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‘Sociology is the same as common sense, discuss’.

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'Sociology is the same as common sense, discuss'. With the increase in technology and supposed increase in the understanding of our society, sociology is becoming progressively more effective and important in the break down and realisation of sociological problems and solutions. Sociology is 'the social science'. 'It is the study and analysis of human behaviour as a result of society'. The aim of sociology is to study behaviour and establish it in a different way through testing and research. Common sense on the other hand is the information that a person has learnt from society as they have been socialised. For example, it is common sense to drive on the left hand side of the road. It may seem useful to us, but it is not always necessarily correct. Some people may argue that not everybody in the world is a sociologist, the majority of people that live on this planet do not attempt to prove or disprove theories, they live their lives as they have been socialised to do so. ...read more.


'Common sense is grounded in our personal experience.' For instance one particular person may have experienced situations that have altered their common sense, or their perception of their common knowledge. On the contrary, Sociological knowledge is spread over 'a multitude of life worlds.' This means that it is viewed upon in a more general way, it has not been influenced or affected by one single person, but instead has been interpreted and generated as a result of numerous people from different environments. Probably the most significant contrasting fundamental is that common sense is untested knowledge, or assumed knowledge that is simply presumed correct. In sociology a statement is analysed, and a sociologists' goal is to 'defamiliarise the familiar,' to question what is known. A quote from Mark Twain sums up simply the differences between the two; 'supposing is good, but finding out is better.' Zigmunt Bauman suggests that in order to think sociologically, we must move beyond our common sense. This means that sociological theories may begin as common sense statements, but in order for them to become a sociological theory or idea, the sociologist must go that step further. ...read more.


In the final question, you would probably be drawn to three possible answers, alcohol, heroin or marijuana. In fact it is aspirin that causes the most casualty patients. These are all examples of common knowledge that has been disproved by sociology. Common sense can be generalised as 'the thing everyone knows'. Since 'everybody' knows that something is true, it is not questioned, it is just accepted by society, or the majority of a society to be valid. Since there is no question of the validity of a common knowledge statement, this closes down any argument against it. If it is the consensus that a certain piece of information or a particular view is correct, it will not be questioned. This is the essential difference between the two; social knowledge, i.e. sociology, has been taken that step further, it has been validated through testing and scrutiny. This is what separates the two. Although they may be similar, and common sense statements may form the basis for sociology, they are not defined as the same thing. In conclusion to the statement, sociology and common sense are not the same things. They have different attributes and different characteristics. ...read more.

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