Sociological Imagination, A Term Coined By C. Wright Mills Essay

Sociological Imagination, A Term Coined By C. Wright Mills Essay

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Sociological imagination, a term coined by C. Wright Mills, is the ability to visualize the connection between personal experience and the larger society. One can possess sociological imagination upon realizing personal behaviors that weren’t completely personal but neighboring society’s common practice. In other words, seeing that one’s action has been completely caused by society or their actions differed from their initial intentions, which were actually altered to fit society’s expectations. In Michael Moore’s documentary, “Sicko,” he explores the health care problems suffered in America and its difference between other healthcare systems around the world. Throughout the documentary lie three interesting examples that seem to be different at nature but all reflect the concept of sociological imagination concerning personal experiences of people from different backgrounds.
Sociological imagination in the documentary, Sicko can first be seen as Michael Moore initiates the documentary by introducing the audience to Larry and Donna. Larry and Donna is a married couple that no longer had the financial ability to sustain their own house because despite the couple’s health insurance, copays and deductibles drove them to bankruptcy. One might see this as more of Larry and Donna personal experience and misfortune that they can’t afford but the sociological imagination perspective allows a different take. This is the result of a society with flawed health insurance system. As C. Wright Mills tried to explain “A trouble is a private matter: values cherished by an individual are felt by her to be threatened”(Mills, 4) and “An issue is a public matter: some value cherished by publics is felt to be threatened”(Mills, 4). In Mill’...


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... and maybe even irritate us. Multiple scenes in the documentary had provided some laughable moments or few chuckles that would help relax the tense atmosphere of the viewers, despite the serious matter in discussion. The best aspect of film is truly the disbelief factor; refer to the textbook long list preexisting condition that denied health insurance to many applicants, basically, the need of a master’s degree to apply for health insurance. That and considering the emotional scenes, makes Sicko a much more impressive and captivating documentary than that of its kind.
Overall, Sicko, the documentary by Michael Moore is a highly interesting and intelligent film in many regards. The film is relaxingly climatic and sometimes laughable, and of course doing so without striping anything away from its informative nature with prime examples of sociological imagination.

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