Current Disputes in Sociology: Sociological Analysis III

The details
Colchester Campus
Full Year
Undergraduate: Level 6
Thursday 03 October 2019
Friday 26 June 2020
16 May 2019


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BA LV31 History and Sociology,
BA LV32 History and Sociology (Including Placement Year),
BA LV38 History and Sociology (Including Foundation Year),
BA LV3C History and Sociology (Including Year Abroad),
BA L390 English Language and Sociology (Including Year Abroad),
BA LQ31 English Language and Sociology,
BA LQ32 Literature and Sociology,
BA LQ33 Literature and Sociology (Including Placement Year),
BA LQ38 Literature and Sociology (Including Foundation Year),
BA QL23 Literature and Sociology (Including Year Abroad),
BA LP33 Communications and Digital Culture,
BA LP34 Communications and Digital Culture (Including Placement Year),
BA P300 Communications and Digital Culture (Including Foundation Year),
BA PL33 Communications and Digital Culture (Including Year Abroad),
BA LV35 Philosophy and Sociology,
BA LV36 Philosophy and Sociology (Including Placement Year),
BA LV83 Philosophy and Sociology (Including Foundation Year),
BA VL53 Philosophy and Sociology (Including Year Abroad),
BA VL58 Philosophy and Sociology (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad),
BA CL83 Sociology with Social Psychology,
BA CL93 Sociology with Social Psychology (Including Placement Year),
BA CLV3 Sociology with Social Psychology (Including Year Abroad),
BA L300 Sociology,
BA L301 Sociology (Including Year Abroad),
BA L304 Sociology (Including Foundation Year),
BA L306 Sociology (Including Placement Year),
BA LM38 Sociology and Criminology (Including Placement Year),
BA LM39 Sociology and Criminology,
BA LMH9 Sociology and Criminology (Including Year Abroad),
BA LMHX Sociology and Criminology (Including Foundation Year),
BA LL23 Sociology and Politics (Including Year Abroad),
BA LL24 Sociology and Politics (Including Placement Year),
BA LL32 Sociology and Politics,
BA L3J9 Sociology with Human Rights (Including Placement Year),
BA L3M9 Sociology with Human Rights,
BA LMJ9 Sociology with Human Rights (Including Year Abroad),
BA LCJ8 Sociology with Psychosocial Studies (Including Placement Year),
BA LJ8C Sociology with Psychosocial Studies (Including Year Abroad),
BA LJC8 Sociology with Psychosocial Studies,
BA P540 Journalism and Sociology,
BA P541 Journalism and Sociology (Including Placement Year),
BA P542 Journalism and Sociology (Including Year Abroad),
BSC L315 Sociology (Applied Quantitative Research),
BSC L316 Sociology (Applied Quantitative Research) (Including Year Abroad),
BSC L317 Sociology (Applied Quantitative Research) (Including Placement Year),
BA L330 Sociology with Counselling Skills (Including Placement Year),
BA L331 Sociology with Counselling Skills (Including Year Abroad),
BA L332 Sociology with Counselling Skills

Module description

The first term will build on some of the key concerns of sociology that you have encountered already and will introduce a range of approaches to understanding our (post)-modern, globalized and multicultural world. These lectures will introduce a range of substantive problems, theories, arguments and examples which are important for developing an understanding of contemporary society. It will look at some of the key contemporary theorists such as Foucault and Bourdieu, as well as some of the key topics such as Modernity, Post-modernity, Feminisms, and new forms of capitalism.

The second term looks at why some philosophical knowledge is vital for our understanding and practice of sociology. It introduces some of the theoretical and conceptual concerns and problems which influence all sociological research and thinking. The aim is to stimulate and deepen a reflective awareness of what it is to do sociology and why it is worth doing. The module examines a number of different philosophical approaches to sociology, including the relationship between the social and the natural sciences; it also covers the various 'interpretative' approaches to sociology, and whether sociology can be seen as an 'emancipatory' science. We also examine contemporary feminist, post-colonial and post-structuralist approaches to knowledge - claims and how to justify them.

Module aims

This course aims to broaden and deepen your understanding of some of the important themes raised in SC201. The first term will build on some of the key concerns of sociology that you have encountered already and will introduce a range of approaches to understanding our (post)-modern and multicultural world. These lectures will introduce a range of substantive problems, theories, arguments and examples which are important for developing an understanding of contemporary society. Overall, the module introduces some of the theoretical and conceptual concerns and problems which influence all sociological research and thinking. The module is divided into 4 blocks: Thinking Modernity and Postmodernity Thinking Inequality Thinking Power and its Consequences Thinking Ahead

Module learning outcomes

To give students a critical awareness of a range of current topics in sociological theory. To provide students with the capability to assess different philosophical perspectives and their relation to sociology. To enable students to make links between theoretical approaches and sociological research. To develop student’s ability to think abstractly and to assess the validity of a range of different conceptual positions.

Module information

Compulsory for all third year Sociology students

Learning and teaching methods

1 weekly lecture and class


  • Collini, Stefan. (no date) Blahspeak: London Review of Books.
  • Gilroy, Paul. (1993) The black Atlantic: modernity and double consciousness, London: Verso.
  • Geertz, Clifford. (1993) The interpretation of cultures: selected essays, London: FontanaPress.
  • Gilroy, Paul. (1998-01) 'Race ends here', in Ethnic and Racial Studies. vol. 21 (5) , pp.838-847
  • Calhoun, Craig J. (2012) Contemporary sociological theory, Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Ray, Larry J. (c1999, c2010) Theorizing classical sociology, Buckingham: Open University Press.
  • Harding, S. (1997) 'Feminist epistemology', in Feminisms, Oxford: Oxford University Press. vol. Oxford readers, pp.160-170
  • Birke, Lynda I. A. (c1999) Feminism and the biological body, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. vol. Gender, science and technology
  • Halewood, Michael. (2014) Rethinking the social through Durkheim, Marx, Weber and Whitehead, London: Anthem Press.
  • Williams, Karel. (2008) 'Elites: remembered in capitalism and forgotten by social sciences', in Remembering elites, Malden, MA: Blackwell Pub. vol. The sociological review monographs
  • Foucault, Michel. (1990) The will to knowledge: the history of sexuality, volume 1, London: Penguin Books. vol. v. 1
  • Jeffreys, Sheila. (2014) Gender hurts: a feminist analysis of the politics of transgenderism, Abingdon: Routledge.
  • Du Bois, W. E. B.; Edwards, Brent Hayes. (2007) The souls of Black folk, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Ashe, Fidelma; Lloyd, Moya. (1999) Contemporary social and political theory: an introduction, Buckingham: Open University Press.
  • Žižek, Slavoj. (c2003) The puppet and the dwarf: the perverse core of Christianity, Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press. vol. Short circuits
  • Hall, Stuart; Gieben, Bram. (1992) Formations of modernity, Cambridge: Polity Press in association with the Open University. vol. Understanding modern societies
  • Bordo, Susan. (c1993) Unbearable weight: feminism, Western culture, and the body, Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Stryker, Susan; Whittle, Stephen. (2006) The transgender studies reader, New York: Routledge.
  • Skeggs, Beverley. (1997) Formations of class and gender: becoming respectable, London: Sage. vol. Theory, culture & society
  • Ashcroft, Bill; Griffiths, Gareth; Tiffin, Helen. (2006) The post-colonial studies reader, London: Routledge.
  • Dreyfus, Hubert L.; Rabinow, Paul. (1983) Michel Foucault: beyond structuralism and hermeneutics, Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
  • Strinati, Dominic. (2004) An introduction to theories of popular culture, London: Routledge.
  • Berger, John. (c1972) Ways of seeing, London: British Broadcasting Corporation/Penguin Books.
  • Backett-Milburn, Kathryn; McKie, Linda. (2001) Constructing gendered bodies, Basingstoke: Palgrave. vol. 59
  • Brooks, Ann. (1997) Postfeminisms: feminism, cultural theory, and cultural forms, London: Routledge.
  • Geertz, Clifford. (1996, c1995) After the fact: two countries, four decades, one anthropologist, Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press.
  • Dussel, Enrique. (1993-23) 'Eurocentrism and Modernity (Introduction to the Frankfurt Lectures)', in boundary 2. vol. 20 (3) , pp.65-
  • Fraser, Mariam; Greco, Monica. (2005) The body: a reader, London: Routledge.
  • Neuman, William Lawrence. (2014) Social research methods: qualitative and quantitative approaches, Harlow: Pearson Education.

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework ESSAY 1 15/01/2020 50%
Coursework Essay 2 22/04/2020
Exam 180 minutes during Summer (Main Period) (Main)

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
50% 50%


Coursework Exam
50% 50%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Taught by various members of the Department
Jane Harper, Undergraduate Administrator, Telephone: 01206 873052 E-mail:



External examiner

Dr Monika Krause
Available via Moodle
Of 126 hours, 126 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

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