Why Studying Sociology Has Become More Important within the Pandemic Era


As the pandemic continues to have an effect on people and societies internationally, extra consideration needs to be given to the best way that sociology faces as much as its challenges. It is a query not solely of how to consider sociological points that emerge from the pandemic, but in addition of which analysis methodologies are probably the most acceptable when occupied with them. So methods to examine sociology in a pandemic period? In order to reply this, we have to bear in mind what sociology is about.

Charles Wright Mills (1959:3) argued in his seminal ebook The Sociological Imagination (1959) that “neither the life of an individual nor the history of a society can be understood without understanding both”. It is of the very essence of sociology to attempt to perceive these connections. In this sense, the start line for a sociological reflection of the pandemic is to begin by finding ourselves as people.

How will we place ourselves in relation to the pandemic requires a crucial consciousness of id, of elements comparable to race, ethnicity, gender and sophistication. Also, it requires an consciousness of the broader social, political and cultural contexts that form our lives. Not everybody experiences the impacts of the pandemic in the identical manner and a few are experiencing it in tougher methods than others, not due to themselves however of exterior elements. Therefore, a sociology pupil has to place themselves in relation to the pandemic earlier than beginning a mirrored image on its social impression.

Once there may be an consciousness of positionality then it’s doable to look at the pandemic with a sociological focus. In doing so, the temptation is to assume that the pandemic brings ahead new social challenges, however it actually lays naked previous challenges in new methods. The pandemic has shed new mild on huge social disparities; entrenched discriminatory practices; rising psychological well being issues; unequal world distribution of wealth, assets and well being care; rising tensions between safety and particular person freedoms; the formation of recent social actions, elevated vulnerabilities for migrants and refugees; the extension of world poverty; renewed nationalist and xenophobic discourses and practices; gender inequalities; human rights violations, new types of colonialism; an the growth of organised crime, simply to call a number of.

Alongside these challenges, the pandemic has shed new mild on particular person and collective types of resistance, resilience, social solidarity, social integration, creativity, and shifting types of identities and the self.

It is on this wider context the place sociology college students can discover fertile floor to develop their sociological creativeness with a view to perceive the impression of the pandemic on people and communities. It is right here the place they will consider the very best analysis strategies that may be deployed to gather and interpret knowledge. The significance of qualitative, quantitative, and mixed-method approaches spring from the necessity to deal with these points in a dependable but inventive and dedicated manner. Finally, this technique of sociological analysis needs to be world in nature.

To restrict sociology to the slender borders of the nation-state is an phantasm not to mention ineffective. If something, the pandemic has allowed us to assume globally and to think about ourselves as a part of a worldwide group with shared obligations and alternatives. The social impression of the pandemic negatively impacts all of humanity however disproportionally these on the margins.

Accordingly, the principle problem for a sociology pupil is to develop a sociological creativeness with a dedication to social justice. Here we observe Amartya Sen (2010: 179): “the notion of human rights builds on our shared humanity. These rights are not derived from the citizenship of any country, or the membership of any nation, but are presumed to be claims or entitlements of every human being”. It is from this concept of justice {that a} sociology pupil can begin occupied with the pandemic and its legacies

— Written by Dr Carlos Gigoux, Deputy Director, Centre for Migration Studies Department of Sociology, University of Essex

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