Sociology Essay

Core of a Sociology Essay: Mastering the Art of a Sociologist on Paper 

Before you master the art of writing a sociology essay, you must first think like a sociologist. Simply, understand the why and the how, before you start writing!

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Sociology is the study or knowledge of social relationships and society. In essence, sociology is the intellectual venture of interpreting and understanding human behaviour from a social-scientific platform, where social interactions, social relationships, culture, and modernization, are theoretically patterned and generalized. From this background, it is important to understand the rare and unique features of a sociology essay. Understand this feature, and your essay will predictably attain unquestionable quality.

What Makes an Essay in Sociology Unique?

  • The Relationship-Centred Theme

Any sociology essay, regardless of the question or requirements on which it is based, must be anchored on human behavioural patterns. The issue under discussion may vary, but all issues sociology must be anchored on an underlying theme of human relationships. It is therefore advisable that the essay must be developed from a template of relationship-cantered social themes, and then developed towards the issue of concern.

A sociologist understands and interprets the quality of an essay based on how well it represents and characterises issues from the perspective of social relationships. The essay should indeed be created towards the consensus of human relationships, and then be developed towards the instructions or requirements provided. Importantly, therefore, an essay must be in congruence with the undertone of human behaviour i.e. how does the topic relate to or influence human behaviour/relationships.  

The essay might focus on such varied institutions as marriage and schooling, such themes as feminine movements or factionalism, and issues like social status or suicide. Yet in its presentation, regardless of which divergent topic is under discussion, the essay should be approached from the perspective of social relationships. That is how the essay will be marked, and should therefore be written from that perspective. Above everything else therefore, a sociology essay must be written from the perspective of social relationships regardless of the topic or issue under discussion.  

  • Matric of a Social-Science Theory

Being a scientific study of human behaviour, sociology is a social science. Whether addressing the dynamics of social change, crime, social status, social stratification, societal disorders, social movements, or social revolutions, and such other concerns in sociology, the essay must always deliver arguments based on science. This explains why a sociology essay needs in-depth literature review, and all statements and arguments should be backed by accurate in-text referencing.

Assuming the mantel of a sociologist, therefore, the essay must deliver its arguments based on current theories in social science. This eliminates presence of opinion statements and expressions. Social theory is in the very heart of sociology and must therefore be integrated into the essay content. Indeed, the very basis from which all arguments must projected, and a fulcrum upon which the overall essay is eventually evaluated is theory. An essay that does not integrate theory and or the derivations therefrom will neither appease a sociologist, nor get the mark you desire.

  • Generalization and Prediction: The Big Picture

Given that a sociology essay is theory-dependent, as discussed above, it is also important to note that the essay is not exclusively a theoretical analysis. What the essay must therefore do is to develop generalizations and predictions based on the social theory. The best approach is to identify and briefly highlight a relevant social theory, and then therefrom derive implications for the essay topic. The theory thus helps develop an argument with which you can derive generalizations.

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A good example will be when writing about crime variations based on socio-economic variables. There are tens of theories relating to the socio-economic context of crime, perhaps the most notable being the Rational Actor Theory. Once the Rational Actor Theory is cited in the background, the essay can then progress to making derivative summations of how crime rates are determined by the economic context of the actors.

As such, a good essay in sociology will use a theory for its background, progress to make derivative arguments, and conclude with a generalized statement on the issue at hand. That sigma of Theory-Argument-Generalized conclusion is central to a sociologist’s line of thought, and is therefore essential to the essay writing process. When creating your essay, think like a sociologist, where theory makes varied implications that can then be generalized for the larger society (big picture).

  • Structure, Flow and Connectedness

The final concern for the present article is critical to all types of essays besides a sociology essay. A good essay has an introduction, body, and conclusion, where each of these sections can be subtitled if the length of the essay is above two pages. Further, these subsections of the essay need to flow into each other symmetrically and with a flowing connectedness. The sociologist looks for flow and connectedness within the essay, where one idea leads to the next with logical order.

To exemplify, the sections and paragraphs all through the essay should develop to each other. The introductory paragraph exemplified below illustrates how to combine structural alignment, flow, and connectedness into a single paragraph.

i.e.:

Feminist sociology provides a conflict theoretical perspective into the issues of gender and their relation to social power and power structure (introduction to the topic). The present essay links culture to the interaction of power and gender, from the perspective of a woman (Lead sentence). As argued below, Gilman’s (1933) proposed the feminism theory in agreement with subsequent theorists including Crenshaw (1989), McCann (2016) and Crossman (2018), agree that feminism is a product of the underlying culture (summary of essay contents and guide to the next section).

The foregoing example of an introductory paragraph should be the platform on which all other paragraphs in the body and conclusion should be created. A good sociology essay perfects its development process from a theory-based statement, derivations, and ultimately generalized conclusions with logical flow and order. From the perspective of a sociologist, essays should be interconnected progressively from the introduction, to the conclusion. 

Conclusion

In conclusion, therefore, a great sociology essay should be written from the perspective of a sociologist. Important to a sociologist when reading your essay, will be the undertone of a relationship-centered theme, the basis of a social-science theory (theoretical basis), mature generalization, and prediction for the big picture, alongside convention essay requirements of a good layout, flow, and interconnectedness. Get these factors right, and you will have created a masterpiece of an essay.  

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