Kerry Ferris (Author)Jill Stein (Author)

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The Real World

An Introduction to Sociology


The most relevant textbook for today’s students.

Each chapter includes four relevance boxes that expose students to the sociological implications of everyday events:

  • On the Job boxes explore how people use sociological insights in a variety of work settings.
  • In Relationships boxes look at how sociology can help us understand our friendships, intimate partners, and family relations.
  • Changing the World boxes focus on the role that sociological insights can play in bringing about social change.
  • Global Perspectives boxes highlight the differences and similarities between the United States and other cultures.

Theory in Everyday Life tables.

The Second Edition includes these helpful tables, which compare the theories discussed in the chapter and then apply each to a real-world situation. For example, in Chapter 4 (Culture) the “Theory in Everyday Life” table uses religion as an example of culture to examine the different theoretical approaches to understanding religions’ values, rituals, and prohibitions. Chapter 8 (Social Stratification) features three different views of poverty by functionalists, conflict theorists, and symbolic interactionists.

The most coverage of everyday life, popular culture, and mass media.

The authors have updated the Second Edition to include examples and photos from mass media and popular culture, particularly on technologies that students use everyday such as social networking sites, cellphones, and the Internet.

The only book to include Data Workshops in each chapter.

The Data Workshops, which are integrated into every chapter, focus on “Analyzing Everyday Life” and “Analyzing Mass Media and Popular Culture” and give students an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the practice of sociology. Qualitative exercises mean that students get to deal with real data–whether it’s data they have collected themselves or data provided in raw form. Each workshop has an assignment sequence, so instructors can make them homework assignments or in-class activities. They are also on the student website, so students can complete the projects and submit them online.

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A complete media and instructor support package.

The Real World, Second Edition, features a suite of resources that take a participatory approach to sociology and include student review materials that reinforce the book’s focus on popular culture and everyday life. Instructors have everything they need to bring sociology alive in the classroom, including 2 DVDs with over 4 hours of video clips, an expanded instructor's manual, an online instructor's forum, coursepacks, a test bank, and more.

Unbeatable packages.

Instructors can package The Real World with their choice of readers for only $10 more (net price to bookstores) and with select Norton paperbacks for free.