What Elements Create A Social Structure

Submitted By Luke-Blair
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Pages: 11

What Elements create a
Social Structure
• Macrosociology is the study of largescale society, focusing on the social structures that exist within a society that endure from one generation to the next
• Microsociology deals primarily with the small interactions of daily life

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

By studying workers in the United States and
France, Michéle
Lamont illustrates that there is a clear link between the smallscale and large-scale components of a society. THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Social Structure
• Social structures are patterns of relationships that endure from one generation to the next
– They are arrangements of systems – such as marriage, education, and work – by which people in a society interact and are able to live together

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Culture
• Culture is the language, beliefs, values, norms, behaviors and material objects that are important enough to be passed on to future generations
– Culture touches every aspect of our lives and our society

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Groups
• A group is any number of people with similar norms, values, and behaviors who frequently interact with one another
– Groups may include athletic clubs, workplaces, and even a family group
– Groups affect us differently depending upon who important that group is to us.

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Groups
• Primary groups are small, intimate, enduring groups such as the family and close friends
• Secondary groups are formal, superficial, temporary groups such as relationships with most class mates

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Social Class
• Social class is a group with similar access to power, wealth, and prestige
– The importance of social class varies within different societies
– Your social class can have a profound impact on your life

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Effects of Social Class

Source: Data from the “Wealthy, Healthy, and Aged 85: The Women Living Even Longer” by Jill Sheerman.
THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
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Social Status
• Status is the position that you occupy within the social structure which is closely linked to social class
• Achieved status is a position that you earn or do something to attain
• Ascribed status is a position in society that you do not attain but you inherit

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Social Status
• Master status
– Is a status toward which we gravitate; master status may be what is most important to us, such as our status as a parent, or what is most important to others such as one’s race or economic standing

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Social Roles
• A social role is the behavior of a specific status – Role expectations are anticipated behaviors for a particular role
– Role performance is the degree to which a person plays the role in a manner we expect

THINK Sociology, Second Edition
John D. Carl

Copyright ©2011 by Pearson Education, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Social Roles
• Two more aspects of social roles are
– Role conflict is a phenomenon occurring when one is forced to choose between the competing demands of multiple roles
– Role strain is what we feel when the demands of a role are difficult for us to satisfy

THINK Sociology, Second…