This course has as its subject matter the individual's relation to society and the relationships that arise among individuals, organizations, or institutions. This course aims to enable the student, as an individual, to understand his/her relation to the social world considered as a web of complex and dynamic interrelationships among cultural, economic, psychological, political, and social factors. To this end, the course examines and compares various systematic theories and methods used to analyze this social world, their embedded assumptions, their claim to scientific status and empirical verification, and their application to various contemporary problems. The course also examines the idea of a social science and the importance of simplifying or describing observations of the world in order to construct a model of individual or collective behavior.
Prerequisites: Admission to the Honors Program.