Sociology is the study of human societies which include the three main areas for the purpose of theoretical and empirical research namely social structures, social systems and social issues. The social structures has within its fold subjects like the family, education, social stratification while the social system refers to subjective study of various culture, identification of groups and their control by agents and their influence over it while the social issues relates to crimes, unemployment, downsizing at work places, child abuse, health issues and other related subjects.
Although sociology took its root as a science concerning the welfare of societies and its people it has however over time spread into a vast area unlike any other sciences such that it is sometimes found to be quite difficult to draw a limit to its scope. In fact, it touches upon anything from politics to economics and to health and is still seen to be expanding.
For the purpose of this paper it is therefore ideal and proper to understand the societies from the angle of human race and their immigration bringing into focus the peculiarities in the relationships in the context of modern societies as the matter has attained significant world wide critical views. In order to give reason to immigrants one must understand why cultures immigrate.
The main reason that there is migration of people is due to dearth of opportunities and means of livelihood as well as social and political unrest within their home countries while there is relatively greater stability and economical growth and employment potential in the host country. The argument for such immigration on the positive side is that the migrating population would fend better in the host country while the host country itself would escape from being caught in a state of complacency, social corruption, cultural stagnation and mediocrity.
America which has seen immigrants and in fact is justly seen to be a place full of migrant population has remained vibrant and growth oriented primarily due to this reason. However, in spite of all this America still experiences great disparity among different races especially among the blacks and the white population. To cite an example Arthur Ashe the famous tennis star when contracted AIDS was asked whether this was the most challenging battle of his life. In reply that would surprise any one he said that the greatest barrier of his life was being a black (Feagin and Sikes 272).
However, when one looks deep into the behavioral patterns of both black and the white one can see that they both thrive to improve their livelihood and engage fruitfully for the development of their own areas. This is especially marked in the people of high status. Yet it is seen that in spite of high status the black must live in neighborhoods with fewer amenities, high rate of poverty, dependency and crime and send children to public schools. This confirms that racial segregation still remains to this day an important issue (Massey, Condran and Denton 29).
Again, in the light of the above it is generally seen that the blacks are no less competitive than the whites if given good health, provided with good living and working conditions as well scope of good education. It is noteworthy to point out here that the US is experiencing lesser social discrimination than what has been experienced in the past although it has not been completely erased as yet. This undoubtedly creates friction in the smooth functioning of the social system as there is a lot of misunderstanding, inferiority complexes among the blacks, suspicions and social stigma that are generally attached to it.
Yet, the problem of race is slowly receding in America. This has been an area of focus of the William Julius Wilson debates which basically stresses on empirical testing and the use of common sense in understanding of the social world and the hypothesis derived from the ‘Truly Disadvantaged’ in US rather than rely on the declining significance of race( Niemonen 49). Another somewhat less researched topic is the second generation immigrants who are now school going children with their parents who belong to the first generation of immigrants, the latter having settled down with some initial difficulties.
As these children or the second generation haven’t as yet joined the labor force of US, it is quite essential that the school careers and future job possibilities be properly understood. It is seen that over a period of time the second generation would successfully merge with the population of the host country and thus the notion of assimilation for social theory and public discourse assumes importance in order to perceive the actual pathway that ought to be followed by foreign immigrants in US (Portes, Rumbant 44).
Here the idea is to have constructive dialogue for proper assimilation of the second generation immigrants for overall contribution in nation building and future prosperity. Yet it is easier said than done and is perhaps the main reason for the scourge of racial discrimination to remain not only among the black and white population of America, but among the other Hispanic and Asian races too. One of the prime reasons for this is the absence of give and take principles by the host country themselves.
The advocates of removal of racism are never far behind in their practice of adamancy and so called supremacy over other immigrant races. Not in least is the example of language problem. The host country, in this case the US, never ever concedes to the demand of the immigrants keeping the language of the country of their origin. There is partially some truth in this for English is the common language in America and they signify the core of national identity and hence the host country groups oppose them quite determinedly (Portes, Rumbant 113).
Yet this isn’t the actual picture if one were to see in the larger context of the world. It has been seen in the present days of globalization mass communication that the gaps between nations have narrowed down considerably through the means of fast communication networks and hence a person who is staying in a host country does not stop communicating as has been done in the past by immigrants, but rather spend a greater part of their waking days in communicating with their friends, relations and others of their country in language other than English.
In fact, in the future this is one of the ironic truths that the host country like America is likely to face and it would be an impossible task to efface these languages altogether. The better way is to facilitate the immigrant school children to study one of their own languages along with the main language English. Already it has become quite apparent that the linguistic and cultural diversity has become a reality in US.
But the unfortunate part is that the schools in US have failed to meet the needs of diverse students resulting in huge dropouts, failures due to the simple fact that they are being forced to read only the English language (Stritikus 1). This of course doesn’t augur well for a nation who wants to be a leader among nations and do justice to all its citizens. Thus in conclusion one should note that changes occur among the immigrants way of life in far greater proportion than those of the population of the host country which too would voluntarily or involuntarily experience significant change for the purpose of sociological study.