Part I: Methods Essay 1: Numbers Don't Lie Part II: Culture Essay 2: Winning Is Everything Essay 3: Children Are Our Most Precious Commodity Part III: Social Structure Essay 4: Love Knows No Reason Essay 5: Stress Is Bad for Your Well-Being Essay 6: The "Golden Years" Are Tarnished Years Part IV: Socialization and Identity Essay 7: What's in a Name? That Which We Call a Rose by Any Other Name Would Smell As Sweet Essay 8: Beauty Is Only Skin Deep Part V: Stratification Essay 9: The More We Pay, the More It's Worth Essay 10: Money Is the Root of All Evil Essay 11: You've Come a Long Way, Baby Essay 12: America Is the Land of Equal Opportunity Part VI: Deviance, Crime, and Social Control Essay 13: Violence Is on the Rise in the United States-No One Is Safe Essay 14: There's Nothing We Can Do About the Weather Essay 15: There Ought to Be a Law Essay 16: Honesty Is the Best Policy Part VII: Social Institutions: Marriage and Family Essay 17: The Nuclear Family Is the Backbone of American Society Essay 18: Marriage Is a Failing Institution Part VIII: Social Institutions: The Economy Essay 19: Welfare Is Ruining This Country Essay 20: Immigrants Are Ruining This Nation Part IX: Social Institutions: Media and Technology Essay 21: Technology Is Taking Over Our Lives Part X: Social Institutions: Education Essay 22: Education Is the Great Equalizer Part XI: Social Institutions: Religion Essay 23: We Are One Nation Under God
Janet M. Ruane (PhD, Rutgers University) is a professor of sociology at Montclair State University. She has served as her department's undergraduate and graduate program director. Professor Ruane's research interests include formal and informal social control mechanisms, media and technology, research methods, and applied sociology. She is the author of Essentials of Research Methods (Blackwell) and has contributed articles and chapters to several journals and collections including Sociological Forum, Sociological Inquiry, Law and Policy, Communication Research, Sociological Focus, Journal of Applied Sociology, and Science as Culture. Since stepping into her first classroom, Professor Ruane has accumulated decades of valuable teaching experience in both introductory and advanced-level sociology courses. These years have afforded her a wealth of opportunities for generating and fine-tuning many second thoughts. Karen A. Cerulo (PhD, Princeton University) is a professor of sociology at Rutgers University. Her research interests include culture and cognition, symbolic communication, media and technology, and comparative historical studies. Professor Cerulo's articles appear in a wide variety of journals, including the American Sociological Review, Contemporary Sociology, Poetics, Social Forces, Sociological Forum, Sociological Inquiry, Communication Research, and annuals such as the Annual Review of Sociology and Research in Political Sociology. She is the author of three books: Identity Designs: The Sights and Sounds of a Nation, winner of the ASA Culture Section's award for the Best Book of 1996 (Rose Book Series of the ASA, Rutgers University Press); Deciphering Violence: The Cognitive Structure of Right and Wrong (Routledge); and Never Saw It Coming: Cultural Challenges to Envisioning the Worst (University of Chicago Press). She has also edited a collection entitled Culture in Mind: Toward a Sociology of Culture and Cognition (Routledge). Professor Cerulo's teaching and research earned her both the Rutgers University Awards for "Distinguished Contributions to Undergraduate Education" and the "Scholar-Teacher Award." In 2014, she was named the Robin Williams Lecturer for the Eastern Sociological Society.