The General in the Particular
C. Wright Mills reflects his ideas of sociology as the studies of the behavior of individuals to make a conclusion if the issues that happened socially have an effect of the person’s life. Mills also claims that the only way to understand a person’s behavior is through examining the social content of the behavior. Therefore, it creates a quality of mind that he calls “sociological imagination”. By using this concept, it will show either the social, historical, cultural, and economic or the political aspects of how people live their lives. Based on his theory of sociology, the behavior of a person can have a recurrent pace where it can shape your choices that you make in life in regards to the course of life itself. When a behavior is recurrent, it’s considered a “patterned” aspect. People nowadays do things in which it happens in everyday life. It could be the things you eat, the way you dress or the things you do every day. In my case, the one thing that I do that’s recurrent is listening to music. I usually listen to music when I’m coming to school, coming back home from school or while I’m doing my homework. The type of music that I listen to regularly would have to be pop rock. The singers that sing this type of music have a significant message in their songs that’s relatable to an event in my life. I started to listen to it around the time I was 10 years old and from that point on, it stuck with me to this day. The region of music has not only occupied my time but it also shows my individuality as a person.
It gives me the chance to show expression and my personality as well. According to the theories of C. Wright Mills, he claims that “It is not only the information that they need-in this Age of Fact, information often dominates their attention and overwhelms their capacities to assimilate it”. This theory is proven through the evolution of a popular brand known as Hello Kitty. Hello Kitty originated in Japan with its “childish, sweet, innocent version of a kitten”. However, its audience was directed to young girls who eventually lead to the attention of teens and adults with its unique style. This theory applies to not only Hello Kitty fans but also teens that listen to pop rock music as well. Pop rock music consists of singers and bands such as Maroon 5, Avril Lavigne, Demi Lovato and much more of their characters. It also tries to grab the attention of teenagers, but had also captured the attention of adolescents. The messages that the songs of these singers send as well as the person itself influenced many teenage girls to want to follow in their footsteps. Not only do these teenagers get influenced by the lyrics and the story behind these songs; but they also happen to become “fan-crazed” as do the adolescents. These teens and adolescents begin to go to their concerts, wait outside for the artists to appear and show their love towards them to the best of their ability. My passion towards pop rock music has also been shown through teenage girls that listen to the same thing as well. Not only does it help show their individuality and expression but it also contributes to the behavior that these girls act around society.
The types of music that people listen to have an effect on society where it can spread out to different regions. It can also result to a worldwide evolution that usually starts out with the people that listen to a specific kind of music. For example, over the last few decades, society has been influenced by a different genre of music. During the 20s and 30s, it was mostly a jazz era where during the 60s through the 80s, it was mostly pop and rock music. The past few years created an era where a genre of music has influence society in terms of their style in clothing, their attitude towards others as well as the development of their well-being. The genre of music that individuals listen to has an effect of their lifestyle. According to The Promise by C. Wright Mills, he claims that the sociological imagination starts with the way an individual’s daily routines can influence their social status. C. Wright Mills claims that: “The first fruit of this imagination-and the first lesson of the social science that embodies it-is the idea that the individual can understand his own experience and gauge his own fate only by locating himself within his period, that he can know his chances in life only by becoming aware of those of all individuals in his circumstances”. It influences their clothing and their attitude. In this case, it can be proven that the teenagers that listen to this type of music have a certain style and behavior that was influenced by pop rock music. The individuals that listen to this type of music happen to wear dark eye makeup with dark colored clothes where they show the appearance of rebellion. The attitude they possess is more like a slightly rude but with a tone of persuading and want to debate on a situation. This rebellious attitude that these girls show also happen to reflect on their household conditions. In terms of pop rock music, the household conditions can be described as a strict and conservative stability. In other words, the conditions that these girls live in can be described as living inside a jail with no escape. As to the people that they hang out with and the relationship that they have with others, it can either put them in trouble or a drastic position where they must choose from right and wrong. An everyday choice can be made and the direction it goes in can be influenced by behavior and attitude based on the music that they listen to. Overall, music can influence the lifestyle of an individual.
As Mills proclaims in his theories, the behavior of a person is based on social content. It can affect society in a social, economic, political, or cultural way. The basis of the social content that an individual can embrace towards can create a recurrent event in their everyday lives. Music is one of the qualities that created the guidance of social behavior among others. In terms of pop rock music, it reflected on the lifestyles of teenage girls as well as adolescents. The message from the music that speaks out to these girls has had an effect on their everyday choices and behavior due to their love of music. It shows through the kind of clothing they wear, the attitude they possess and the household environment that they live in. Music had a strong influence on the people it reaches out to and that can influence the society that they live in.
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