Using the sociological imagination, discuss the experience of disability in modern Ireland. In your answer refer to how using “The sociological Imagination” can assist SCP when working with those living with disability.
The Sociological Imagination
The Sociological Imagination was introduced by C. Wright Mills in 1959. Mills argued that the specific job of the sociologist is to reveal the connections between what is going on in the world and what might be happening within ourselves. According to Mills (1970) “we must think ourselves away from the familiar routines of our daily lives in order to look at them anew”- The sociological imagination is the ability to think of human society as well as personal experience.
What C. Wright Mills called the ‘sociological imagination' is the recognition that what happens in an individual's life and may appear purely personal has social consequences that actually reflect much wider public issues. Human behaviour and biography shapes society, and vise-versa and one cannot be properly understood without the other. If a sociologist was trying to understand two friends having coffee for example then they would examine it as social interaction, as acceptable drug taking, and as part of a complex mix of social and economic processes. They might also assess the fact that coffee is produced by the poor but drunk mainly by the better off, they would examine the history of coffee drinking. (Giddens, 2001).
In order to understand what is going on for a client group, we must examine private troubles in the context of the larger social issues. We as SCP’s must think in terms of the “bigger picture”.
Using the Sociological Imagination when working with those living with disability
(1) allows us to see the bigger picture i.e. it allows us to focus on the social issues determining the quality of life of those living with disability to create more holistic solutions.
It does this by:
• Allowing us to assess how affective agency or...