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Social Groups.

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Presentation on theme: "Social Groups."— Presentation transcript:

1 Social Groups

2 Groups People who think of themselves as belonging together and who interact with one another Provide intimate relationships and a sense of belonging Groups are not to be confused with: Aggregate- a number of people who happen to be in one place but don’t interact Shoppers standing in line Category- people who share similar characteristics but don’t interact with one another or consider each others interest All people who wear glasses

3 Primary Groups Groups that are characterized by cooperative, intimate, long-term face- to-face relationships Family and friends Meets the basic need of humans to have a sense of belonging and the feeling of being appreciated The values and attitudes of the primary group become fused into our identity Continue to influence how we see the world

4 Secondary Group Larger, more anonymous, more formal and more impersonal than primary groups Based on some interest of activity American Sociological Association, Democratic Party, etc. Members are likely to interact on the basis of specific roles: president, manager, worker, student Secondary groups tend to break down into primary groups: cliques at school or work

5 Voluntary Associations
Voluntary associations are secondary groups made up of volunteers who have organized on the basis of some mutual interest Boy Scouts for example Inner circle- key members in the association Iron law of oligarchy- the tendency of the inner core to dominate the organization by become elites

6 In-groups and Out-groups
In-Groups: groups toward which individuals feel loyalty provide a sense of belonging Out-Group: those toward which the feel antagonism Help to reinforce the loyalty of members in the in-group “US” vs. “THEM” According to Robert K. Merton, the behaviors of an in-group’s members are seen as virtues, while the same behaviors by members of an out-group are viewed as vices

7 Reference Groups Groups we use as standards to evaluate ourselves, whether or not we actually belong to those groups Family, neighbors, teachers, classmates, co-workers, members of your church Can be a group you don’t belong to- college students Exert great influence over behavior- clothing, hairstyles, speech, etc.

8 Social Networks Consist of people who are linked by various social ties Cliques for example Our interactions within social networks connect us to the larger society Think Facebook-everyone you know, everyone they know, and so on. Tend to perpetuate social inequality in which whom you know might be more important that what you know Good old boy network

9 Group Dynamics How individuals affect groups and how groups affect individuals Size of the group is significant Dyad- 2 ppl smallest most fragile of all human groupings Triad- 3 ppl bond between 2 of the members is stronger, someone left out As more members are added stability increases but intimacy decreases

10 Effects of Group Size on Behavior
As it grows there is a diffusion of responsibility Think about group work, the more people in the group the less you actually have to do As it grows, the group loses it sense of intimacy Group becomes more formal As it grows, group tends to divide into smaller groups cliques

11 Groups and Behavior Groups generally reward members who conform to their norms Group opinions strongly influence individual behavior and judgment toward that of the group.

12 Group Leaders People who influence the behavior, opinions, or attitudes of others Who becomes a leader? People who are perceived by group members as strongly representing their values or as able to lead a group out of a crisis

13 Types of leaders 2 types of leaders: 3 types of leadership styles:
Instrumental (task-oriented)- try to keep the group moving toward its goal Expressive (socioemotional) those who are less likely to be recognized as leaders but help with the group’s morale 3 types of leadership styles: Authoritarian leaders- those who give orders and don’t explain why they praise or condemn a person’s work Democratic leaders- those who try and gain a consensus by explaining proposed actions, suggesting alternative approaches and giving facts as the basis for evaluation Laissez-faire leaders- those who are passive and give the group almost total freedom to do as they wish

14 Group decision making v. individual decision making
Group decision making is slower but tend to be more accurate People in groups are more willing to make riskier decisions

15 Peer Pressure A study by Dr. Soloman Asch indicated that people are greatly influenced by peer pressure The group is so powerful that most people are willing to say things that they know are not true just to go along

16 Power of Authority Groupthink- coined by Irving Janis to refer to the collective tunnel vision that group members sometimes develop As they begin to think alike, they become convinced that there is only one “right” viewpoint and a single course of action Comes with great consequences Post 9/11 and Guantanamo Bay

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