In the News

Nostalgia and Sociology

Sarah Best

31st October 2017

I never owned a Nintendo SNES when it was originally released in 1992 (Europe and Australasia), but I, along with many other people now have the opportunity with the release of the Nintendo Classic Mini: SNES.

As much fun as playing games such as Mario Kart and The Legend of Zelda would be, this recent release does cause me to question the nostalgia that I impress on myself and of those (easier, simpler?) times. Furthermore, I wonder what sociologists may think of not just the cultural influence and the pace of technological change but also of the ‘rose-tinted glasses’ view of the recent past.

Some sociological theory is supportive of technology and of its influence. Research into technology has encouraged improvements in medicine, education and living standards generally. However, a counter-argument could be made that with an increase in technology comes responsibility and can come at a price, with current debates focusing on things like: the rise of AI, increases in what some call a ‘surveillance society’, the impacts of climate change, and the divide between rich and poor (or the have’s and have not’s’). 

There could be a rich debate in this area, with links to various sociological topics such as: Theory and Methods, The Media, Culture and Identity, Family and Households and Global Development, all of which have explicit links to the theme of globalisation.

Reference:

Sarah Best

Sarah is a passionate full-time Head of Sociology and Psychology and has worked in a variety in schools in the UK, and she is currently working in a British international school. She is keen to develop and boost the profile of both subjects.

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