Everyone thinks sociology is easy except the people taking it," Steve Taylor says in the opening frame of his film. He concedes that the subject sometimes presents itself through a "strange theoretical language of ologies, ities and isms", but goes on to offer a clear explanation of three key theoretical perspectives - structural functionalism, Marxism and symbolic interactionism.
Punctuated by subtitles and divided into short chunks that end with a cue to "pause" the tape, Taylor's one-hour film (the second in a series of three) is a lucid introduction to the minefield of sociological theory.
The commentary considers the historical context in which each approach has emerged, applies it to the case of educa-tion, and invites the viewer to consider the professionalisation of health care in modern society.
Taylor concludes by likening the range of sociological theories to a "hall of social mirrors", each illuminating aspects of society but failing to present a complete picture.His video provides a succinct and enjoyable introduction, to sociological theory, and to sociology itself.