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Chapter 17: Collective Behavior, Social Movements, and Social Change.

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1 Chapter 17: Collective Behavior, Social Movements, and Social Change

2 Objectives (slide 1 of 2) 17.1 Collective Behavior Define collective behavior and explain its challenges to sociologists. Compare and contrast types of collectivity. Examine examples of mass behavior Social Movements Illustrate the various types of social movements Stages of Social Movements Describe the stages of a social movement.

3 Objectives (slide 2 of 2) 17.4 Social Movements in the United States Analyze key social movements in the United States Theories of Social Movements Explain the main theories of social movements Social Change Illustrate theories of social change.

4 Collective Behavior Collective behavior: Behaviors involving a large number of individuals that are usually unplanned, often controversial, and sometimes even dangerous Collectivity: A large number of individuals whose minimal interaction occurs without the benefit of conventional norms – Localized collectivities emerge among people who share close physical proximity. – Dispersed collectivities involve people who influence one another even though they are spread over a large area.

5 How Collectivities Differ from Social Groups Collectivities Members have only minimal interaction other individuals in the collectivity. No clear social boundaries. Characterized by the emergence of weak and often unconventional social norms that are insufficient to regulate the actions of individuals. Social Groups Individual members have considerable interaction with one another. Members share a sense of identity. Characterized by strong norms and have the goal of regulating the behavior of members of the group.

6 Localized Collectivities Crowd: A temporary gathering of people who share a common focus of attention and who influence one another Types of crowds: – Casual – Conventional – Expressive – Acting – Protest

7 Riots and Mobs Mob: A highly emotional crowd that pursues a destructive or violent goal Riot: An eruption of social activity that is highly emotional, undirected, and violent

8 Theories of Crowd Behavior Contagion theory argues that crowds have a hypnotic effect on their members, causing people to act in ways they would not ordinarily act. Convergence theories argue that crowd behavior comes from like-minded individuals. Emergent norm theory states that it is possible to observe patterns that help predict the behaviors of individuals within the collective.

9 Dispersed Collectivities: Rumors Rumors: Unconfirmed information that people spread, often by word-of-mouth Characteristics of rumors: – They occur in situations in which there are large degrees of uncertainty and in which facts are difficult to authenticate. – They are unstable and change frequently. – They are difficult to stop. Gossip: Rumors about the personal affairs of a person

10 Propaganda and Public Opinion Public opinion: Widespread attitudes or beliefs about a particular issue Propaganda: Information that is given with the intention of influencing public opinion through: – Facts or evidence – Emotions – Authority

11 Fads and Fashions Fashion: A social pattern that is adopted or followed by a large number of people Conspicuous consumption: Spending money on things that advertise status and prestige Fad: A unique or unconventional social pattern that is adopted briefly and enthusiastically by members of a social group or society

12 Other Collective Behaviors Panic and Mass Hysteria Panic: A form of collective behavior in which people react to a perceived threat in a frantic and irrational way Moral panic (mass hysteria): A form of dispersed collective behavior in which people react to a perceived threatening event with an irrational fear Disasters Disaster: An event that causes extensive harm to people and property Types of disasters: – Natural disasters – Technological disasters – Intentional disasters

13 Social Movements Social movement: Any organized activity that encourages or discourages social change The cultural variety that accompanies industrial and postindustrial societies makes social conflict more likely.

14 Types of Social Movements Alternative social movement: A social movement that seeks to change only very limited aspects of society Redemptive social movement: A social movement that seeks radical change for a specific, targeted group of people Reformative social movement: A social movement that targets a broad group of people but whose changes are limited in scope Revolutionary social movement: A social movement that seeks radical change of an entire society – Progressive movements promote new social patterns – Reactionary movements oppose movements that seek change

15 Why Do People Join Social Movements? Sociologists have identified four main reasons people join social movements: – Personal advantage – Principled commitment – Sense of self-identity – Desire to be part of a group Claims making: The process of trying to convince people that the cause of a social movement is important

16 Stages of Social Movements Emergence: The tendency for social movements to form to address a perceived social problem Coalescence: A stage of social movements in which the social movement begins to mobilize resources to achieve its goal Bureaucratization: The tendency for a social movement to adopt the characteristics of a bureaucratic organization to achieve its goals Decline: The tendency for all social movements to fade in power and significance

17 The American Civil Rights Movement The American civil rights movement: – Fought to end racial discrimination through litigation, education, and lobbying efforts – Was centered around peaceful, but forceful, motivation

18 The Women’s Movement The women’s movement: – A series of movements occurring over many years that have been committed to achieving equal rights for women. – Three phases: Phase 1: Concerned with the basic rights of women. Phase 2: Focused on issues of sexuality, family, and the workplace. Phase 3: Evolved to criticize social definitions of what it means to be a woman.

19 The Environmental Movement The Environmental movement has had two main goals: – Conservation – The creation of social policies that will lead to environmental sustainability

20 The Gay Rights Movement The gay rights movement: – The goal of achieving acceptance and equal rights for people of all sexual orientations and sexualities – Works through the media and the legal system

21 The Occupy Wall Street Movement The Occupy Wall Street movement: – Attempted to raise awareness of growing income inequality and corporate influence – Relied on consensus-based decisions made in large assemblies – Did not have clear-cut goals

22 The Tea Party Movement The Tea Party movement: – Arose in protest of increasing government intervention in the lives of citizens – Articulated a clear set of demands from its inception – Has remained politically relevant at state and local levels

23 Mass Society Theory Mass society theory: A theory that suggests that people join social movements because it gives them a sense of belonging to something larger than themselves

24 Deprivation Theory Deprivation theory: A theory that states people join social movements because they feel deprived in some way – Relative deprivation: The feeling of dissatisfaction upon realizing that while conditions are improving, they are improving more for other people than for you

25 Resource Mobilization Theory Resource mobilization theory: A theory that suggests that for a social movement to be successful, it has to accumulate and mobilize substantial resources Political process theory: A theory of social movements that emphasizes the role of the political structure and public opinion in the outcomes of social movements

26 Culture Theory Culture theory: A theory that argues that cultural symbols are important for the development of a social movement

27 New Social Movement Theory New social movement theory: A theory that suggests that social movements in postindustrial societies are substantially different from social movements that occurred in industrial societies

28 Marxist Theory Marxist theory: A theory of social movements that suggests that societies change through a dialectical process

29 Categories of Social Change: Natural Cycles Natural cycle theories attempt to explain the rise and fall of entire civilizations. – Every civilization faces challenges. – Groups within a society develop solutions that often conflict with the ruling class. – The ruling elite eventually turns to force to keep the masses under control. – The resultant fracturing of society leads to the inevitable decline of the empire.

30 Evolutionary Theories Evolutionary theories suggest that societies develop from lower forms to higher forms. – All societies go through phases of cultural progress. – As they develop, cultures become more complex.

31 Conflict Over Power Conflict-over-power approaches are based in the dialectic of Karl Marx. – Antitheses are conflicts over who gains or maintains power in society. – Between societies, conflicts over power often occur in violent clashes or as indirect competition.

32 Technology Technology changes society through three main processes: – Invention: The combining of existing materials to form new ones – Discovery: A new way of seeing reality – Diffusion: The spread of discovery or invention from one area to another


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