Sociology 319

Winter 2000

Second Paper (15 points)

Due: March 16, 2000

Choose one of the following topics and write a paper on this topic. The paper should clearly explain and discuss the topic chosen. If appropriate, you may want to include a short critique of the views and approaches you are discussing.

The paper should be approximately than five typewritten double-spaced pages. In a paper of this length there should not be too many quotes. Do not rely on quotes to make the arguments for you, and explain the concepts and ideas in your own words. Where you do use quotes or references, these should be properly cited. If you use only the text, this may be cited like (Turner, p. 47). If you use other sources, complete citations should be provided in footnotes or at the end of the paper in one of the standard referencing styles. Provide a bibliography of the sources you have used.

Avoid using "man" and "he" in the generic sense, except where they are part of a direct quote. Otherwise, if you use "man" or "he" I will assume you are referring to males only.


  1. Write an essay outlining the essential aspects of rational choice theory and how it uses some of the elements that are common with other sociological approaches. Provide examples to illustrate the argument.
  2. Select one or more of the recent feminist writers and write an essay showing how the ideas of that writer can contribute to the study of sociology and the social world. In each case, present a succint summary of the authorís ideas and show how they are sociologically relevant.
  3. Feminism perspectives and contributions to sociology are more compatible with some traditional sociological approaches than others. Select one of the classical or more contemporary sociological perspectives and write an essay outlining whether or how feminist theory could be integrated with this perspective.
  4. In "Dilemmas of the Self" Giddens argued that modernity is both fragmenting and uniting. Illustrate this with historical examples from Chapter 10 of Turner, or other sources.
  5. Write an essay analyzing how the forces of globalization have been present in different ways at different stages during modernity. (Focus on the arguments in Chapter 10).
  6. Write an essay providing examples of how critical theory uses ideas and approaches from Marx, Weber, or other social theories. (Chapters 2, 15).
  7. Critical theorists and Giddens appear to approach modernity in a somewhat different manner. Compare and contrast ideas from "Dilemmas of the Self" with arguments presented in Turner on critical theory.


References on Feminism

Humm, Maggie, Modern Feminisms. HQ1190 M63 1992

Nicholson, Linda J., Feminism/Postmodernism. HQ1206 F453

Tuana, N. and Rosemarie Tong, Feminism and Philosophy. HQ1190 F42 1995

Tong, Rosemarie, Feminist Thought: A Comprehensive Introduction. (Copy on reserve) 


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