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Presentation on theme: "CHAPTER 4: SOCIAL STRUCTURE"— Presentation transcript:


2 LIFE IN SOCIETY Humans are social beings- we live and work in groups and interact in predictable ways. This structure helps people know what is expected of them in most social situations and what they can expect from others. It also ensures that the general nature of the society remains stable from one generation to the next.

Social Structure- the network of interrelated statuses and roles that guide human interaction. Status- a socially defined position in a group or society. Role- the behavior expected of someone occupying a particular status

4 STATUS Each individual in society occupies several statuses.
For example, an individual can be a teacher, father, husband, African American, and a church member all at the same time. Ascribed Status- assigned according to qualities beyond a person’s control Achieved Status- acquired through and individual’s efforts Master Status- can be ascribed or achieved. Refers to an overall image. Ex: student, occupation, parenthood, etc. A person’s master status can be achieved such as being a doctor or be ascribed such as being a woman.

5 ROLES You occupy a status, but you play a role.
Reciprocal Roles- corresponding roles that define the patterns of interaction between related statuses. Ex: Husband & Wife Role Expectations- socially determined behaviors expected of a person performing a role Role Performance- a person’s actual role behavior does not always match the behavior that is expected. The role of coaches and athletes are reciprocal in that they rely upon each other.

6 ROLES CONT. Role Set- different roles attached to a single status
Role Conflict- occurs when fulfilling the role expectations of one status makes it difficult to fulfill the role expectations of another status Role Strain- a person has difficulty meeting the role expectations of a single status Many working families face role conflict because the needs of their family and the requirements of work demand a great deal of time

7 SOCIAL INSTITUTIONS Social Institution- when statuses and roles are organized to satisfy one or more of the basic needs of society The basic needs of society include providing physical and emotional support, transmitting knowledge, producing goods and services, and maintaining social control Marti

When you play a role, most of the time you have to interact with others. These are the 5 types of interaction that take place in societies throughout the world. Exchange Competition Conflict Cooperation Accommodation

9 Couples in relationships often have interactions based on exchange
Exchange- whenever people interact in an effort to receive a reward or return for their actions Reciprocity- the idea that if you do something for someone, that person owes you something in return Exchange Theory- Belief that people are motivated by self-interest in their interactions with other people Couples in relationships often have interactions based on exchange

10 COMPETITION Competition- occurs when two or more people or groups oppose each other to achieve a goal that only one can attain Common feature of Western societies Some scholars consider it to be the cornerstone of the capitalist economic system and the democratic form of government

11 CONFLICT Conflict- the deliberate attempt to control a person by force, to oppose someone, or to harm another person Four sources of conflict Wars Disagreements within groups Legal disputes Clashes over ideology

12 COOPERATION Cooperation- occurs when two or more people or groups work together to achieve a goal that will benefit more than one person Cooperation is often used along with other forms of interaction For example, individuals who go out for a team sport often compete with one another to make the varsity team. By using cooperation members of a group can work together to complete a goal that might have been unobtainable by an individual

13 ACCOMMODATION Accommodation- state of balance between cooperation and conflict Compromise- occurs when two parties both give up something to come to a mutual agreement The United Nations is a global organization that tries to solve world problems through cooperation and compromise

14 TYPES OF SOCIETIES Group- a set of people who interact on the basis of shared expectations and who possess some degree of common identity The largest and most complex groups that are studied by sociologists are societies Subsistence Strategies- the way a society uses technology to provide for the needs of its members

Preindustrial Society- food production which is carried out through the use of human and animal labor is the main economic activity Hunting and Gathering Societies- The main form of food production is the daily collection of wild plants and the hunting of wild animals Pastoral Society- rely on domesticated herd animals to meet their food needs Division of Labor- the specialization by individuals or groups in performance

Horticultural Society- fruits and vegetables are grown in a garden to provide the main source of food Agricultural Society- animals are used to pull plows to till the fields. This allows agriculturalists to plant more crops than is possible when only human labor is used Barter- the exchange of a good or service

17 INDUSTRIAL SOCIETIES Industrial Societies- emphasis shifts from the production of food to the production of manufactured goods Urbanization- the concentration of the population is located in cities With the development of machines, production moves from the home to the factory Industrial societies use machines to increase productivity which leads to a larger society and a greater division of labor

Postindustrial Society- much of the economy is involved in providing information and services In the United States: 73% Information & Services 25% Production of Goods 2% Agriculture

Mechanical Solidarity- when people share the same values and perform the same tasks, they become united in a common whole Organic Solidarity- individuals can no longer provide for all of their own needs

20 GROUPS WITHIN SOCIETY Society is not only a group; it is a group made up of other smaller groups 4 Features of a Group: Consist of 2 or more people Interaction among members Members have shared expectations Members possess some sense of common identity This group of sailors have a shared identity as part of a military unit

21 WHAT IS A GROUP? Aggregate- when people gather in the same place at the same time, but lack organization Ex: Passengers on a plane Social Category- classifying people according to a shared trait or a common status. Ex: Students, women, left-handed people, teenagers

22 WHAT IS A GROUP? Dyad- smallest group possible, a group with 2 members
Triad- a 3 person group Small Group- a group with few enough members that everyone is able to interact face-to-face Formal Group- structure, goals, and activities are clearly defined Informal Group- no official structure or established rules of conduct Student governments in a school is an example of a formal group

23 TYPES OF GROUPS Primary Group- small group of people who interact over a relatively long period of time Secondary Group- group in which interaction is impersonal and temporary in nature In-group- the group that a person belongs to and identifies with Out-group- any group that a person does not belong to or identify with Sports fans who support a specific team or player often form in-groups. They view fans of other teams as out-groups.

24 TYPES OF GROUPS CONT. E-Community- people interact with one another regularly on the Internet Social Network- the web of relationships that is formed by the sum total of a person’s interactions with other people Unlike groups, social networks do not give rise to a common sense of identity. Knowing the “right” person can mean the difference between getting or not getting a job

25 GROUP FUNCTIONS Leaders- people who influence the attitudes and opinions of others Instrumental Leaders- task oriented; find specific means that will help the group reach its goals Expressive Leaders- emotion oriented; find ways to keep the group together and to maintain morale

Formal Organization- large, complex group that has been established to achieve specific goals Bureaucracy- ranked authority structure that operates according to specific rules and procedures Rationality- subjecting every feature of human behavior to calculation, measurement, and control Bureaucracies serve important functions such as establishing proper rules and regulations

German sociologist Max Weber developed a theoretical model of bureaucracies that is still widely used today Division of Labor Ranking of Authority Employment based on formal qualifications Rules and Regulations Specific lines of promotion and advancement


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