• Men often feel their private lives are a series of traps
  • The more aware they may become, the more trapped they may feel
  • Neither the life of an individual nor the history of a society can be understood without understanding both
  • Information often dominates attention and overwhelms their capacities to assimilate it

Sociological Imagination

  • The sociological imagination enables its possessor to understand the larger historical scene in terms of its meaning for the inner life and external career of a variety of individuals
  • The first lesson of the social science which embodies sociological imagination is the idea that the individual can understand his own experience and gauge his own fate only by locating himself within his period, that he can know his own chances in life only by becoming aware of those of  all individuals in his circumstances
    • Being aware of what’s going on around you
  • Every human lives in a historical sequence and each minute one is shaping this society and the course of history, just as one is made by society and by its historical push and shove
  • Those who have been imaginatively aware of the promise of their work have consistently asked three sorts of questions:
    • What is the structure of this particular society as a whole?
    • Where does the society stand in human history?
    • What varieties of men and women now prevail in this society and in this period?
  • Troubles occur within character of the individual and within the range of his immediate relations with others; they have to do with his self with those limited areas of social life of which his is directly and personally aware (to deal with the self)
  • Issues have to do with matters that transcend these local environments of the individual and the range of his inner life (to deal with the public)
  • Milieux – an environment or a setting
  • When people cherish some set of values and do not feel any threat to them, they experience well-being
  • People who are unaware of any cherished values nor experience any threat, they experience indifference
  • Those who are unaware of any cherished values but still are very much aware of a threat are experiencing uneasiness

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