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SOC 220 Week 1 Discussion 2
The article I read was “How to be a Friend in the Face of Suffering” written by Kristin Bergmann and published in The Journal of the National Association of Social Workers. This article was an excellent resource to use to understand the social issues that are linked to child abuse. The article provided an explanation of what child abuse is and why it is so harmful to children and their families as well as reasons why child abuse occurs and how it can be prevented through social work activities. During this assignment I struggled with many aspects of the analysis due to the lack of information within the journal article that helped me understand whether or not there were contextual factors that influenced this social problem.
The article “Greening the Newsroom” by Jerome Remick, Sarah Lee, and Amy Whitfill is about the environmental procedures an environmental friendly newspaper uses. The first problem was to provide a short summary of the information in the article. With more than just one person involved in writing the report, it wasn’t difficult to summarize. The second part of this social problem was to determine how it can be used to identify other social problems. A lot of useful information was provided in the article that could be used for several social problems. Some examples would be pollution, traffic accidents, and industrial hazards. Lastly, I struggled with identifying any contextual factors that have influenced the social problem. Although, social problems are influenced by the available resources people have and how they use them but it would be useful to know if there were cultural or religious reasons why we aren’t seeing better results than what we are seeing at present time.
The Journal article I chose to read was “Productivity and the Dignity of Market Work: Reinterpreting job Satisfaction in Iraq” by Paul Fishstein. This particular article can be used to understand the social problems of unemployment, underemployment, despair, insecurity and powerlessness. The Journal article can also show us the contextual factors that have influenced these social problems through three different types of employment: (1) private companies, (2) state jobs, and (3) contracting firms.
The “Importance of a Holistic Approach” journal article described the social problems of food insecurity and obesity in the United States. It contained many contextual factors that have influenced these social problems. The author discussed how ―food insecurity affects all members of society, those who live with its impact in addition to those who are most deeply impacted by it‖. He also explained that “the 2008 economic crisis has exacerbated food insecurity; high unemployment led some families to report trade-offs with healthy eating as they face a reduced income or loss of income‖.
The newspaper article I chose to use for my analysis is about the most current social problem in America, gang activity. I was interested in learning about this topic because of the furthering of ideas that represent the problems society is facing today. I decided to research some gang activities and reasons why people get involved in these groups. There are many groups of people who join these groups in order to gain more power and money while they also seek out closer relationships with others who they relate to. In my opinion, there have been many different instances leading up to the creation of these gangs that have helped contribute to their exposure to more members. Since the article focused on more insightful information on the history of gangs, it assisted me in understanding how a problem has come this far.
The article “Restraining Order Abuse” by Alexia Cooper and Erica L. Smith provides statistical evidence to support the claim that restraining orders are being abused. This article discusses the demographic characteristics, recurrence of domestic violence, and the direct observation of recent cases in which a court found no evidence of abuse. The article also addresses several contextual factors that may have influenced this social problem.
Overall, the article “Social Problems Are Everywhere” helped to understand that social problems are faced by people all over the world. I found it the most difficult to analyze how mental illness is understood differently in various cultures. The main reason for this was due to the fact that most of the other articles were about domestic problems, so I wasn’t used to looking at these types of social problems.
In “I Am A Man” by James Baldwin, he discusses the social issues that African Americans face in the United States. Through the discussion of religion, education, and racism in America, Baldwin shows us how these are some of many factors that lead to creating this “social problem”. In the article, we find out that most African Americans were raised by their parents to believe in God (Baldwin 63). Religion is a big factor because it provides hope to everyone regardless of race. They think that if they serve and please God he will help them escape the troubles in their lives (Baldwin 64). The other reason why religion is such a big issue is because it is all throughout their culture. Their music, art and even speeches and sermons are composed of religious songs and prayers (Baldwin 64-65). On top of the fact that black people are raised believing in God, they also attend public schools created for them.
Since the mid-1960s, the divorce rate among American couples has quadrupled. According to research by Suzanne Bianchi and Katrina Kimport, part of this reason can be attributed to the marriages between women and higher educated men. As women continue to receive more schooling, the gap between women marrying men with equal or lower education levels has narrowed. This can be used to understand the social problem of marriage rates declining in today’s society. Marriage rates are declining for men and women in both lower and higher income groups.
Using the data that I gathered in class about the inner-city public schools in Chicago and Washington D.C., I found that students from those two school districts were not doing well in math, reading or science when compared to schools from the suburbs. The education level of their parents also coming into play whether or not the students were able to succeed in these areas. The lack of funding also affected them negatively because many of the teachers were not well compensated or had bad working conditions.
In the article A Precarious Existence: Forging a New Arab Identity in Egypt’s Informal Settlements , author Steen Djurtoft argues that Egypt is striving to develop democracy. The informal settlements of Egypt are often neglected by officials and citizens. Djurtoft states that “the government has left the poor on their own” and many lack decent housing, employment, education, and access to the city’s infrastructure.
After completing the “Research Analysis Exercise”, explain how the article can be used to understand the social problems presented. Which part of the analysis did you struggle with the most? Why? Explain whether or not the journal article provided any contextual factors that have influenced the social problem the article was about.