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Prepared by:

Jef Francis Lim

 Derivation:
 Socius (Latin) – Companion
 Logos (Greek) – Study of

 Literally means “the study of companionship.”

 Or

 May also be defined as “the study of the bases of

social/societal membership” (Penguin:1994).
 Other definitions (widely used):
 The systematic study of social behavior & human
groups (Schaefer: 2005).

 The scientific study of society & human behavior

(Henslin: 2003).

 The systematic study of human society (Macionis:

 Thus, it focuses in understanding:
 Social Patterns
 Shared Human Behavior
 Social Relations
 Social Interaction
 Social Structures
 Social Organization
 Social Process
 Social Experience
 The main focus of sociology (in general) is the group
rather than the individual.

─ The ways in which people act toward, respond to &

influence one another.
 Many people mistakenly believe that sociology is the
study of the obvious.

 They claim that sociology is nothing but the

application of common sense.

 But equating any science with simple common sense

could not be further from the truth!

 Common sense is not always “common,” nor “sensible.”

 Statements like “Birds of the same feather flock
together” and “Opposites attract,” while supposedly
based on common knowledge, contradict each other.

 Because common sense does not always accurately

predict reality, people need something else.
 Common Sense :
 Is routine knowledge you have from every day life
 We gain common sense by interacting with people,
watching others, and by experiencing different

 Sociology often regards common sense as a

problem and challenge the idea of it.
 One difference between sociological and common
sense explanations of human society is that common
sense explanations tend to be individualistic meaning
that they are created on the basis of a personal point of

 Whereas in contrast, sociological explanations are

theories based on research.
 Furthermore, common sense is ultimately an opinion,
but the sociological explanation is an objective that is
knowledge which attempts to be free of prejudice.
 Example 1: RISE IN DIVORCE RATES (U.S. Survey)

 Common Sense:
 Would suggest that couples are falling out of love and
growing apart.

 Sociological Explanation:
 They would look at the changing role of women in the last
few decade which has created a generation of independent
women who excel in the workforce , therefore able to live
an independent life without the support of a partner.
 Example 2: WHY PEOPLE MARRY?

 Common Sense:
 Most people have the opinion that everyone should
marry someone they love due to tradition.

 Sociological Explanation:
 It is society which has deemed marriage a right of
passage and if an individual does not marry then they
are felt to be doing something wrong.
 The sociological approach goes beyond everyday
common sense.

 Many people believe they understand the world and

the events taking place within it, often justifying their
understandings by calling it "common sense. "

 However, they have not actually engaged in a

systematic attempt to understand the social world.
 Sociology, is an attempt to understand the social world
by situating social events in their corresponding
environment (i.e., social structure, culture, history)
and trying to understand social phenomena by
collecting and analyzing empirical data.

 This scientific approach is what differentiates

sociological knowledge from common sense.
 Thus, to obtain sociological knowledge, sociologists
must study their world methodically and

 They do this through induction and deduction.

 With induction, sociologists gather data on the ground

and formulate theories about what they find.
 These theories are then tested by using the scientific
method in order to assess the theory's validity.

 In order to test a theory's validity, they utilize


 Deduction is the act of evaluating their theories in

light of new data.
 Thus, sociological knowledge is produced through a
constant back and forth between empirical
observation and theorization.

 In this way, sociology is more rigorous than common

sense, because sociologists test and modify their
understanding of how the world works through
scientific analysis.
 Derivation:
 Anthropos (Greek) – Man/Human
 Logos (Greek) – Study of

 Literally means “the study of man/human

 Other definitions (widely used):
 The holistic study of human beings/humankind.

 The study of the whole of the human condition: past,

present, & future; biology, society, language, & culture
 Thus, it is interested in understanding all aspects of
human beings from its:
 Human History (prehistory, medieval, modern)
 Culture (ancient/extinct, primitive, modern, exotic)
 Human Evolution (human & non human primates,
anatomy, biology, variation, adaptation , ecology,
 Language (patterns, syntax, everyday use, jargon,
 Due to the broadness of the scope of study that it has
been divided into four (4) major subfields:

 Physical/Biological Anthropology
 Cultural/Social Anthropology
 Archaeology/Archaeological Anthropology
 Linguistic Anthropology
1) Physical/Biological Anthropology:
 The branch of anthropology that deals with human and
nonhuman primate evolution, the biological bases of
human behavior, and human biological variability and
its significance.
 Subfields/Subdivisions of
Physical Anthropology:
 Primatology
 Human Variation
 Paleoanthropology
 Human Adaptability and Ecology
 Forensic Anthropology
 Blood Group Genetics and
 Paleoprimatology
 Comparative Primate
 Growth, Physique, and Aging
 Skeletal Biology
 Primate Behavior and Ecology
 Paleopathology
 Molecular Anthropology

 Nutritional Anthropology

2) Cultural/Social Anthropology:
 The branch of anthropology that deals with human
culture and society.

 The branch of anthropology that deals with human

culture especially with respect to social structure,
language, law, politics, religion, magic, art, and
 Cultural anthropology is the study of human society and
culture, with an emphasis on describing, analyzing,
interpreting, and explaining social and cultural
similarities and differences.

 With the notion of culture as their principle, organizing

concept, cultural anthropologists are interested in the
whole of the human condition.
 Topics of study include how people make a living
(consumption and exchange), kinship and descent,
political systems, gender and sexuality (sex, gender, and
power), religion, art, the modern world system
(colonialism and postcolonialism), the sociocultural
context of disease and illness (medicine, the body,
knowledge, and culture), ethnicity, the social context of
“race,” and the relation between the self, culture, and
 The Two (2) Research Methodologies of
Cultural/Social Anthropology:
 Ethnography - is a research method designed to
explore cultural phenomena where the researcher
observes society from the point of view of the subject of
the study. An ethnography is a means to represent
graphically and in writing the culture of a group.

 Ethnology - is the branch of anthropology that

compares and analyzes the characteristics of different
peoples and the relationship between them.
3) Archaeology/Archaeological Anthropology:
 The study of human history and prehistory through the
excavation of sites and the analysis of artifacts and other
physical remains.

 The branch of anthropology that deals with the study of

extinct culture through examining its material remains.
 Subfields/Subdivisions of
 Battlefield Archaeology  Ethnoarchaeology
 Biblical Archaeology  Experimental Archaeology
 Classical Archaeology  Indigenous Archaeology
 Cognitive Archaeology  Maritime Archaeology
 Commercial Archaeology  Post-Processual Archaeology
 Cultural Resource Management  Prehistoric Archaeology
 Economic Archaeology  Processual Archaeology
 Environmental Archaeology  Urban Archaeology
4) Linguistic Anthropology:
 The branch of anthropology that deals with is the study
of language in the context of human social and cultural
diversity in the past and the present.

 It is a branch of anthropology that originated from the

endeavor to document endangered languages, and has
grown over the past 100 years to encompass almost any
aspect of language structure and use.
 Is the interdisciplinary study of how language influences
social life.

 It explores how language shapes communication, forms

social identity and group membership, organizes large-
scale cultural beliefs and ideologies, and develops a
common cultural representation of natural and social

Prefers Qualitative Method Prefers Quantitative

/Approach. Method/Approach.
Traditionally focuses on Traditionally focuses on
Exotic/Primitive Societies. Modern/Industrial Societies.
Socio-cultural, linguistic, physical, Social institutions (economic life
archaeological. Simple, traditional education, family, politics and
and non-industrialized societies. religion), social stratification (by
age, gender, race and ethnicity, and
social class), social change and
social problems. Focuses on
complex and modern societies.
 Summarize the difference:
 1. Anthropology and sociology are both fields of social
science that study the behavior of humans within their

2. Traditionally anthropology dealt with the study of
cultures different from one’s own, especially those less
advanced while sociology was used to understand
one’s own society.
 3. Today anthropology tends to look at the big picture
of human culture while sociology spends more time
analyzing data from a specific study.

 4. Anthropology is considered to be a softer science

than sociology as it bases more of its conclusions on
case studies than hard data.