• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

What is sociology? Identify three ways that sociology can be applied to health? There is no precise definition of sociology. In basic terms, sociology is the study of society.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

What is sociology? Identify three ways that sociology can be applied to health? There is no precise definition of sociology. In basic terms, sociology is the study of society. The meaning of the word comes from the suffix "-ology" which means "study of" and the stem "soci-" which refers to society. Sociology is a social science which involves the study of the social lives of people, groups, and societies. It is a relatively new academic discipline which evolved in the early 19th century by a sociologist named Auguste Comte. The term "sociology" was coined by Auguste Comte in 1838 from the Latin word socius which means "companion" and the Greek language logia, which means "study of", (Taylor and Field, 2003). Comte hoped to merge all studies of human-kind including history, psychology and economics. His own sociological methods were typical of other theorists throughout the 19th century. He believed all human life had passed through the same distinct historical stages and that, if one could grasp this progress, one could prescribe the remedies for social ills. During these times, sociology was looked upon as the 'queen of sciences', (www.wilkipedia.org). ...read more.

Middle

Once this position is held, the person has to perform a role, known as a behavior. These concepts were utilized by Parsons to create a theoretical outlook based on individuals who are sick, hence the 'sick role'. Parsons divided the model into two categories, the rights and the obligations. The sick individual has two rights; being exempt from normal social roles. Depending on the severity of the illness, will be dependent upon the length of time they are excused from their every day responsibilities. Within society, legitimation by the physician (doctor) is required in order for the sick person to be considered justifiably ill. Society is protected by this legitimation as sick individuals may attempt to remain in the sick role longer than social expectations allow, which may result in secondary gains, for example sick pay; this is known as malingering, (Cockerham, 2001). The sick individual is not accountable for their state of health. Illness is usually thought to be beyond the individuals own control. Depending on the severity of the illness, will power and motivation is often needed in order for the sick person to become better. ...read more.

Conclusion

McKeown (1976) was the first person who questioned the social overvaluation of medicine. He believed that medicine had a minor effect on public health and that the changes within the environment explain the disappearance of various infections and the decrease in mortality. Not everyone agrees with McKeown, as Sontag, (1982) believed that penicillin is one of the most important discoveries to man. It has helped develop antibiotics which have led to cures of disease and infection. Medicalization is expanding because of the development of medicine and technology. New treatments to cure disease which were formerly incurable are developed continuously - also for illnesses, which formerly were trivial. New techniques are fast insisted on as routines, for all the people without any question. (Niiniluoto 2003) Reference List. Cockerham, W.C. (2001) Medical Sociology, 8th Edition. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall. Gordon DR. (1988) Clinical science and clinical expertise: changing boundaries between art and science in medicine. Biomedicine examined. Kluwer Academic Publishers Lyng S. (1990) Holistic health and biomedical medicine. A counter-system analysis. State University of New York Press, New York. Sontag S. (1982) Illness as metaphor. Penguin Books, Harmondsworth. Taylor S. and Field S. (2003) Sociology of Health and Heath Care. Blackwell Publishing Ltd. ?? ?? ?? ?? Daniel Taylor 326SOC Social Aspects of Health Coursework 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Sociology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Sociology essays

  1. Approaches to History: Sociology and History

    begins with the idea of the wider social networks and societies within which individuals are to be found. Sociology can therefore be defined as the 'study of social order'. Sociology is a subject made up of competing theories on society.

  2. Is sociology a science?

    They believe that social facts and the behaviour of humans like the behaviour of matter can be objectively observed, expressed as a quantity and measured. These measurements are vital to explain human behaviour. Positivists also believe that based on objective measurements, observations of behaviour will allow statements of effect and cause to be made.

  1. Compare and contrast white collar crimes and street crimes, while understanding the definition of ...

    This type of behavior, while Smith may argue is how things needed to be done, is not acceptable by the board. Smith argues how the board (or more specific Board members) was "left out" of major decisions, yet he refuses to see the importance of his role.

  2. A-Level Sociology Theory + Methods Revision.

    SPF the result of these initiatives is a self-regulating system + social stability. Two ways of achieving this equilibrium = Socialisation + Soc. Control - punishment for those who fail to update society's values. * Functional Prerequisites - basic things that soc.

  1. evaluation of methods

    This means to improve the question I should ask 'if your parent did get married, in which way did they get married?'

  2. The position of widows in Nepalese society - sociological study.

    to 18 years in 1991, indicating a slow but steady change in secial peroeptions about the institution of child marriage . The change is most pronounced for young girls. In 1991, 7.4 percent of fernales in the 1-14 age group were reported to be married, compared with 24.9 pereent in 1961.

  1. Is sociology a science?

    From a functionalist perspective society is a system made up of interrelated parts. For example if a functionalist was asked what is the function of the family then they would say the family socialises new members of society and teaches them the norms and values which are essential for social life.

  2. Intro to Sociology.

    This injury has caused changes in statuses such as becoming a college student, becoming unemployed, and physically disabled and performing these roles in society has made me view our society as whole in a much more critical way. The sociological perspective in Jeremy's terms means: Take a step back, think

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work