Spring 2019 - SA 304 D100

Social Control (S) (4)

Class Number: 7243

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jan 3 – Apr 8, 2019: Mon, 4:30–8:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    SA 101 or 150 or 201W.



This course examines how the organization of control (formal and informal) affects both individuals and society. It will investigate how control takes form, how it functions, the ideologies supporting it, and the resistance it produces. We will ask the following questions: who are the agents of social control; who or what do they control; and how do they control?


This course will offer students an opportunity to explore social control, moral regulation, and the governance of subjects. Students will develop an understanding of the diffuse nature of control, the wide constellation of actions, subjects and spaces that have become subject to control, and the complex infrastructures and discourses that enact control. In a challenge to the overall course theme of “control,” we will also explore notions of freedom, agency, and contestation. A wide variety of empirical topics and theoretical perspectives will be broached, examining both formal and informal structures of control, but with much emphasis on perspectives that look “beyond” the state and traditional power structures. Students will have the opportunity to study topics ranging from: law, cities, surveillance, self-help, public space, and everyday practices of moral regulation.


  • Reading responses 30%
  • Group presentation 15%
  • Participation 15%
  • Test 1 20%
  • Test 2 20%


Grading: Where a final exam is scheduled and you do not write the exam or withdraw from the course before the deadline date, you will be assigned an N grade. Unless otherwise specified on the course outline, all other graded assignments in this course must be completed for a final grade other than N to be assigned.

Academic Dishonesty and Misconduct Policy: The Department of Sociology and Anthropology follows SFU policy in relation to grading practices, grade appeals (Policy T 20.01) and academic dishonesty and misconduct procedures (S10.01‐ S10.04).  Unless otherwise informed by your instructor in writing, in graded written assignments you must cite the sources you rely on and include a bibliography/list of references, following an instructor-approved citation style.  It is the responsibility of students to inform themselves of the content of SFU policies available on the SFU website: http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student.html.



Readings available on Canvas.

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html