Two teenage girls are facing felony murder charges after carjacking an Uber Eats vehicle with the driver inside and then crashing it … ending in the death of the Uber driver.
What’s wrong with American society? What possibly could have been going through these girls’ minds? Did some unexpressed anxiety lead them to this murderous behavior? Or to put it more succinctly, is this an expression of two disturbed individuals or, as Émile Durkheim might have argued, part of a correlation between crazed behaviors and disturbed societal conditions?
For those who don’t know about Émile Durkheim, he was a pioneering Jewish and French sociologist who studied the phenomenon of suicide from a statistical and sociological perspective. That might not sound so groundbreaking but his book Suicide was published in 1897.
Durkheim also laid out “rules” for sociological investigation. First, he said, you develop theory. Then you provide concrete real-life examples which support that theory. And that’s what he did.
Durkheim may not be a household name but his thoughts have stayed with me for many years, even since I got 93% in my sociological theory course at the U.
In other words, I liked thinking about our world instead of uncritically accepting what everyone says. So I took to sociological theory like a duck to water.
Sadly, especially in religious studies, one ‘expert’ in his small little field couldn’t see beyond his esoteric specialty. And while I still think about Durkheim today, I still pay the price for the incompetence and moral shortcomings of this religious studies professor, whom I have talked about many times at Earthpages.