The Sociological Imagination By C. Wright Mills

1315 Words6 Pages
“The sociological imagination enables us to grasp history and biography and the relations between the two within society. This is its task and its promise.” C. Wright Mills writes about the sociological imagination in an attempt to have society become aware of the relationship between one’s personal experience in comparison to the wider society. By employing the sociological imagination into the real world, individuals are forced to perceive, from a neutral position, social structures that, in turn, influence behavior, attitudes, and culture. Mills just wants the world to be able to see the connection between the individual and society. Everything is influenced by an outside force. Just as easily, outside forces are influenced by an…show more content…
According to Mills’ mentality, one has to truly fulfill the promise that social science requires people to focus upon practical problems, and to relate these kinds of problems to historical features of the sociocultural system. Mills continues on in his book, expressing ideas that he finds troubling in professional sociology. In his opinion, the sociological world should retreat back to the classical roots from which it has derived. According to Mills, society as a whole has failed to carry out the work in which he believes in. First and foremost, Mills addresses what he calls “grand theory.” Grand theory is what he uses to try and explain all social structures in all societies. This, in turn, provides general descriptions of all social interactions and he refers to this as a concept. Mills associates this theory with Talcott Parson. Parson was a very important American sociologist, if not one of the most important. He thought there was one big social system and all of society operates the same way. Mills continued on to say that Parson’s work is too general and dense, as he makes big theories about human nature, as well as, the shape of all societies. When writing about grand theory, Mills states “when people share the same values, they tend to behave in accordance with the way they expect one another to behave. Moreover, they often treat such conformity
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