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Unformatted text preview: CHAPTER 4 MACROSOCIOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVE: Social Structure How does Social Structure influence our behavior? MACROSOCIOLOGY : analysis of social life that focuses on broad features of society, such as social class and the relationships of groups to one another; usually used by functionalists and conflict theorists. Sociologists who use this approach analyze such things as social class and how groups are related to each other. The term social structure refers to the social envelope that surrounds us and establishes limits on our behavior. Social structure consists of culture , social statuses, roles , groups , and social institutions . Together, these serve as foundations for how we view the world. Our location in the social structure underlies our perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors. Culture lays the broadest frame- work, while social class divides people according to income education and occupational prestige. Each of us receives ascribed statuses at birth; later we add achieved statuses . Our behaviors and orientations are further influenced by the roles we play, the groups to which we belong, and our experiences with social institutions. Theses components of society work together to help maintain social order. Social Structure tends to override personal feelings and desires. -People learn their behaviors and attitudes because of their location in the social structure, and act accordingly. The differences in behavior and attitudes are due not to biology, (race, sex, or any other supposed genetic factors) but to peoples location in the social structure. Social Structure: the framework that surrounds us, consisting of the relationships of people and groups to one another, which gives direction to and sets limits on us and guides our behavior. The different components of social structure are culture, social class, social status, roles groups, and social institutions. Social Class: According to Weber, a large group pf people who rank close to one another in wealth power and prestige. According to Marx, one of two groups: capitalists who own the means of production or workers who sell their labor. Social class is based on income, education, and occupational prestige. Status : The position that someone occupies in a society or in a social group---Each status provides guidelines for how we are to act and feel. Like other aspects of social structure, statuses set limits on what we can and cannot do. Because social statuses are an essential part of the social structure, they are found in all human groups. When statuses mesh well we know what to expect of people---helping social interaction to go smoothly. Status Set: All the statuses or positions that an individual occupies. Status set changes as particular statuses change Ascribed Status: Positions that an individual either inherits at birth or receives involuntarily later in life. Achieved Status: Positions that are earned, accomplished, or involve at least some effort or activity on the individuals part. activity on the individuals part....
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- Fall '08