Social Theory and African-American Experience

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Essay Social Theory and African-American Experience

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An examination of the theories on social structure and reform (Rousseau, Mill, Marx) related to two books on racial inequities in the U.S.

This research will examine how major social theorists cast light on the experience of African Americans as described in books on the status of race relations in the U.S., by Andrew Hacker and Stephen and Abigail Thernstrom, respectively. The research will set forth the context for application of social theory to the two books and then discuss how theories of social structure can be employed to illuminate or explain certain assumptions and attitudes that inform each book.
It could be argued that there are as many definitions of social structure as there are commentators defining it, and the problem of definition and interpretation of observed conditions of human society (and of critique of such definition and interpretation) reaches back at least as far as Rousseau, who answers such earlier commentators as Aristotle and Hobbes…

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