Violations of Restaraunt Norms

Topics: Sociology, Anomie, Norm Pages: 6 (2236 words) Published: August 2, 2008

Violations of Restaurant Norms
Bonita Wright
Julie Lagunero
Sandra Burkes
Tarleton State University- Central Texas

The research study for this topic is what norms are acceptable in a specific social setting. What was found is that there are specific social norms that are acceptable and unacceptable in a restaurant setting. There have not been many research experiments done in a restaurant setting while violating social norms, but it is done every day. Research does implicate that society has particular social norms that people must adhere to and if not they would be in violation and considered deviant. Additional research needs to be done on this particular social setting to include such factors as race, ethnicity and social backgrounds of the employees and diners.

Violations of Restaurant Norms
For many years researchers have observed that while humans are in a certain social setting they have conducted themselves in accordance to what is acceptable to their group. Humans are social beings who want to be accepted by others and will adapt their behavior according to what the group believes to acceptable. When a member of that group steps out of those parameters they are no longer seen as a member of that group and are frowned upon as being a norm violator. While many humans violate social norms every day, the majority of humans do not. It has been observed that people promote and support social norms to benefit the social good of society; they do it because they want to. It also has been shown that humans are prewired to act negatively to those who take advantage of others when they violate the standards of acceptable social norms. The negative emotions may be the motivation to justify why a certain set of norms are acceptable to their society (Horne, 2007, p.4). Norms have also been found to produce aggression in society. People use coercion as an upper hand in order to get what they want out of a situation to feed their self interest. The person is than again classified as violating the social norm and becomes the target of retaliation by the violated party. The violated party then purposely does things to discomfort the social norm violator causing further aggression. When the violated party does not respond to the violation or responds weakly may cause in most instances allows the violator to exploit this as a weakness and empowers the violator to keep up such behavior (Lee and Tedeschi, 1996, p. 17-25). When norms are violated we then have others in society exercise what is called social control. This is a reaction people have to counter normative behavior, such as shaking an empty glass at a server for a refill. Those who violate social norms usually are looked upon as deviant and are often given dirty looks and negative comments by bystanders and by those who are in direct contact with those individuals. Behaviors are considered counter normative when culture has already decided its norms and traditions they hold to be appropriate (Brauer and Chekrain, 2005, p. 1-2). How well does a society conform to its own norms and what is the price that is paid for not following those set norms? That depends on where you are in the world and what society believes to be culturally correct. A community where the collective consciousness is very strong is what is used to control its members of the community. This is done mainly by ostracism and ridicule. By making the member, who violated their social norm, shameful and embarrassed controls future behavior by obeying the social norms of that community. In this situation the community as a whole controls each member to accept the behaviors they put forth as acceptable so their community (Weissner, 2005, p. 2). Norms come in different societies and cultures. It doesn’t matter what part of the world you are from or what cultural background you posses, we all have specific social...
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