Sociology | Social Problems & Policies
S101 | 4091 | Bolzendahl

Topic:  Contemporary Social Issues in the United States

Americans today are challenged to deal with a variety of social
problems:  Should I oppose legal abortion?  Why are people poor when
our country is so rich?  What is the best way to eliminate racism?
Will I be able to have a good relationship, career, and family life?
Should jail terms be increased to discourage crime?  Using
sociological tools and understandings we will move toward a deeper
understanding of a variety of social problems.  The course will be
organized around four broad topics: race and ethnicity, gender and
family, crime and deviance, and class and inequality.  Students will
be introduced to broad theoretical frameworks, methods of analysis,
and findings from the past and present.  Sociological perspectives
will often be compared to those found in the media, the natural
sciences, government, and religion.  At the end of the course,
students should be able to apply a sociological perspective to the
issues surrounding contemporary society.