Sociology of Conflict Test Review-1

Dr. Marina
Sociology of Conflict
Mid-term Exam Spring 2011
Student Name: _____________________________________________
Short Answer/Essay (Pick 15 of 15)
1. Explain how the Resistance through Rituals authors describe youth subcultures? How do
they resist structural domination? Describe, in detail, the Marxist concept of hegemony. How
do subcultures “win space?” In your discussion, include a discussion on style and the role of
media. Explain the concept of bricoleur and homology. What do the authors mean by no
solution to the youth working class subculture? What is this magical or imaginary way to solve
the problem of class? Explain how do youth and their working class parents face the same
institutional conditions in education, work, and leisure but respond in a different way with
their own cultural solutions?
2. Using Jefferson's “Cultural Responses of the Teds,” explain the three related aspects in
trying to understand Teddy Boy Culture:
a. Group-mindednes
b. Extreme Touchiness to Insults
c. Dress and Appearance
In your discussion, explain how extreme sensitivity and “defense of status” help explain fights
and violence. What happened to the Edwardian suit? How did its “meaning” change?
3. Using Clarke's “Skinheads and the Magical Recovery of Community,” explain how
Skinheads attempted to “recover” traditional working class community? How did this Us vs.
Them consciousness develop? How did skinheads view the dominant culture? Give examples?
What are the sources of conflict?
4. Using Turner's “Marx and Simmel Revisited,” compare Marx and Simmel's basic
assumptions regarding the nature of class conflicts. Explain Marx and Simmel's basic
contributions to theory in the sociology of conflict.
5. How does Horton define racism? Explain the problem of how demographers treat the issue
of racism in demographic studies? Explain the distinction between racism, race, and racial
inequality. How does using these concepts interchangeably obscure the problems of race in
demography? Explain the population and structural change theory. Use some examples in your
discussion (work and employment, minority population increase, etcetera). Explain the four
ways critical demography differs from conventional demography?
6. Explain the following quote:
The ideas of the ruling class are in every epoch the ruling ideas, i.e. the class which is the
ruling material force of society, is at the same time its ruling intellectual force. The class
which has the means of material production at its disposal, has control at the same time over
the means of mental production, so that thereby, generally speaking, the ideas of those who
lack the means of mental production are subject to it. The ruling ideas are nothing more than
the ideal expression of the dominant material relationships, the dominant material
relationships grasped as ideas.
Marx, German Ideology (1845)
7. Demonstrate the differences between the conflict and functionalist perspective by making
two different arguments explaining the causes of crime and deviance and another social
problem of your choice.
8. Explain the how the following model gives some perspective on the causes of conflict in
social life. Be sure to use examples to substantiate your claims.
Merton's typology of individual adaptations to environmental pressures
Type of Adaptation
1. Conformity
2. Innovation
3. Ritualism
4. Retreatism
5. Rebellion
Cultural Goal
Institutionalized Means
Note: + signifies acceptance, – signifies rejection, and + signifies rejection of prevailing goal or
means and substitution of new goal or means.
9. Explaining the current debate on sagging pants using a conflict and functionalist
perspective. In your discussion, think about how the dominant culture views sagging pants and
the recent debate to curtail the practice. Use ideas from Resistance through Rituals to
discuss how sagging pants resist the dominant culture. What function might sagging pants
serve for youths and what functions does outlawing the practice serve for the dominant
10. Explain the emergence of the global movement against capitalism, in particular, to
organizations like the IMF and WTO. Explain how a network of resistance developed. How
would you describe this resistance to capitalism? Explain. What is neo-liberalism and why are
people resisting it? Explain.
11. Explain the ways each of the classical sociological theorists viewed religion (Marx, Weber,
and Durkheim). Be specific and detailed. What are the manifests and latent functions of
religion like, for example, Pentecostal practices in the class video? What kind of approach
might you use to understand institutional functions of religion (Functionalist, Marxist, or
Conflict Perspective)? Explain. Finally do church members experience alienation or
empowerment? Does religion serve as a tool to keep the poor and working class accepting of
their social positions or a source of hope and inspiration? Explain but keep your sociological
“hat” on.
12. In detail, describe how Becker uses analytic induction to explain how people become
marijuana user. How is this process a social one? Why is this explanation sociologically
important. Create a fictitious examples using Becker's type of thinking to explain someone
becoming another type of deviant.
13. Using the arguments in Thinking Twice and class discussions of functionalist and conflict
perspectives, make two different arguments on the following claim: Poverty causes crime. You
might also want to use functionalist and conflict perspective in your discussion.
14. Using the arguments in Thinking Twice and class discussions on the functionalist and
conflict perspectives, make two different arguments on whether economic inequality benefits
15. Using the arguments in Thinking Twice and class discussions on the functionalist and
conflict perspectives, discuss whether Western aid benefits other countries. Explain in detail
the benefits and consequences to other countries receiving Western aid.
Required Essay (20 points)
Use the ideas of Massey and Denton to explain the construction and persistence of the
American ghetto. Your discussion should include, among other things, answers to the
following questions. How are the problems of segregation mainly structural, not individual?
What is the concept of hypersegregation. What are the dimensions of hypersegregation? How
does the creation of the black ghetto undermine the American ideology of getting ahead
though hard work and education? How do Massey and Denton challenge the “culture of
poverty” argument that blames the victim? Explain. How are spatial barriers also barriers to
social mobility? In your discussion, include the key elements of segregation and its effects on
individual poverty? How was the Black ghetto in the early 20th Century different from the
Italian and Polish ghettos? What accounts for the difference? Why does housing segregation
worsen and concentrate poverty? Finally, how does residential segregation and spatial
isolation lead to linguistic bifurcation (e.g. Ebonics vs. Standard English), and an oppositional
counter culture?