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Unit information: Sociological Theory and the Concept of Culture in 2021/22

Unit name Sociological Theory and the Concept of Culture
Unit code SPAIM0049
Credit points 20
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Perez-Solorzano Borragan
Open unit status Not open
Pre-requisites

None

Co-requisites

None

School/department School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Description including Unit Aims

This unit provides a broad grounding in contemporary sociological theory. It does so by paying critical attention to the concept of culture as it has been developed by social and cultural theorists in the contemporary era. The notion of culture has been a staple focus of sociological theory and is a useful lens through which to see different types of theory in operation, what separates them and what makes them still relevant. The unit will examine the contribution of particular theorists from particular theoretical perspectives. Important approaches or schools of thought within social/sociological/cultural theory will be analysed including perspectives from areas such as Marxism, critical theory, post-structuralism, feminism, postmodernism and post-colonial studies. Thinkers addressed may include Michel Foucault, Pierre Bourdieu, Theodor Adorno and the Frankfurt School, Jean Baudrillard, Raymond Williams, Mary Douglas, Judith Butler, Paul Gilroy, Marth Nussbaum, Clifford Geertz, Gayatri Spivak and Edward Said.

Aims:

The aims of the unit are to:

  • explicate and critically evaluate key themes, concepts and perspectives in sociological/social/cultural theory
  • provide a critical account of some of the ways sociological theory has developed over the last fifty years in engagement with the broad notion of culture
  • critically engage with key historical and conceptual approaches in the sociology of culture and cultural theory

Intended Learning Outcomes

By the end of this unit, students will be able to:

  • explicate and critically evaluate key themes, concepts and perspectives in sociological/social/cultural theory
  • provide a critical account of some of the ways sociological theory has developed over the last fifty years in engagement with the broad notion of culture
  • critically engage with key historical and conceptual approaches in the sociology of culture and cultural theory

Teaching Information

The method of teaching will be a form of blended learning which involves both asynchronous online student learning, synchronous weekly seminar/webinars, and in person teaching on campus.

Assessment Information

One 4000 word summative essay (100%). Formative assessment will be built into the asynchronous element of the unit.

Resources

If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. SPAIM0049).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

Assessment
The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.

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