Chapter 15 Study Questions & Exercises

Social Change and the Future

Study Questions

  1. What is social change? Which areas of life are influenced by social change?
  1. What are the main tenets of each of the five interpretations of social change? Which approach do you agree with the most? Why?
  2. How did Lewis Henry Morgan explain societal progress? How is his explanation useful for modernism?
  1. In what ways do the collapse of the cod fishery in Newfoundland and Labrador and the emergence of Islam as the fastest growing religion in Canada outline social change in the country?
  1. What are the three ways that the virtual class, as theorized by Arthur Kroker, acts as a class? Do you agree with Kroker? Use examples from your experience with the Internet to illustrate your answer.
  1. How can sociology as a discipline accommodate Indigenous groups and minorities?
  1. How can sociology be more inclusive in order to thrive in the twenty-first century?

Exploration and Discussion Exercises

  1. Using one of the models of interpreting social change, explore how you would improve society. Outline all aspects involved in making society a better place (infrastructure, architecture, living conditions, and social constructs such as gender, class, age, “race,” and ethnicity). Gather all that you have learned from the text and use it to help provide Canada with a solution to change its social condition.

    For suggestions on how to improve global conditions, visit Greenpeace’s website (www.greenpeace.org/canada/en/).
  1. Video games have caused intense social and cultural reactions since their inception, reactions that designers are now hoping to change. Jane McGonigal’s TED Talk, “Gaming Can Make a Better World,” suggests that game designers are creating games that focus on saving the world and, in the process, creating gamers with “epic skills” who can save us all.

    Watch the presentation at www.youtube.com/watch?v=dE1DuBesGYM and answer the following questions: Do you agree or disagree with her arguments about gamers as virtuosos? Why or why not? Do you agree that video games can change the world? Explain.
  1. Find an interview with Noam Chomsky on you tube and analyze his views on America as a beacon of modernity.
  1. Are anti-globalization movements the modern Luddites? Discuss.
  1. Are radical Islamic movements such as Al-Qaeda or ISIS Luddites? Discuss.