to the
fact that they go to school for a very long time and have to learn a great deal
of material, I might think a little differently. If I imagine myself a lawyer
and think to myself, these people will pay whatever I want to get them out of
the jams they\'re in, it might not sound too bad. The idea of sociology is not
necessarily to change my view but to give me better understanding, what\'s
referred to as level 2 understanding. Level 2 understanding means that you have
taken a new sociological perspective on a behavior and gained a new social
reality. When people have opposing opinions in an issue that has to be resolved
such as a war, gaining level 2 understanding is of great importance. You
wouldn\'t have to change your view on the situation at all but you would be in a
much better position to compromise an end to the argument.
This is sociology and it will work with any behavior on any group of
people assuming that the researcher, or sociologist, has an open mind to looking
at things a little differently than they are used to.

Category: Social Issues