Social structure is the organized set of social institutions and patterns of institutionalized relationships that together make up a society.
Social structures are not immediately visible, but they are always there and affect all dimensions of our experience. They operate on three levels: macro, meso, and micro levels.
MORE IDEAS FROM What Is "Social Structure" in the Context of Sociology?
The meso level can be seen in the social networks that are organized by social institutions and institutionalized social relationships.
Our social networks also show up in social stratification, where relations are structured by class differences, differences in educational attainment, and differences in levels of wealth. In turn, it may shape the kinds of opportunities available and foster behavioral norms that determine the direction of our lives.
Social structures are expressed at the micro-level by the interactions we have with each other in the form of norms and customs.
We see it in the way it shapes our interactions within the family or education and the way institutionalized ideas about race, gender, and sexuality shape our interaction and expectations.
The major social institutions include family, religion, education, media, law, politics, and economy. These are separate institutions that are interrelated and interdependent. Together they form the overarching social structure of a society.
There usually is a hierarchy to these relationships, which results in a power differential. The organization and operation of these social institutions result in other aspects of social structure, including socio-economic stratification.
It is the study of humans and the ways they live. The goal is to understand human diversity and cultural differences. The four primary sub-fields:
Social Economics is a branch of economics and social sciences that puts focus on studying and analyzing the relationship between social behavior and economics.
It attempts to explain how a particular social group or social class behaves within a society and this includes their actions as consumers.
The notion that we often hear, that it’s the size of your network that matters, or the number of people you know, is simply wrong.
What is far more important than the number of people you know is the strength and the quality of your social connections.
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