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CU-BA - Sem VI-Sociology VI

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BACHELORS OF ARTS SEMESTER - VI SOCIOLOGY VI


First Published in 2022 All rights reserved. No Part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without permission in writing from Chandigarh University. Any person who does any unauthorized act in relation to this book may be liable to criminal prosecution and civil claims for damages. This book is meant for educational and learning purpose. The authors of the book has/have taken all reasonable care to ensure that the contents of the book do not violate any existing copyright or other intellectual property rights of any person in any manner whatsoever. In the event the Authors has/ have been unable to track any source and if any copyright has been inadvertently infringed, please notify the publisher in writing for corrective action. 2 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Contents Unit-1 Social Disorganizations: Definition and Meaning .................................................... 4 Unit-2 Social Disorganizations: Features and functions .................................................... 22 Unit- 3 Sociological Perspectives on Social Problems: Labelling (Becker) .................... 37 Unit- 4 Sociological Perspectives on Social Problems: Anomie (Durkheim) .................. 59 Unit- 5 Sociological Perspectives on Social Problems: Differential Association (Sutherland) ........................................................................................................................ 72 Unit- 6 Drug Addiction: Definition; Causes ................................................................... 87 Unit- 7 Drug Addiction: Consequences on Individual, Family and Society .................. 105 Unit-8 Major Social Problems: Definition (as per Indian Law); Social Consequences .... 116 Unit-9 Female Feticide: Meaning; Causes ...................................................................... 139 Unit-10 Female Feticide: Consequences on Society particularly on Sex Ratio ................... 150 Unit- 11 Domestic Violence: Definition (as per Indian Law) ............................................. 162 Unit- 12 Types of Domestic Violence ............................................................................... 175 Unit- 13 Deviance and Crime: Definition .......................................................................... 193 Unit- 14 Deviance and Crime: Difference between Deviance and Crime ........................... 238 3 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


UNIT-1 SOCIAL DISORGANIZATIONS: DEFINITION AND MEANING STRUCTURE 4 1.0 Learning Objectives 1.1 Introduction 1.2 Social Disorganization 1.3 Meaning of Social Disorganization 1.4 Definition of Social Disorganization 1.5 Nature of Social Disorganization 1.6 Social disorganization Theory 1.6.1 Theory of Social Ecology 1.6.2 The City as an Environment 1.6.3 Acculturation 1.7 Examples Of Social Disorganization Theory 1.7.1 Public Housing Projects and Delinquency 1.7.2 Linguistic Diversity, and Challenges in Community-level Regulation 1.7.3 Self-regulation in Rural/Tribal/Primitive Communities 1.7.4 Hate Crimes and “Lone Wolf” Shooters 1.8 Strengths Of Social Disorganization Theory 1.8.1 Grounded in Empiricism 1.8.2 Durability 1.8.3 Accuracy 1.8.4 Provides Actionable Policy Insights 1.9 Criticisms Of Social Disorganization Theory 1.9.1 Ecological Determinism and Spatial Discrimination 1.9.2 Ignores Positive Role of Migration 1.9.3 An Overreliance on Sociological Factors of Crime 1.9.4 Inability to Explain White Collar Crime CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


1.6 Summary 1.7 Key Words 1.8 Learning Activity 1.9 Unit End Questions 1.10 References 1.0 LEARNING OBJECTIVES After studying this unit, you will be able to;  Explain the concept of social disorganization  Describe the definitions of social disorganization  Elaborate on the nature of social disorganization  Describe how the concept of social disorganization has changed over time  State instances wherein social disorganization has impacted our life at an individual level, family level as well as societal level  Describe ways in which we can cope up with social disorganization 1.1 INTRODUCTION We all have studied the theory of evolution which was proposed by Darwin to explain how complex organisms have evolved from rather simple life forms over the course of time. We also encountered concepts of natural selection and the survival of the fittest. However, this evolution is not limited to merely our biological existence. As students of sociology, we are always observing the subtleties of our societies as well as our social life. We have seen humans evolving not only biologically but also socially. Right from the time when we lived in the era of hunting and wandering when there were no permanent settlements or long-lasting institutions to the early agrarian societies when we saw the birth of various institutions at micro and macro levels. When the age industrialization came into existence, the social institutions as well as the social structures and processes around these institutions became more and more complex and complicated. Social institutions became interlinked and interconnected with political institutions loke government, political parties; economic institutions like banks and money lenders as well religious institutions. We could 5 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


no longer segregate these institutions or study them and their impact individually or in isolation. Then came the era or information technology where things have become more and more advanced as well as complicated. The rate at which change takes place in our social, economic and political areas is rapidly increasing. This has thrown our society in a turmoil as we have to continuously make adjustments to this rapid changes. With this phase of constant change, we are becoming more and more unstable and maintaining equilibrium has become even more challenging. This makes it all the more important for us understand the process of social organization and how it turns to social disorganization. We need to look into the impact of social disorganization at micro level as well as macro level. We also need to study the features and characteristics of social disorganization. We need to look in to detail, the factors that lead to stage of social disorganization and ways of handling such situations. The topic of social disorganization is divided into two units. In this unit, we will be introduced to the concept of social disorganization. We will look into some of the definitions of social disorganization and try to understand them in detail. We will also see how the concept pf social disorganization has changed over the course of time. Further we will look into how we are affected by social disorganization both at micro level and macro level. Finally, we will study about the ways in which we can manage or cope up with social disorganization. 1.2 SOCIAL DISORGANIZATION When all the members of a society follow the norms, mores, values, laws and the regulations of the society then it is considered as an organized society which in turn ensures the welfare and wellbeing of all its members. However, due to various factors, sometimes, it seems not possible for a society to maintain those rules and norms then it creates a situation of disorder and instability in the society which adversely impacts the smooth functioning of the social system. An organized society is marked by sincerity, obedience and loyalty of all its members who follow the rules and norms. Although there are circumstances in which people have the tendency developed in mind to disobey or disregard such accepted rules or norms. This creates the situation of social disorganization, social deviance and social pathologies. 6 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Social disorganization is a theoretical perspective that explains ecological differences in levels of crime based on structural and cultural factors shaping the nature of the social order across communities. It is a state of society characterized by the breakdown of effective social control resulting in a lack of functional integration between groups, conflicting social attitudes, and personal maladjustment. 1.3 MEANING OF SOCIAL DISORGANIZATION Life is a process of continuous adjustment and readjustment. The social organism is always undergoing a change necessitating adjustment of its different parts. When the various parts of society are properly adjusted, we have social order and a well organised society, but when they fail to adjust themselves to the changing conditions, the result is social disequilibrium or disorganisation leading to social problems. Figure 1.1 Social Disorganization Since social disorganisation puts the society out of gear, it has been an important subject of study in sociology. However, before we study social disorganisation, it would be fruitful to study social order as its study is helpful in understanding the nature of social disorganisation. Social disorganization occupies a prominent position in the sociological literature. It was developed by Thomas and Zanaiecki in their famous book, “The Polish Peasant in Europe and America”. According to them the term social disorganization refers to the lack of effectives and influence of the social rules of behaviour upon the members of the society which lead to delineation of the individuals, separatist attitude among the members and 7 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


disintegration of the people in the society. It was analysed by them as a process which will inevitably create other social pathologies. Social disorganization disrupts the social forces that bring stability and order in the society thereby developing a situation of social disequilibrium and also ruptures the cohesiveness among the members of the society. However, it is also argued that since the society is dynamic in nature, the rules and regulation need to be rearranged and reorganized because of which the social equilibrium cannot be always maintained, therefore social disorganization or social breakdown takes place. 1.4 DEFINITION OF SOCIAL DISORGANIZATION Emile Durkheim considers social disorganization as, “A state of disequilibrium and lack of social solidarity or consensus among the members of the society”. According to Ogburn and Nimkoff, “Social Disorganization implies some breakdown in cultural contact, some disturbance in the equilibrium among the various aspects of the cultural pattern”. According to Elliot and Francis, “Social Disorganization is the process by which the relationship between the members of a group is broken or dissolved” W.I. Thomas and Florien Znaniecki conceived of social disorganisation as “a decrease of the influence of existing rules of behaviour upon individual members of the groups.” According to Mowever, social disorganization is “the process by which the relationships between members of a group are shaken.” Stuart A. Queen, Walter B. Bodenhafer, and Ernest B. Harper described social disorganisation in their book ‘Social Organisation and Disorganisation’ as the counterpart of social organisation. 1.5 NATURE OF SOCIAL DISORGANIZATION Social disorganization includes conflict of mores and institutions of the society. Social disorganization is also characterized by transfer of functions from one group to another. The feeling of separatism, self-centredness and individualism is increased during social disorganization. Incongruence between expectations and achievements of the people is also one of the characteristics of social disorganization. Any variant behaviour or innovation that brings changes in the attitude system may result in social disorganization. 8 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Inconsistency and extreme ambiguity and uncertainty is found between the status and role of the members and institutions in a disorganized society. A change in the cultural context which destroys the functioning of coordination that constitutes the social order represents social disorganization. Social Disorganization indicates social abnormality or breakdown in the social customs, mores and laws, thereby, weakening the integrative forces that maintains unity and equilibrium in the society. It does not mean the absence of harmonized relationship in society, but marks serious breakdown of such relationship. Therefore, social disorganization can be considered a product of the clash of interests among various groups in a society. 1.6 SOCIAL DISORGANIZATION THEORY The social disorganization theory is a theory that applies the principles and methods of sociology to understand the prevalence of high crime rates especially among juveniles of working-class communities. The social disorganization theory has mostly been applied to understanding crime rates in urban neighborhoods with blue-collar working class populations and high rates of migration. Social disorganization is a type of spatial theory, in that it posits that certain neighborhoods or areas within a city tend to have higher rates of crimes. Its early proponents such as Shaw & McKay (1969) even developed detailed crime maps of cities. They called their map-making exercists ‘spatial mapping’, that attempted to show how crime varies as you move from a city center to its suburbs. Such spatial models however, were discarded later. The social disorganization theory holds that traditional societies were organized according to certain rules and norms that have been nurtured and strengthened over time. Some rules and norms in communities gained the status of unsaid, unenforced, yet widely accepted laws. ‘Respect your mother’, ‘go to church’, and ‘do not steal’ might be examples of these established norms. Social disorganization theorists believe that all traditional societies had mechanisms for internal policing or regulation that acted as checks and balances against deviant behavior by its members. However, in cases where traditional societies are subjected to stress factors such as large- scale immigration and/or industrialization, a disorganization occurs, leading to a breakdown of the society’s internal norms. In these situations, the community fails to ensure order and regulation. Social disorganization manifests in the form of a spike in deviant behavior by its 9 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


members, particularly juveniles and youth, leaving external, state-backed policing the only mechanism for regulating crime. he social disorganization theory grew from the work of a group of University of Chicago researchers in the 1920s and 30s who are credited with founding the Chicago School of Sociology. These researchers were interested in examining the increasing rates of crime in the first few decades of the 20th century as the city of Chicago witnessed a boom in both industrialization and immigration. The theory provided many insights into crime, that today, we think of as obvious givens, but were path-breaking for their time. Some of these included: 1.6.1 Theory of Social Ecology The social disorganization theory is an ecological theory which attempts to attribute human behavior to influences absorbed consciously or unconsciously from their surroundings. 1.6.2 The City as an Environment At the end of the 19th century, metropolises such as Chicago were a relatively new phenomenon. So the idea that a city is an environment much like the natural environment, and that Darwinian rules of evolution apply to this urban environment, much like they do in nature, was a novel one. The social disorganization theory began by basing itself on Darwinian postulates. For instance, the theory held that just as certain kinds of plants thrive in certain environments, specific human behavioral traits such as delinquency also thrive in certain kinds of environments. 1.6.3 Acculturation A central postulate of the social disorganization theory was that attitudes are not innate but stem through a process of acculturation or an imbibing of cultural norms and mores. It follows then that in a socially disorganized neighborhood, children and juveniles are likely to get acculturated to a lack of control and conflicted morality, leading to crime. 10 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


1.7 EXAMPLES OF SOCIAL DISORGANIZATION THEORY Public Housing Projects and Delinquency Linguistic Diversity, and Challenges in Community-level Regulation Self-regulation in Rural/Tribal/Primitive Communities Hate Crimes and “Lone Wolf” Shooters Figure 1.2 Examples of Social Disorganization Theory 1.7.1 Public Housing Projects and Delinquency Several social disorganization theorists such as Bursik & Grasmick (1993) and Wikstrom & Loeber (2000) concluded that juveniles living in public housing projects in western countries may be more susceptible to crime as the ties of community in such projects are weak. Neighbors may not often know each other, and family networks are likely to be small, with the nuclear or single-parent family being the most common. In the absence of community level organization, juveniles in such projects were being rendered vulnerable to the effects of social disorganization. 1.7.2 Linguistic Diversity, and Challenges in Community-level Regulation Elliot et al (1996) concluded that in neighborhoods with a high percentage and high diversity of first-generation immigrants, crime rates tend to be higher. This is because in such neighborhoods, a large number of different languages are spoken, making communication, and by extension, community self-regulation difficult. 1.7.3 Self-regulation in Rural/Tribal/Primitive Communities In contrast to the previous two examples cited, colonial anthropologists in the late 19th and early 20th centuries travelling to remote tribal and “primitive” societies, were often struck by the remarkable order and absence of crime from such societies. While they may not always 11 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


have approved of the means of dispensing justice in such societies – comparing “primitive” law mostly unfavorably with systems of justice in the western world – they did however note the sense of community and organization in primitive communities, and their efficient functioning for the purpose of maintaining order. Some examples include Weber’s writings on primitive law, and Malinowski’s Crime and Custom in Savage Society. Of course, sociology has since moved well beyond such simplistic binaries of savage and civilized, but these examples serve to buttress the basic premise of the social disorganization theory – that all societies, in their natural, stable state have mechanisms for internal regulation of human action and behavior, and delinquency occurs when such community- based mechanisms are disturbed or broken. 1.7.4 Hate Crimes and “Lone Wolf” Shooters The social disorganization theory does not apply to immigrants alone. It can equally well be used to explain crimes against immigrants by members of dominant groups. Such individuals, isolated from their social groups on account of breakdown of traditional groupings such as family, church, etc., and being unable to cope up with a rapidly changing environment around them, begin to display deviant behavior. Think of “lone wolf” shooters who often attack immigrants. A famous pop-cultural example would be the character of Travis Bickle played by Robert De Niro in Taxi Driver, who, living an isolated life cut-off from his family and community, and struggling to make sense of the rapidly changing post-Vietnam war American society, begins to harbor delusions of “cleaning up” his neighborhood. 12 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


1.8 STRENGTHS OF SOCIAL DISORGANIZATION THEORY Grounded in Empiricism Durability Accuracy Provides Actionable Policy Insights Figure 1.3 Strengths of Social Disorganization Theory 1.8.1 Grounded in Empiricism The social disorganization theory was one of the earliest projects that marked the empirical turn in sociology from a theoretical perspective. The Polish Peasant in America, for instance, was based on thousands of personal documents, interviews, and case histories, resulting in a 5-volume magnum opus. Other University of Chicago projects such as those by Shaw & McKay (1969), and Park & Burgess (1925) too relied on large bodies of empirical data collected over several years, detailed city maps, and voluminous statistics to produce elaborate theoretical models. 1.8.2 Durability In the second decade of the 21st century, the theory has now been around for a little over a century. Unlike many other premises of the social and natural sciences, the theory however continues to stay relevant, even though it has been modified and adapted several times from the time of its first formulation. 1.8.3 Accuracy Within its limited scope, the mathematical models derived from social disorganization theory worked remarkably well in predicting delinquency. For instance, the unit-weighted regression 13 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


model devised by Ernest Burgess, a founding theorist of the social disorganization theory to predict the parole success rates of convicts is noted as a remarkably accurate model, and one that further found application in fields such as insurance. Burgess based his model on assigning scores to convicts on various parameters of their integration with their social environment such as having a job, a family network, etc. 1.8.4 Provides Actionable Policy Insights The theory is useful in drawing our attention to what works and what does not when it comes to tackling crime. For instance, by pointing to the roots of delinquency, the theory helps explain why incarceration and the penal justice system are futile in reducing crime. Several studies, for instance, Pratt & Cullen (2005) have in fact demonstrated that incarceration is inversely related to crime. The theory gives several actionable policy insights such as where to direct public funding to prevent crime (certain neighborhoods, as depicted by mapping models), how to govern urban cities (delegating more authority to neighborhood and community-level organizations), and which social values to uphold (families, as units that can prevent social disorganization). 1.9 CRITICISMS OF SOCIAL DISORGANIZATION THEORY Ecological Determinism and Spatial Discrimination Ignores Positive Role of Migration An Overreliance on Sociological Factors of Crime Inability to Explain White Collar Crime Figure 1.4 Criticism of Social Disorganization Theory 14 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


1.9.1 Ecological Determinism and Spatial Discrimination A key concept of the social disorganization theory was the concentric zones model which divided a city into concentric zones, with certain areas, closer especially to the city center being identified as the breeding grounds of crime, whereas a movement radially outwards from the centre seemed to be correlated with a decrease in crime. However such an approach made a claim that was later found to be untenable –that certain spaces and cites within a city by themselves induce socially pathological behavior Such hypotheses in turn led to further stigmatization and marginalization of already marginalized spaces. 1.9.2 Ignores Positive Role of Migration The theory, especially in its earlier formulations, emphasized anomie-inducing effects of migration that are no longer held to be tenable. Studies of migration by sociologists are now increasingly pointing to an overall positive effect of migration with immigrant presence being linked to greater innovation, increased wealth creation and more liberal societal values in general. In fact for many rich countries such as Canada, immigration is critical for continued economic growth. 1.9.3 An Overreliance on Sociological Factors of Crime We now understand that crime has both social as well as psychological causes. An overemphasis by the social disorganization theory on the structural and social causes of crime eventually led to its taking a backseat to psychological theories of crime, until a balance was found between the two towards the end of the 20th century. 1.9.4 Inability to Explain White Collar Crime Like other similar “location” theories based on urban ecology, that attribute crime to certain locations within an urban center (such as those with higher immigrant populations, or lower economic status), the social disorganization theory fails to explain white collar crime or organized, multinational crime rackets that do not seem to be rooted in any neighborhood or limited to immigrants or economically deprived sections of the society. 1.6 SUMMARY  Society is composed of social structures, social institutions, social processes, etc. In a well-organized society, the various aspects of society work in proper harmony with one another. 15 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


 As social conditions change, these various players in the society modify themselves to suit the needs of the changing times. This enables the society to maintain a state of equilibrium.  This process is not always smooth and equilibrium may not be attained in all the instances. In situations, when all the parts of society have not properly adjusted to the changing conditions, we say that the situation has led to social disorganization.  In simple words, lack of social order and organization with the structures and institutions of society is referred to as social disorganization.  In social disorganization, the control of society over its components becomes ineffective and the societal order is disrupted.  Social disorganization does not happen in isolation. It is a response to a trigger, wherein the society is unable to assimilate or integrate the changes resulting from the trigger.  All the individual components of the society react to this trigger and a ripple affect or a spillover impact is seen in almost all the social institutions as social structures.  The social processes are disrupted and require targeted efforts for bring the social functioning back to the state of equilibrium.  Social disorganisation is the process opposed to social organisation. Social organisation, Some Fundamental Concepts’, is an orderly relationship of parts. The significance of this orderly arrangement lies in what it does. When the parts of social structure do not perform their functions efficiently and effectively or perform them badly, there occurs an imbalance in society.  The social equilibrium is disturbed and society gets out of gear.  Social disorganisation, therefore, is to be considered in terms of functional disequilibrium, it is disequilibrium within customs, institutions, groups, communities and societies.  Comparing social disorganisation with social organisation Queen and Harper write, “If social organisation means the development of relationships which persons and groups find mutually satisfactory, then disorganisation means their replacement by 16 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


relationships which bring disappointment, thwarted wishes, irritation and unhappiness.”  Social disorganisation often brings personal disorganisation, since a person is a social creation and his “self” a social product. 1.7 KEY WORDS  Acculturation: Acculturation can be defined as the ‘process of learning and incorporating the values, beliefs, language, customs and mannerisms of the new country immigrants and their families are living in, including behaviors that affect health such as dietary habits, activity levels and substance use.  Diversity: The diversity definition refers to the existence of variations of different characteristics in a group of people.  Hate-crime: A hate crime is a crime motivated by bias against race, color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or disability.  Poverty: Poverty is a state or condition in which a person or community lacks the financial resources and essentials for a minimum standard of living.  Self-Regulation: Self-regulation is the ability to control one's behavior, emotions, and thoughts in the pursuit of long-term goals.  Social Disorganization: a state of society characterized by the breakdown of effective social control resulting in a lack of functional integration between groups, conflicting social attitudes, and personal maladjustment  Social Ecology: Social ecology is the study of how individuals interact with and respond to the environment around them, and how these interactions affect society and the environment as a whole.  Social Attitude: Social attitudes are individual attitudes directed toward social objects. Collective attitudes are individual attitudes so strongly inter conditioned by collective contacts that they become highly standardized and uniform within the group. 17 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


 Social Norm: A social norm is the accepted behavior that an individual is expected to conform to in a particular group, community, or culture.  Sociology: Sociologists study the interrelationships between individuals, organizations, cultures and societies. 1.8 LEARNING ACTIVITY 1. Define Social organization? ___________________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________ 2. State the nature of social disorganization? ___________________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________ 1.9 UNIT END QUESTIONS 18 A. Descriptive Questions Short Questions 1. What is social disorganization? 2. Define acculturation? 3. What are social norms? 4. Define linguistic diversity? 5. What is social ecology? Long Questions 1. Write in detail about social disorganization? 2. Explain the components of social disorganization theory? 3. Explain in detail the concept of social disorganization with examples? 4. What are the strengths of social disorganization theory? CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


5. What are the limitations of social disorganization theory? B. Multiple Choice Questions 1. Which of the following does not lead to a breakdown in social institutions, according to Classical Social Disorganization Theory? a. Immigration b. Economic stress c. Urbanization d. Industrialization 2. Social problem means ________________. a. State of affairs b. Moral approach to a problem c. Personal problem d. Family problem 3. \"A pattern of behaviour that constitutes\" is called. a. Economic problem b. Political problem c. Social problem d. Religious problem 4. Social disorganisation is ______________________. a. None of these b. Continuous process c. One time process d. Static process 5. Which of the following does not fall under the category of family disorganisation? a. Venereal disease b. Poverty 19 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


c. Unemployment d. Drunkenness Answers 1-a, 2-a, 3-c. 4-c, 5-d 1.10 REFERENCES References book  Turner, Jonathan H., 1987; The Structure of Sociological Theory, Fourth Edition, Rawat Publications, Jaipur.  Henry, Kenneth, 1978, Social Problems: Institutional and Interpersonal Perspectives, Scott, Fopresman and Company, Illinois, London.  Kothari, Rajani, 1988, Transformation and Survival, Ajanta Publications, Delhi.  Lerner, Daniel, 1964, The Passing of Traditional Society, The Free Press, London.  Polanyi, Karl, 1957, The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origin of our Time, Beacon Press, Boston.  Merton, Robert K. & Nisbet, Robert, 1976, Contemporary Social Problems, Hercourt Brace Iovanovich, International Editing, New York, Chicago.  Singh, Yogendra, 1988, Modernizations of Indian Tradition, Reprint, Rawat Publication, Jaipur.  Ancel, Marc (1965), Social Defence – A Modern Approach to Criminal Problems, Routlege and Kegan Paul, London.  Bhattacharya, S.K. (1981), “The Concept and Areas of Social Defence”, in Readings in Social Defence edited by N.C. Joshi and V.B. Bhatia, Wheeler Publishing, Allahabad.  Government of India (Ministry of Social Welfare) (1974), Social Defence in India, National Institute of Social Defence, New Delhi.  Government of India (Ministry of Social Welfare) (1980), National Institute of Social Defence: A Perspective, NISD Publication, New Delhi. 20 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


 Srivastava, S.P., April (2000), “Explaining the Concept of Social Defence”, Social Defence, Vol. 49, No. 144. Textbook references  Ahuja, Ram (1992), Social Problems in India, Rawat Publications, Jaipur.  Keneth, Henry (1978), Social Problems: Institutional and Interpersonal Perspectives, Scott, Fopresman and Company, Illinois, London.  Merton, Robert K, and Robert Nisbet (1971), Contemporary Social Problems, Fourth Edition, Harcourt Brace and Co., New York.  Memoria, Dr. C.B. (1960), Social Problems and Social Disorganisation in India, Kitab Mahal, Allahabad.  Annual Report 2003, National Commission for Women, New Delhi.  Annual Report 2002-2003, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India.  Cooley, C.H. (1902), Human Nature and Social order, Scribner, New York.  Crime in India (2003), Annual Report, National Crime Records Bureau, New Delhi.  Merton, (1957), R.K., Social Theory and Social Structure, Free Press, Glencoe, Illinois.  Ram, Ahuja (1997), Social Problems in India, Rawat Publications, New Delhi.  William, Scott (1988), Dictionary of Sociology, Goyl Saab Publishers, New Delhi. Website  https://open.lib.umn.edu.  https://www.sociologylens.in/2021/03/social-problems.html  https://academic.oup.com/socpro  https://www.oxfordbibliographies.com/ 21 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


UNIT-2 SOCIAL DISORGANIZATIONS: FEATURES AND FUNCTIONS STRUCTURE 2.0 Learning Objectives 2.1 Introduction 2.2 Characteristics of Social Disorganisation 2.2.1 Conflict of Mores and of Institutions: 2.2.2 Transfer of Functions from one Group to Another: 2.2.3 Individuation: 2.2.4 Change in the Role and Status of the Individuals: 2.3 Causes of Social Disorganisation 2.3.1 Division of Labour : 2.3.2 Violation of Social Rules: 2.3.3 Industrialization: 2.3.4 Cultural Lag: 2.3.5 Natural Catastrophes: 2.3.6 War: 2.3.7 Maladaptation of Inherited Nature to Culture: 2.8 Summary 2.9 Key Words 2.10 Learning Activity 2.11 Unit End Questions 2.12 References 22 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


2.0 LEARNING OBJECTIVES After studying this unit, you will be able to;  Describe the features of social organization  Describe the functions of social organization  Describe the features of social disorganization  Describe the functions of social disorganization  Elaborate on the causes of social disorganization 2.1 INTRODUCTION When all members of society adhere to the society's norms, mores, values, rules, and regulations, the society is called organized, ensuring the welfare and well-being of all members. However, when it appears that society will be unable to sustain such laws and norms owing to a variety of causes, it produces a state of disorder and instability in the society, which has a negative influence on the social system's smooth operation. All members of an organized community who obey the laws and standards are distinguished by sincerity, obedience, and loyalty. Even so, there are times when people's minds have been programmed to violate or reject such established standards or conventions. As a result, social disorder, misbehaviour, and pathologies emerge. 23 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


2.2 CHARACTERISTICS OF SOCIAL DISORGANISATION Characteristics Conflict of Mores and of Institutions of Social Transfer of Functions from one Group to Disorganisation Another Individuation Change in the Role and Status of the Individuals Figure 2.2 Characteristics of Social Disorganization The main characteristics of social disorganisation are the following: 2.2.1 Conflict of Mores and of Institutions: As we have studied earlier every society has its mores and institutions which regulate the life of its members. With the passage of time, these mores and institution become obsolete. New ideals arise and new institutions are formed. The existing mores come into conflict with new mores. Some people want to replace them by new ones. This destroys consensus in society. With the destruction of consensus, social organisation breaks up and social disorganisation ensues. In the Indian society we can see such conflict of mores and institutions. If, on the one hand, there are critics of caste system, on the other hand there are its staunch supporters. There is a strong difference of opinion on a number of other issues like divorce, family planning, untouchability, love-marriage, joint family system, women education, widow remarriage, education etc. On the one hand, we denounce caste system while on the other we apply casteism in the selection of candidates for political offices, recruitment to public services and admission to educational institutions. There is much confusion of mores in our society and so we are passing through a state of social disorganisation. Elliot and Merrill called social organisation fundamentally a problem of consensus and when there is disagreement concerning mores and institutions, the seeds of social disorganisation have been sown. 24 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


2.2.2 Transfer of Functions from one Group to Another: In an organised society the functions of different groups are defined and predetermined. But as society is dynamic, the functions of one group are transferred to another.Thus most of the functions once performed by the family stand transferred today to nurseries, schools and clubs. This has caused family disorganisation. Thus transfer of functions from one group to another is characteristic of social disorganisation. 2.2.3 Individuation: Man today thinks in terms of self. The functions of different groups are determined in purely individualistic terms. Under the impact of individualism every person thinks upon all the important matters of life from his individual viewpoint. The young men and women want to take decisions on such important matters as marriage, occupation, recreation and morality in accordance with their individual prejudices, interests and attitudes. This trend has set in a dangerous process of social disorganisation. 2.2.4 Change in the Role and Status of the Individuals: In an organised society the roles and status of people are defined and fixed. Their functions are well defined and they carry on the tasks allotted to them. They enjoy the status in accordance with their role in society. A primitive society suffers less from disorganisation because it is stable and its members follow the professions allocated to them. But in course of time our norms change which also brings a change in the roles and statuses of the people. They no longer are treated as fixed and the people begin to choose from amongst the different role which causes disequilibrium. Thus, the women are no longer confined to homes. They work in offices. This change in the roles of women has caused family disorganisation. The Government of India is making efforts to raise the status of the lower classes which has led to disorganisation in the caste system. Faris writes, “Social disorganization is the disruption of the natural relation of persons to a degree that interferes with the performance of the accepted tasks of the group.” 2.3 CAUSES OF SOCIAL DISORGANISATION Social disorganization has been and is always present in every society. As indicated above man since the dawn of civilization has been confronted with social problems of diverse nature. A society in which each structural element is functionally equilibrated with all the 25 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Causes of socialothers is purely a hypothesis. If social disorganization is a widely prevalent phenomenon, disorganizationthen the question arises as to what leads to it. Division of labour Violation of social rules Industrialization Cultural lag Natural catastrophies War Maladaptation of Inherited Nature to Culture Figure 2.2 Causes of Social Disorganization 2.3.1 Division of Labour: According to Emile Durkheim, extreme division of labour is the cause of social disorganization. Division of labour is generally productive of social solidarity; but when it becomes excessive and complex then solidarity diminishes or disappears and social equilibrium is disturbed. Extreme division of labour gives rise to economic crises of all kinds, class struggles, and industrial strife, and leads to the demoralization of individuals, the family, and the community. “In short” as Koenig puts, “it produces an abnormal, anomalous situation in which the different parts do not integrate but are at cross purposes with each other and a state of normlessness.” 2.3.2 Violation of Social Rules: According to W.I. Thomas and Znaniecki, when the rules and regulations of society fail to keep individuals under control, social disorganisation sets in. In society there are always individuals who violate social rules. This has a disorganizing effect upon social institutions, and unless the violations are checked; they may eventually lead to the death of institutions. 26 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


According to Elliot and Merrill, “Without social values neither social organisation nor social disorganisation would exist.” The changes in social values come into conflict with old values. The new values take time to adjust themselves in society. In the meantime social disorganisation spreads. The Traditional social values in Indian society have undergone a major change. As a result a major conflict between the old and new values has been created. Consequently, one sees the process of social disorganisation working rapidly. 2.3.3 Industrialization: Industrialization creates conditions leading to social disorganisation. The effects of industrialization on family structure and relationships. Industrialization as seen in system had led to capitalism, exploitation and class conflicts. It has also contributed to unemployment, crime, immorality, family disorganisation, urbanisation and its evils. 2.3.4 Cultural Lag: Ogburn maintained in Social Change that disorganisation is caused primarily by the unequal rates of change in the different parts of culture, resulting in a conflict between them. The disproportionate rates of change in various elements of the functionally interdependent component system of a changing social structure produce a condition of disequilibrium. This uneven change is due to the fact that inventions and discoveries are made more frequently in certain parts of culture, usually the material parts, than in others. Science and technology, while bringing a more efficient material culture, more knowledge, and a higher standard of living, produce social disorganisation as well. Thus Ogburn says, “When 10,000 musicians are thrown out of jobs as a result of ‘canned’ music through the sound film introduced in cinemas, the result is the disorganisation of orchestras, and musicians who cannot find employment.” Modern technology is changing at a rapid rate and creating important social changes with which our institutions have not yet caught up. Ogburn by analysing various social problems such as unemployment, poverty, crime, race conflict, family disorganisation and labour problems has shown that social disorganisation issues from the irregular changes of our culture. 27 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


2.3.5 Natural Catastrophes: According to Ogburn, technological inventions, however, must not be considered the only cause of social disorganization, Ecological disturbances, i.e., disturbances in the relationship of man to his environment, including such natural phenomena as disease, earthquakes, floods, volcanic eruptions and various other catastrophic phenomena of nature, may also have a disorganizing effect on society. When the Black Death visited England in 1348, it is said, it destroyed between a third and a half of the entire population in a little over a year. The effect of natural catastrophes on social organisation was great in the past; at present such catastrophes are more easily controlled. We now have more knowledge with which to control or check epidemic, to build earthquake proof houses and to dam rivers against floods. However, recent experiences with floods in India suggest that the influence of geographic factors on social organisation should not be under-estimated. Besides natural catastrophes there may be other types of crisis too which can cause social disorganisation. Thus the sudden death of a leader may create a crisis and throw the society out of gear. The murder of Mahatma Gandhi created such a crisis for India. A crisis may become cumulative as a result of a series of events taking place from time to time, the partition of India was a cumulative crisis. The differences between the Congress and Muslim League went on increasing, hatred between Hindus and Muslims went on aggravating and communal clashes took place from time to time. The fire of communalism gradually spread. In the end the country had to be partitioned. Both the Indian and Pakistani societies were faced with serious problems which could not be solved even to this day. 2.3.6 War: While war is the result of social disorganisation, it is also its cause. War disturbs the economy of a country and introduces confusion and disorder in society. War leads to scarcity. There is economic crisis during the war period. It inflates the prices and the people resort to hoarding and black-marketing. Further, war consumes the young men of the country. As a result young women are widowed. They are left with none to support them. That tends to weaken the sexual ties. War also affects the male-female ratio. Social values are also injured. 28 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


2.3.7 Maladaptation of Inherited Nature to Culture: Ogburn mentions another cause of social disorganisation and it is the lack of adaptation of man’s inherited nature to the environment of group and culture. Man’s nature is modified very slowly through changes in the germ plasm, whereas culture is altered with comparative rapidity. Group life implies cooperation and respect for the rights of others, yet the aggressive, acquisitive tendencies of man are not readily accommodated to the restrictions imposed by the group. The social environment may thus impose requirements on man which he finds most difficult to fulfill. The life in modern urbanised society is highly competitive and very taxing causing many individuals to become demoralized or to suffer breakdowns. It may also be noted that in modern societies, whereas the epidemic diseases have been brought under control, other physical disabilities, circulatory disorders, cancer and various degenerative conditions have become more common. The increase in these diseases is a product of the modern way of life. Nervous tensions that are induced by the stresses and strains of social change are thought to be primarily responsible for much of the high blood pressure, faulty heart action and gastric ulcers. The mental disorders are also considered to be directly related to the modern way of life. It may be said that these diseases are the price that men pay for social change. At the end, it may be said that social disorganisation is a process prevailing all over the world. In actual fact no society is completely organised. Some elements or the other of disorganisation are to be found in every society. When these elements grow more numerous their disorganised character becomes more apparent than others. All societies are changing rapidly accumulating numerous cultural lags at every point. In the family, in the industry, in the government, in the school and in the church a number of cultural lags can be seen. The traditional informal controls have failed to regulate the behaviour of individuals in modern society. Many people fail to internalize a coherent system of values and behaviour controls. They become disorganised and are diagnosed as mentally ill. It may also be referred that some sociologists regard social disorganisation as a natural process than as a malady. Maladjustment or non-adjustment of different parts of social 29 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


structure may prepare a way for a new social structure to emerge. Social disorganisation may thus prove beneficial to erase the old edifice and construct a new one. But the new structure should be erected before social disorganisation can destroy the entire social fabric. Social disorganisation is a disease of society which must be treated rapidly and effectively before it becomes chronic and destroys the social organism. 2.8 SUMMARY  The origin of the Social Disorganization theory began at The University of Chicago in the 1920’s-1940’s.  The proponents of the theory had a moralistic approach, they associated “good” as a well-organized community.  They developed the theory to explain the nature and consequences of the urban communities.  In social organization, all citizens possess the capacity to live in a society with shared values or beliefs.  Historically, social disorganization in the society has organized crime as one of its consequences.  When members of the society are in disunity, the self- policing attributes of that society fail, and organized crime reigns.  he youth of a society, in particular, are vulnerable to gang organizations due to the failure of the society around them.  Therefore, gangs are formed and society is unable to stop the growth of them in the community.  In addition, the lack of economic industry for youth makes it difficult for job opportunities, the availability of employment is part of the social disorganization of the community.  The organized crime groups offer an attractive opportunity for youth to make an income that they are likely to find in legitimate careers. 30 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


 The crime rate is increased in the urban areas due to the increased population, the lack of social control allows for the growth of these groups and the neglect of the social constraints perpetuate the crime. 2.9 KEY WORDS  Acculturation - This term is used to describe both the process of contacts between different cultures and also the outcome of such contacts.  Adaptation: Adaptation is the physical or behavioural characteristic of an organism that helps an organism to survive better in the surrounding environment.  Conflict: Conflict occurs when unequal amounts of resources and power exist. The people with more power and resources try to maintain it, and may even do so by repressing those with less power and fewer resources.  Culture: Culture can be defined as all the ways of life including arts, beliefs and institutions of a population that are passed down from generation to generation.  Cultural lag: Cultural lag refers to the phenomenon that occurs when changes in material culture occur before or at a faster rate than the changes in non-material culture.  Individuation: Individuation is the process by which an individual becomes distinct.  Maladaptation: the failure to adapt properly to a new situation or environment  Mores: Mores are the customs, norms, and behaviors that are acceptable to a society or social group.  Natural calamity: A natural disaster is \"the negative impact following an actual occurrence of natural hazard in the event that it significantly harms a community\".  Social Disorganization: a state of society characterized by the breakdown of effective social control resulting in a lack of functional integration between groups, conflicting social attitudes, and personal maladjustment  Social Role: A social role defines a set of behaviors that are expected of someone who holds a particular status. 31 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


 Social Status: Social status is the position that an individual holds in a social group or society.  Social Norms: Social norms are the unwritten rules of beliefs, attitudes, and behaviours that are considered acceptable in a particular social group or culture.  War: War is an intense armed conflict between states, governments, societies, or paramilitary groups such as mercenaries, insurgents, and militias. 2.10 LEARNING ACTIVITY 1. Define Social Rules? ___________________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________ 2. Define culture lag with suitable examples? ___________________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________ 2.11 UNIT END QUESTIONS A. Descriptive Questions Short Questions 1. What is social disorganization? 2. Define Individuation1? 3. What do you mean by social status? 4. Give one example of hoe industrialization leads to social disorganization? 5. What do you mean by natural calamities? Long Questions 32 1. Explain with examples the different characteristics of social disorganization? 2. What is the impact of industrialization on society? CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


3. How does war and natural calamity result in social disorganization? 4. What is the relation between cultural lag and social disorganization? 5. Explain the concept of division of labour? B. Multiple Choice Questions 1. Which of the following is not characteristic of social problem? a. Develops gradually and slowly b. Generally regarded harmful for the society. c. It has effect on a large section of a society d. Develops gradually but fast 2. Density of population is very much related to________________. a. climate b. political system c. environmental study d. economic condition 3. Which of the following is not source of social problem? a. Social change b. Poverty c. Personal development d. Personal disorganization 4. The economic system in which highly complex division of labour is present is the feature of______________________. a. Simple societies b. Globalization c. Modern societies d. Rural economy 5. The undisputed political rule of a state over a given territorial region’ is known as? 33 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


a. democracy b. monarchy c. bureaucracy d. Sovereignty Answers 1-a, 2-a, 3-c. 4-c, 5-d 2.12 REFERENCES References books  Turner, Jonathan H., 1987; The Structure of Sociological Theory, Fourth Edition, Rawat Publications, Jaipur.  Henry, Kenneth, 1978, Social Problems: Institutional and Interpersonal Perspectives, Scott, Fopresman and Company, Illinois, London.  Kothari, Rajani, 1988, Transformation and Survival, Ajanta Publications, Delhi.  Lerner, Daniel, 1964, The Passing of Traditional Society, The Free Press, London.  Polanyi, Karl, 1957, The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origin of our Time, Beacon Press, Boston.  Merton, Robert K. & Nisbet, Robert, 1976, Contemporary Social Problems, Hercourt Brace Iovanovich, International Editing, New York, Chicago.  Singh, Yogendra, 1988, Modernizations of Indian Tradition, Reprint, Rawat Publication, Jaipur.  Ancel, Marc (1965), Social Defence – A Modern Approach to Criminal Problems, Routlege and Kegan Paul, London.  Bhattacharya, S.K. (1981), “The Concept and Areas of Social Defence”, in Readings in Social Defence edited by N.C. Joshi and V.B. Bhatia, Wheeler Publishing, Allahabad. 34 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


 Government of India (Ministry of Social Welfare) (1974), Social Defence in India, National Institute of Social Defence, New Delhi.  Government of India (Ministry of Social Welfare) (1980), National Institute of Social Defence: A Perspective, NISD Publication, New Delhi.  Srivastava, S.P., April (2000), “Explaining the Concept of Social Defence”, Social Defence, Vol. 49, No. 144. Textbooks  Ahuja, Ram (1992), Social Problems in India, Rawat Publications, Jaipur.  Keneth, Henry (1978), Social Problems: Institutional and Interpersonal Perspectives, Scott, Fopresman and Company, Illinois, London.  Merton, Robert K, and Robert Nisbet (1971), Contemporary Social Problems, Fourth Edition, Harcourt Brace and Co., New York.  Memoria, Dr. C.B. (1960), Social Problems and Social Disorganisation in India, Kitab Mahal, Allahabad.  Annual Report 2003, National Commission for Women, New Delhi.  Annual Report 2002-2003, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India.  Cooley, C.H. (1902), Human Nature and Social order, Scribner, New York.  Crime in India (2003), Annual Report, National Crime Records Bureau, New Delhi.  Merton, (1957), R.K., Social Theory and Social Structure, Free Press, Glencoe, Illinois.  Ram, Ahuja (1997), Social Problems in India, Rawat Publications, New Delhi.  William, Scott (1988), Dictionary of Sociology, Goyl Saab Publishers, New Delhi. 35 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Website  https://open.lib.umn.edu.  https://www.sociologylens.in/2021/03/social-problems.html  https://academic.oup.com/socpro  https://www.oxfordbibliographies.com/ 36 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


UNIT- 3 SOCIOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES ON 37 SOCIAL PROBLEMS: LABELLING (BECKER) STRUCTURE 3.0 Learning Objectives 3.1 Introduction 3.2 Howard S. Becker 3.3 Categories of behaviour 3.3.1 Falsely accused 3.3.2 Confirming 3.3.3 Pure deviant 3.3.4 Secret deviant 3.4 Types of Deviance 3.4.1 Primary Deviance 3.4.2 Secondary Deviance 3.4.3 Moving from primary deviance to secondary deviance 3.5 Labelling Theory 3.6 Strengths of the LabelLing Theory 3.7 Limitations of the Labelling Theory 3.8 Summary 3.9 Key Words 3.10 Learning Activity 3.11 Unit End Questions 3.12 References 3.0 LEARNING OBJECTIVES After Studying this unit, you will be able to;  Elaborate on the contribution of Harward Becker in the field on organization CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


 Describe the influence of social interactionist theory on Harward Becker  Describe the labelling theory of sociology  Explain the key features of labelling theory  Elaborate on types of labelling in the society  Describe the relation between labelling and deviant behaviour  Explain the strengths and limitations of the labelling theory 3.1 INTRODUCTION Just about everyone has done something thatsomeone else frowns upon; just about everyonebelieves something that certain others view asimmoral or wrongful, holds attitudes of whichsomebody disapproves, or possesses physical orethnic characteristics that touch off disdain orhostility or denigration in this, that, or some other,social circle, “audience,” or person. Perhaps at leastonce, we’ve stolen something, or told a lie, orgossiped about another person in an especiallyunflattering manner. Maybe more than once we’vegotten drunk, or high, or driven too fast, or recklessly, or gone through a red light without botheringto stop. Have we ever worn clothes someone elsethought were out of style, offensive, or ugly? Havewe ever belched at the dinner table, broken wind,or picked our nose in public? Have we ever cutclass or failed to read an assignment? Do we likea television program someone else finds stupid andboring? Didn’t we once date someone our parentsand friends didn’t like? Maybe our religious beliefsand practices don’t agree with those of the membersof another theological group, organization, sect, ordenomination. Perhaps politically we’re a liberal,or a conservative, or somewhere in the middlesomeone doesn’t approve of those views. At somepoint, didn’t we put on a little too much weight? All of us make judgments about the behavior,beliefs, appearance, or characteristics of others. Allof us evaluate others, although in variable ways.Societies everywhere formulate and enforce rulesor norms governing what we may and may not do,how we should and shouldn’t think, believe, andsay, even how we should and shouldn’t look. Thosenorms are so detailed and complex, and so dependent on the views of different “audiences” or socialcircles of evaluators, that certain things that othersdo, believe, and are, are looked on negatively bysomeone—in all likelihood, by lots of other people. 38 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Based on this judgement, the behaviour and person will be given a label. Labels are used as a way to categorize a group with some form of shared characteristics. Society labels things such as food products, clothing brands, file folders, personal items, and people. Labels are associated with certain images, characteristics, connotations, associations, stigmas, and stereotypes. For example, a person can volunteer to remain at home and watch the children as their parents go out on a date. However, if the person has been labelled as a child abuser, people might be suspicious that they might do something bad to the children. In another example, a person running a busy shop might want to step out briefly. While they are outside the shop, a friend could pass by and offer to watch the shop for them in order to allow them to leave. However, if the person offering has been labelled as a thief, the shop owner might be suspicious that they want to steal from their shop. 3.2 HOWARD S. BECKER Howard S. Becker also known as Howard Saul Becker was born on 18th April 1928 in Chicago, USA. He is an American Sociologists known for his contribution in the areas of employment, education, deviance and art. His work is most closely related to that of the German sociologists Max Weber and Leopold von Wiese and of certain Americans, particularly R. E. Park and G. H. Mead. Howard S. Becker studied sociology at the University of Chicago. He completed his Ph. D in the same university in the year 1951. For the most part of his career, he taught in the Northwestern University. 39 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Figure 3.1: Howard S. Becker According to Becker, the core of sociology lies in the social norms and values that constitute and govern the society and the way an individual behaves in the society. The choices we make, the decisions we take and even the way in which we react to the various personal and social events in the social context. Social norms define what is considered appropriate and what is considered inappropriate. They act like a parameter or a benchmark which guide us in our social interactions and relationships with our people around us. Based on the social norms we make a lot of judgements in our day-to-day life. We determine what is superior or inferior in terms of position and behaviour. We categorize people and actions as good or bad, moral or immoral, right or wrong, legal or illegal, acceptable or unacceptable, etc. based on these norms. Social norms assign a value to a person, to an idea, to an emotion and to every behaviour of its members. According to Howard S. Becker, this valuation arises primarily because of the process through which our personality is designed by the social and cultural processes. Hence, it is not the reflection of the social processes but the inner structure of the personality if an individual member of the society. 3.3 CATEGORIES OF BEHAVIOUR Behaviour is a simple yet a complex subject. It is a subject of study of almost all the social sciences. The only thing changes is the context in which behaviour is examined and the perspective in which the behaviour is analysed. 40 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


For instance, economics studies the behaviours that are related to the use of resources and the use and allocation of resources by an individual and the society. Economists are interested in understanding the how people acquire resources, how they spend than and save them, why some people are able to acquire more resources than others, also how resources grow over a period of time, etc. Political science is related to the study of behaviour concerned with power and distribution of power. Political science is study of the state and the study of political system. It studies behaviour covering the study of government, study of power; study of man and his political behaviour and study of political issues which influence politics directly or indirectly. Sociology, whereas is related to social behaviour. Social behavior is defined as interactions among individuals. Social behavior serves many purposes and is exhibited by an extraordinary wide variety of animals, including invertebrates, fish, birds, and mammals. It is believed that social behavior evolved because it was beneficial to those who engaged in it, which means that these individuals were more likely to survive and reproduce. On the other hand, psychology is related to individual behaviour rather than social, political or economic behaviour. Psychology is the scientific study and practical application of observable behavior and mental processes of organisms. Psychologists are actively involved in studying and understanding mental processes, brain functions, and behavior. According to Howard S. Becker, behaviour can be categorized into four groups. Confirming Pure deviant Falsely Secret accused deviant Behaviour Figure 3.2: Types of behaviour according to Howard S. Becker 41 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


3.3.1 Falsely accused Falsely accused represents those individuals who have engaged in obedient behaviour but have been perceived as deviant; therefore, they would be falsely labeled as deviant. 3.3.2 Confirming Conforming represents those individuals who have engaged in obedient behaviour that has been viewed as obedient behaviour (not been perceived as deviant). 3.3.3 Pure deviant Pure deviant represents those individuals who have engaged in rule breaking or deviant behaviour that has been recognized as such; therefore, they would be labeled as deviant by society. 3.3.4 Secret deviant Secret deviant represents those individuals who have engaged in rule breaking or deviant behaviour but have not been perceived as deviant by society; therefore, they have not been labeled as deviant. 3.4 TYPES OF DEVIANCE Becker defined deviance as a social creation in which “social groups create deviance by making the rules whose infraction constitutes deviance, and by applying those rules to particular people and labeling them as outsiders.” Types of deviance Primary Secondary deviance deviance Figure 3.3: Types of deviance 3.4.1 Primary Deviance Primary deviance includes things people do that are abnormal, but are not seen as central to someone’s identity. They can get away with doing something ‘different’ or even ‘wrong’ without being labeled as a ‘bad person’. 42 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Primary deviance refers to initial acts of deviance by an individual that have only minor consequences for that individual’s status or relationships in society. The notion behind this concept is that the majority of people violate laws or commit deviant acts in their lifetime; however, these acts are not serious enough and do not result in the individual being classified as a criminal by society or by themselves, as it is viewed as “normal” to engage in these types of behaviours. Primary deviance is usually the first, or an early act of deviance, before the label of ‘deviant’ has been applied to a person. At this stage, the person has violated social norms in some manner. This breach could be an act as harmless as dyeing their hair pink to something more serious like shoplifting. At the stage of primary deviance, the person has not yet internalized a social label (such as ‘criminal’) in a way that would influence their actions in the future. For authorities like teachers, sensitive handling of the act of primary deviance can help prevent its degeneration into secondary deviance. Acts of primary deviance have two main characteristics – 1. A person transgresses social norms (acknowledging that social norms change across time and place). 2. Their behaviours have not been internalized and it has not led to a cycle of self- fulfilling prophecies in which the person becomes the very thing they are accused of. Example of primary deviance: Peer Pressure and Intoxicant Use Speeding would be a good example of an act that is technically criminal but does not result in labeling as such. Often, teenagers are first introduced to intoxicants as a part of a peer-group setting such as a party. An adolescent consuming beer with friends at a party for the first time can be considered an example of primary deviance. Furthermore, many would view recreational marijuana use as another example. An intoxicant is any substance that artificially stimulates the nervous system to generate feelings of pleasure, excitement, or relaxation, such as alcohol. Often, teenagers are first introduced to intoxicants as a part of a peer-group setting such as a party. An adolescent consuming beer with friends at a party for the first time can be considered an example of primary deviance. It may or may not deteriorate into a case of substance abuse 43 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


depending on how the act of deviance is handled by the youth’s family and the society at large. Nonviolent Youth Gangs Youth gangs may not necessarily be involved in criminal activities. They can often just be a space for adolescents to explore issues of identity, belonging, and the pressures of growing up. Membership of a non-criminal youth gang may or may not descend into crime. Youth gangs may have had difficulty answers to questions of identity and belonging within normative institutions such as the family or the school. Membership to gangs, however, can be viewed by society at large as an act of deviance even when no explicitly criminal acts are performed by the group. Shoplifting Shoplifting is a classic form of primary deviance, and one that is the most easily observable around us. Often children tend to pick up things from a store without paying for them. Depending on their age, they may or may not be fully aware of their consequences. For instance, a 7-year-old accompanying their parent on a trip to Walmart may pick up a chocolate bar without informing their parent of it. A 13-year old on the other hand, may have a better cognition of their actions and their consequences. In each case however, sensitive handling of the act of deviance and an avoidance of labeling can help the youth recover from the deviancy without being labeled. Countercultures Subcultures are groups of people who adopt a unique set of rituals, mannerisms, aesthetics, norms, or values. Countercultures are subcultures that adopt a more oppositional, combative attitude towards mainstream culture. People may often be unconsciously attracted towards subcultural and countercultural movements for a variety of reasons, without explicitly identifying with their causes. A classic example of subculture/counterculture associated with deviance is the musical genre known as Punk with its distinct, nonconformist aesthetics of appearance, its intensely political stance often spilling onto belligerence, and the cult-like loyalty it commanded among its adherents at its peak. Workaholism 44 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


People considered to be working too hard and potentially causing harm to their family relationships. It exists in the primary stage until the family begins to label it as a serious systemic family problem. Primary deviance is not something that is observed in children or adolescents alone. Even professional, disciplined, middle-aged adults can find themselves labeled as primary deviants. An example from the workplace is workaholism. Workaholism, like other forms of primary deviance, is a classic social construct whose perception as ‘deviant’ behaviour may vary across cultures. For instance, in certain societies such as Japan, working hard to the point of overworking is very common. The Japanese even have a name for death due to overwork – Karoshi. The Soviet Union under Stalin underwent a period of an intense push towards increasing labour productivity by several multiples of the accepted norm. This movement was known as the Stakhnovite Movement, after a coal miner who claimed to have mined over 100 tons of coal in a single shift – more than 14 times his quota. The Stakhnovite Movement exhorted all Soviet workers to work much more than they were normally capable of, so that they could produce goods and services at several times their allotted quota of work. In particular places and at particular times then, workaholism was even regarded as a virtue. In most parts of the First World however, workaholism is today recognized not just as deviant behavior but even as a form of psychological disorder that may need medical attention to treat. A workaholic may not be aware of their obsessive need to keep working, and often even the people around them may not necessarily be conscious of it. Thus, a workaholic displays their “deviant” behavior prior to being labeled. In fact, given the present popular discourse around maintaining a healthy work-life balance, labeling is likely to push a workaholic to improvement, rather than to an exacerbation of their “deviance”, as happens in the case of secondary deviance. This makes workaholism a good example of primary deviance. At the other end of the workplace deviance spectrum can be placed people who work at a much slower pace and often get labelled as slackers, shirkers, or laggards at the workplace. Contrasting instances of Japanese workaholism with the cultural stereotypes of a relaxed life, such as the ritual of siesta in Mediterranean countries, also helps us to get a deeper appreciation of the social and cultural relativism of norms and deviance. Racial Profiling 45 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Feature: When people are labelled as deviant due to their race or ethnicity, despite not personally participating in deviant behavior. Racial profiling has become a major area of concern in most countries with multi-racial, multi-ethnic populations. It leads to fears that the dominant group may use the instruments of state power such as the police to racially profile and target ethnic minorities for discriminatory treatment. In such cases, the race, ethnicity, or religion of the targeted group is perceived as deviant by the state, and the person becomes a deviant simply on account of their existence in that society. In such cases, deviance is clearly a social construct, and can be countered by having in place a more sensitive and empathetic state and society that does not look upon mere ethnic difference as a form of deviance. Religious Symbols and Observances Feature: Society seeing the wearing of religious symbols or observing religious practices that are not the dominant practices as suspect, despite no misbehavior occurring. Religious symbols, dress codes, and observances can often be perceived as forms of deviance by a hegemonic culture or group. A classic example is the debate over the wearing of the Islamic headscarf ( Hijab/ Burqa/ Purdah) in France and the Quebec province of Canada. The dominant western liberal cultural framework expressed ambiguity over whether the Islamic headscarf is to be viewed as an expression of women’s agency, or a symbol of women’s repression. However, in France and Quebec, the dominant view was that it was an oppressive symbol, leading to a labeling of observant Muslims as deviants and laws outlawing headscarves in some instances. 3.4.2 Secondary Deviance Secondary deviance includes things people do that are abnormal and have become seen as central to their identity. Both the person doing the act and the rest of society can see them as inherently ‘bad’, ‘evil’, ‘criminal’, and so on. Secondary deviance, however, is deviance that occurs as a response to society’s reaction and labeling of the individual engaging in the behaviour as deviant. This type of deviance, unlike primary deviance, has major implications for a person’s status and relationships in society and is a direct result of the internalization of the deviant label. 46 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


A fundamental principle of secondary deviance is the social construction of the self, which means that individuals construct their self-image based on their perception of what others think of them. In simple terms, they start seeing themselves the ways others see them. Examples of Secondary Deviance: 1. ‘Smart’ Vs ‘Dumb’ Students If you label a child as dumb, they may come to see themselves as dumb and therefore not put much effort into their school work. Teachers should always set high expectations to avoid labeling. When working with my education studies students, we often talk about the labels we give students, and the possible effects they may have. If a teacher labels a student dumb or inadequate, that student comes to learn that they’re not expected to do well. The student may begin to set low expectations of themselves. They might label themselves as dumb and incapable, and therefore decide not to try very hard. Here, we have led the student down the path of secondary deviance. You can also use this example to separate out primary versus secondary deviance. Primary deviance: If you tell a student who performs badly in a test that they “can do better next time” or that you “expect better results next time”, you’re constructing primary deviance. In other words, you’re not labelling the student as dumb, but labeling them as capable with effort. Secondary deviance: If you label a student who performs badly as ‘dumb’, or even start giving them easier work, you might send them signals that you don’t expect much of them. You’re encouraging them to internalize the idea that they’re not smart. With this knowledge, teachers should always aim to set high expectations for all students and avoid the temptation to expect less of some students than others. Bullying/Use of Violence If you label a child a bully, they may come to see themselves as bullies and continue to do the bullying. Bullying is a common form of deviance observed among children. A child may resort to bullying other kids due to various reasons that he or she may not be conscious of, such as a lack of attention from parents, unchanneled aggression, dealing with some form of trauma, etc. 47 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


Once labelled a bully or someone with violent tendencies, a child may construct a self-image of themselves as a bad kid. They may then continue to be bullies because that’s what they know society expects of them. They may even grow up into violent adults. Gaps In Professional Resumes People who have gaps in their resumes are often permanently labeled as lazy in late capitalism. You can also think of people who have large gaps in their professional resumes, and the negative perception that recruiters tend to have of them. Several job descriptions explicitly state that an applicant must not have any gap in their studies or work career. People with gaps in their resumes may get characterized as deviants in such a hypercompetitive professional environment that rewards constant activity as demonstrated by professional and personal achievements, and penalizes stillness, or the cessation of professional activity. People may have gaps in their resumes for a variety of reasons ranging from the need to provide care to ailing family members, dealing with personal traumas, or quite simply, to stop and make sense of the often overwhelming nature of life. In the absence of any discourse normalizing such gaps, these people have no other yardstick to measure their situation by, except for the dominant corporate template in which professional gaps are equated with failure and laxness. In a system that demands relentless accounting for every year of your life (demonstrated to have been dedicated to the achieving of such professional goals as deemed desirable by the recruiter), hiding such a gap becomes impossible. The professional CV thus can be thought of as an institution in itself in which the stigma of the gap becomes an indelible negative label. This can result in an internalizing of the dominant narrative by the subject that characterizes their situation as one of deviance. Power And The Juvenile Justice System Police often label people of certain ethnicities and social-class as deviants, despite the fact they may commit less crimes that similar demographics. Aaron Cicourel (1968) in his book The Social Organization of Juvenile Justice argued that the perceptions and stereotypes of police were a major deciding factor in crime statistics. 48 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


In his study of two Californian cities with similar socio-economic profiles yet widely varying rates of delinquency, Cicourel demonstrated that it was the difference in the perceptions of the law enforcement and justice systems that created the delinquency, not actual crime. The police stereotyping included:  Physical appearance (darker skin colour, unkempt hair, dishevelled clothing), and  Manner of speech more closely associated with the wrong social class  In cities where more people possessed those labels, the rates of delinquency were much higher. Cicourel thus concluded that it was the justice system that created delinquency through its need for labeling that in turn fed into a cycle of long-lasting secondary deviance. The Professional Musician Many musicians construct themselves as deviants because they feel society doesn’t understand their culture and skills. The sociologist Howard S. Becker in his influential work The Outsider (1963) (not to be confused with the movie, or the novel of the same name on which it was based) explains how professional musicians begin to think of themselves as being different from the rest of society. Professional musicians, according to Becker, begin to feel isolated from society as they feel that their audience, for the most part, has no real appreciation for, or understanding of the nuances of music. Himself a Jazz musician, Becker spent several years performing with Jazz ensembles in Chicago as part of his fieldwork. As service professionals whose sense of self is deeply connected to the patronage and appreciation by their audience, musicians are a classic case of symbolic interactionism. That is, a case study in how the self is constructed in interaction with others. As Becker (1951) observed during his several years of performing as a Jazz musician, the average customer at a Jazz bar did not much care for the more complex, intricate, improvised pieces of music that the musicians themselves loved to play. Instead, the vast majority demanded the same simple, sugary, commercialized music that the musicians themselves despised, leading to a feeling of contempt and superciliousness developing among the musicians for their audience. This kind of interaction between the 49 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


professional musicians and their audience led to the musicians first steadily isolating themselves, and then increasing this isolation through what Becker calls a process of “self- segregation”. This isolation is not a physical one, but rather a mental and social one, in which the musician becomes obsessed with building a defense in their heads against what they perceive as outside control over their craft, by people (i.e., their audience, for whom they are bound to perform in return for money) who are utterly incapable of appreciating and understanding their craft. Musicians did this, for instance, by using slang such as calling the ordinary person “a square”, by extension implying that a professional musician is not a square, but a deviant. With time, this attitude of perceiving themselves as different from society leads professional musicians into more negative forms of deviant behavior such as drug use, as they feel that the standard norms of social behavior no longer apply to them as deviants. Body Shaming Some people internalize the idea that they are ugly due to society’s unachievable beauty ideals. Victims of body shaming are perceived as deviants on account of their physical appearance that may not always conform to the prevailing norms of physical aesthetics defined by hegemonic groups in a culture. For instance, in a pop-cultural environment obsessed with size-zero figures for women and muscular, ripped bodies for men, however unattainable these may be, people with body types that fall well outside this norm are likely to be victims of body shaming. With time they internalize this perception of their appearance, leading to serious conditions such as body dysmorphia, eating disorders, anorexia, etc. Criminal Tribes of British India Summary: Historically, some people have been labeled as criminals simply based on their ethnicity or locality. The Criminal Tribes Acts were a series of legislations passed by the British colonial state in India under which entire communities, villages, or tribes were declared as criminals. Men of such communities were required to report to the local police stations every week, irrespective of whether or not they had committed any criminal act, and were not allowed to leave their designated residential areas without passes. Thus, all members of such tribes and 50 CU IDOL SELF LEARNING MATERIAL (SLM)


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