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DEPARTMENT OF SOCIOLOGY
FALL  2021 COURSES

*All courses are 3 credits except where noted*

We have an interest in providing experience that permits students to examine social forms of life, and at the same time explore their values and beliefs. One of our interests is to help students begin to participate in the public domain. We will do this by assisting students in identifying coursework, internships, research, and other intentional experiments that can provide the fundamental theoretical and research tools for roles in intervention.

SOCI 10100-01 INTRODUCTION TO SOCIOLOGY

MWF: 11:00 – 11:50 PM

INSTRUCTOR: Joslyn Brenton, 112 Muller Faculty Ctr., 4-7384, jbrenton@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 30 students per section
PREREQUISITES: None
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Sociology is the scientific study of human social behavior. In this course you will be introduced to sociological theories, methods of inquiry, and concepts that will help you cultivate a sociological perspective—the ability to see how your personal experiences are shaped by the way your society is organized. Together we will identify and examine how durable patterns in the organization of daily life give us freedom to act as we want, but also constrain our behaviors (for example, do you ever wonder why you do not see boys wearing skirts to class?). In this course we will focus on how multiple inequalities along the lines of race, class, gender, and sexuality shape our experiences and understanding of the self as well as the reproduction of inequality. It is my hope that the topics and readings discussed in this course will complicate some of your prior assumptions and knowledge about the social world, as this is part and parcel of the learning process.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion, films, and small group activities, creative activities

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Papers, exams, group discussion, and research project.

SOCI 20500-01 SOCIOLOGICAL INQUIRIES
TR 10:50-12:05 PM
INSTRUCTOR:  Sergio Cabrera, Muller 109, Ext. 4-7968, scabrera@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 25

PREREQUISITES:  Must be a Sociology Major.

COURSE DESCRIPTION:  Students will learn about primary sociological theories; basic research methods; how to ask a research question; basics of academic literature searching and reviewing; relevance of sociological reasoning and thinking.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  Discussion-centric, with lectures; writing, thinking, and reading in various ways. 

SOCI 20700-01 RACE & ETHNICITY
MWF 12:00 – 12:50 PM

INSTRUCTOR: Belisa Gonzalez, Egbert Hall 347, Ext. 4-3921, bgonzalez@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25

PREREQUISITES: One course in the social sciences or sophomore standing.
STUDENTS: Individuals who are serious about the subject matter of this course, and who want an increased awareness about living in a society where race is a primary organizing category.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will provide an introduction to concepts, theories, and current research on race & ethnicity on the United States. We will approach the subject through various perspectives including assimilations and pluralist. Race & ethnicity will be examined as dimensions of social stratification and social control. We will examine, analyze and challenge concepts, such as: prejudice, discrimination, institutional racism, internal colonization and ethnic identity.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture, discussions, films.

SOCI 21200-01 CHANGING CONTOURS OF WORK

MWF 9:00 -9:50 AM

INSTRUCTOR: Steve Sweet, 107 Muller Faculty Ctr., Ext. 4-3910, ssweet@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25

PREREQUISITES: One course in the social sciences or permission of instructor.
STUDENTS: Those with interest in work, occupations, inequality, and career success.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course examines the variety of jobs performed in society, the historical transformation of the workplace, and the impact of workplace practices on individuals and the larger social order. Students will learn core sociological concepts and perspectives that underpin the study of work, as well as methodological concerns relevant to studying industries and workers. The course addresses four big questions: 1) What have been the major historical transformations of work? 2) How do gender, race, class, age and disability intersect with work? 3) What are the characteristics and experiences of workers in different professions, and what does the future hold for these workers? 4) What are the implications of working in a global economy?

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: We will investigate work through a number of different media-lectures, films, student reports, discussions.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING:  Regular attendance and participation, papers, group presentations.

SOCI 21400-01, -02 DEFINITIONS OF NORMALITY

TR: 9:25 – 10:45 AM

INSTRUCTOR: Jessica Dunning-Lozano, Muller Faculty Ctr., 115, Ext. 4-7490, jdunninglozano@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One 100-level sociology course

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Using our sociological imagination we will be curious about what it means to be considered an outsider. We will think critically about the “social forces” and “coercions”, in particular historical moments, that define what is normal and what is not. In so doing we will reveal the power relations that define and control individuals and groups as “bad”, “mad”, “sad”, and “awe”-ful.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion/lecture.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Readings, daily engagement, facilitation of readings, discussions, analytic essays, exams.

SOCI 21700-01 MENTAL HEALTH IN HISTORICAL AND SOCIAL CONTEXT 
MWF 11:00 - 11:50 AM

INSTRUCTOR: Katherine Cohen-Filipic, Muller Faculty Ctr., 113, Ext. 4-5122, kcohenfilipic@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One 100-level sociology course or PSYC 10300
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Explores the historical and contemporary contexts of mental health and distress from both sociological and psychological perspectives. Examination of the social construction of mental health through time, and consideration of how social and cultural factors such as race, class, and gender intersect with diagnostic paradigms and clinical treatment models employed by practitioners. Cross listed as PSYC 21700. Students may not receive credit for PSYC 21700 and SOCI 21700.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture, discussions, small group activities.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: A wide variety of learning activities, including papers, presentations, exams, and class participation.

SOCI 22000-01 SOCIOLOGY OF AGING

TR 9:25 - 10:40 AM

INSTRUCTOR: Elizabeth Bergman, Job 216, Ext. 4-3859, ebergman@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 25

PREREQUISITES: SOCI-10100 (Introduction to Sociology) or GERO-10100 (Introduction to Gerontology).

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Upon completing the course, a student will:
1. Describe the condition of the elderly in contemporary American society, noting both attitudes toward the elderly and the objective status of the elderly, and assess the manner in which these conditions are affected by variables such as race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status, and culture.
2. Discuss the social implications of population aging for American society.
3. Identify the roles and importance of the elderly within the basic social institutions of the family, the economy, and the political system, and discuss the ways in which these institutions have adapted to the elderly and population aging.
4. Explain how social factors that affect successful aging are modified by such variables as social class and health status.
5. Describe the ways in which American society organizes behavior around caregiving and chronic illness, and discuss the implications for the elderly and their families.
6. Understand the historical development and status of programs and services for the elderly in the American society.
7. Apply in-class knowledge to case studies and other "real life" situations.
Please note: This course is cross-listed with GERO-22000. Students may not receive credit for both SOCI-22000 and GERO-22000.

SOCI 23501-01 SELECTED TOPICS: RICH AND POOR IN THE U.S. 
MWF 10:00 – 10:50 AM

INSTRUCTOR: Sergio Cabrera, Muller 109, 4-7968, scabrera@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 25
PREREQUISITES: One social science course

STUDENTS:  All are welcome.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Over the last three decades the gap between the very rich and everybody else has grown dramatically. In this class we will explore several broad questions concerning the nature and reproduction of class inequality in the U.S. We will ask, for example: What is unique about the inequality we live with today? How does social class structure our everyday lives? How, in a purportedly democratic and meritocratic society, is class inequality sustained across generations? What institutions and beliefs systems are involved in this reproduction? How do the rich and poor make sense of their place within the distribution of wealth and power? How is it that our society has become simultaneously more open (in terms of race and gender) and unequal? What does all this mean for the viability of a democratic society? And why should we turn to sociologists to help us answer these questions? By exploring these questions I hope to help you develop a toolkit for critical thinking about the complexities of social class in the U.S., as well as an understanding of how your own experiences are the products of systems of stratification.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  Lecture/Discussions

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING:  One course in the social sciences or sophomore standing. Grading based on active reading and participation; exams; and occasional quizzes.

SOCI 30500-01 PRACTICUM IN SOCIAL CHANGE: UMI

TR 2:35 – 3:50 PM

INSTRUCTORS: Gustavo Licon, Egbert 344, Ext. 4-1042, glicon@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 15

PREREQUISITES: Three courses in the social sciences.
COURSE DESCRIPTION:  Urban Mentorship Initiative is an academic mentorship program that offers students the opportunity to participate in interdisciplinary, coursework and field-based service-learning aimed at supporting disadvantaged youth’s pursuit of higher education.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Grades will be assigned based on a series of reflection papers and a final group project.

SOCI 32700-01 WORK AND THE FAMILY
TR 9:25-10:40 AM
INSTRUCTOR: Stephen Sweet, 107 Muller Faculty Ctr., Ext. 4-3910, ssweet@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 20
PREREQUISITES: One 100-level sociology course; two additional courses in the social sciences
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course examines the interlocking relationships between two key institutions in society: the workplace and the family. We consider three core questions: First, how do jobs and workplaces affect family life? Second, how do family commitments influence the behaviors or workers and their ability to contribute to the economy? Third, to what extent do existing policies meet the needs of working families? Our approach will focus on issues of history, gender, class inequality, the life course, career development, organizational practices, and government policy.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lectures, films, group discussions.
COURSE REQUIREMENTS/GRADING: Class participation, 3 research papers, group presentation and paper, readings. Grading: A-F, based on requirements.

SOCI 33501-01 ST: SEXUALITY & HEALTH

M 4:00 - 6:40 PM

INSTRUCTOR: Luca Maurer, Hammond Health Ctr., B116, Ext. 4-7394, lmaurer@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES: One 100-level sociology course; two additional social science courses.

COURSE DESCRIPTION:  This course explores the intersections of sexuality and health and focuses on both as social concepts. We will investigate the manner in which sexuality and health are shaped by individual, social and cultural factors and how ideas about our bodies and our sexuality are related to ideas about our health.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  The course includes a wide variety of learning opportunities, including multidisciplinary readings, experiential learning activities, summative reflections, and other learning modalities, and is taught in an intersectional manner.      

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING:  Based upon a project, a paper, exams, a group project, class participation, and other assignments.

SOCI 33509-01 ST: HOOKING UP:  SOCIOLOGY OF INTIMACY

MWF 2:00 - 2:50 PM

INSTRUCTOR: Sociology Chair, Muller Faculty Ctr. 114, ext. 4-3311, sociologychair@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES: SOCI 10100 or SOCI 10200 and two additional courses in the social sciences.

STUDENTS: Intended for juniors and seniors; social science and women’s studies students will benefit most. All students will need to be engaged, enthusiastic readers and participants, ready for a rigorous course.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will allow students to use upper-level social scientific knowledge to explore intimate relationships; the focus is on the United States but cross-cultural data will also be used. We will use gender as the major variable to illuminate the historical, material, and social contexts of intimate relationships, sexuality, and intimacy. Throughout the course, we’ll also address race, class, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Students will be expected to challenge their taken-for-granted assumptions about the intersections between individuals and broader social structures.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture, highly engaged student discussions

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Class participation and attendance, analytical papers, critical thinking exercises, projects.

SOCI 33604-01 ST:  MASS INCARCERATION IN THE U.S.
TR 4:00-5:15 PM
INSTRUCTOR: Jessica Dunning-Lozano, 111 Muller Faculty Ctr., 4-7490, jdunninglozano@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 20
PREREQUISITES: One 100-level sociology course; two additional social science courses
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Forty years ago prominent criminologists predicted the inevitable decline of the prison system in the United States. However, the U.S. now comprises 25% of the world's prisoners despite accounting for only 5% of the world's population, making it by far the world's most incarcerating nation. The primary objective of this course is to bring context to this drastic shift from a trajectory toward de-incarceration to the current era of mass incarceration. The course is designed to aid you in the development of a nuanced and multifaceted understanding of the social, political, and economic factors that have brought about this punitive turn in the criminal justice system. We will examine how prisons as social institutions operate as important sites for the (re)production of class, racial, and gender inequality in an ostensibly egalitarian U.S. society.
While the course is sociologically centered, we will also engage works in education, history, geography, and ethnic studies to enhance our sociological understanding of the phenomenon of mass incarceration. We will examine the prison as a physical site of confinement and punishment and investigate the enduring social and economic consequences associated with incarceration, such as limited labor market options, felony disenfranchisement, and the extension of the punitive activities of the criminal justice system into the families and communities of the incarcerated.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion/ Lecture
COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Your grade will be based upon you papers, group presentations, engagement with the course readings, and participation

SOCI 35500-01 QUANTITATIVE METHODS

MWF: 1:00 – 1:50 PM

INSTRUCTOR:  Stephen Sweet, Muller Faculty Ctr., 107, Ext. 4-3510, ssweet@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT:  20

PREREQUISITES:  Prerequisites: SOCI 20500 or the one credit course in GERONTOLOGY introducing students to research methods.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Students will learn skills in data analysis, data presentation, and report writing.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  Seminar and discussion.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING:  Students will complete weekly analysis exercises (approximately 60% of the course grade) and compose a report summarizing their analysis of a nationally representative sample of adult behaviors, values and attitudes (approximately 30% of the course grade).  Consistent attendance is necessary (10% of course grade).

SOCI 43500-01 ST: FEMINISM, FOOD, AND HEALTH 

TR 10:50 AM – 12:05 PM 

INSTRUCTOR: Joslyn Brenton, Muller 115, Ext. 4-7384, jbrenton@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 12
PREREQUISITES: One 100 level sociology course; three courses in the social sciences with at least one at level 3; junior standing or above.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The way people experience food and health is deeply tied to gender inequality. In this course we will discuss how our food habits, body image, and health status are shaped by our experiences living in a patriarchal society. To investigate these issues we will use a blend of macro and micro approaches, with an eye to how feminism can help us to identify root causes and future solutions to major social problems surrounding food and health. Using a macro lens we will identify what gender inequality looks like, where it operates, and how it is reproduced. We will then take a micro approach, zooming in to identify and examine how our individual experiences with food and our bodies reflect and/or challenge these macro level processes. Throughout the course we will draw on intersectional theory, attending to how gendered experiences intersect with other systems of oppression.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: We will use a combination of engaging texts, film, writing assignments, and discussion to explore these issues.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Attendance and participation; leading class discussion; reflection papers; final course project.

SOCI 43501-01 SURVEILLANCE & SOCIETY

TR 1:10 – 2:25 PM

INSTRUCTOR: Jessica Dunning-Lozano, Muller Faculty Ctr. 115, Ext. 4-7490, jdunninglozano@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 12

PREREQUISITES: One 100 level sociology course; 3 courses in the social sciences with at least 1 at level 3

STUDENTS: Junior standing or above
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will explore the complex ways that technologies and societies interact to produce security, fear, power, and social control. Course topics include: surveillance as a tool for social control; surveillance technologies in the workplace, schools, on-line, and in the domestic sphere; biometric technologies; and the hypervisibility of certain racialized, classed, gendered or “othered” bodies. Course texts will draw from the disciplines of sociology, race and ethnic studies, geography, and criminology. We will also utilize the mediums of film, reality TV, and social media to examine perceptions of safety, danger, and the normalization of surveillance technologies in our day-to-day lives.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Discussion/lecture/multimedia

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Term paper, engagement with course readings, and class

SOCI 43505-01 ST: NOT FOR SALE:  THE MORAL LIMITS OF MARKETS

TR 2:35-3:50 PM

INSTRUCTOR:  Sergio Cabrera, 109 Muller Faculty Ctr., 4-7968, scabrera@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT:  12

PREREQUISITES:  One 100-level sociology course; three additional courses in sociology; permission of instructor.

COURSE DESCRIPTION:  The moral limits of markets refer to the cultural boundaries beyond which paying for a good or service becomes unnerving—beyond which buying and selling becomes taboo. 

The cultural intersections between markets and morals are an interesting place. By inquiring into why we feel comfortably buying and selling some things and not others we gain insights into a profoundly sociological dimension of contemporary social life: the socially constructed and politically contested nature of our collective values and of the moral categories we use to determine right from wrong and good from bad. 

The course leads students to explore the ethical implications of markets and commodification for both groups and individuals. We will ask, debate, and explore, for example: Should families be run like corporations, or vice versa? Can market metaphors help us understand religious preferences? How should we think about the role of money be in politics, romantic relationships, and higher education? Should markets for babies, drugs, sex, human body parts, or genetic material be regulated, and if so how and by whom? Is Kanye’s self-declared war on music pirating justified? How do groups decide whether, when, and how much “pirating” is acceptable? Should you continue to shop at Hobby Lobby? Can and should ethnic or sexual identities be commodified, bought, and sold? 

Students should expect to leave the course with a nuanced understanding of the relationship between markets, morality, and social life.  

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  Lecture/Discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING:  Class Participation; Reflection Papers; Exams

SOCI 44500-01 TUTORIAL: GENDER & SEXUALITIES RESEARCH

MW: 3:00 – 4:15 PM

INSTRUCTOR:  Sociology Chair, Muller Faculty Ctr. 114, 4-3311, sociologychair@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 12

PREREQUISITES: One 100-level sociology course; three additional courses in sociology; permission of instructor.

NOTE: The course is Writing Intensive. 

COURSE DESCRIPTION:  This course is designed to introduce students to research that utilizes gender and sexuality as foundational variables.  Student will learn how to conduct either their own research or work in teams to do so.  Course products include an original research project, designed and carried out individually.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  The course is a combination of independent study and group and team work.  We will meet to discuss all aspects of sociological gender and sexuality research.  Student teams will meet outside of class as well.  Individual meetings with the professor will also be necessary.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING:  Students will need to design and complete – alone or in teams – a gender plus sexuality research project.  Students will need to be diligent and disciplined, ready to work, read, and learn; able to do independent and collective work. Experience in research methods not needed but willingness to learn is.

SOCI 49002-01 SENIOR PROJECT IN COUNSELING
M 1:00-1:50 PM
INSTRUCTOR: Katherine Cohen-Filipic, 113 Muller Faculty Ctr., Ext. 4-5122, kcohenfilipic@ithaca.edu
ENROLLMENT: 12
PREREQUISITES: Senior Status
COURSE DESCRIPTION:  This class serves as an alternative for the internship requirement for counseling minors and provides students with an opportunity to develop macro-level skills in the human services through a semester-long project.
COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture and small group mentorship.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Weekly assignments that build toward a large project.

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