Prior reading chapter 1 of Introduction to Sociology, I knew close to nothing about the history or true meaning of sociology and the theories and perspectives that accompanied it. The further into the text I got, I started developing my own opinions regarding the ideas mentioned. Personally, I believe the idea of Constructivism is one that was most impactful and still is today.
Constructivism is “an extension of symbolic interaction theory which proposes that reality is what humans cognitively construct it to be” (Openstax, 2015 P17). This idea demostrates the thought that ultimately, we as humans, decide what is abnormal in society, or what is accepted and what is not.
What makes this theory so impactful is the fact that it is still so incredibly relevant and intuitive today. This idea was originated and has traveled throughout sociological history- which makes it impressive. The things we do as a society, in the United States, for example, are considered realistic to us as a community. It is deemed abnormal to not follow the social standards we’ve set in place. Some of these things include: going to college, getting married, having a family, having a job and being an active member of society. For some, not doing these things is considered “unrealistic.”
As stated in Introduction to Sociology, “There is no absolute definition of deviance..” (Openstax, 2015 P17). As people have socially interacted with each other, these behaviors, beliefs, and standards have determined what is socially acceptable and normal in our society. Our culture is determined by what we have set for ourselves and our future generations. Without the idea of Constructivism, we would not have a socially compelling society.