Delta State University
SOC 101: Principles of Sociology
Spring Semester 2005

Study Questions
Week 10

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Topic for the Week:  Social Relations: Gender and Race

Readings for the Week: 

Society: The Basics, Chapter 10 (pp. 244261) and 11 (pp. 271282)

Sociological Footprints, Chapter 14 (Fishbach et al.) and 46 (Merton)


(1)  What is the difference between sex and gender?  What is meant by gender stratification?  Why is gender a topic that interests sociologists?

(2)  Cite evidence that supports the notion that gender is a cultural construction.  What are some of the traditional notions of gender identity?  Can you think of examples that contradict these notions?

(3)  How is gender inequality supported and reproduced by various social institutions in the U.S.?

(4)  How have womens roles in the workplace changed over the years?  Consider wages paid to women, the second shift, and new opportunities available to women.

(5)  What is meant by the term minority?  Are women a minority group?

(6)  What is the difference between race and ethnicity?  What does it mean to say race and ethnicity are social constructs?

(7)  What factors generate ethnic identity?  Why do some groups feel a strong ethnic identity, while other groups do not?

(8)  What is meant by prejudice, discrimination and racism?  What is the difference between individual and institutional discrimination?  How can we recognize or identify institutional discrimination?

(9)  Define the following terms and explain their connection to racial inequality:  stereotype, scapegoat, pluralism, assimilation, segregation, genocide.

(10)  What is meant by domestic violence?  Provide examples of different acts that can be considered domestic violence.  What factors contribute to domestic violence?  What are some of the consequences of domestic violence?

(11)  What is the American creed?  How is the American creed represented with respect to prejudice and discrimination?