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What is Social Structure

What is Social Structure - The micro-level refers to social...

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What is Social Structure? Social structure refers to patterns around which society is organized. Henslin (1999:96) defines social structure as "the framework of society that was already laid out before you were born." Social mobility is often achieved by routes provided by the social structure. In a bureaucracy, the patterns are well defined (in the army one moves up in rank). There are micro aspects of social structure such as statuses and roles. Larger social structures include groups and institutions (e.g., government, education, religion). Still larger are more obscure structures, (like those related to the economy). Often, ordinary people are not even aware of their existence. These obscure structures none-the-less have great impact on the character of society overall. Macro vs. Micro Approaches to Sociology
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Unformatted text preview: The micro-level refers to social relations that involve direct social interaction with others including families, friends, and coworkers. Symbolic Interactionist Theory explore microsociological issues. • An example would be Liebow and Anderson's study of how street corner men in Washington coped with life on a day-to-day basis. The macro-level refers to the larger, more invisible, and often more remote social processes that help to shape the micro world. Macro processes include political, economic, cultural, and other institutional social forces (Appelbaum and Chambliss, 1997:6). Functionalists and Conflict Theory are the domain of macro-level studies. • Karl Marx's concern with social class is an example of macro sociology...
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