BY: ARIEL HSIEH | NOVEMBER 17, 2013
First off, thanks so much for somehow making it over to our corner of the www for the introduction of the UCLA Sociology Undergraduate Association’s blog, where we will be talking all about the social world in which we live. Every Sunday evening, the SUA Executive Board will be bringing you a dose of our sociological imagination, along with academic and professional resources and updates on happenings at UCLA and the greater LA Area!
For those of you who might think that Sociology doesn't apply to you unless you study it in school or are a self-proclaimed Sociologist, let me offer a recap of what Sociology actually is, as defined by UCLA:
“Sociology is the study of the organization, dynamics and consequences of social life. The scope of the discipline is as broad and diverse as social life itself. Sociologists study social interaction and relationships, organizations and institutions, communities and whole societies.”
Basically, if you didn't get it from reading yourself, Sociology is literally the study of everything that has to do with social life, examined from an outside perspective. If you've ever wondered anything from “Why do guys always pay on the first date?” to “How come everything made in China is so cheap?”—congratulations, you’re thinking like a Sociologist. In the wise words of C. Wright Mills (from where our blog name originates), our sociological imagination is “the vivid awareness of the relationship between experience and the wider society” meaning the ability to look at everything in our lives that seems normal, and see how they interact and influence each other to create our individualized notions of daily life.
Obviously, this all originates from the underlying idea that society is fundamentally a result of human invention and interaction, and if that doesn't seem to be an idea you’re on board with, I recommend taking a moment to look at the people, institutions, and behaviors around you and really asking yourself: Is this all natural? Is this all “just the way things are”? Is our world permanent and never-changing? If you answer any of these questions with anything less than a firm “yes,” then Sociology and the UCLA SUA might just be for you.