Arguably, sociology provides the simplest form of understanding of happiness. Philosophical arguments have proved to be challenging even to the greatest of philosophers. For instance, philosophers such as Aristotle, Plato, and Socrates could not provide a universally acceptable line of thought regarding happiness. Indeed, their individual philosophical arguments regarding understanding of happiness are hard to understand especially for the common person. However, sociology provides a more realistic and easy to understand knowledge on the study of happiness. For instance, sociologists approach the study of happiness from a social perspective by incorporating social behavior, attitudes, and social perception in the study of happiness.
Sociology provides the widest encompassing knowledgebase to study of happiness than any other discipline seeking to inject knowledge to defining happiness (Wallis, 2005, P.1). For instance, a study by Yang provided to the knowledge of happiness by using age, period, and cohort analysis. Such interesting and enriching findings by Yang were only made possible by the sociological approach to subject of happiness. According to Yang the closing gap in regard to race, sex and education in happiness with age, significantly correlated to “differential exposure to various social, conditions important to happiness, such as marital status and health” (Yang, 2008, p. 204). This study employed different tenets of social inequalities in understanding happiness.
Bentham made a significant contribution to understanding happiness. His attempt to provide a mathematical and scientific answer to the question of happiness could not find a safe haven in the minds of philosophical and social scholars. However, Stuart Mill, and other scholars incorporated Aristotle’s theories of happiness to come up with a better contribution to knowledge of happiness (Bok 39-44). According to Stuart, social, educational, and economic status determines