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Groups. Recap: Market theories Hold only under stringent conditions Games have clear, cardinal payoffs Payoffs are common knowledge Indefinite iterations.

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Presentation on theme: "Groups. Recap: Market theories Hold only under stringent conditions Games have clear, cardinal payoffs Payoffs are common knowledge Indefinite iterations."— Presentation transcript:

1 Groups

2 Recap: Market theories Hold only under stringent conditions Games have clear, cardinal payoffs Payoffs are common knowledge Indefinite iterations of game with same players Even so, only in very small groups In large groups, it is too difficult to know what players did (either C or D) in previous interactions High monitoring costs

3 Market theories, cont’d Further, at least some of these theories suggest that market approaches are most likely to produce cooperation (instead of just coordination) when people are following rules (eg Schelling). Where might these rules come from? Is government the only source?

4 Groups In all societies people belong to a variety of groups Families, churches, athletic clubs, firms, etc. These groups are related to overall social order in complex ways.

5 Groups Social groups can be very powerful E.g. gender roles

6 Groups Groups can teach people values Groups can enforce norms

7 Social order via values Values are General and relatively durable internal criteria for evaluation General = they apply in many different situations Relatively durable = they don’t change very often Internal = they are inside our heads, and directly motivate action Do not require external incentives Evaluation = they tell us what is good and bad

8 Sigmund Freud

9 Freud People try to maximize their happiness the “pleasure principle” Infants want their mother’s breast, but it is not always available This perception  distinction between self (ego) and the external world The “reality principle” – you can’t always get satisfaction

10 Freud, cont’d How the infant copes with the mother’s absence or disapproval By taking the parent into the self (super- ego), and allowing that internal parent to monitor its behavior Evidence for the super-ego A sense of guilt

11 The fundamental aspect of civilization The replacement of the power of the individual with the power of the community Individual liberty was no gift of civilization; it was greatest before civilization existed The urge for freedom is directed against civilization

12 The parallel between individual and social development Just as the developing individual is led to renounce initial desires for sensual pleasures, so civilization depends on a renunciation of instinct Namely, the individual desire to maximize personal freedom

13 Human nature: sexuality and aggressiveness Sexuality is a fundamental motivator of human behavior (derived from the pleasure principle) Sexuality threatens social order because Unregulated sex Leads to interpersonal conflict (over love objects) – hence social disorder Drains energy from economic productivity

14 Man is instinctively aggressive

15 Human nature must be contained to attain social order Society employs a variety of methods to regulate sexuality and aggressiveness The incest taboo – common to all societies The sexual urges of children are discouraged, so that their adult lusts can be controlled later on Many societies outlaw anything but heterosexual genital love Religions implore people to love their neighbors, etc. But these methods are largely unsuccessful

16 Freud’s solution The super-ego i.e. the conscience Solution: strengthen the super-ego

17 Freud: the price of social order The superego creates guilt; therefore we are less happy. Trade-off between civilization and individual happiness

18 Freud: Summary of causal relations and mechanisms Macro-level cause: dependence Situational mechanisms: people desire love, want to avoid punishment, transfer of aggression to the super-ego Individual internal state: super-ego Behavioral mechanisms: guilt Individual behavior: prosocial behavior

19 Freud: Draw the theory Dependence Super-egoProsocial behavior

20 Freud How do we know if the theory has merit? Look at the empirical world Freud’s argument suggests that children who receive unpredictable nurturing (for example, those in orphanages or with neglectful parents) will be poorly socialized, and in turn, behave in antisocial ways.

21 Emile Durkheim

22 Durkheim Wanted to understand suicide Existing solutions are inadequate Mental illness Heredity Environment (climate and temperature) Durkheim turned to social factors

23 Egoistic suicide Observation: Higher rates of suicide among Protestants vs. Catholics Single males vs. married males Families with few children vs. families with many children Why?

24 Egoistic suicide Individualism  suicide Single people are more individualistic than people with spouses and children Families act as Support structures Rationales for living when times get tough Social integration  low suicide, conformity to norms, social order

25 Mechanisms for egoistic suicide People want to be attached to something greater than themselves They want a purpose If the individual is sufficiently integrated, the social group provides that purpose.

26 Altruistic suicide Results from too little individualism; too much social integration Evidence Tribal societies have high suicide Armies have higher suicide than civilian populations Within armies, officers are higher than enlisted men

27 Altruistic suicide, cont’d Too much social integration encourages people to sacrifice themselves for their groups/societies Individual life loses value

28 Effects of social integration on suicide Egoistic and altruistic suicide at opposite poles of social integration dimension Too little integration (= too much individualism)  egoistic suicide Too much integration (= too little individualism)  altruistic suicide

29 Egoistic/Altruistic suicide: Summary of causal relations and mechanisms Macro-level cause: group integration Situational mechanisms: Individuals need a sense of purpose that can only be provided by the group Attachment to the group increases attachment to group values Individual internal state: individualism Behavioral mechanism: people behave in accordance with internalized values – if weak, one is vulnerable to discouragement; if strong, one has little sense of self- preservation Individual behavior: suicide Transformational mechanism: aggregation Macro-level outcome: suicide rates

30 Egoistic/Altruistic Suicide: Draw the theory Integration Individualism/ purpose Individual suicide Suicide rates

31 Anomic suicide Evidence Suicide higher in economic depressions Suicide higher in economic booms Suicide rates correlated with divorce rates

32 Anomic suicide, cont’d Explanation Crises inhibit social regulation Lack of social regulation leads to individual anomie Anomie = erosion of values Anomie leads to suicide

33 Situational mechanisms/assumptions Human needs/desires are unlimited. Individuals cannot create their own limits Thus, the passions must be limited by some exterior, moral force This force is society Society is the only moral power superior to the individual, the authority of which he accepts Without societal regulation, individual desires are infinite. Individuals are in a state of anomie.

34 Situational mechanisms, cont’d Society determines the rewards offered for every type of human activity There is social consensus about the relative values of different occupations Everyone realizes the limits of his ambitions and strives for nothing more This limits the passions

35 Behavioral mechanisms/assumptions People are content when they get the socially appropriate (‘just’) rewards No one can be happy without limits Anomie is an unhappy condition Anomie  Suicide

36 Durkheim In sum Social crises erode consensus about appropriate expectations and rewards Without regulation, desires are infinite. Infinite desires produce misery. Misery  suicide

37 Effects of Regulation on Suicide Anomic and fatalistic suicide are at opposite poles of the regulation dimension. Too little regulation  anomic suicide Too much regulation  fatalistic suicide

38 Anomic Suicide: Summary of causal relations and mechanisms Macro-level cause: social crisis/lack of regulation Situational mechanism: Individuals have limitless desires Can only be limited by society Individual internal state: Anomie Behavioral mechanism: Anomie makes one miserable Individual behavior: suicide Transformational mechanism: aggregation Macro-level outcome: suicide rates

39 Anomic Suicide: Draw the theory Social crisis/lack of regulation Individual anomie Individual suicide Suicide rates

40 Suicide rates: an indicator of social disorder Two causes of suicide Social integration Egoistic suicide Altruistic suicide Social regulation Anomic suicide Fatalistic suicide

41 Egoistic suicideAltruistic suicide Fatalistic suicide Anomic suicide High incidence of suicide Social integration Social regulation A schematic view of Suicide High incidence of suicide

42 What can be done to increase social order? Marx/Engels say Private property  conflict; thus abolish private property Freud responds Aggressiveness was not created by property – it reigned without limit in primitive times Durkheim says Strengthen religion and common values (the conscience collective) Freud: social regulation  guilt Durkheim: social regulation  contentment

43 Alexis de Tocqueville

44 Tocqueville What is the connection between groups and other institutions such as government? Groups exist in societies with governments Do groups complement government or undermine it?

45 Tocqueville’s Democracy in America A French aristocrat visits the U. S. A. in the 1830’s Compares American democracy to European aristocracy Focuses on the role of voluntary associations Freedom of association restricted in aristocracies; believed to cause social disorder

46 Tocqueville Social isolation  despotism

47 In democracies To obtain political support, each person must lend his neighbors his cooperation People seek to attract the esteem and affection of those in the midst of whom they must live Self-interested action declines

48 If equality  individualism, then how to produce social order? When people are involved with trying to address local problems, they realize how interdependent they are.

49 Role of associations in combating individualism In aristocratic societies, individual nobles can accomplish great things because they can call on the aid of their dependents. In democratic societies, where all are roughly equal and weak, collective action is more problematic – and for that reason, more important. A principal basis for this collective action occurs in voluntary associations (321). If government replaces voluntary associations, then people will need to turn to government more.

50 Role of associations, cont’d When people are involved in voluntary associations, they learn to bend their will to the common good. This suggests that freedom of association contributes to order, rather than threatens it.

51 Tocqueville’s conclusion Americans learn how to be good citizens through their experience in political associations. Cf. Banfield on Montegrano Cf. Putnam on social capital

52 Tocqueville: Summary of causal relations and mechanisms Macro-level cause: voluntary associations Situational mechanism: learn to cooperate Individual internal state: enjoy cooperating Behavioral mechanism: act accordingly Individual action: cooperative behavior Transformational mechanism: aggregation Macro-level outcome: social order

53 Tocqueville: Draw the theory Voluntary associations Enjoy cooperating Cooperate Social order

54 Tocqueville How do we know if the theory has merit? Look at the empirical world E.g. Robert Putnam’s study of Italy (Making Democracy Work, 1994)

55 One way that groups affect individuals is by helping them internalize cooperative values. Another way that groups facilitate cooperation is through norms.

56 Norms Cultural phenomena that prescribe and proscribe behavior in specific circumstances Thus: external criteria for evaluation Unlike values, norms Require sanctioning if they are to be effective an external solution to the problem of social order

57 Norms: some examples Books of etiquette tell us how to behave at Weddings Funerals Baseball games Birthdays Classrooms When we are visitors to other countries

58 Violations have consequences Coach George O’Leary Historian Joseph Ellis These people are very good at their jobs -- but they lied Implication: there is a norm of truth- telling at American universities Sanctions are strong

59 How norms  order To the degree that people comply with prosocial norms Their behavior will be predictable They will act cooperatively

60 Where do norms come from?

61 Michael Hechter

62 Hechter: The Theory of Group Solidarity Addresses two questions Under what conditions do groups form? Under what conditions are existing groups more or less solidary (e.g. ordered)?

63 Group formation People form groups only when there is a net benefit The principal benefit of groups The concentration – or pooling – of individually- held resources, such as Security Insurance from natural disaster and disease Greater access to mates and information Resource pooling  specialization  greater efficiency of production (Smith)

64 Group formation (cont’d) People form groups to attain these private (=excludable) goods Either they cannot provide these goods at all via their own efforts Or they cannot provide them efficiently (e.g. at reasonable cost) Motive of group formation Access to jointly-produced goods

65 Group production These joint goods must be produced Members must comply with rules assuring production of joint goods Compliance with these rules is costly Members have an incentive to free ride Compliance is the principal cost of group formation

66 Insurance groups Group formation motivated by desire to insure against uncertainties of physical and economic security Friendly societies and fraternal organizations Mutual benefit associations Rotating credit associations

67 Group solidarity If members free ride, then few joint goods are produced Rationale for group formation to gain access to joint goods If too few joint goods are produced then group will dissolve Groups have varying levels of solidarity The greater the proportion of each member’s resources contributed to the group’s ends, the greater the solidarity

68 Solidarity increases when Members are dependent on the group for access to the good Dependence varies to the degree that Members value the joint good They cannot obtain it elsewhere Members are subject to control Monitored to detect if they contribute Sanctioned to punish them for not contributing, or rewarded for exceptional contribution

69 The theory of group solidarity Visibility of members Dependence of members Efficiency of Monitoring Efficiency of Sanctioning Extensiveness Extent of normative obligations Probability of compliance Group solidarity

70 How to overcome 2 nd order free rider problem? Group survival requires compliance with rules Don’t skip town with all the money Compliance requires control apparatus Control apparatus = a collective good Why will it be produced? People invest only if there is control Members have an incentive to enforce the rules (this protects their private goods) Conclusion: rational egoists establish control in small groups providing private goods

71 Summary  Solidarity is a positive function of  Members’ dependence on group  Group’s control (monitoring and sanctioning) capacity

72 Theory of group solidarity How do we know if the theory has merit? Look at the empirical world E.g. The Amish Witness E.g. Kibbutz versus Moshav (Schwartz 1954, Yale Law Journal)

73 Theory of group solidarity Hechter argues that when people are visible to each other, norms are more likely to be enforced But why do people want to enforce norms?

74 James S. Coleman

75 Coleman One possibility is that people want the resulting benefits E.g. When others cheat, the individual loses. If the individual can punish cheating, so that cheating declines, the individual is better off E.g. Smoking. When people realized that second- hand smoke caused health problems, they wanted smoking to be regulated

76 Coleman So, when behavior produces harms for others, those others have an interest in regulating it In turn, they are more likely to punish it

77 Coleman: Draw the theory Externality Norms Producing Behaviors RegulatoryPunish interestdeviance

78 Christine Horne

79 Horne But presumably, any individual would prefer to let others make the effort to sanction rather than bear the costs themselves Sanctioning can take time and energy. It can be embarrassing. It can result in retaliation. So, why sanction?

80 Horne People care about their relationships with others, and they care about how others treat them So, when they make decisions about reacting to deviance, they consider how their actions will be viewed by others They consider how others are likely to react Such reactions are called ‘metanorms’

81 Horne People are more likely to get support for sanctioning in tight-knit groups That is, metanorms are stronger in tight- knit groups

82 Horne Cohesive groups therefore have more norm enforcement than noncohesive groups E.g. fraternities

83 Horne: Draw the theory Group Norms Cohesion Interest in maintainingIndividuals relationships and evokingsanction & positive responsessupport others’ sanctioning efforts

84 Macy

85 Centola, Willer, and Macy This concern with social relations can lead people to punish behavior – even if the behavior produces no harm. E.g. fashion, music

86 If groups control their members, then group solidarity will be high. But how is order within a group connected to order in the larger society – especially when the society is diverse?

87 Hechter, Friedman, and Kanazawa: Attaining order in heterogeneous societies Chapter contrasts two explanations of social order Order via coercion Critique: need for legitimacy Order via values and norms Critique: if order is a product of common values and norms, how to explain order in societies with discrete subcultures, like the U.S.A?

88 Thesis The members of groups produce local order (e.g. solidarity) to satisfy their own private ends Once produced, local order contributes to the production of social order

89 Local order and social order States free-ride on the production of local order Local order contributes to global order, regardless of the norms of local groups A counterintuitive implication of this argument The more deviant the normative content of the local order, the greater its relative contribution to social order

90 Why deviant groups contribute more to social order All groups control members’ behavior (to variable degrees) Members are consumed by the demands of the group, and although the group explicitly intends to provide an alternative to mainstream norms, the fact that their members are compelled to satisfy corporate obligations limits their ability to engage in other, potentially antisocial, activities Members of deviant groups more likely to behave anti-socially than members of the Rotary Club Hence: there is a bigger payoff for regulating the behavior of deviant than straight individuals

91 The exception: counterproductive groups Exception This proposition is not true if this local order causes the state to expend its resources on control This occurs with the prevalence of counterproductive groups, which Require their members not to comply with at least some important social norms, e.g. Street gangs Separatist militias Terrorist cells (Al Qaeda, etc.) The more solidarity counterproductive groups have, the less the social order

92 Hechter, Friedman, & Kanazawa: Drawing the theory Solidarity & productivity of groups Costs for non-group members/ government Sanctioning by the state Social order

93 Sanctioning varies among deviant groups Sanctioning reserved for counterproductive groups Little sanctioning of deviant groups that are not counterproductive Example Hare Krishna and Rajneesh are both deviant groups Hare Krishna not sanctioned by the state Rajneesh sanctioned Conclusion: deviance of the group doesn’t explain differential sanctioning

94 Evidence Because the state has limited control capacity, it can only enforce the legal code selectively Differential treatment of the Saints vs. Roughnecks Tolerance of the Guardian Angels

95 American inner-city street gangs The most successful urban gangs regulate their members' behavior by punishing those who engage in random violence that is unsanctioned by the leadership Gangs who fail to keep their members from preying on the community are denied the community's safe haven and soon unravel (Jankowski)

96 State tolerance of vice The police are more likely to turn a blind eye to illegal activities of groups that contribute to global order (like gambling parlors in New York's Chinatown; prostitution everywhere) than those that threaten it (like crack- dealing gangs in Watts)

97 Conclusion Order in heterogeneous societies enhanced by the existence of large numbers of relatively small solidary groups unable to command control over resources that threaten the unique position of the state Social order is enhanced by the freedom of association, especially at the margins of society. The most efficacious way to produce global order is to strengthen the conditions for the production of local solidarity.


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