The Sociological Imagination Multiple-Choice Questions



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The Sociological Imagination

Multiple-Choice Questions


  1. Sociology is the scientific study of

    1. human activity in society.

    2. mental processes.

    3. people.

    4. multiple personalities.

ANS: A



  1. From a sociological point of view, a ________ is the day-to-day activities from birth to death that make up a person’s life.

  1. social fact

  2. sociological imagination

  3. biography

  4. autobiography

ANS: C



  1. Emile Durkheim defined social facts as

  1. census statistics.

  2. having the remarkable property of existing outside the individual.

  3. fundamentally psychological.

  4. things we know to be true.

ANS: B




  1. Only when people _________________ do they come to know the power of social facts.

    1. grow older

    2. cooperate

    3. comply

    4. rebel against the established ways of doing things

ANS: D





  1. Durkheim wrote that he was not forced to speak French or to use the legal currency, but it was impossible for him to do otherwise. Durkheim was writing about

    1. mechanical solidarity.

    2. social relativity.

    3. social facts.

    4. social interaction.

ANS: C



  1. Durkheim wrote, “Even when, in fact, I can struggle free from these rules and successfully break them, it is never without being forced to fight against them.” This statement is a reference to

    1. mechanical solidarity.

    2. social relativity.

    3. social facts.

    4. social interaction.

ANS: C



  1. “Because I refuse to shave under my arms, I have to pay a price. On a personal level, this price was my mother’s hostility. On a public level, the price is dealing with the stares of strangers.” This statement illustrates

    1. mechanical solidarity.

    2. social relativity.

    3. the power of social facts.

    4. the idea of double consciousness.

ANS: C



  1. A woman writes, “I can’t be anything but what my skin color tells people I am. I am black because I look black. It does not matter that my family has a complicated biological heritage.” She is writing about the power of

    1. social facts.

    2. troubles.

    3. the sociological imagination.

    4. rationalization.

ANS: A



  1. An American traveling to Ghana, Africa, on business notices that the “men, including the men I was with, hold hands. One day one of the men I was with took my hand as we walked. In order not to offend him, I took his hand in mine.” The American is responding to a(n)

    1. trouble.

    2. issue.

    3. social fact.

    4. traditional action.

ANS: C




  1. Sociologists argue that people fall in love

    1. when they experience a violent, irresistible attraction to another person.

    2. only once in the course of a lifetime.

    3. when certain conditions are met.

    4. with people like themselves.

ANS: C




  1. In examining patterns of courtship and marriage, sociologists would emphasize which of the following in shaping a couple’s decision to marry?

    1. the personalities of the couples

    2. the importance of love

    3. personal preferences

    4. social considerations such as age, sex, race, income, etc.

ANS: D



  1. Peter L. Berger equates the sociologist with

    1. a curious observer who, walking down the neighborhood streets of a large city, is fascinated with what he or she cannot see taking place behind the building walls.

    2. an Internal Revenue Service auditor.

    3. a judge giving instructions to a jury.

    4. a talk show host interviewing guests.

ANS: A



  1. Peter Berger argues that the logic of sociology presupposes a measure of suspicion about the way in which human events are officially interpreted by authorities. This suspicion speaks to __________, which defines the sociological consciousness.

    1. solidarity

    2. the debunking motif

    3. rationalization

    4. false consciousness

ANS: B



  1. “The fascination of sociology lies in the fact that its perspective makes us see in a new light the very world in which we have lived all our lives.” This vision of sociology can be attributed to

    1. Peter Berger.

    2. Emile Durkheim.

    3. C. Wright Mills.

    4. W.E.B. DuBois.

ANS: A



  1. The number of mobile phones per 1,000 people in the U.S. has increased steadily each year since the introduction of the mobile phone in 1985. A sociologist studying these rates would

    1. agree that mobile phones are necessary.

    2. think about the forces behind this increase in mobile phone use.

    3. contemplate the individual reasons for owning a mobile phone.

    4. wonder how cell phone manufacturers keep up with demand.

ANS: B



  1. Currents of opinion are broadly reflected in

    1. personal biographies.

    2. rates summarizing various behaviors.

    3. advertisements.

    4. newspaper headlines.

ANS: B



  1. Suicide rates represent one example of what Durkheim would call

    1. social statics.

    2. toubles.

    3. social dynamics.

    4. currents of opinion.

ANS: D



  1. The quality of mind that enables us to connect seemingly impersonal and remote historical forces to the most basic incidents of an individual’s life is

    1. the sociological imagination.

    2. the structure of opportunities.

    3. independent thinking.

    4. common sense.

ANS: A



  1. The payoff for those who possess _____________ is that they can understand their inner life in terms of institutional arrangements and larger historical forces.

    1. the sociological imagination

    2. common sense

    3. independent thinking

    4. a sense of self

ANS: A



  1. A trouble is

    1. an issue.

    2. deeply and significantly social.

    3. caused by character flaws.

    4. outside an individual’s control.

ANS: C



  1. Unemployment is a(n) __________ when it results from corporate downsizing.

    1. issue

    2. trouble

    3. private matter

    4. social fact

ANS: A



  1. Which of the following explanations would someone use to explain an issue?

    1. “She had the opportunity but didn’t take it.”

    2. “He is lazy.”

    3. “There is a flaw or breakdown in an institutional arrangement.”

    4. “She didn’t try very hard in school.”

ANS: C




  1. When in a nation of 50 million employees, 15 million are unemployed, that is

    1. an issue.

    2. a trouble.

    3. a series of private troubles.

    4. a result of basic character flaws.

ANS: A




  1. The high school dropout rate in the United States is greater than 25 percent. C. Wright Mills would classify this situation as

    1. a trouble.

    2. an issue.

    3. value-rational action.

    4. a social fact.

ANS: B



  1. The obesity rate in the United States is greater than 30 percent. According to Mills, the key to resolving this issue involves focusing on

    1. the character flaws of the 92 million plus Americans who are obese.

    2. ways to increase the motivation of obese Americans.

    3. understanding the underlying social forces that contributed to the current obesity rate.

    4. greater awareness of nutritional guidelines.

ANS: C



  1. The resolution of an issue involves changing

    1. institutions.

    2. individual character.

    3. motivation level.

    4. human nature.

ANS: A




  1. The sociologist __________ is associated with the concepts “troubles” and “issues.”

    1. Karl Marx

    2. Robert K. Merton

    3. C. Wright Mills

    4. Emile Durkheim

ANS: C



  1. Sociologists do not define the cause of unemployment simply in terms of individual shortcomings because

    1. profit-generating strategies include laying off employees.

    2. people may decide to quit their jobs.

    3. employees have the power to stay if they really want to.

    4. most people are good workers.

ANS: A



  1. Which one of the following is not a characteristic of an issue?

    1. An issue is a public matter.

    2. An issue is caused by flaws in institutional structures.

    3. The cause of an issue can be traced to personal weaknesses.

    4. Issues transcend the life of any one individual.

ANS: C



  1. Sociologist C. Wright Mills believed that people, in order to gain some sense of control over their lives, need

    1. to keep up with the news.

    2. regular breaks from their hectic schedule.

    3. a quality of mind to help them grasp the interplay between their biographies and institutional arrangements.

    4. to take personal responsibility for their actions.

ANS: C



  1. The sociological imagination allows a person to

    1. see the connection between self and immediate relationships.

    2. distinguish between mechanical and organic solidarity.

    3. see that problems can be solved by changing the character of the individual.

    4. make a distinction between troubles and issues.

ANS: D



  1. The addition of external sources of power from burning coals and oil to hand tools and modes of transportation is

    1. standardization.

    2. affective action.

    3. modernization.

    4. mechanization.

ANS: D




  1. The __________ refers to a time of the most rapid colonial expansion in history.

    1. Age of Reason

    2. Age of Imperialism

    3. Middle Ages

    4. European Century

ANS: B




  1. The period in history known as the Age of Imperialism (1880-1914)

    1. was one of the most peaceful periods in modern history.

    2. represents the most rapid colonial expansion in history.

    3. preceded the period in history known as the Industrial Revolution.

    4. corresponds with the Cold War between the United States and the former Soviet Union.

ANS: B




  1. One fundamental feature of the Industrial Revolution is

    1. craftsmanship.

    2. solidarity.

    3. manual labor.

    4. mechanization.

ANS: D



  1. The Industrial Revolution transformed the nature of work in which one of the following ways?

    1. Machine production was replaced by hand production.

    2. People now could say, “I made this; this is a unique product of my labor.”

    3. Products became standardized, and workers performed specific tasks in the production process.

    4. The workers’ power over the production process increased dramatically.

ANS: C



  1. “Within a few decades, a social order that had existed for centuries vanished, and a new one, familiar in its outline to us in the twentieth century, appeared.” This assessment applies to which historical event?

    1. European colonization

    2. the Industrial Revolution

    3. the Cold War

    4. the emergence of sociology

ANS: B




  1. The early sociologists spent most of their professional life attempting to understand the consequences of which one of the following events?

    1. World War I

    2. World War II

    3. the Industrial Revolution

    4. the Enlightenment

ANS: C




  1. The name sociology and the corresponding academic discipline was born during the

    1. American Revolution.

    2. Civil War.

    3. Vietnam era.

    4. Industrial Revolution.

ANS: D




  1. Who invented the term sociology?

    1. Auguste Comte

    2. Emile Durkheim

    3. Max Weber

    4. Karl Marx

ANS: A




  1. In addition to the Industrial Revolution, which one of the following helps to explain the emergence of sociology as a discipline?

    1. mechanization

    2. the widespread acceptance of the scientific method

    3. the Age of Imperialism

    4. rationalization

ANS: B




  1. Auguste Comte defined sociology as the scientific study of the collective and cumulative results of the human intellect. The words collective and cumulative suggest that sociology involves the study of

    1. people and history.

    2. social and psychological forces.

    3. social interactions across cultures and throughout time.

    4. the mind and body.

ANS: C




  1. The Communist Manifesto is associated with

    1. W.E.B. DuBois.

    2. Karl Marx.

    3. Emile Durkheim.

    4. Max Weber.

ANS: B




  1. Marx’s legacy has been obscured by

    1. his inability to accurately describe capitalism.

    2. a personality disorder.

    3. the failure of Communism.

    4. the fact that he published in German (not English).

ANS: C



  1. The Communist Manifesto begins with the line

    1. “A specter is haunting Europe—the specter of Communism.”

    2. “Workers of all countries, unite.”

    3. “I am not a Marxist.”

    4. “The global economy is restless, anxious, and competitive.”

ANS: A




  1. Karl Marx described capitalism in all but which one of the following ways?

    1. a boundless thirst

    2. a werewolf-like hunger

    3. socially conscious

    4. blood-sucking

ANS: C




  1. With mechanization, the rise of two distinct classes emerged. The one that owns the means of production is called

    1. the proletariat.

    2. the bourgeoisie.

    3. socialists.

    4. communists.

ANS: B




  1. According to Karl Marx, the character of class conflict is shaped directly and profoundly by

    1. social facts.

    2. solidarity.

    3. the means of production.

    4. sociological imagination.

ANS: C





  1. Land, tools, equipment, factories, modes of transportation, and labor are

    1. owned by the proletariat.



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