We live in a world that is frequently characterized by change. What are these changes? Are they so radical? Do changes also bring uncertainties as well as new opportunities? How can we understand the things that matter? These are the questions with which the social sciences engage. The social sciences are about people and the relationship between individuals and the social world in which we live. Some contemporary debates have a long history, whereas others are expressed differently in the age of new technologies and the Internet. This book offers an introduction to the big debates within the social sciences and to the ways of thinking and of dealing with what matters, which the social sciences employ. It introduces some of the important concepts and claims that promote understanding of recent discussion of identity, citizenship, social divisions, consumption and class, gender, race and ethnicity, the role of the media and the impact of globalization.
It will be of particular interest to students wanting to bridge the gap between Access courses or A levels and social science degrees, and for those who are considering studying the social sciences at undergraduate level and want to know more about what might be involved, as well as to those who just want to think more systematically about issues of social and political concern and develop some of the tools of critical analysis.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction: getting started; 2. You and Me, Us and Them: Issues of Identity; 3. Citizenship: who's in and who's out?; 4. Buying and Selling; 5. Where Do You Come From? Place and Race; 6. Globalization: all over the place; 7.Conclusion