September 16, 2002
Think Piece One
Sociological imagination is the process of looking beyond the personal dilemma of an individual to observe the social factors that contribute to the problem. Essentially, having a sociological imagination will expand the perspective in solving a problem. To think sociologically is to realize that what we experience as personal problems are often widely shared by others like ourselves. Thus, many personal problems are actually social issues.
Recently, an Associated Press reporter wrote an article about how the exercise rate has dropped for adolescent girls. The article stated, "The amount of regular exercise girls get falls off dramatically as they move through their teenage years, dropping to practically zero in many cases, especially among blacks, a study found," (Nano 1). Involvement in physical activities varies among teen girls. Some factors include, "lower levels of parental education, heavier weight, smoking and pregnancy," (Nano 1).
Eva Obarzanek, a research nutritionist at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, conducted a ten year study that trailed 1,213 black girls and 1,166 white girls, ages of 9 and 10, from the Washington, D.C., Cincinnati and San Francisco areas. The study included a variety of questionnaires and interviews which documented the amount of activities the girls were involved in. At the conclusion of the study, Obarzanek found that "the activity score for the whole group dropped 83 percent," (Nano 1). Medical experts featured in the article fear that the lack of exercise in teen girls will lead to an epidemic rate of obesity.
This article does not exhibit a sociological imagination. The reporter did not go in depth with the social factors that contributed to the decreased participation in exercise. There were only a small amount of factors that were mentioned. In addition,