What Is Sociology

Sociology is the systematic study of human social life, groups and societies. Sociology is a member of Social Sciences which includes Anthropology, Economics, Human Geography and Political Science.

The purpose of sociological study is to gain knowledge and understanding the changes that took place in human societies in the past decades and on what is happening in our current modern world such as in the area of globalism, urbanism, religious changes and world politics that is continually shaping the face of our modern social world.

Sociologist try to understand this by studying our culture, socialization, life cycle, conformity, deviance, gender, sexuality, power, class structure, ethnicity, race, politics, government, kinship, marriage, family, war, military, education, communication, media, religion, work, social change, urbanism, revolutions, social movements, population, health, aging and much more.

There are many ways theoretical approaches sociologist uses in trying to answer sociological questions. Among the popular approaches includes functionalism, structuralism, symbolic interactionism and Marxism. Important figures in sociological studies include Aguste Comte, Emile Durkheim, Karl Marx and Max Weber. Their sociological perspectives and ideology holds an important place in modern sociology study.

Sociologist investigate the social life by asking distinct questions and try to find answer to it by formulating systematic research. The questions used may be factual, comparative, developmental or theoretical.

Sociological research involves the use of reliable approach for analyzing a particular social phenomena. For example, the sociologist use proper

  1. research strategy which involves the planning of the research,

  2. research methodology which involves the logics and principles of research,

  3. research method which is concerned with how the research is carried out i.e. survey, participant observation etc.

The sociologist also understand the difference between intended and unintended results of human actions. This means, sociologist detach themselves away from their own preconceived notion about social life and study it objectively which brings out reasonably acceptable conclusions from studies conducted.

Modern Sociologist consider Sociology as a scientific field because it uses systematic methods of investigations and evaluation of theories in the light of evidence and logical arguments just like modern scientific research. However, sociology cannot be compared directly with natural science due to the difference of studying the natural world and human behavior.

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