The Life Course and Social Change January 17

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The Life Course and Social Change January 17 th , 2010 Agency and Structure The Life Course and Social Change January 17 th , 2010 Agency and Structure

My Research Interests • Individualization, relationships, intimacy • Values • Family sociology • Economic Sociology •My Research Interests • Individualization, relationships, intimacy • Values • Family sociology • Economic Sociology • Social change and modernization • Urbanization • Socio-biology • Critical theory

Outline • Review • Determinism and Free will • Example from Popular Culture • Plato's AllegoryOutline • Review • Determinism and Free will • Example from Popular Culture • Plato’s Allegory of the Cave • Critical Theory • Structure and Agency, Structuration, Life course policy • Seminar-tutorial: Settersten text, Agency and Structure

Review • Mannheim's generation: social location,  generation as an actuality, generational units • Other “generations“:Review • Mannheim’s generation: social location, generation as an actuality, generational units • Other “generations“: of a family, popular „Pepsi Generation“ • Cohorts (same time interval, when a particular event occurs: birth, first marriage, business start-up etc. )

Determinism vs. Free Will Free will: the ability to act, make choices,  free from externalDeterminism vs. Free Will Free will: the ability to act, make choices, free from external constraints Determinism: events are caused, predictable (by culture, biology, laws of nature, physics, pychology, god) Moral consequences Compatibilism Illusion of will

Popular culture Popular culture

Two issues Accurate perception of reality Freedom to act within this reality Two issues Accurate perception of reality Freedom to act within this reality

Critical Theory Rationality, science, and the holocaust Perception of reality vs illusion: role of consumer culture,Critical Theory Rationality, science, and the holocaust Perception of reality vs illusion: role of consumer culture, ideology in masking reality Freedom to act: limited due to rational, scientific control amid “dumbing down” of society

Structure and Agency • Agency vs structure perspectives • Life course policy • Structuration; anchored inStructure and Agency • Agency vs structure perspectives • Life course policy • Structuration; anchored in „social practices ordered across time and space“

Readings for Next Week • Glenn 1. What examples of age, cohort and period effect doReadings for Next Week • Glenn 1. What examples of age, cohort and period effect do you know? 2. What data should be used for separating age, period, and cohort effects? 3. What statistical methods you would use to separate these effects? • Mc. Adams 1. How would you go about analyzing such an interview? 2. Which life course concepts would you use in your analysis? 3. Which person, other than your parents or grandparents, over 50 years of age, will you interview?




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