Subject Matter of Sociology


Sociology is the scientific study of society: its composition, organization, culture, and development. Sociology combines scientific methods with humanistic perspectives and integrates the findings of economics, political science, psychology, and history. The subject matter of sociology is equally diverse, ranging from crime to religion, from the family to the state, from popular culture to traditional culture, and from social stability to revolution. Sociology is a field of study that seeks to analyze and explain important matters that affects our everyday life, our society, and the world in which we live. At a personal level sociology investigates the causes and consequences of such things as romantic love, racial prejudice, gender identity, deviant behaviour, entrepreneurial activity, and religious experience. At a societal level, sociology examines and explains such matters as existence of poverty and wealth, the creation of law, the administration of justice, prejudice and discrimination, business enterprises and entrepreneurship, schools and education, and social movements. At the global level sociology studies such things as population growth and migration, economic development and globalization, war and peace, and policies to support the protection of the environment.

Sociologists stress the importance of systematically gathering and analyzing evidence about social life to enrich our understanding of the social processes that drive society and impact on everyday life. In doing this sociologists use a wide variety of research methods. Sociologists observe the everyday life of social groups, conduct individual interviews, carry out large-scale social surveys, examine historical documents and official records, analyze census data, and conduct small group experiments. Regardless of the methods used, the aim is always to better understand the social forces that affect our lives and society in which we live. One of the most important things that sociology can offer to its students is the ability to grasp clearly a connection between broad social forces and personal experience. This is an extremely important preparation for living effective personal lives in a changing and complex world. It is also equally important for the future development of our society.