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SOC 124D: The Sociology of Nature

What does is mean for something to be 'natural', and why is a connection to nature so often seen as a good thing? Drawing on perspectives from sociology, psychology, anthropology, environmental studies, and popular culture, this course analyzes how the concepts of nature and naturalness contribute to the way we make sense of our social world, including based on race, gender, beauty, morality, and politics. Students will learn about the history of environmentalism, the sociology of bodies, the economics of consumption, and the social psychology of traditionalism. Through a combination of lectures, in-class discussions, written assignments, and group projects, students will be encouraged to interrogate their own relationships with nature in order to more intentionally act towards the natural world and towards other people. Throughout, the course will prioritize a sociological lens by considering the roles of social relationships, power, scientific evidence, and inequality in cultural conceptions of nature.
Terms: Sum | Units: 4
Instructors: Johfre, S. (PI)
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