Emma Cook degree icon

Associate Professor

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Research Faculty of Media and Communication, Hokkaido University

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Feel free to contact me at:

cook [at] imc.hokudai.ac.jp




Introduction to Social Theory (社会論I)

Social anthropology and sociology are disciplines that have developed from a long period of thinking about the social in its myriad forms. This course aims to give an introductory overview of the major theories of the social ranging from 19th century thinkers to those of the 21st century, and to explore their relevance in the 21st century.

The 2018 syllabus is available for download here.

The 2018 essay questions are available for download here.

 

Weekly Schedule (Spring 2018)

Week 1 Introduction: What is Social Theory? (April 11th)

No reading due, but a recommended reading is: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Introduction

Slides

Week 2 Karl Marx (April 18th)

Reading due: Applerouth, S and Edles, L (eds.) 2012. Sociological Theory in the Classical Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications: Chapter and Exerts from: Marx, Karl. 1845-6. ‘The German Ideology / Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844’.

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 3 Emile Durkheim (April 25th)

Reading Due: Applerouth, S and Edles, L (eds.) 2012. Sociological Theory in the Classical Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications: Chapter and Exerts from: ‘The Rules of Sociological Method and The Division of Labor in Society’.

(Additional reading for those interested: ‘Religion and Knowledge’ in Thompson, K. 2002. Emile Durkheim. Routledge Key Sociologists Series. Pp. 98-117)

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 4 Max Weber (May 2nd)

Reading Due: Applerouth, S and Edles, L (eds.) 2012. Sociological Theory in the Classical Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications: Chapter and Exert from Weber’s ‘The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism’.

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 5 Structuralism and Structural Functionalism (May 9th)

Reading due: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Chapter and Exerts from Parsons, T. 1951 ‘Categories of the Orientation and Organization of Action,’ and ‘Sex Roles in the American Kinship System.’

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 6 Critical Theory and the Frankfurt School (May 16th)

Reading due: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Chapter and Exerts from Horkheimer’s ‘Eclipse of Man’ and Adorno’s ‘The Culture Industry Revisited.’

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 7 Exchange and Networks (May 23rd)

Reading Due: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Chapter and Exerts from Homan’s ‘Social Behavior as Exchange’ and Blau’s ‘Exchange and Power in Social Life.’

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 8 Reading Week (May 30th)

No Reading or Discussion Questions due. Please take the time to start working on your essays.

Week 9 Symbolic Interactionism (June 6th)

Reading due: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Chapter and Exert from Goffman’s (1959). ‘The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life.’

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 10 Phenomenology (June 13th)

Reading due: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Chapter and Exerts from Berger and Luckman’s ‘The Social Construction of Reality.’

If you have time, please also try the exert from Schutz’s ‘The Phenomenology of the Social World’. Pages: 270-277

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 11 Feminist Theories (June 20th)

Reading due: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Chapter and Exert from Patricia Collins’s ‘Black Feminist Thought.’

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 12 Peer Review Week (June 27th)

No required reading or discussion questions. You should aim to have a first draft of your essay done by here. Please take the time to work on your essays and to engage in peer review of what you have done so far.

Week 13 Poststructuralism and Postmodernism: Michel Foucault (July 4th)

Reading due: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Chapter and Exert from Foucault’s ‘Discipline and Punish.’

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 14 Pierre Bourdieu (July 11th)

Reading due: Edles, L and S. Applerouth (eds.) 2010. Sociological Theory in the Contemporary Era: Text and Readings Sage Publications. Chapter and Exert from Bourdieu’s ‘Social Space and the Genesis of Groups,’ and ‘Outline of a Sociological Theory of Art Perception.’

Discussion Question Due

Slides

Week 15 Reflections and Discussion (July 18th)

No reading due. In this class we will wrap up the course and discuss what the point of theory is and why it is important to attend to.

** Essay Deadline **

Essay is due by 5 p.m. on Friday July 20th 2018 by email.

Please note that all submissions should be in Microsoft Word format. If that is not possible then a PDF will also be accepted.

 

 

Karl-Marx1

Karl Marx (1818-1883)