: contemporary social theory

Sociology 415 Contemporary Social Theory
Second Take-Home Exam, November 2, 2020
Ira J. Cohen
Instructions: Answers must be submitted in MICROSOFT WORD. All exams must be emailed to:
icohen@rutgers.edu. Answers must be received in my in-box by 11:59 pm on Wednesday,
November 11. Unexcused late exams will be penalized 6 points for the first week and 10 points
In order to ensure receipt, the subject headers in your emails and attachments must read: 415.2
followed by last and first name. For example: 415.2 Lincoln, Abraham
Put your full name on your exam. Answer and number each question (and sub-question separately
where appropriate). Use a darker font than usual so that I can best read your exam. The preferred font is
12 point Arial Black in single space. No extra credit and no make-up exams.
Plagiarism: Every student must write an exam in his/her own words. Failure to write in one’s own
words will be regarded as plagiarism. Plagiarism includes: parallels in sentence structure, wording, or
any rearrangement of material from another student’s exam. Plagiarism also includes any material
quoted, paraphrased, or otherwise used without footnote from any internet, published, or student-written
sources. Exams or materials from paper and exam services will be treated as plagiarism. All forms of
plagiarism will result in harsh penalties, including the ultimate penalty of failing the course. I reserve
the right to administer an oral examination to confirm that the written examinations are the
product of a student’s own work.
Reminder: This is a Writing Across the Curriculum exam. Five (5) points will be reserved for a
grade on the quality of your writing. See the syllabus for criteria for the writing grade.
Q.1.A. Fifty years ago life was lived far more local than it is today. Anthony Giddens draws attention to
how the eclipse of time and the compression of space has contributed to an expansion of how we live
beyond local settings. Consider Amazon as an example of the eclipse of time and the compression of
space that has expanded our lives beyond local settings. Using Giddens’ concepts of the eclipse of time
and the compression of space, please discuss how Amazon eclipses time and compresses space so as to
expand the boundaries of our lives beyond local settings. Be sure to discuss both time and space.
Q.1.B. Amazon collects enormous amounts of data from its customers. Please discuss one way in which
Amazon might use this information in a manner that would constitute institutional reflexivity from
Anthony Giddens’ point of view. Note: you will need to define Giddens’ concept of institutional
reflexivity during the course of answering this question. Q1. = 15 points
Q.2. Based upon lectures and assigned readings from Giddens, Modernity and Self-Identity, please discuss
the relationship between practical consciousness, the unconscious, and ontological security. Q.2=5 points
Q.3. According to Anthony Giddens, your current sense of self-identity will have changed ten years from
now. Please explain. Q.3= 5 points
Q.4. In one paragraph, please define Giddens concept of a “fateful moment.” Now imagine that person is
fired from a good paying job she has held for ten years. Why is this a good example of a fateful moment?

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