Purposive Rambling

the journey is the reward.

Posts Tagged ‘reality television

Sociology rocks!

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I am so excited to see that the most emailed article from nytimes.com today isĀ Maureen Dowd’s “Blue Is the New Black.” Although I suppose there is a chance that all the sociologists of the world are responsible for this emailing frenzy, I am going to conclude instead that everyone loves sociology. Everyone, of course, being the people who are reading the NYT, which may be somewhat limited, but is certainly not limited to only sociologists. Anyway, there seems to be this ongoing debate in the discipline about how much sociologists should be engaging the public with their work, and I take this as a sign that the answer to this debate is that sociologists should be putting it out there as much as possible because people are really interested in hearing about it. How can people not be interested in other people? There’s a reason we continue to see reality tv show after reality tv show after reality tv show popping up. We are voyeurs, and we like to compare our experiences to others’, and we like to understand why our life is what it is.

Okay, you get my point. So, in this op-ed, Dowd discusses data from the General Social Survey that show that since the 1970’s women have been reporting lower levels of happiness, while men have been reporting higher levels of happiness. She goes on to mention some of the possible reasons for this trend. And she does not limit her discussion to considerations of change over time, but also talks about changes across the life course. It’s a complex issue, and she treats it that way. In my most humble opinion, I think it is very well done.


Written by Lisa

September 22, 2009 at 8:31 pm