DOING Sociological research table 5.3 Demographics of Internet Users It is too early to know the implications of these cyberspace interactions. Some
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2.    What was Durkheim's point central to sociological analysis? Explain


3.    What are social institutions? What needs do they meet for society? Explain according to functionalists.


4.    What do conflict theorists say about social institutions?


5.    What is Social Structure? Explain


6.    What holds society together? Explain


7.    Discuss Durkheim theory of mechanical and organic solidarity.


8.    What are the different types of societies? Describe and define.

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DOING Sociological research table 5.3 Demographics of Internet Users It is too early to know the implications of these cyberspace interactions. Some think it will make social Following is the percentage of each group who use the The Prisoner's Dilemma Game un an experiment to examine these life more alienating, with people developing weaker Internet according to a 2012 survey. different potential outcomes? social skills and less ability for successful face-to-face Research Method: The "prisoner's outcomes, One possibility is that neither Conclusions and Implications: What Total Adults interaction. Some studies have noted that people can dilemma" is a classic "trade-off" game in confesses to the crime. This represents a real-life situations represent situations develop extremely close and in-depth relationships Men the study of social interaction. Different cooperative alternative for each person. 81% like the prisoner's dilemma. What as a result of their interaction in cyberspace (Hargittai varieties of it are often used in sociological They cooperate with each other and about arguments with your brother or Women 81%% 2008). The Internet also creates more opportunity for studies of social interaction. The dilemma reject the deals offered by the police. If sister when you were growing up? Here is Race/Ethnicity people to misrepresent themselves or even create com- arises in a story about two criminals, this happens, both will get only a light pletely false-o a good one: What if both you and a friend entities. But studies whom we will call Bart and Mack. They are prison sentence. have cheated on a final exam? Should White, non-Hispanic 83% find that computer-mediated interactions also follow arrested on suspicion of having commit- Another possibility is that one person you "tell on" him or her to the instructor? Black, non-Hispanic some of the same patterns that are found in face-to-face ted armed robbery. They are found by the will confess (the competitive alternative) 74% Should your friend tell on you? interaction. People still "manage" identities in front of a police to be carrying concealed weapons, while the other will not (the cooperative Hispanic (English-speaking) Questions to Consider 73% presumed audience; they project images of self to oth- but they do not have enough evidence to alternative). If Bart confesses and ers that are consistent with the identity they have cre- Age link them to the robbery. Accordingly, the Mack does not, then the police will let Do you think that the results would ated for themselves, and they form social networks that be the same, or different, if both police question them separately. Both Bart go free as a reward for testimony 18-29 95% become the source for evolving identities, just as people of the subjects in the prisoner's di- men are invited to confess to the crime against Mack, who will get a long prison do in traditional forms of social inter 30-49 89% and hence betray each other. sentence. The outcomes are reversed if lemma experiment were of opposite In this respect, cyberspace interaction is an appli- Bart does not confess and Mack does. gender instead of the same gender? 50-64 Speculate about it. 77% cation of Goffman's principle of impression manage- Research Question: What happens to The last possible result is that both ment. The person can put forward a totally different either of them depends upon how each 2. What if they were of the same 65+ 52% reacts. How do real people react if put in confess. In this case, both receive and wholly created self, or identity. One can "give off," gender but of different races-one moderate prison terms. The "dilemma" Household Income in Goffman's terms, any impression one wishes and, at this prisoner's dilemma situation? Black, one White? Speculate. is thus whether to confess and betray the same time, know that one's true self is protected by Source: Baumeister, Roy F. and Brad J. Bushman. Less than $30,000 per year Research Results: This is a hypothetical your partner, or hold out (not confess) 68% 2008. Social Psychology and Human Nature anonymity. This gives the individual quite a large and exercise with different potential and cooperate with him. How might you Belmont, CA: Thompson/Wadsworth. $30,000 to $49,999 86% free range of roles and identities from which to choose As predicted by symbolic interaction theory, of which $50,000 to $74,999 95% Goffman's is one variety, the reality of the situation grows $75,000+ 97% out of the interaction process itself. This is a central point non-zero sum. We thus see that the "game of love" is thousands of people). Cyberspace interaction is becom- of symbolic interaction theory and is central to socio- indeed a game, whether zero-sum or non-zero sum. ng increasingly common among all age, gender, and Educational Attainment logical analysis generally: Interaction creates reality. race groups, although clear patterns are also present in Less than high school 47% Cyberspace interaction has thus resulted in new INTERACTION IN CYBERSPACE who is engaged in this form of social interaction and how forms of social interaction in society-in fact, a new social people use it (Hargittai 2008; see Table 5.3). Women, for High school 72% order containing both deviants and conformists. These When people interact and communicate with one example, used to lag behind men in Internet usage but Some college 90% new forms of social interaction have their own rules and another by means of personal computers-through have now caught up. Internet usage is also related to race norms, their own language, their own sets of beliefs, and some virtual community such as email, Twitter, Face- (Whites have the most usage but not by a large margin); College+ 96% practices or rituals-in short, all the elements of culture, book, Linkedin, and the like or other computer-to- age (youngest use it most); annual earnings (those with Source: The Pew Internet and American Life Project as defined in Chapter 2. For sociologists, cyberspace computer interactions-then they are engaging in highest earnings use it most); education (more educa- August-September, 2012. http://pewinternet.com/ also provides an intriguing new venue in which to study cyberspace interaction (or virtual interaction). tion means more usage); and location of residence being the connection between society and social interaction. The character of cyberspace interaction is chang- urban, suburban, or rural (rural residents use it the least). ing rapidly as new technologies emerge. Not long ago, Although women and men are roughly the same over- nonverbal interaction was absent in cyberspace as peo- all in Internet usage (see Table 5.3), gender differences can ple could not "see" what others were like. But with the still be found in the type of usage. Women are more likely introduction of video-based cyberspace, such as photos to use email to write to friends and family, share news, plan chapter summary on Facebook and MySpace, and Skype, people can now events, and forward jokes. And women are more likely to display still and moving images of themselves. These report that email nurtures their relationships. Men, on What is society? the other hand, use the Internet more to transact busi- Society is a system of social interaction that includes both together, depending on overall type, by mechanical images provide new opportunities, as we noted previ- ously, for what sociologists would call the presentation ness, and they look for a wider array of information than culture and social organization. Society includes social solidarity (based on individual similarity) and organic solidarity (based on a division of labor among dissimi- of self and impressi management. Sometimes this women do. Men are also more likely to use the Internet for institutions, or established organized social behavior, comes with embarrassing consequences. The young col- hobbies, including such things as sports fantasy leagues, and exists for a recognized purpose; social structure is lar individuals). Two other forms of social organization also contribute to the cohesion of a society: gemein- lege student who displays a seminude or nude photo of downloading music, and listening to radio. Men more the patterned relationships within a society schaft ("community," characterized by cohesion based herself or himself, projecting a sexual presentation of than women in the age 18 to 24 range tend to use social on friendships and loyalties) and gesellschaft ("society," self, may be horrified if one of the parents or a poten- networking sites to make new friends and to flirt, whereas What holds society together? tial employer visits the Facebook site! Furthermore, the women in this age range are somewhat more likely to use According to theorist Emile Durkheim, society with characterized by cohesion based on complexity and photo could be intercepted by a disgruntled boyfriend, it to stay in touch with friends that they already have (Pew all its complex social organization and culture, is held differentiation). reproduced, and made to "go viral" (seen by hundreds or Internet and American Life Project 2012). SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 119 120 > CHAPTER 5

DOING Sociological research what WOULD A sociologist say? Doing Hair, Doing Class though they never see them outside the salon, also reduces status differences. The Congress and Game Theory given interchange constitute a zero- Research Question: Sociologist Debra bringing the latest fashion and technique Conclusions and Implications: Gimlin sum game, or a non-zero sum game? A simlin was curious about a common site to clients. Beauticians are also expected Members of the U. S. Congress often that such debates inevitably involve concludes that beauty ideals are shaped bitterly debate issues-such as the in- zero-sum game would be exemplified for social interaction-hair salons. She to engage in some "emotion work"-that game-like trade-offs between members in this society by an awareness of social tense budget debates in both the House by, say, the Republican Speaker of the noticed that the interaction that occurs is, they are expected to nurture clients of Congress. A sociologist might thus location and cultural distinctions. As she and the Senate immediately following House promising to deliver 15 votes in hair salons is often marked by differ- and be interested in their lives; often use some form of social exchange theo- says, "Beauty is ... one tool women use the election of President Obama at the "for" issue X if his "opponent" (say, the ences in the social class status of clients they are put in the position of sacrific- as they make claims to particular social ry, or game theory, to analyze such acri- end of 2012. Sociologists have noted Democratic Minority Leader) agreed to and stylists. Her research question was: ing their professional expertise to meet monious verbal exchanges. Does such a statuses" (1996: 525) "give up" 15 votes. How do women attempt to cultivate clients' wishes. the cultural ideals of beauty, and in According to Gimlin, because stylists Questions to Consider particular, how is this achieved through typically have lower class status than The next time you get your hair cut, you giving a talk before a class and then suddenly forgot the interaction between hair stylists and their clients, this in might observe the social interaction the rest of the talk. Or perhaps you recently bent over someone out for a date and the person says yes, you their clients? ationship that stylists around you and ask how class, gender, and split your pants. Or perhaps you are a man and have gained a reward, and you are likely to repeat the negotiate carefully in their routine social and race shape interaction in the salon barged accidentally into a women's bathroom. All interaction. You are likely to ask the person out again, Research Method: She did her research interaction. Hairdressers emphasize their or barbershop that you use. Try to get by spending more than 200 hours ob- these actions will result in embarrassment, causing or to ask someone else out. If you ask someone out, and special knowledge of beauty and taste as someone in class to collaborate with you you to "lose face." he or she glares at you and says, "No kind of way!," then serving social interaction in a hair salon. a way of reducing the status differences so that you can compare observations She watched the interaction between You will then attempt to restore face ("save face"), you have elicited a punishment that will probably cause between themselves and their clients. in different salon settings. In doing so. that is, eliminate the conditions causing the embarrass- you to shy away from repeating this type of interaction clients and stylists and conducted with that person. In this way, they manage the impres- you will be studying how gender, race, ews with the owner, the staff, and ment. You thus will attempt to con others into perceiving their clients are thought to have- and class shape social interaction in twenty women customers. During the you as they might have before the embarrassing inci- Social exchange theory has grown partly out of They also try to nullify the existing class everyday life. dent. One way to do this is to shift blame from the self to game theory, a mathematic and economic theory course of her fieldwork, she recorded hierarchy by conceiving an alternative that predicts that human interaction has the charac- her observations of the conversations 1. Would you expect the same some other, for example, claiming in the first example hierarchy, not one based on education, and interaction in the salon, frequently dynamic in a salon where men are that the teacher did not give you time to adequately teristics of a "game," namely, strategies, winners and income, or occupation but only on the losers, rewards and punishments, and profits and costs asking questions of pa the stylists? memorize the talk; or in the second example, claim- ability to style hair competently, Thus The patrons were mostly middle and 2. Do Gimlin's findings hold in settings ing that you will never buy that particular, obviously (Stevens 2011; Kuhn and Nasar 2002; Wright 2000). stylists describe clients as perhaps Simply asking someone out for a date indeed has a upper-middle class, the stylists, working where the customers and stylists inferior brand of pants again; or in the third example, "having a ton of money," but unable to claiming that the sign saying "Women's Room" was not gamelike aspect to it, and you will probably use some class. All the stylists were White, as were are not White or where they are all do their hair or know what looks best kind of strategy to "win" (have the other agree to go out most of the clients working class? clearly visible. All these represent deliberate manipu- on them. Stylists become confidantes 3. In your opinion, would Gimlin's find- lations (cons) to save face on your part-to restore the with you) and "get rewarded" (have a pleasant or fun Research Results: "Beauty work" as with clients, who often tell them highly other's prior perception of you. time) at minimal "cost" to you (you don't want to spend ings hold in an African American a large amount of money on the date or you do not Girlin calls it, involves the stylist bridging personal information about their lives- men's barbershop? the gap between those who seek beauty another attempt at impression manage- want to get into an unpleasant argument on the date) Source: Gimlin, Debra. 1996. "Pamela's Place and those who define it; her (or his) role ment. Appearing to create personal The interesting thing about game theory is that it sees Power and Negotiation in the Hair Salon." Social Exchange and Game Theory Another way of analyzing social interaction is through human interaction as just that: a game. is to be the expert in beauty culture, relationships with their clients, even Gender & Society 10 (October): 505-526 the social exchange model (see Table 5.2). The social If in a given interchange between persons A and exchange model of social interaction holds that our B the amount of reward to person A is exactly equal to interactions are determined by the rewards or pun- the amount of loss to person B, then it is called a zero- show off their grades, but they did not want to appear sum game (reward plus loss will equal zero). A simple impression management reveals that we try to con the ishments that we receive from others (Cook and example would be person A receiving a $1,000 gift from other into perceiving us as we want to be perceived. to be braggarts, so they casually or "accidentally" let Gervasi 2006; Wright 2000). A fundamental principle person B-the reward to person A is the same amount The box "Doing Sociological Research: Doing Hair, others see their papers, such as by dropping them of exchange theory is that an interaction that elic- on the floor, face up. In contrast, the bombers hid or its approval from another (a type of reward) is more as the loss to person B. To take another example, the Doing Class" shows how impression management can covered their papers to hide their poor grades, said likely to be repeated than an interaction that incites game of poker is a zero-sum game: Person A's winnings be involved in many settings, including the everyday they "didn't care" what they got, or simply lied about disapproval (a type of punishment). According to the exactly equal B's losses. This applies even if there are world of the hair salon. more than one "person Bs." A study by Albas and Albas (1988) demon- their grades. exchange principle, one can predict whether a given If on the other hand the amounts of reward and strates just how pervasive impression management One thing that Goffman's theory makes clear is interaction is likely to be repeated or continued by cal- that social interaction is a very perilous undertaking. culating the degree of reward or punishment inspired punishment for persons A and B are unequal, then it is is in social interaction. The Albases studied how Have you ever been embarrassed? Of course you have; by the interaction. a non-zero sum game (amount of reward plus amount college students interacted with one another when we all have. Think of a really big embarrassment that Rewards can take many forms. They can include of loss # zero). If you, a male, ask a woman out for a the instructor returned graded papers during class. Some students got good grades ("aces"), others got you experienced. Goffman defines embarra issment tangible gains such as gifts, recognition, and money, date and she accepts, this is reward for you. But if she as a spontaneous reaction to a sudden or transitory or subtle everyday rewards such as smiles, nods, and rejects your offer, this is punishment for you and either poor grades ("bombers"), but both employed a vari- ety of devices (cons) to maintain or give off a favor- challenge to our identity: We attempt to restore a prior pats on the back. Similarly, punishments come in many a neutral or even a reward for her! Hence what you get able impression. For example, the aces wanted to perception of our "self" by others. Perhaps you were varieties, from extremes such as public humiliation, (punishment) and what she gets (neutrality or reward) beating, banishment, or execution, to gestures as subtle do not sum to zero-unless of course she attains a as a raised eyebrow or a frown. For example, if you ask hefty amount of glee from rejecting you, in which case SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 117 it would then indeed be zero-sum! Otherwise, it is 118 > CHAPTER 5

What are the types of societies? What theories are there about social interaction? Societies across the globe vary in type, as determined Social interaction takes place in society within the mainly by the complexity of their social structures, their context of social structure and social institutions. division of labor, and their technologies. From least to Social interaction is analyzed in several ways, include most complex, they are foraging pastoral, horticultural, ing the social construction of reality (we impose agricultural (these four constitute preindustrial societ- meaning and reality on our interactions with others); ies), industrial, and postindustrial societies. ethnomethodology (deliberate interruption of interac- tion to observe how a return to "normal" interaction What are the forms of social interaction in society? is accomplished); impression management (a person All forms of social interaction in society are shaped "gives off" a particular impression to "con" the other by the structure of its social institutions. A group is and achieve certain goals, as in cyberspace interac- a collection of individuals who interact and commu- nicate with each other, share goals and norms, and tion); and social exchange and game theory (one engages in gamelike reward and punishment interac- have a subjective awareness of themselves as a dis- tions to achieve one's goals). tinct social unit. Status is a hierarchical position in a structure; a role is the expected behavior associated How is technology changing social interaction? with a particular status. A role is the behavior others Increasingly, people engage with each other through expect from a person associated with a particular sta- cyberspace interaction. Social norms develop in cyber- tus. Patterns of social interaction influence nonver- space as they do in face-to-face interaction, but a person bal interaction as well as patterns of attraction and in cyberspace can also manipulate the impression that affiliation. he or she gives off, thus creating a new "virtual" self. Key Terms achieved status 108 group 107 organic solidarity 103 social interaction 100 ascribed status 108 impression postindustrial society 107 social organization 101 collective management 116 preindustrial society 104 social structure 101 consciousness 102 imprinting 112 proxemic society 100 cyberspace macroanalysis 100 communication 111 status 108 interaction 119 master status 108 ole 109 status inconsistency 108 division of labor 103 mechanical solidarity 102 role conflict 109 status set 108 ethnomethodology 115 microanalysis 100 role modeling 109 tactile game theory 118 nonverbal role set 109 communication 110 gemeinschaft 103 communication 110 role strain 110 zero-sum game 118 gesellschaft 103 non-zero sum game 118 social institution 101 SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 121

We hear that "beauty is only skin deep." Appar- their "opposite" in personality, social status, background, ently, that is deep enough. To a surprisingly large and other characteristics. Many of us grow up believ- debunking SOCIETY'S MYTHS degree, the attractions we feel toward people of ing this to be true. However, if the research tells us one MYTH: Love is purely an emotional experience that either gender are based on our perception of their thing about interpersonal attraction, it is that with you cannot predict or control.' physical attractiveness (Baumeister and Bushman only a few exceptions we are attracted to people who SOCIOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVE: Whom you fall in 2008). A vast amount of research over the years are similar or even identical to us in socioeconomic love with can be predicted beyond chance by such factors has consistently shown the importance of attrac- status, race, ethnicity, religion, perceived personal- as proximity, how often you see the person (frequency, tiveness in human interactions: Adults react more ity traits, and general attitudes and opinions (Taylor or mere exposure effect), how physically attractive you leniently to the bad behavior of an attractive child et al. 2013; Baumeister and Bushman 2008; Brehm perceive the person to be, and whether you are similar than to the same behavior of an unattractive child et al. 2002). "Dominant" people tend to be attracted (not different) to her or him in social class, race/ethnicity, Berscheid and Reis 1998). Teachers evaluate cute to other dominant people, not to "submissive" people. religion, age, educational aspirations, and general children of either gender as "smarter" than unat- "Verbally aggressive" people tend to be attracted to attitudes, including political attitudes and beliefs. . tractive children with identical academic records others who are also verbally aggressive and not to (Worchel et al. 2000). In studies of mock jury trials, someone who is verbally withdrawn or verbally shy. attractive defendants, male or female, receive lighter Couples tend to have similar opinions about political Many young romantic relationships, regrettably, jury-recommended sentences on average than do issues of great importance to them, such as attitudes come to an end. On campus, relationships tend to break unattractive defendants convicted of the same crime about abortion, crime, animal rights, gun violence, up most often during gaps in the s ol calendar, such as Gilbert et al. 1998). and whom to vote for as president. Overall, couples winter and spring breaks. Summers are especially brutal Of course, standards of attractiveness vary between tend to exhibit strong cultural or subcultural similar- on relationships formed during the academic year. Break- cultures and between subcultures within the same ity, not difference. ups are seldom mutual. Almost always, only one member society. What is highly attractive in one culture may There are exceptions, of course. We sometimes of the pair wants to break off the relationship, whereas Romantic love is idealized in this society as something that "just happens," but research shows that interpersonal be repulsive in another. In the United States, there is a fall in love with the exotic-the culturally or socially the other wants to keep it going. The sad truth means maxim that you can never be too thin-a major cause different. Novels and movies return endlessly to the that the next time you hear that a breakup was "mutual," attraction follows predictable patterns. of eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia story of the rich young woman who falls in love with a you will know this is probably a lie or self-deception. especially among White women (Hesse-Biber 2007) rough-and-ready biker, but such a pairing is by far the proximity, such as in online dating. Studies of Internet The maxim is oppressive for women in U.S. society. exception and not the rule. That rich young woman is THEORIES ABOUT ANALYZING dating show that, even in this cyberworld, social norms yet it is clearly highly culturally relative, even within far more likely to fall in love with a rich young man. SOCIAL INTERACTION still apply. Studies of Internet dating find, for example, U.S. culture. What is considered "overweight" or "fat" When it comes to long-term relationships, including that unlike other dating behavior, there is pressure to is indeed a social construction (Atkins 2011). Among both friends and lovers (whether heterosexual, lesbian, Groups, statuses, and roles form a web of social inter- disclose more secrets about oneself in a shorter period many African Americans, "chubbiness" (itself a social gay, or bisexual), humans vastly prefer a great degree action. Sociologists have developed different ways of of time on the Internet (Lawson and Leck 2006). construction) in women is considered attractive. Such of similarity, even though, if asked, they might deny it. conceptualizing and understanding social interaction. Our attraction to another person is also greatly women are called "healthy" and "phatt" or "thick," In fact, the less similar a heterosexual relationship is Functionalist theory, discussed in Chapter 1, is one affected simply by how frequently we see that per- which means the same as "stacked" or curvaceous. with respect to race, social class, age, and educational such concept. Here we detail four others: the social son or even his or her photograph. When watching a Similar cultural norms often apply in certain aspirations (how far in school the person wants to go), construction of reality, ethnomethodology, impression movie, have you ever noticed that the central character U.S. Hispanic populations. The skinny woman is not then the quicker the relationship is likely to break up management, social exchange and game theory (refer seems more attractive at the end of the movie than at considered attractive. Nonetheless, studies show (Silverthorne and Quinsey 2000; Worchel et al. 2000; to Table 5.2). The first three theories come directly from the beginning? This is particularly true if you already that anorexia and bulimia are now increasing among Berscheid and Reis 1998). the symbolic interaction perspective. find the person very attractive when the movie begins. women of color, showing how cultural norms can Have you ever noticed that the fabulous-looking person change-even though Black women, in general, are sitting next to you in class l etter every day? You more satisfied with their body image than White table 5.2 Theories of Social Interaction may be experiencing mere exposure effect: The more you women (Atkins 2011; Lovejoy 2001; Fitzgibbon and The Social see someone in person-or even in a photograph-the Stolley 2002; see also Chapter 14). Construction more you like him or her. In studies where people are Studies of dating patterns among college students Social Exchange of Reality Ethnomethodology Dramaturgy Theor Game Theory repeatedly shown photographs of the same face, the show that the more attractive one is, the more likely one will be asked on a date. This applies to gay and lesbian Interprets Organized around Held together through A stage on which A series of more often a person sees a particular face, then other Asystem in which things being constant, the more he or she likes that per- dating as well as to heterosexual dating (Berscheid and society as: the subjective the consensus that actors play their Interactions that are people strategize Reiss 1998). However, one very important exception meaning that people share around social roles and based on estimates "winning" and son (Moreland and Beach 1992). can be added to this finding: Physical attractiveness people give to social norms; you can give impression of rewards and "losing" in their There are two qualifications to the effect. First, social behavior discover these norms to those in their punishments overexposure can result when a photograph is seen too predicts only the early stages of a relationship. When interactions with often. The viewer becomes saturated and ceases to like one measures relationships that last a while, other by violating them "audience" each other the pictured person more with each exposure. Second, factors come into play, principally religion, political Analyzes social Based on the A series of encounters the initial response of the viewer can determine how attitudes, social class background, educational aspira- Enactment of A rational balancing Calculated interaction as: meaning people tions, and race. Perceived physical attractiveness may in which people social roles act involving risks to balance much liking will increase. If someone starts out liking give to, or a particular person, seeing that person frequently will predict who is attracted to whom initially, but other manage their played before a perceived costs and rewards and variables are better predictors of how long a relation- attribute to, impressions in front social audience benefits of a given punishments Increase the liking for that person; however, if one starts actions in society of others behavior out disliking the pictured person, the amount of dislike ship will last. Cengage Learning tends to remain about the same, regardless of how often So, do "opposites attract"? Not according to the one sees the person (Taylor et al. 2013). research. We have all heard that people are attracted to SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 113 114 > CHAPTER 5

The Social Construction of Reality Thomas embodies this idea in his well-known dictum Ethnomethodology is based on the premise that Saleswoman: (becoming quite angry) What is the mat- What holds society together? This is a basic question that situations defined as real are real in their conse- human interaction takes place within a consensus, and ter with you? Are you crazy or something? Everything in for sociologists, one that, as we have seen, has long quences (Thomas 1966/1931). The Princeton and interaction is not possible without this consensus. The this store is priced more than what it is worth. Those jelly consensus is part of what holds society together. Accord- beans probably cost the store only a nickel. Now do you guided sociological thinking. Sociologists note that Dartmouth students saw different "realities" depend- ing on what college they were attending, and the ing to Garfinkel, this consensus will be revealed by want them or should I put them back? society cannot hold together without something that is shared-a shared social reality. consequences (the perceived rule infractions) were people's background expectancies, namely, the norms Some sociological theorists have argued convince very real to them. At this point, the student became quite embar- for behavior that they carry with them into situations of rassed, paid the 35 cents, and hurriedly left (Gamson ingly that there is little actual reality beyond that pro- The definition of the situation is a principle that interaction. It is presumed that these expectancies are can also affect a "factual" event such as whether an and Modigliani 1974). duced by the process of social interaction itself. This to a great degree shared, and thus studying norms by emergency room patient is perceived to be dead by the The point here is that the saleswoman approached is the principle of the social construction of reality, the deliberately violating them will reveal the norms that idea that our perception of what is real is determined by doctors. In his insightful research in the emergency the situation with a presumed normative consensus, most people bring with them into interaction. The eth- the subjective meaning that we attribute to an experi- room of a hospital, Sudnow (1967) found that patients a consensus that became revealed by its deliberate nomethodologist argues that you cannot simply walk ence, a principle central to symbolic interaction theory who arrived at the emergency room with no discern- violation by the student. The puzzled saleswoman took up to someone and ask what norms the person has and ible heartbeat or breathing were treated differently by measures to attempt to normalize the interaction, even (Blumer 1969; Berger and Luckmann 1967). Hence, uses, because most people will not be able to articulate to force it to be normal (see Table 5.2). there is no objective "reality" in itself. Things do not the attending physician depending on the patient's them. We are not wholly conscious of what norms we have their own intrinsic meaning. We subjectively age. A person in his or her early twenties or younger use even though they are shared. Ethnomethodology is impose meaning on things. was not immediately pronounced "dead on arrival" designed to "uncover" those norms. Impression Management Children do this routinely-impose inherent mean- (DOA). Instead, the physicians spent a lot of time lis- The recently aired CNN TV program called "What and Dramaturgy ing on things. Upon seeing a marble roll off a table, the tening for and testing for a heartbeat, stimulating the Would You Do?" employs what is in effect ethnomethod Another way of analyzing social interaction is to study child attributes causation (meaning) to the marble: heart, examining the patient's eyes, giving oxygen, and ology, though in a nonsystematic and relatively uncon- The marble rolled off the table "because it wanted administering other stimulation to revive the patient. trolled way. For example, in one episode, a father is seen impression management, a term coined by symbolic If the doctor obtained no lifelike responses, the patient in a restaurant very loudly scolding his own small child interaction theorist Erving Goffman (1959). Impres- to." Such perceptions carry into adulthood: The man walking down the street who accidentally walks was pronounced dead. Older patients, however, were for accidentally dropping a few crumbs on the floor. The sion management is a process by which people control on the average less likely to receive such extensive extremely loud scolding represents a norm violation in how others perceive them. A student handing in a term smack into a telephone pole, at first thought glares at the pole, as though the pole somehow caused the procedures. The older person was examined less this context. The father is in alliance with the TV produc- paper late may wish to give the instructor the impres- sion that it was not the student's fault but was because accident! He inadvertently attributes causation and thoroughly and often was pronounced dead on the ers. The point is to see what the observing people in the of uncontrollable circumstances ("my computer hard meaning to an inanimate object-the telephone pole spot with only a brief stethoscopec examination of the restaurant do, namely, engage in what the ethnometh- (Heider 1958). heart. In such instances, how the physicians defined odologist would call norm-restoration behavior. They drive crashed," "my dog ate the last hard copy," and so on). The impression that one wishes to "give off" (to use Considerable evidence exists that people do just the situation-how they socially constructed the real- found that many people looked but did not intervene. ity of death-was certainly real in its consequence for A few did intervene, such as by asking the father why he Goffman's phrase) is that "I am usually a very diligent that; they force meaning on something when doing the patient! person, but today-just today-I have been betrayed by so allows them to see or perceive what they want to was so loud, saying that his punishment was too severe. perceive-even if that perception seems to someone Ethnomethodologists in actual research often use circumstances." Impression management can be seen as a type of else to be contrary to actual fact. They then come to Ethnomethodology ingenious procedures for uncovering norms by think- ing up clever ways to interrupt "normal" interaction. con game. We willfully attempt to manipulate others' believe that what they perceived is indeed "fact." A Our interactions are guided by rules that we follow. Sometimes these rules are nonobvious and subtle. impressions of us. Goffman regarded everyday inter- classic and convincing study of this is Hastorf and In a clever study, sociology professor William Gamson action as a series of attempts to con the other. In fact, Cantril's (1954) study of Princeton and Dartmouth These rules are the norms of social interaction. Again, had one of his students go into a grocery store where students who watched a film of a game of basketball what holds society together? Society cannot hold jelly beans, normally priced at that time at 49 cents per trying in various ways to con the other is, according to Goffman, at the very center of much social interaction between the two schools. Both sets of students watched together without norms, but what rules do we follow? pound, were on sale for 35 cents. The student engaged the saleswoman in conversation about the various and social organization in society: Social interaction is the same film. The students were instructed to watch How do we know what these rules or norms are? An candies and then asked for a pound of jelly beans. The just a big con game! carefully for rule infractions by each team. The results approach in sociology called ethnomethodology is a Perhaps this cynical view is not true of all social were that the Princeton students reported twice as many clever technique for finding out. saleswoman then wrapped them and asked for 35 cents. rule infractions involving the Dartmouth team as the Ethnomethodology (Garfinkel 1967), after ethno The rest of the conversation went like this: interaction, but we do present different "selves" to others in different settings. The settings are, in effect, Dartmouth students saw. The Dartmouth students saw for "people" and methodology for "mode of study," Student: Oh, only 35 cents for all those nice jelly beans? different stages on which we act as we relate to oth about twice as many rule infractions by Princeton as is a technique for studying human interaction by There are so many of them. I think I will pay $1 for them. ers. For this reason, Goffman's theory is sometimes the Princeton students saw! Remember that they all deliberately disrupting social norms and observing Saleswoman: Yes, there are a lot, and today they are on called the dramaturgy model of social interaction, a saw exactly the same game-the same "facts." We see how individuals attempt to restore normalcy. The sale for only 35 cents. way of analyzing interaction that assumes the partici- the "facts" we want to see, as a result of the social con- idea is that to study such norms, one must first break Student: I know they are on sale, but I want to pay $1 pants are actors on a stage in the drama of everyday struction of reality. Subsequent research has strongly them, because the subsequent behavior of the people for them. I just love jelly beans, and they are worth a lot social life. People present different faces (give off dif supported the Hastorf and Cantril findings (Taylor et al. involved will reveal just what the norms were in the to me. ferent impressions) on different stages (in different 2013; Baumeister and Bushman 2008; Ross 1977; Jones first place. In the "See For Yourself" elevator example Saleswoman: Well, uh, no, you see, they are selling for situations or different roles) with different others. To and Nisbett 1972). you were asked to perform previously (see page 111), 35 cents today, and you wanted a pound, and they are your mother, you may present yourself as the duti- As we saw in Chapter 1, our perceptions of real- an application of ethnomethodology would be stand- 35 cents a pound. ful, obedient daughter, which may not be how you ity are determined by what is called the definition ing too close to someone on the elevator (this is the present yourself to a friend. Perhaps you think act- of the situation: We observe the context in which norm violation) and observing what that person does Student: (voice rising) I am perfectly capable of seeing that they are on sale at 35 cents a pound. That has nothing ing like a diligent student makes you seem a jerk, so we find ourselves and then adjust our attitudes and as a result (which would be the norm-restoration to do with it. It is just that I personally feel that they are you hide from your friends that you are really inter- perceptions accordingly. Sociological theorist W. I. behavior). worth more, and I want to pay more for them. ested in a class or enjoy your homework. Analyzing SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 115 116 > CHAPTER 5

is a supportive activity for women. For men, touch is Likewise, people who grow up in urban environ- The affiliation tendency has been likened to often a dominance-asserting activity, except in athletic ments learn to avoid eye contact on the streets. Staring imprinting, a phenomenon seen in newborn or newly contexts where hugging and patting among men is a at someone for only two or three seconds can be inter- hatched animals who attach themselves to the first supportive activity (Worchel et al. 2000) preted as a hostile act, if done man to man (Anderson living creature they encounter, even if it is of another In observing patterns of touch, you can see where 1999, 1990). If a woman maintains mutual eye contact species (Lorenz 1966). Studies of geese and squirrels social status influences the meaning of nonverbal with a male stranger for more than two or three sec- show that once the young animal attaches itself to a behaviors. Professors, male or female, may pat a man onds, she may be assumed by the man to be sexually human experimenter, the process is irreversible. The or woman student on the back as a gesture of approval; interested in him. In contrast, during sustained conver- young animal prefers the company of the human to students will rarely do this to a professor. Male pro- sation with acquaintances, women maintain mutual the company of its own species! A degree of imprint- fessors touch students more often than do female eye contact longer than do men (Romain 1999) ing may be discernible in human infant attachment, professors, showing the additional effect of gender. but researchers note that the process is more com Because such patterns of touching reflect power rela- tionships between women and men, they can also be Interpersonal Attraction plex, more changeable, and more influenced by social factors in infants. offensive and may even involve sexual harassment (see We have already asked, "What holds society together?" Somewhat similar to affiliation is interpersonal Chapters 11 and 15). This was asked at the macroanalysis level-that is, the attraction, a nonspecific positive response toward You can also see the social meaning of interac- level of society. But what holds relationships together- another person. Attraction occurs in ordinary day-to- tion by observing how people use personal space. or, for that matter, makes them fall apart? You will not day interaction and varies from mild attraction (such Proxemic communication refers to the amount of be surprised to learn that formation of relationships as thinking your grocer is a "nice person" ) all the way to space between interacting individuals. Although Patterns of touch reflect differences in the power that is has a strong social structural component-that is, it is deep feelings of love. According to one view, attractions people are generally unaware of how they use per- part of many social relationships patterned by social forces and can to a great extent be fall on a continuum ranging from hate to strong dis- sonal space, usually the more friendly people feel predicted. like to mild dislike to mild liking to strong liking to love. toward each other, the closer they will stand. In casual Humans have a powerful desire to be with other Another view is that attraction and love are two differ- conversation, friends stand closer to each other than The proxemic bubbles of different ethnic groups human beings; in other words, they have a strong need ent continua, able to exist separately. In this view, you do strangers. People who are sexually attracted to on average have different sizes. Hispanic people tend to for affiliation. We tend to spend about 75 percent of can actually like someone a whole lot, but not be in love. each other stand especially close, whether the sexual stand much closer to each other than do White, middle our time with other people when doing all sorts of Conversely, you can feel passionate love for someone, attraction is gay, lesbian, or heterosexual. According class Americans; their proxemic bubble is, on aver- activities-eating, watching television, studying, doing including strong sexual feelings and intense emotion, o anthropologist E. T. Hall (1966; Hall and Hall 1987), age, smaller. Similarly, African Americans also tend to hobbies, working, and so on (Cassidy and Shaver yet not really "like" the person. Have you ever been in we all carry around us a proxemic bubble that repre- stand close to each other while conversing. Interaction 1999). People who lack all forms of human contact are love with someone you did not particularly like? sents our personal, three-dimensional space. When distance is quite large between White, middle-class, very rare in the general population, and their isolation Can attraction be scientifically predicted? Can you people we do not know enter our proxemic bubble, we British males-their average interaction distances can is usually rooted in psychotic or schizophrenic disor- identify with whom you are most likely to fall in love? feel threatened and may take evasive action. Friends be as much as several feet. ders. Extreme social isolation at an early age causes The surprising answer to these questions is a loud, stand close; enemies tend to avoid interaction and Proxemic interactions also differ between men and severe disruption of mental, emotional, and language although somewhat qualified, "yes." Most of us have keep far apart. According to Hall's theory, we attempt women (Taylor et al. 2013; Romain 1999; Tannen 1990). development, as we saw in Chapter 4, been raised to believe that love is impossible to mea- to exclude from our private space those whom we do Women of the same race and culture tend to stand closer sure and certainly impossible to predict scientifically. not know or do not like, even though we may not be to each other in casual conversation than do men of the We think of love, especially romantic love, as quick and fully aware that we are doing so same race and culture. When a Middle Eastern man mysterious-a lightning bolt. Couples report falling in (who has a relatively small proxemic bubble) engages in love at first sight, thinking that they were "meant for conversation with a White, middle-class, U.S. man (who each other" (Mccollum 2002). Countless novels and See FOR YOURSELF has a larger proxemic bubble), the Middle Eastern man stories support this view, but extensive research in soci- Riding in Elevators tends to move toward the White American, who tends ology and social psychology suggests otherwise: In a Try a simple experiment Ride in an elevator and to back away. You can observe the negotiations of prox- probabilistic sense, love can be predicted beyond the closely observe the behavior of everyone in the emic space at cocktail parties or any other setting that level of pure chance. Let us take a look at some of these elevator with you. Write down in a notebook such involves casual social interaction. intriguing findings. things as how far away people stand from each In a society as diverse as the United States, under- A strong determinant of your attraction to others is other. Note the differences carefully, even in esti- standing how diversity shapes social interaction is an simply whether you live near them, work next to them, mated inches. What do they look at? Do they tend to essential part of understanding human behavior. Igno- or have frequent contact with them. (This is a proxemic stand in the corners? Do they converse with strang- rance of the meanings that gestures have in a society determinant.) You are more likely to form friendships ers or the people they are with? If so, what do they can get you in trouble. For example, some Mexicans and with people from your own city than with people from talk about? Mexican Americans may display the right hand held up, a thousand miles away. One classic study even showed palm inward, all fingers extended, as an obscene ges- 2. Now return to the same elevator and do something that you are more likely to be attracted to someone ture meaning "screw you many times over." This pro- that breaks the usual norms of elevator behavior, on your floor, your residence hall, or your apartment vocative gesture has no meaning at all in Anglo (White) such as standing too close to someone. (You will building than to someone even two floors down or two society. (However, giving someone "the finger"- have to get up a lot of nerve to do this!) How did middle finger extended ("flipping the bird")-certainly streets over (Festinger et al. 1950). Subsequent studies Konrad Lorenz, the animal behaviorist, shows that adult people react? What did they do? How did you feel? continue to show this effect (Baumeister and Bushman does carry meaning in not only Anglo society but also in Graylag geese that have imprinted on him the moment they were hatched will follow him anywhere, as though he 2008). Such is the effect of proximity in the formation of How does this experiment show how social norms are Latin society and many other societies as well! It is a bit were their mother goose (from Tweed Roosevelt, personal human friendships. maintained through informal norms of social control? . of nonverbal communication that is nearly universally communication)! Now, though the general principle still holds, recognized.) many people form relationships without being in close SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 111 112 > CHAPTER 5

person's identity. The master status may be imposed by others, or a person may define his or her own master and family. The parental role demands extensive time if a stranger kissed you on the lips, you would probably status. A woman judge, for example, may carry the mas- and commitment, and so does the role of worker. Time consider it a negative act, perhaps even repulsive. ter status "woman" in the eyes of many. She is seen not given to one role is time taken away from the other. just as a judge, but also as a woman judge, thus making Although the norms pertaining to workingwomen Verbal and Nonverbal Communication. We saw in and workingmen are rapidly changing, it is still true the culture chapter (Chapter 2) how patterns of social gender a master status (Webster and Hysom 1998). A that women are more often expected to uphold tradi- interaction are embedded in the language we use, and master status can completely supplant all other statuses tional role expectations associated with their gender language is deeply influenced by culture and society. in someone's status set. Being in a wheelchair is another example of a master status. Consider, for example, the role and are more likely held responsible for minding Furthermore, communication is not just what you say, case of a person in a wheelchair who is at the same time the family when job and family conflict. The sociologist but also how you say it and to whom. You can see the Arlie Hochschild captured the predicament of today's influence of society on how people speak, especially a medical doctor, an author, and a painter. People will see the wheelchair, at least at first, as the most impor women when she described the "second shift": an in different contexts. Under some circumstances, a pause in speaking may communicate emphasis; for tant, or salient, part of identity, ignoring other statuses employed mother spends time and energy all day on that define someone as a person. For a time, that person the job, only to come home to the "second shift" of others, it may indicate uncertainty. Cultural differences will be known as "that wheelchair guy" or "that wheel- family and home responsibilities (Hochschild 2003, across society make this obvious. Thus, during interac- 1997, and Hochschild and Machung 1989). tions between Japanese businessmen, long periods of chair doctor." Hochschild has found that some companies have silence often occur. Unlike U.S. citizens, who are experts instituted "family-friendly" policies, designed to reduce in "small talk" and who try at all costs to avoid periods thinking SOCIOLOGICALLY n role modeling. a person imitates the behavior of an the conflicts generated by the "second shift." Ironically, of silence in conversation, Japanese people do not Make a list of terms that describe who you are. Which admired other. however, in her study she found that few workers take need to talk all the time and regard periods of silence of these are ascribed statuses and which are achieved advantage of programs such as more flexible hours, as desirable opportunities for collecting their thoughts paid maternity leave, and job sharing-except for (Worchel et al. 2000; Fukuda 1994). American business- statuses? What do you think your master status is in A person may occupy several statuses and roles at the on-site child care that actually allowed parents to people in their first meetings with Japanese executives the eyes of others? Does one's master status depend one time. A person's role set includes all the roles occur work more! often think, erroneously, that these silent interludes on who is defining you? What does this tell you about pied by the person at a given time. Thus a person may Hochschild's studies point to the conflict between the significance of social judgments in determining who mean the Japanese are responding negatively to a pre- be not only Linda the skater but also Linda the student, two social roles: family roles and work roles. Her sentation. Even though some find the Japanese mode of you are? . the daughter, and the lover. Roles may clash with each research is also illustrative of a different sociological conversation highly uncomfortable, getting used to it is other, a situation called role conflict, wherein two or concept: role strain, a condition wherein a single role a key tool in succ more roles are associated with contradictory expecta- brings conflicting expectations. Different from role con Nonverbal communication is also a form of social Roles tions. Notice that in Figure 5.1 some of the roles dia- flict, which involves tensions between two roles, role interaction and can be seen in various social patterns. A grammed for this college student may conflict with A role is the behavior others expect from a person strain involves conflicts within a single role. In Hochs- surprisingly large portion of our everyday communica others. Can you speculate about which might and child's study, the work role has not only the expectations tion with others is nonverbal, although we are gener- associated with a particular status. Statuses are occur which might not? pied; roles are acted or "played." The status of police traditionally associated with work but also the expecta ally only conscious of a small fraction of the nonverbal In U.S. society, some of the most common forms of tion that one "love" one's work and be as devoted to it "conversations" in which we take part. Consider all the officer carries with it many expectations; this is the role role conflict arise from the dual responsibilities of job of police officer. Police officers are expected to uphold as to one's family. The re is role strain. The role of nonverbal signals exchanged in a casual chat: body the law, pursue suspected criminals, assist victims of student also often involves role strain. For example, stu- position, head nods, eye contact, facial expressions, crimes, fill out forms for reports, and so on. Usually, dents are expected to be independent thinkers, yet they touching, and so on. As noted just previously, the length Daughter people behave in their roles as others expect them to, Student feel-quite correctly-that they are often required to of a silence period during a conversation is itself a type but not always. When a police officer commits a crime, Part-time simply repeat on an exam what a professor tells them. of nonverbal communication. Studies of nonverbal such as physically brutalizing someone, he or she has waitress The tension between the two competing expectations is communication, like those of verbal communication, an example of role strain. violated the role expectations. Role expectations may show that it is much influenced by social forces, include vary according to the role of the observer-whether the Asian American ing the relationships between diverse groups of people. person observing the police officer is a member of a person Person Everyday Social Interaction The meanings of nonverbal communications depend heavily on race, ethnicity, social class, and gender, as minority group, for example. As we saw in Chapter 4, social learning theory You can also see the influence of society in everyday we shall see. predicts that we learn attitudes and behaviors in Church-goe behavior, including such basics as how you talk, pat- For example, patterns of touch (called tactile com- response to the positive reinforcement and encourage- terns of touch, and who you are attracted to. Although munication) are strongly influenced by gender. Parents ment received from those around us. This is important you might think of such things as "just coming natu- vary their touching behavior depending on whether the Girlfriend Woman in the formation of our own identity in society. "I am rally," they are deeply patterned by society. The cultural child is a boy or a girl. Boys tend to be touched more Linda, the skater," or "I am John, the guitarist." These Roommate context of social interaction really matters in our under- roughly; girls, more tenderly and protectively. Such pat- identities are often obtained through role modeling. standing of what given behaviors mean. An action is terns continue into adulthood, where women touch a process by which we imitate the behavior of another defined as positive or negative by the cultural context each other more often in everyday conversation than person we admire who is in a particular role. A ten- FIGURE 5.1 Roles in a College Student's Role Set because social behavior is that to which people give do men. Women are on the average more likely to touch year-old girl or boy who greatly admires the teenage Identify the different roles that you occupy and draw a similar meaning. An action that is positive in one culture can be and hug as an expression of emotional support, whereas expert skateboarder next door will attempt, through diagram of your own role set. Then identify which roles are negative in another. For example, shaking the right hand men touch and hug more often to assert power or to role modeling, to closely imitate the tricks that neighbor consistent with each other and which might produce role in greeting is a positive action in the United States, but express sexual interest (Baumeister and Bushman 2008; performs on the skateboard. As a result, the formation conflict and role strain. the same action in East India or certain Arab countries Worchel et al. 2000). Clearly, there are also instances of the child's self-identity is significantly influenced. Cengage Learning might be an insult. Social and cultural context matter. where women touch to express sexual interest and/or A kiss on the lips is a positive act in most cultures, yet dominance, but research shows that, in general, touch SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 109 110 > CHAPTER 5

Postindustrial Societies to their influence: family, friendship groups, athletic or municipal governments or associations such as the For most individuals, race is an ascribed status fixed teams, work groups, racial and ethnic groups, and so on. Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) are examples of for- at birth, although an individual with one light-skinned In the contemporary era, a new type of society is emerg- Groups impinge on every aspect of our lives and are a mal organizations. A deeper analysis of bureaucracies African American parent and one White parent may ing. Whereas most twentieth-century societies can be major determinant of our attitudes and values regard- and formal organizations appears in Chapter 6. appear to be White and may go through life as a White characterized in terms of their generation of material ing everything from personal issues such as sexual atti person. Within the African American community, this goods, postindustrial society depends economically tudes and family values to major social issues such as Status is called passing, although this term is used somewhat on the production and distribution of services, infor- the death penalty and physician-assisted suicide. less often now than it was several years ago. Ascribed mation, and knowledge. Postindustrial societies are To sociologists, a group is a collection of individu- Within groups, people occupy different statuses. Status status may not be rigidly defined, as for individuals information-based societies in which technology plays als who is an established position in a social structure that who define themselves as biracial or multiracial (see a vital role in the social organization. The United States carries with it a degree of social rank or value. A status is also Chapter 10). Finally, ascribed statuses can arise is fast becoming a postindustrial society, and Japan may . interact and communicate with each other; a rank in society. For example, the position "vice presi be even further along. Many of the workers provide ser- . share goals and norms; and through means beyond an individual's control, such as dent of the United States" is a status, one that carries rel- vices such as administration, education, legal services, . have a subjective awareness of themselves as "we," severe disability or chronic illness. atively high prestige. "High school teacher" is another scientific research, and banking, or they engage in the that is, as a distinct social unit. Some seemingly ascribed statuses, such as gen- status; it carries less prestige than "vice president of the United States," but more prestige than, say, "cabdriver." der, can become achieved statuses. Gender, typically development, management, and distribution of infor- To be a group, the social unit in question must pos- Statuses occur within institutions and also within thought of as fixed at birth, is a social construct. You can mation, particularly in the areas of computer use and sess all three of these characteristics. We will examine design. Central to the economy of the postindustrial the nature and behavior of groups in greater detail in groups. "High school teacher" is a status within the edu- be born female or male (this is your sex), but becom- cation institution. Other statuses in the same institution ing a woman or a man is the result of social behaviors society are the highly advanced technologies of com- Chapter 6. associated with your ascribed status. In other words, puters, robotics, and genetic engineering. Multinational In sociological terms, not all collections of people are "student," "principal," and "school superintendent." corporations globally link the economies of postindus- are groups. People may be lumped together into social Within a given group, people may occupy different sta- gender is also achieved. People who cross-dress, have a sex change, or develop some c acteristics associated trial societies. categories based on one or more shared characteris- tuses that can be dependent on a variety of factors, such The transition to a postindustrial society has a tics, such as teenagers (an age category), truck drivers as age or seniority within the group. with the other sex are good examples of how gender is achieved, but you do not have to see these excep strong influence on the character of social institutions. (an occupational category), and even those who have Typically, a person occupies many statuses simul- Educational institutions acquire paramount impor- taneously. The combination of statuses composes a tional behaviors to observe that. People "do" gender lost their life savings and pensions as a result of crimi- in everyday life. They put on appearances and behav- tance in the postindustrial society, and science takes nal Ponzi investment schemes, such as occurred in the status set, which is the complete set of statuses occur pied by a person at a given time (a term originally intro- fors that are associated with their presumed gender an especially prominent place. For some, the transition fall of 2008, when many unknowingly invested money to a postindustrial society means more disc retionary with the now-infamous criminal Bernard Madoff duced by sociological theorist Robert Merton [1968]). (Andersen 2011; West and Fenstermaker 1995; West and Zimmerman 1987). If you doubt this, ask yourself income for leisure activities- ntertainment, (more about him, similar others, and Ponzi investment A person may occupy different statuses in different what you did today to "achieve" your gender status. and relaxation industries (spa massage centers, and schemes in Chapter 7). institutions. Simultaneously, a person may be a bank Did you dress a certain way? Wear "manly" cologne or exercise) become more prominent-at least for people Social categories can become social groups, president (in the economic institution), voter (in the deodorant? Splash on a "feminine" fragrance? And so In certain classes and in the absence of severe eco- depending on the amount of "we" feeling the group political institution), church member (in the religious on. These behaviors-all performed at the microlevel- nomic recession, which has recently plagued not only has. Only when there is this sense of common identity, institution), and treasurer of the PTA (in the education institution). Each status may be associated with a differ- reflect the macrolevel of your gender status. the United States but Japan, Germany, France, Greece, as defined in the previous characteristics of groups, is and other technologically advanced countries as well. a collection of people an actual group. For example, all ent level of prestige. As with the United States in the last ral years, the people nationwide watching TV programs at 8 o'clock Sometimes the multiple statuses of an individual debunking SOCIETY'S MYTHS transition to postindustrialism has meant permanent Wednesday evening form a distinct social unit, an audi- conflict with one another. Status inconsistency exists MYTH: Gender is an ascribed status where one's joblessness for many. For others, it has meant the ence. But they are not a group because they do not inter- where the statuses occupied by a person bring with them significantly different amounts of prestige and thus dif- gender identity is established at birth. need to hold down more than one job simply to make act with one another, nor do they possess an awareness fering expectations. For example, so ne trained as a SOCIOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVE: Although one's ends meet. of themselves as "we." However, if many viewers were to come together for a convention where they could lawyer, but working as a cabdriver, es status biological sex identity is an ascribed status, gender inconsistency. Some recent immigrants from Vietnam is a social construct and thus is also an achieved SOCIAL INTERACTION interact and develop a "we" feeling, such as do fans of the long-running book and movie series about Harry and Korea have experienced status inconsistency. status-that is, accomplished through routine, everyday behavior, including patterns of dress, speech, touch, and AND SOCIETY Potter, they would constitute a group. Many refugees who had been in high-status occupa other social behaviors. Sex is not the same as gender You can see by now that society is an entity that exists We now know that people do not need to be face- tions in their home country, such as teachers, doctors, and lawyers, could find work in the United States only (Andersen 2011). . above and beyond individuals. Also, different societies to-face to constitute a group. Online communities, for example, are people who interact with each other regu- as grocers or technicians-jobs of relatively lower sta- are marked by different forms of social organization. tus than the jobs they left behind. A relatively large body Although societies differ, emerge, and change, they are larly, share a common identity, and think of themselves ial unit. On the Internet commu- of research in sociology has demonstrated that status The line between achieved and ascribed status can also highly predictable. Your society shapes virtually as being a distinct so be hard to draw. Social class, for example, is determined inconsistency-in addition to low status itself-can every aspect of your life from the structure of its social nity Facebook, for example, you may have a group of by occupation, education, and annual income-all institutions to the more immediate ways that you inter- "friends," some of whom you know personally and oth- lead to stress and depression (Taylor et al. 2013; Thoits of which are achieved statuses-yet one's job, educa- act with people. It is to that level-the microlevel of ers whom you only know online. But these friends, as 2009; Taylor and Hornung 1979; Lenski 1954). tion, and income are known to correlate strongly with they are known on Facebook, make up a social group Achieved statuses are those attained by virtue of the social class of one's parents. Hence, one's social society-that we now turn. that might interact on a regular, indeed, daily basis- individual effort. Most occupational statuses-police possibly even across great distances. officer, pharmacist, or boat builder- class status is at least partly-though not perfectly- -are achieved sta Groups Groups also need not be small or "close-up" tuses. In contrast, ascribed statuses are those occupied determined at birth. It is an achieved status that includes an inseparable component of ascribed status as well. At the microlevel, society is made up of many different and personal. Formal organizations are highly struc from the moment a person is born. Your biological sex Although people occupy many statuses at one time, social groups. At any given moment, each of us is a mem- tured social groupings that form to pursue a set of is an ascribed status. Yet, even ascribed statuses are it is usually the case that one status is dominant, called ber of many groups simultaneously, and we are subject goals. Bureaucracies such as business corporations not exempt from the process of social construction. the master status, overriding all other features of the SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 107 108 > CHAPTER 5

institution is the family, which serves as the means of distributing food, training children, and protecting MAP 5.1 its members, There is usually role differentiation on the basis of gender, although the specific form of the Mapping America's Diversity: Population Density gender division of labor varies in different societies. As this map shows, population enormously in different regions and area might affect people's social The Pygmies of Central Africa are an example of a for- density (measured as the number areas of the country. In what ways interaction? aging society. of people per square mile) varies do you think the density of a given Source: US. Census Bureau. 2009. American In pastoral societies, technology is based on the FactFinder. www.census.gov domestication of animals. Such societies tend to develop in desert areas that are too arid to provide rich vegetation. The pastoral society is nomadic, necessi- Population Density and Social Interaction tated by the endless search for fresh grazing grounds for the herds of their domesticated animals. The animals are used as sources of hard work that enable the cre- ation of a material surplus. Unlike a foraging society, this surplus frees some individuals from the tasks of hunting and gathering and allows them to create crafts, People per square make pottery, cut hair, build tents, and apply tattoos. mile by county The surplus generates a more complex and differen- tiated social system with an elite or upper class and 3000.0 to 66940.0 more role differentiation on the basis of gender. The 300.0 to 2999.9 nomadic Bedouins of Africa and the Middle East are 160.0 to 299.9 pastoral societies. In horticultural societies, hand tools are used to U.S. average 79.6 to 159.9 cultivate the land, such as the hoe and the digging density is 79.6 7.0 to 79.5 stick. The individuals in horticultural societies prac- 1.0 to 6.9 tice ancestor worship and conceive of a deity or deities (God or gods) as a creator. This distinguishes them from 0.0 to 0.9 foraging societies that generally employ the notion of numerous spirits to explain the unknowable. Horticul- tural societies recultivate the land each year and tend to 9 100 Mies 100 Miles establish relatively permanent settlements and villages. Role differentiation is extensive, resulting in different and interdependent occupational roles such as farmer, trader, and craftsperson. The ancient Aztecs of Mexico and the Incas of Peru represent examples of horticul- Different types of societies produce different kinds of social techniques to prolong and improve life, and the emer- tural societies. gence of birth control to limit population growth. of industrialization, the family-wage economy is based relationships. Some may involve more direct and personal The agricultural society is exemplified by the pre- relationships (called gemeinschafts), whereas others on the idea that men are the primary breadwinners. A Unlike agricultural societies, industrial societies Civil War American South, a society of slavery. Such produce more fragmented and impersonal relationships (called gesellschafts) rely on a highly differentiated labor force and the inten- system of inequality in men's and women's wages was introduced-an economic system that even today con- societies have a large and complex economic system sive use of capital and technology, Large formal orga- tinues to produce a wage gap between men and women. that is based on large-scale farming. Such societies nizations are common. The task of holding societ together, falling on institutions such as religion in prein- Industrial societies tend to be highly productive rely on technologies such as use of the wheel and dustrial societies, now falls more on the institutions that economically, with a large working class of industrial use of metals. Farms tend to be considerably larger than the cultivated land in horticultural societies. Industrial Societies have a high division of labor, such as the economy and laborers. People become increasingly urbanized as they work, government, politics, and large bureaucracies. move from farmlands to urban centers or other Large and permanent settlements characterize agri- An industrial society is one that uses machines and other areas where factories are located. Immigration is common cultural societies, which also exhibit dramatic social advanced technologies to produce and distribute goods Within industrial societies, the forms of gender in industrial societies, particularly because industries inequalities. A rigid caste system develops, separat- and services. The Industrial Revolution began over inequality that we see in contemporary U.S. society tend 250 years ago when the steam engine was invented in to develop. With the advent of industrialization, soci- are forming where there is a high demand for more, ing the peasants, or slaves, from the controlling elite cheap labor. caste, which is then freed from manual work allow- England, delivering previously unattainable amounts of eties move to a cash-based economy, with labor per- mechanical power for the performance of work. Steam formed in factories and mills paid on a wage basis and Industrialization has brought many benefits to U.S ing time for art, literature, and philosophy, activities of which they can then claim the lower castes are engines powered locomotives, factories, and dynamos household labor remaining unpaid. This introduced society-a highly productive and efficient economic sys- tem, expansion of international markets, extraordinary incapable. The American pre-Civil War South and its and transformed societies as the Industrial Revolution what is known as the family-wage economy, in which availability of consumer products, and for many, a good system of slavery is a good example of an agricultural spread. The growth of science led to advances in farm- families become dependent on wages to support them- working wage. Industrialization has, at the same time, society. In fact, some argue that the present surviv- ing techniques such as crop rotation, harvesting, and selves, but work within the family (housework, child ing system of sharecropping in the American South ginning cotton, as well as industrial-scale projects such care, and other forms of household work) is unpaid and also produced some of the most serious social problems and Southwest is a slave-like agricultural society as dams for generating hydroelectric power. Joining therefore increasingly devalued (Tilly and Scott 1978). that our nation faces: industrial pollution, an overdepen- these advances were developments in medicine, new In addition, even though women (and young children) dence on consumer goods, wage inequality and job dislo- (Bell 1992). worked in factories and mills from the first inception cation for millions, and problems of crime and crowding in urban areas (see Map 5.1 on population density). SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 105 106 > CHAPTER 5

chapter opened, you might want to study how people birth. Thus, you might have been initially removed from engage in "texting" each other on a one-to-one basis. your mother and examined by a doctor, which is very dif- How are they similar or different, on the basis of age, ferent from the institutional practices in other societies. or gender, or social class, or race? For example, do peo- The major institutions in society include the family, ple text (that is, interact) with each other within racial education, work and the economy, the political institu- groups more than between racial groups? Observing tion (or state), religion, and health care, as well as the his would be an example of microanalysis. mass media, organized sports, and the military. These Thus a sociologist who studies social interaction are all complex structures that exist to meet certain via texting or on the Internet would be engaging in needs that are necessary for society to exist. Function- microanalysis but might interpret what is found in the alist theorists have traditionally identified these needs context of macrolevel processes (such as race relations (functions) as follows (Parsons 1951a; Aberle et al. 1950). in society). Just as a photographer might use a wide angle lens to photograph a lands a telephoto 1. The socialization of new members of the society. This lens for a closer view, sociologists use both macro- and is primarily accomplished by the family, but in- Mark Edwards/Still Pictures/Robert Harding microanalyses to re it dimensions of society volves other institutions as well, such as education. In this chapter, we continue our study of sociology 2. The production and distribution of goods and ser- SHOUT,ONamry Limited by starting with the macrolevel of social life (by study- vices. The economy is generally the institution that ng total social structures), then continuing through performs this set of tasks, but this may also involve the microlevel (by studying groups and face-to-face the family as an institution-especially in societies Birth, though a natural process, occurs within social institutions-institutions that vary in different societies, depending on the interaction). The idea is to help you see how large-scale where production takes place within households. social organization of society. Here you see how birth in the United States, which is mainly defined as a medical event, contrasts 3. Replacement of society's members. All societies with a health assistant attending a birth in rural Mexico. dimensions of society shape even the most immediate forms of social interaction. must have a means of replacing members who die, Sociologists use the term social organization to move or migrate away, or otherwise leave the soci- describe the order established in social groups at any ety. Families are typically organized to do this. are not immediately visible to untrained observers; nev- 1900s. He argued that people in society had a collective level. Specifically, social organization brings regularity A. The maintenance of stability and existence. Certain ertheless, they are present, and they affect all dimen- consciousness, defined as the body of beliefs com- and predictability to human behavior; social organi- institutions within a society (such as the govern- sions of human experience in society. Social structural mon to a community or society that give people a zation is present at every level of interaction, from the ment, the police force, and the military) contribute analysis is a way of looking at society in which the soci- sense of belonging and a feeling of moral obligation whole society to the smallest groups. toward the stability and continuance of the society. ologist analyzes the patterns in social life that reflect to its demands and values. According to Durkheim, 5. Providing the members with an ultimate sense of and produce social behavior. collective consciousness gives groups social solidar- purpose. Societies accomplish this task by creating Social class distinctions are an example of a social ity because members of a group feel they are part of Social Institutions national anthems, for instance, and by encourag structure. Class shapes the access that different groups one society. Societies are identified by their cultural characteristics ing patriotism in addition to providing basic values have to the resources of society, and it shapes many Where does the collective consciousness come and the social institutions that compose each society. A and moral codes through institutions such as reli- interactions people have with each other. People may from? Durkheim argued that it stems from people's par- social institution (or simply an institution) is an estab zion, the family, and education. form cliques with those who share similar class stand- ticipation in common activities, such as work, family, lished and organized system of social behavior with a In contrast to functionalist theory, conflict theory ing, or they may identify with certain values associated education, and religion-in short, society's institutions. recognized purpose. The term refers to the broad sys- further notes that because conflict is inherent in most with a given class. Class then forms a social structure- ems that organize specific functions in society. Unlike societies, the social institutions of society do not pro- one that shapes and guides human behavior at all Mechanical and Organic Solidarity individual behavior, social institutions cannot be directly vide for all its members equally. Some members are levels, no matter how overtly visible or invisible this observed, but their impact and structure can still be seen. provided for better than others, thus demonstrat- structure is to someone at a given time. According to Durkheim, there are two types of social For example, the family is an institution that provides for ing that institutions affect people by granting more The philosopher Marilyn Frye aptly uses the met- solidarity: mechanical and organic. Mechanical soli- the care of the young and the transmission of culture. power to some social groups than to others. Using the aphor of a birdcage to describe the concept of social darity arises when individuals play similar-rather Religion is an institution that organizes sacred beliefs. example of the health care institution given previously, structure (Frye 1983). She notes that if you look closely than different-roles within the society. Individuals in Education is the institution through which people learn at only one wire in a cage, you cannot see the other societies marked by mechanical solidarity share the some groups have considerably less power within the same values and hold the same things sacred. This par- the information and skills needed to live in the society institution than do others. Thus nurses are generally wires. You might then wonder why the bird within The concept of the social institution is important subordinate to doctors and doctors to hospital admin- does not fly away. Only when you step back and see the ticular kind of cohesiveness is weakened when a soci- to sociological thinking. You can think of social institu- Istrators. And beyond these specific actors within the whole cage instead of a single wire do you understand ety becomes more complex. Contemporary examples tions as the enduring consequences of social behavior, why the bird does not escape. Social structure, like the of mechanical solidarity are rare because most societ- health care institutions, different social groups in soci- but what fascinates sociologists is how social institu- birdcage, confines people; their motion and mobility ies of the world have been absorbed in the global trend ety have more or less power within social institutions. tions take on a life of their own. For example, you were Therefore, racial and ethnic minorities in general have are restricted; their lives are shaped by social structure. for greater complexity and interrelatedness. Before likely born in a hospital, which itself is part of the health Just as the birdcage is a network of wires, so is society European conquest, Native American groups were poorer access to health care than others; the poor have care institution. The simple act of birth, which you might less access, as do those of lower social class status. a network of social structures, both micro and macro. bound together by at least a partial mechanical soli- think of as an individual experience, is shaped by the [For more information, see Chapter 14 on health care.) darity. Indeed, many Native American groups are now structure of this social institution. Thus, you were likely trying to regain the vestige of mechanical solidarity on delivered by a doctor, accompanied by nurses and, per- WHAT HOLDS SOCIETY which their cultural heritage rests, but they are finding haps, a midwife-each of whom exists in a specific social Social Structure TOGETHER? that the superimposition of White institutions on Native relationship to the health care institution. Each of these Sociologists use the term social structure to refer to the American life interferes with the adoption of traditional people is in an institutional role. Moreover, this social organized pattern of social relationships and social insti- What holds societies together? We ask this question ways of thinking and being, which prevents mechanical institution also shaped the practices surrounding your tutions that together compose society. Social structures throughout this chapter. This central question in solidarity from gaining its original strength even though sociology was first addressed by Emile Durkheim, the this view is not intended to treat all Native American SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 101 French sociologist writing in the late 1800s and early tribes or groups the same. 102 > CHAPTER 5

In contrast, organic (or contractual) solidarity the internal sense of belonging that members share. occurs when people play a great variety of roles, and You might think of a small community church as an inequality, notably along class, gender, racial, and The key driving force that distinguishes these dif- unity is based on role differentiation, not similarity. The example. ethnic lines (Nolan and Lenski 2008). ferent societies from each other is the development United States and other industrial societies are built on In contrast, in societies marked by gesellschaft, an Sociologists distinguish six types of societies of technology. All societies use technology to help fill human needs, and the form of technology differs for the organic solidarity, and each is cohesive because of the increasing importance is placed on the secondary rela based on the complexity of their social structure, the differentiation within each. Roles are no longer neces- tionships people have-that is, less intimate and more amount of overall cultural accumulation, and the level different types of society. sarily similar, but they are necessarily interlinked-the instrumental relationships such as work roles instead of their technology. They are foraging, pastoral, horti- performance of multiple roles is necessary for the exe- of family or community roles. Gesellschaft is character- cultural, agricultural (these four are called preindus- cution of society's complex and integrated functions. ized by less prominence of personal ties, a somewhat trial societies), and then industrial and postindustrial Preindustrial Societies Durkheim described this state as the division of diminished role of the nuclear family, and a lessened societies (see Table 5.1). Each type of society can still A preindustrial society is one that directly uses, modi- labor, defined as the relatedness of different tasks that sense of personal loyalty to the total society. The soli- be found on Earth, although all but the most isolated fies, and/or tills the land as a major means of survival. develop in complex societies. The labor force within the darity and cohesion remain, and it can be very cohesive, societies are rapidly moving toward the industrial and There are four kinds of preindustrial societies, listed contemporary U.S. economy, for example, is divided but the cohesion comes from an elaborated division postindustrial stages of development. here by degree of technological development: forag- according to the kinds of work people do. Within any of labor (thus, organic solidarity), greater flexibility in These different societies vary in the basis for their ing (or hunting-gathering) societies, pastoral societies, horticultural societies, and agricultural societies (see division of labor, tasks become distinct from one social roles, and the instrumental ties that people have organization and the complexity of their division of another, but they are still woven into a whole. to one another. labor. Some, such as foraging societies, are subsistence Table 5.1). The division of labor is a central concept in soci- economies, where men and women hunt and gather In foraging (hunting-gathering) societies, the tech- Social solidarity under gesellschaft is weaker than ology because it represents how the different pieces in the gemeinschaft society, however. Gesellschaft food but accumulate very little. Others, such as pasto- nology enables the hunting of animals and gathering of of society fit together. The division of labor in most is more likely than gemeinschaft to be torn by class ral societies and horticultural societies, develop a more vegetation. The technology does not permit the refrig- contemporary societies is often marked by distinc conflict because class distinctions are less prominent, elaborate division of labor as the social roles that are eration or processing of food, hence these individuals tions such as age, gender, race, and social class. In though still present, in the gemeinschaft. Racial-ethnic needed for raising livestock and farming become more must search continuously for plants and game. Because numerous. With the development of agricultural soci- hunting and gathering are activities that require large other words, if you look at who does what in society, conflict is more likely within gesellschaft societies amounts of land, most foraging societies are nomadic; you will see that women and men tend to do different because the gemeinschaft tends to be ethnically and eties, production becomes more large scale and strong patterns of social differentiation develop, sometimes that is, they constantly travel as they deplete the plant things; this is the gender division of labor. Similarly, racially very homogeneous; it is often characterized by old and young to some extent do different things; only one racial or ethnic group. This means that con- taking the form of a caste system or even slavery. supply or follow the migrations of animals. The central this is a division of labor by age. This is crosscut by flict between gemeinschaft societies, such as ethnically the racial division of labor, the pattern whereby those based wars, can be very high because both groups have in different racial-ethnic groups tend to do differ- a strong internal sense of group identity that may be table 5.1 Types of Societies ent work-or are often forced to do different work- intolerant of others. Economic Base Social Organization Examples in society. At the same time, the division of labor is In sum, complexity and differentiation are what also marked by class distinctions, with some groups make the gesellschaft cohesive, whereas similarity and Preindustrial Foraging Economic sustenance Gender is important basis for social Pygmies of Central providing work that is highly valued and rewarded unity cohere the gemeinschaft society. In a single soci- Societies societies dependent on hunting and organization, although division of labor Africa and others doing work that is devalued and poorly ety, such as the United States, you can conceptualize foraging is not rigid; little accumulation of wealth rewarded. As you will see throughout this book, the whole society as gesellschaft, with some internal Pastoral Nomadic societies, with Complex social system with an elite Bedouins of Africa gender, race, and class intersect and overlap in the groups marked by gemeinschaft. Our national motto societies substantial dependence on upper class and greater gender and Middle East division of labor in society seems to embody this idea: e pluribus unum (unity domesticated animals for role differentiation than in foraging within diversity), although clearly this idealistic motto economic production societies Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft has only been partly realized Horticultural Society marked by relatively Accumulation of wealth and elaboration Ancient Aztecs of Different societies are held together by different societies permanent settlement and of the division of labor, with different Mexico: Inca Empire forms of solidarity. Some societies are characterized TYPES OF SOCIETIES production of domesticated occupational roles (farmers, traders of Peru by what the German sociologist Ferdinand Tonnies In addition to comparing how different societies are crops craftspeople, and so on) called gemeinschaft, a German word that means bound together, sociologists are interested in how Agricultural Livelihood dependent on Caste system develops that American South, "community"; other societies are characterized as social organization evolves in different societies. Sim- societies elaborate and large-scale differentiates the elite and agricultural pre-Civil War gesellschaft, which literally means "society" (Tonnies ple things such as the size of a society can also shape patterns of agriculture and laborers; may include system of slavery 1963/1887). Each involves a type of solidarity or its social organization, as do the different roles that increased use of technology cohesiveness. Those societies that are gemeinschafts men and women engage in as they produce goods, in agricultural production (communities) are characterized by a sense of "we" care for the old and young, and pass on societal tradi- feeling, a very moderate division of labor, strong per- tions. Societies also differ according to their resource Industrial Economic system based on Highly differentiated labor force with Nineteenth and most sonal ties, strong family relationships, and a sense base-whether they are predominantly agricultural or Societies the development of elaborate a complex division of labor and large of twentieth-century of personal loyalty. The sense of solidarity between industrial, for example, and whether they are sparsely machinery and a factory formal organizations United States and members of the gemeinschaft society arises from per- or densely populated. system; economy based on Western Europe sonal ties; small, relatively simple social institutions; Thousands of years ago, societies were small cash and wages and a collective sense of loyalty to the whole society. sparsely populated, and technologically limited. In Postindustrial Information-based societies Education increasingly important to the Contemporary People tend to be well integrated into the whole, and the competition for scarce resources, larger and more societies in which technology plays a division of labor United States, Japan, social cohesion comes from deeply shared values and technologically advanced societies dominated smaller vital role in social organization and others beliefs (often, sacred values). Social control need not ones. Today, we have arrived at a global society with be imposed externally because control comes from highly evolved degrees of social differentiation and Cengage Learning SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND SOCIAL INTERACTION < 103 104 > CHAPTER 5

learning objectives theorist, described society as sui generis-a Latin phrase Define society and identify ways in which society is meaning "a thing in itself, of its own particular kind." To held together sociologists, seeing society sui generis means that society . Identify the types of societies is more than just the sum of its parts. Durkheim saw Understand social interaction as a "game" within society society as an organism, something comprising different Learn what theories are used to analyze social parts that work together to create a unique whole. Just interaction and know how they differ as a human body is not just a collection of organs but is Discover in what ways cyberspace interaction has alive as a whole or ationships between its changed society organs, society is not only a tion of individu- What Is Society? als, groups, or institutions but is a whole entity that con- sists of all these elements and their interrelationships. What Holds Society Together? WHAT IS SOCIETY? Durkheim's point-central to sociological analysis- Types of Societies In Chapter 2, we studied culture as one force that is that society is much more than the sum of the individu- holds society together. Culture is the general way of als in it. Society takes on a life of its own. It is patterned Social Interaction and Society life, including norms, customs, beliefs, and language. by humans and their interactions, but it is something that endures and takes on shape and structure beyond Theories About Analyzing Human society is a system of social interaction that includes both culture and social organization. Within a the immediacy of any given group of people. This is a Social Interaction society, members have a common culture, even though basic idea that guides sociological thinking. there may also be great diversity within it. Members of a You can think of it this way: Imagine how a photog- Interaction in Cyberspace society think of themselves as distinct from other soci- rapher views a landscape. The landscape is not just the eties, maintain ties of social interaction, and have a high sum of its individual parts-mountains, pastures, trees, Chapter Summary degree of interdependence. The interaction they have, or clouds-although each part contributes to the whole. whether based on harmony or conflict, is one element The power and beauty of the landscape is that all its of society. Within society, social interaction is behav- parts relate to each other, some in harmony and some picture a college classroom on your campus. in contrast, to create a panoramic view. The photo- Students sit, and some are taking notes; others, for between two or more people that is given meaning grapher who tries to capture this landscape will likely listening; a few, perhaps, sleeping. The class period by them. Social interaction is how people relate to each ends and students stand, gathering their books, other and form a social bond. use a wide-angle lens. This method of photography captures the breadth and comprehensive scope of what backpacks, bags, and other gear. As they stand, Social interaction is the foundation of society, but the photographer sees. Similarly, sociologists try to pic- many whip out their cell phones, place them to their society is more than a collection of individual social ears, and quickly push buttons that connect them actions. Emile Durkheim, the classical sociological ture society as a whole, not only by seeing its individual parts but also by recognizing the relatedness of these to a friend. As the students exit the room, many are parts and their vast complexity. engaged in social interaction-chatting with their friends: some by phone, others by text messaging ("texting"), some by talking face-to-face. Few, if any, Macro- and Microanalysis of them realize that their behavior is at that moment Sociologists use different lenses to see the different influenced by society-a society whose influence parts of society. Some views are more macroscopic- extends into their immediate social relationships, that is, sociologists try to comprehend the whole of even when the contours of that society-its social society, how it is organized, and how it changes. This structure-are likely invisible to them. is called macroanalysis, a sociological approach that These same students might plug a music player takes the broadest view of society by studying large pat- into their ears as they move on to their next class, terns of social interaction that are vast, complex, and possibly tuning in to the latest sounds while tuning highly differentiated. You might do this by looking at out the sounds of the environment around them. a whole society or comparing different total societies Some will return to their residences and perhaps text to each other. For example, as we opened this chapter, message friends, download some music, or connect you saw that large-scale changes in technology influ- with "friends" on Facebook. Surrounding all of this ence even the most immediate social interaction that behavior are social changes that are taking place in we have with other people. Thus, whereas only a few society, including changes in te chnology, in global years ago it would not have been imaginable to create a communication, and in how people now interact network of friends in cyberspace, today it is a common with each other. How we make sense of these practice, especially for young people. changes requires an understanding of the connection Other views are more microscopic-that is, the between society and social interaction. In this way, focus is on the smallest, most immediately visible parts a sociological perspective can help you see the of social life, such as specific people interacting with each relationship between individuals and the larger society The introduction of new technologies is transforming the other. This is called microanalysis. In this approach, of which they are a part. nature of human communication, As more young people sociologists study patterns of social interactions that are become adept with these tools, what will the future bring? relatively small, less complex, and less differentiated- the microlevel of society. Again, thinking of how this 100 > CHAPTER 5 : 99

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Step-by-step explanation

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