Sociological Imagination and Generational Change

1. Read the famous C. Wright Mills essay “The Promise” under Files/Readings 2. Review this chart (Links to an external site.) from the Pew Research Center comparing key demographic differences among generational cohorts, from the Silent Generation to Millennials and everyone in between. On the left you will see a number of different variables to be explored. You can also switch between the 2017 data for all cohorts, or the “when they were young” data from all the generations before Millennials – this will show the data for older generations when they were the age that Millennials are now. You may also want to review this article (Links to an external site.) from Pew on Generation Z, or those born starting in 1996 and after. 3. In your first post, you will do 3 things: (1) explain Mills’ concept of the sociological imagination, and (2) apply it to one of the key generational differences that the Pew chart reveals. Include in your post the relevant statistics from Pew that document the generation change you are writing about – be specific. Sociology begins with empirical data. This should be about 250 words long (2 full paragraphs). At the end of your post, (3) pose a sociological question about the data. For example, what might explain one of the generational differences the data reveal? What might have caused that change? Try to think in terms of changes in our social structures and institutions (laws, the labor force, education, criminal justice, etc) to explain this change in the data. As always, please avoid asking ethical questions (they usually begin with the word “should,” and/or ask the reader to evaluate if something is “good” or “bad.” In your reply post you will reply to a fellow student’s question. This should be one full paragraph long (125 words). Please stay close to the data from Pew.

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