Homelessness as an Issue in Sociology and Social Studies - Term Paper Example

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The author states that homelessness is caused by different social factors including lack of affordable housing and high prices, family violence and drug abuse, poverty, and unemployment. Homeless people are suffering the consequences of a breakdown in the needs-meeting structures of society. …
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Homelessness as an Issue in Sociology and Social Studies
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Download file to see previous pages The sociological perspective applied to the research paper is social constructionism. This approach allows a researcher to examine and analyze the development of homelessness in particular social contexts. This sociological perspective is chosen for analysis because the constructionist position emphasizes that the activities through which social problems like homelessness are constructed are both implicitly and intentionally. Social constructionism accounts for maintenance of social activities which lead to such problems as homelessness. Sociologists use the assumptions as a warrant for defining problems as real and observable social conditions, portraying their studies as objective analyses, and describing themselves as experts on social problems.
The notion of the homeless is difficult to define because it involves diverse social groups and diverse populations. Researchers propose different definitions which take into account different age groups and different social causes of homelessness, location and neighborhoods environment. For instance, Chamberlain and Johnson (2001) state that: "the literal definition equates homelessness with rooflessness', implying that homeless people are literally under the stars', or illegally occupying deserted premises" (p. 35). Traditional definitions of homelessness (Arden et al 2006) involve such groups as children, women, veterans, racial minorities, young mothers and drug users. Homeless are considered children who have been separated from their homeless parents and are in foster care or are living with relatives; a young mother and her children who have lived for two or three months at a time with different relatives during the past year or so, and who expect that, within the next few months, they will have to leave where they now live; a family or single person who migrated to a new town looking for work, live with relatives, does not pay rent, cannot find work, and does not know how long the present arrangement will last or where to go if it terminates.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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