Preface of the Book
Sociology in the 21st Century: A Perspective of Pakistani Society draws on the latest developments in the fast-changing body of knowledge about society and through the most advanced tools to understand the interesting and challenging academic discipline of sociology. Many believe that those who have no email address and social media accounts, they simply do not exist in the 21st century. It is undeniably true today. Human social life undergoes changes occurring with Godspeed in the aftermath of the arrival of new media and the new technology of new and unprecedented human connectivity offering widest social circles with highly intensified interactions of the human beings “live” and in “real-time” and without any physical boundaries. What makes sociology an exciting and interesting subject is that it tells us more about ourselves; who we are; and the way we live.
How new digital technology engages the human beings and impacts their behaviours and beliefs is something at the heart and soul of this discourse, which struggles to bring everything social and anything sociological in its fold. The approach of this book derives its strength from the sociological imaginations and engages the readers in a meaningful way. Though some of the ideas and innovations about interacting individuals presented here may roll reader’s eyes in awe and doubt, yet the same newer concepts may appear older before the ink of my pen writing this book gets drier because the beauty of sociology, like its subject matter-human social life, is the scope, space, and speed of change in it. My target audience for this text is the young students who dream to work miracles in their completive exams particularly in the context of Pakistan and India; however, Pakistani society has been contextualised as the recurrent point of reference in this book.
Society in Pakistan has witnessed drastic changes, both negative as well as positive during the last seventeen years of the 21st first century. Our eldest living generation that had seen our country during its formative years of statehood and perhaps born in the 1950s or 1940s seems to have been taken aback by the meteoric rise of a thickly populated cities, booming urbanisation, spreading digitalization, shifting gender roles, expanding youth demographics, increasing awareness of human rights, democracy, and rule of law, emerging judicial activism, engaging media, reinventing connectivity, and also morphing violence, intolerance, and extremism. With all the monumental losses our society has suffered due to increased incidents of terrorism in the post 9/11 Pakistan, it has cultivated unbelievable resilience and has honed unmatchable strength to regrow and restart from the very scratches. From a sociological point of view, Pakistani society offers greater scope for studying resilience and power of starting from the ashes and strength of keeping going along with entire baggage of history and culture of misadventure of both the masters as well as the masses. The discourse in Sociology in the 21st Century sits well on the very soul of Pakistan’s society and senses its pulse with novelty, clarity, energy, versatility and profundity. It is all about us and it’s your story told by someone who has been immersing in the same society.
The new syllabus of sociology for CSS has been fully covered with more additions that are more likely to be made part of the sociology syllabus of CSS in future revisions and also might be included in University Masters courses in Pakistan. This book is not revised text or addition to my previous book on “An Introduction to Sociology” which I had written in 2001 and was too brief to be a proper book. The sociology in the Twenty-First Century is a new book written with new research and new ideas with the additions of the new sub-fields of sociology such as social media, internet, terrorism, gender, technology, globalization, and also detailed sociological analysis of the problems of Pakistan’s” listed” as well as “likely” social problems and sociology of everything. For the convenience of the reader, the book is divided into four parts, ten sections and 45 chapters except for the bibliography of about 700 different sources or books at the ends. This book took me a year and a half in getting completed.
This book claims following distinguishing features
- In this book, each topic and sub-topic of sociology has been covered. The idea of the sociology of everything that runs the entire theme of the books is based on the fact that everything that humans use and that affects their behaviour fall into sociological inquiry and hence covered in this book.
- This book is detailed and elaborate: This book covers not only the range of topics but discusses every topic in all possible details that are necessary to make an appropriate idea of that particular topic or subject matter. Generally, each topic begins with the opening thoughts that are used to set the pace of discussion or to highlight the currency of issue and that are followed by theoretical perspectives, definitions, background, present prevalence, latest research, problems, solutions and recommendations.
- This book incorporates the latest research and new ideas. The central idea and recurrent theme of the book is sociology in the twenty-first century and therefore in all areas of sociology the new ideas and new research findings have been consulted and analysed. All the topics are flavoured with updated knowledge in each by consulting the latest reports, surveys, publications, books, research findings etc.which are properly referenced.
- This book covers the new syllabus of CSS but is not limited to CSS course. Rather many new topics of the future have been included with the thorough study of each topic. The sociology of everything, sociology in the twenty-first century, social media, media as the social institution, and terrorism: its drivers, as well as its dynamics in Pakistani society, and many other topics have been thoroughly analysed in sociological frameworks.
- This book discusses everything in the theoretical framework of sociology. Whether it is religion, government, media, education, economy, family, or anything, it is discussed taking in consideration the latest and informed sociological theoretical perspectives such as functional, critical or conflict, symbolic interactionist, gender etc. no general approach has been followed; instead a very academic approach had been adopted in inking the pages of this book: Sociology in the 21st Century.
- This book discusses everything in the context of Pakistani Society. How everything social and sociological prevails in Pakistan is the unique and distinguishing feature of this book. No book with such characteristics has been published in Pakistan before. It is more or less a sociology of Pakistan society that is current and multidisciplinary in all senses of the words.
This book will be launched in December this year (2018) in Karachi.