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Social Interaction & Social Structure

By nget030603 Jun 30, 2011 949 Words
Social Interaction
Social Structure

SOCIAL INTERACTION is the, social action of two or more people taking each other into account in their action

SOCIAL ACTION refers to those actions which people are conscious of doing because of other people.

There are some studies about Social Interaction. Those are ETHNOMETHODOLOGY and DRAMATURGY.

ETHNOMETHODOLOGY is the study of the norms governing social interaction, this approach normally involves purposely violating commonly understood rules as a means to gauge the nature of people’s response.

DRAMATURGY understands social interaction in terms of the theatre. In dramaturgical sociology it is argued that human actions are dependent upon time, place, and audience.

Goffman used such theatrical terms as frontstage and backstage to refer to the staged sets of real life. Frontstage is where the act is put on, where all actors are engaged in the production and the script is followed. Front stage is where the performance takes place and the performers and the audiences are present.

Back stage is where performers are present but audience is not, and the performers can step out of character without fear of disrupting the performance. Backstage is where the performers can take off their various masks and specified identities and safely abandon the performance for a time. By monitoring the effects of their roles on others, individuals engage in what Goffman termed impression management.

Outside, or off-stage, is the place where individuals are not involved in the performance (although they may not be aware of it).

There are types of Social Interaction namely: Nonverbal Behavior, Exchange, Cooperation, Conflict and Competition.

For Nonverbal Behavior it is communication transmitted in symbols other than language such as facial expression, gesture and posture.

Exchange is a social interaction with the express purpose of receiving mutual rewards.

Cooperation is a social interaction engaged in to promote common interests.

Conflict is a social interaction that involves working against each other for a commonly prized object.

Competition is a form of conflict in which individuals confine conflict to agreed-upon rules.

SOCIAL STRUCTURE is the distinctive, stable system of social relations that exists in any human society. It is not concerned with people as individuals, in groups, or in the organizations forming the society, nor the ultimate goal of their relationships. Rather, social structure deals with the organization of their relationships: how they are arranged into patterns. Thus, the concept of social structure assumes that human social relationships are not arbitrary or coincidental, but rather they follow certain patterns that can be identified.

SOCIAL STRUCTURE is the institutional framework that makes for order in repetitive, rhythmic (whether daily, weekly, or yearly) interactions among people. The key to the social structure of a society lies in understanding its social institutions and their intertwining combinations. Social institutions provide the order necessary to make social structure possible.

Some characteristics of Social Structure are as follows : it remains stable despite changes in the population, …… makes possible efficient human activity, and …… restricts personal freedom. (When excessive it may cause social change).

The components of Social Structure are Statuses, Roles, Social Groups and Social Institution.

A STATUSES is any socially defined position that people occupy. Some statuses are mode influential than other in shaping our identity and the interactions of others around us. These are called MASTER STATUSES.

Statuses can be either conferred upon us, or can be voluntarily attained

- Ascribed statuses are conferred upon us, usually at birth. Include our race, sex, etc.

- Achieved statuses are voluntarily attained and include
our occupation, student status, etc.

ROLES is the behavior expected of someone with a given status in a group or society. (You occupy a status, but you play a role). All of the roles attached to a particular status are called, collectively, role sets. Because we cannot possibly fulfill all of the roles attached to a particular status at any give time, we typically identify a role set as those rules that apply to our interaction with other individuals in particular statuses

Because we occupy several statuses, and numerous roles are attached to each status, there is a great potential for conflict between roles. ROLE STRAIN occurs when there is conflict between roles attached to same status. ROLE CONFLICT occurs when conflict is encountered between roles that are attached to two or more statuses.

Social groups consist of people who have a common sense of identity, shared norms and common goals. Social groups are distinct from two other types of collectivities :

SOCIAL AGGREGATES – people who happen to be in close physical proximity, but share little else
SOCIAL CATEGORIES – people who share one or more characteristics in common, but not interact

Small Groups are few enough in number so that all members know one another. As a group grows larger, subgroups within the larger group may form.

DYAD – is the smallest group, consisting only two people
TRIAD – is a group of three, which introduces the possibility of coalitions and mediation

Large Groups consist of many people who do not usually know each other well.

ASSOCIATIONS – are large groups purposely created to accomplish clearly defined goals. Associations have both FORMAL STRUCTURE and an INFORMAL STRUCTURE. The formal structure consists of formally defined, typically written job definitions. The informal structure is negotiated in the day to day activities of the association.

BUREAUCRACY is “a formal, rationally organized social structure with clearly defined patterns of activity in which……ideally, every series of actions is related to the purposes of the organization.”

Social Institutions are the ordered relationships that grow out of the values, norms, statuses, roles and groups of society.Social Institutions respond to the basic need areas of society, which includes family, religion, economic institution, educational institution and political institution.

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