Talk:Rural sociology

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NPOV and other issues[edit]

This article sounds like it describes a particular school of rural sociology, which seems to have a pessimistic assessment without exception.

Aren't there positive developments in some places, such as environmental restoration made possible by population shrinkage? Types of rural communities is a partial list of how certain rural communities can prosper economically, and there are others, including focusing on niche crops (specialty organics, biofuel, crops for export, etc.). Farm productivity is high and rising, and so on; some people think that's a good thing, and that the economic dislocation of small farmers is a temporary burden and that the process is good for the economy and good for consumers (including rural consumers) in the long run. New methods for regenerating renewable natural resources are being used in some places (fish farming instead of fishing natural stocks, sustainable forest management, etc.).

Issues of globalization, the newfound ease with which "digital" can move to low cost-of-living areas, and government subsidies for agriculture are not mentioned. These topics seem to be intimately related to the economics of rural sociology, and represent mixed positive and negative prospects.

Under the section "Economic trends", it says: "Net cash farm income was projected at US$ 53.7 billion for 1999." This is not a trend; this is a single data point. Is this higher or lower than the previous years, and what is the trend over many years?

Under the section, "Issues in Rural America", it says: 'Fred Buttel asks, "Will we witness a further erosion of commitment to improving the livelihoods of the rural poor?"' This seems like a fairly biased political statement that assumes that the government (whatever government that might be; it's not clear) or voters have an insufficient commitment to the welfare of rural citizens. Many would say that rural Americans in particular have undue influence over national politics, due to the structure of the Electoral College.

Aren't there also non-economic aspects to rural sociology, like culture and religion?

If this article is supposed to represent a certain school of thought about rural sociology, it should be labelled as such. If it's supposed to be a general article about the field, it feels like it should reflect a greater diversity of perspectives and opinion.

Perhaps the original author can explain where the material for this article came from, and perhaps others closer to the field can identify the major competing schools of thought so their ideas can be better represented.

The articles listed under "Key topics" seem to have been written in a similar way. --Beland 08:57, 22 Jul 2004 (UTC)

"Sociology of the village"?[edit]

I've never heard Rural Sociology referred to as such. Is this someone's idea of a joke? Thanks, DA Sonnenfeld (talk) 14:20, 5 April 2013 (UTC)

i never heard it either--it's now erased. I added a bibliography but confess I'm a rural historian--that field is doing quite well. Rjensen (talk) 14:26, 5 April 2013 (UTC)
Thanks! Internationally, my perception is that rural sociology is doing very well; in the US, more or less holding its own, but with declining institutional support. Kind regards, DA Sonnenfeld (talk) 16:18, 5 April 2013 (UTC)

Scope of Rural sociology[edit]

In my experience, there are quite a few Rural sociologists who also work in the areas of Development studies, Community studies and Community development. Kind regards, DA Sonnenfeld (talk) 14:22, 5 April 2013 (UTC)

In the US, another area that has been a long-term, steady focus of rural sociology is the important role of women. This relates to the extension aspect of rural sociology: being seen as a 'conveyor belt' of scientific information from the academy to rural households, both in farming and, for example, safe home food preservation. In more recent decades this has branched out and developed into an array of emphases, including leadership development, women-led community development and more. Regards, DA Sonnenfeld (talk) 10:15, 6 April 2013 (UTC)