Collective Behavior

Collective Behavior - together in large crowds . People in...

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Collective Behavior Appelbaum and Chambliss (1997:422) define collective behavior as a voluntary, goal- oriented action that occurs in a relatively disorganized situation, in which society's predominant social norms and values cease to govern individual behavior . Collective behavior consists of a groups reaction to some situation. The study of collective behavior is especially concerned with the behavior of people in crowds (Appelbaum and Chambliss, 1997:423). A. Crowds Crowds are temporary gatherings of closely interacting people with a common focus . People in crowds are prone to being swept up in group emotions and loose their ability to make rational decisions. The group-mind is viewed as irrational and dangerous. Theories of Collective Behavior A. Contagion Theories Contagion theories argue that human beings revert to herd-like behavior when they get
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Unformatted text preview: together in large crowds . People in crowds mill about, like a group of animals, stimulating and goading one another into movement (Appelbaum and Chambliss, 1997:423). The acts of individuals are copied by other individuals. A skilled leader can manipulate crowds. B. Emergent-Norm Theories Emergent-norm theories suggest that it is values and norms , and not unconscious process, that prompt groups of people to act in unison . Emergent-norm theories argue that even in seemingly chaotic crowd behavior, norms emerge that explains a crowd’s actions . While it may appear to an observer that the group is acting in a single purpose, the individuals within the crowd may have differing reasons for taking part...
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This note was uploaded on 11/09/2011 for the course SCIE SYG2000 taught by Professor Bernhardt during the Fall '10 term at Broward College.

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