Yahaira Villarrubia Intro to Sociology Section #13528Today in society many changes are made that can affect the way we live our lives. Sometimes these changes can be a personal changes that affects our own life. Or it can even be a change in the world that can completely affect our society. In 1959 C. Wright Mills (2016) introduced the term “Sociological Imagination” which he defines as ” a quality of the mind that allows us to understand the relationship between our individual circumstances and larger social forces (Ferris & Stein, 2016, pg.
13).” C. Wright Mills believed that sociological imagination was the relationship between a person’s troubles and a public issue (Sociological Imagination ,2015). Mills defined that ones trouble is defined as an individual character who had limited areas of social life which he or she is directly and personally aware about (C Wright Mills…,2015). A public issue was defined as the matter that transcends these local environments of the individual and the limited range of of his life such as society(C Wright Mills…,2015).
Sociological imagination allows us to become more aware and understand what is going on in the world and how individuals in society are being affected by these changes in the world (C Wright Mills…,2015). Sociologist look at society in two different levels, called macrosociology and microsociology. Macrosociology is referred as to the bigger aspect of society meaning if you were looking at the entire society as a whole (Ferris & Stein, 2016, pg.16). Microsociology is considered if you are looking at an individual, your family, or even your community (Ferris & Stein, 2016, pg.14). Every person is their own person and has their own story. Each individual was influenced by the people who came before us.
History can establish these routines and patterns that we do everyday in society today. Many things have shaped the person I am today, specifically the three structures that have made me who I am today are my gender, my class, and my race/ethnicity. These three structures have helped me become the person I am today, and have also helped me make the decisions I make in my day to day life. Today in society being a woman can be difficult. For example many women today are often criticized by what they wear. Especially by men, and sometimes women themselves. Women who wear shorter skirts or clothes that don’t cover them up all the way are often seen as “sluts” or are harassed by men.
Society has painted a picture for how the “ideal” women should look like. Magazines and models advertise women to be skinny, fair complexion, and no flaws. Being a women in the past was a bit different than that of today’s women. In the past women have been only seen as a housewife, basically staying at home and taking care of the kids. Today some women still live that lifestyle. Women are still seen lower than men, Also men and women aren’t paid equally.
I believe women have the same human rights as men in today’s society. Many women are breaking barriers and doing jobs that men do today. Which has changed since the past couple years. Being a women today has enabled to me to understand that I am as fairly equally to men. It has allowed me to change my behavior and to stand up for myself. To make choices that I believe are right for my life and well being.
It has enabled me to do things that society thinks women shouldn’t be able to do. I have encountered many times where I have been told I can’t do this or that because I’m a girl, but many times have proven wrong. For example, I told my dad that i was thinking about becoming EMT and the first thing he said was, “that a guys job”. Which is completely wrong in my perspective. Every women has the strength and the same abilities that men have to do whatever they want to do.
Which I believe is why women have broken the barrier of taking some jobs that men currently do. Women always run into problems regarding their gender and being underestimated, which is a worldwide problem. This is why women behave certain ways or act certain ways because society has shaped them to be that way. Society separated into three different classes.
The lower class, the middle class, and the upper class. You aren’t able to pick what class you want to be in, but you are born into a certain class. You may however change your circumstances and class by working hard. Lower class is considered to be the least wealthiest class, whereas the middle class makes enough money to live a comfortable life. The upper class is the wealthiest class.
An example of this can be homeless which are considered lower class. Then there is the middle class which is people who work the “9-5” life and make enough to support their family and live somewhat of a comfortable life tyle. As for the upper class, which is your typical “celebrity” who is able to have the luxuries things and live in a mansion. Symbolic interaction does has a big impact in the type of class you are in. Symbolic interaction is defined as a symbolic interactionism helps us explain both how language and symbols give meaning to experiences in our life (Ferris & Stein, 2016, pg. 27). For example many people who are of the upper class are able to buy things from designer bags like Gucci, Supreme, or any high designer brand.
This is an example of symbolic interactionism because they are able to buy a expensive brand bag. Other people who see people who have things like that can point out that they are someone who is a wealthy person. Being apart of the middle class has showed me to value the things I have in my life. It has taught me that I should be thankful for the things I am able to have, which others may not be able to have. For example, sometimes I can get caught up in the idea of no I don’t want that for dinner. But people from a lower class would do anything just to provide any meal for their families. My class has helped me view things in different perspectives, it has taught me to vale the things I have and to be thankful for what I have. Many people don’t have things you might be able to have, and might value them more than another person can.
Society might treat you differently depending on your race or you ethnicity. Some people get treated bad because they are of a certain race. For example, a big issue has been how police are treating african americans. There has been many videos online showing how police treat african americans because of their race. Being a latina in today’s society can affect the way people treat you, or the jobs you can get as well. For example, A friend that used I work at hollister used to tell me that they only hire girls that fit the image. When she first told me that I was a bit confused, I asked her what exactly was hollisters image? She stated, “the beachy girl, natural, tan, and tall”.
Meaning a certain race would be the ideal fit for this job. On the other hand sometimes being latina and being able to speak two languages can come in handy. It can allow you to get jobs that look for people who need a spanish speaker as well. I have also encountered negative experiences where jobs didn’t want me to speak spanish to the customers because it made other people around me feel uncomfortable. They felt uncomfortable because they did not understand what was being exchanged with the other person. People can sometimes always assume you are talking about them when your speaking spanish in public, and give you dirty looks. Race and ethnicity has a very large impact in society.
It can change what job you can get, it can change the way people treat you as well. This has become a problem that has affected the wider society, not just individuals. In conclusion, sociological imagination is an awareness of the relationship between an individual and the wider society. Weather you are looking at society through macrosociology or microsociology, it helps you to see the different classes and the people in them. The reasons they are in them and possible reasons why they ended up there at all.
We have all been influenced by those who came before us. Gender, class, and race/ethnicity to me are the strongest influences on the person I have become. From being a woman and the many challenges that come along with it.
To my class which I was born into but I have ability to change just as everyone does. Depending on your starting point though it can more difficult to change classes, but everyone is capable. And of course race and ethnicity is big one when it comes to where you are in society, and can make things easier or more difficult.
But of course that can not stop you from changing your social class and accomplishing your dreams. All these things can affect individuals as well as society. Works Cited Ferris, K., & Stein, J. (2016.). In The Real World: An Introduction to Sociology (5th ed.).
New York : W. W. Norton & Company Inc. NikosKaranikolas (2015, November 28) “C Wright Mills Sociological Imagination and Power Elite.” Youtube. Retrieved From https://youtu.be/JQWLQOruh6I Sociology Live! (2015, October 22) “Sociological imagination.
” Youtube. Retrieved From https://youtu.be/BINK6r1Wy78