9 Sep 2022


Compare and contrast scientific sociology, interpretive sociology, and critical sociology

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Compare and contrast scientific sociology, interpretive sociology, and critical sociology. Be sure to explain which approaches best describe the work of Comte, Durkheim, and Marx. 

Scientific sociology analyses social life of people focusing on what they do which is precisely their actions. On the other hand, interpretive sociology focuses on how people understand their actions while critical sociology focuses on reality as subjective as a result of peoples’ day to day lives.

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Sociology was first seen as a stage by stage development i.e. theoretical, metaphysical and scientific stages by Comte. Comte’s approach was a scientific one that studied the society through systematic observation which would then be interpreted using the law. According to Comte social systems would be explored either by social statics that observed institutions and how they coexist with their structures and their functions as well as social dynamics which follow change and progress in organizations. The scientific approach emphasized the use of objective and critical evidence, which are narrowly presented in other approaches. Durkheim, on the other hand, used scientific approach though basing his observation more on the structures and functions of an institution rather that the body itself. Karl Marx approach was of critical sociology and social conflict. Marx approach emphasized on the part conflict played in social development. To Marx, economic life was necessary to social life. The series from primitive communism to feudalism and finally to capitalism was the path of social development (Fulcher & Scott, 2011).

What are the major elements that define and influence a society? Be sure to explain the elements and describe how they affect day-to-day living for a person living in the United States. 

Society is defined by its culture, its economy, and politics. Culture has the primary influence in establishing a society. It refers to their way of life, their religious beliefs, their dressing code, their education, and mannerisms. The modern society is built up of education culture where levels of education define people and change their way of life and mannerisms. The difference in religious cultures also defines societies as the way of worship is unique from another. Politics as well define a society. The way in which a society administers its political system and their political policies defines most societies with some dictatorial and others democratic. The economy is another central element defining societies in the modern world with undeveloped, developing and developed societies. Americans are informal in the way the address each other and mostly deal with conflicts as they happen. They are an open-minded nation that emphasizes the importance of personal growth and development. Characteristics such as individualism and independence are what defines their society. U.S is a well-developed nation, and politically it is a democratic nation (Zimmerman, 2015).

Identify one topic that relates to Sociology. Which type of research method would be the best choice to further study this topic and why? Why wouldn't you use another type of research method that is addressed in your textbook for this topic? 

Racism is society’s belief that another society’s traditions and culture are inferior compared to itself. The main cause of racism is accepting labels about individual communities or group of people based on their skin color, descent or culture. Conducting surveys to collect data on the affected population is the most suitable research method for studying racism and its consequences. Other methods of research do not offer an opportunity to interact directly with the affected persons to give a clear view on racism and its actual effects on victims. As Dowling states that racism would reduce greatly if people understand how it works (Dowling, Alternatively, observation by living within a society that is discriminated upon and gaining the experiences firsthand would be the other suitable method. (Krieger, 2012).

Compare and contrast the different types of research methods identified in your textbook and explain why one works for a certain topic and maybe not another

Every study has its unique characteristics and aims at capturing particular Statistics. There are also other factors that determine the research method such as ethics, budget and time available for the study. The factors and the intended statistics for the study influence the type of research method used. The suitability, or otherwise, of a method is thus dependent on these factors and reason for the study. When the most suitable methods are listed, then the best in the list is used (Shuttleworth). 


Fulcher, J. & Scott, J. (2011). Thinking Sociologically: theories and Methods. Sociology . Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Krieger, N. (2012). Methods for the Scientific Study of Discrimination and Health: An Ecosocial Approach. National Centre of Biotechnology Information. Retrieved on 15 April 2017 from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3484783/.

Shuttleworth, M. (2017). Different Research Methods. Explorable.com Retrieved on 15 Apr. 2017 from https://explorable.com/different-research-method.

Zimmerman, K. A. (2015). American culture: Traditions and Culture of the United States. Purch. Retrieved on 15 April 2017 from http://www.livescience.com/28945-american-culture.html.

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StudyBounty. (2023, September 15). Compare and contrast scientific sociology, interpretive sociology, and critical sociology.


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