Unit-1 Studying Human Society

This unit familarize the students with some tips on how to study a society.

What has been the common theme underlying various meanings of society?

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Learning Pundits Content Team

Written on Apr 15, 2019 12:08:53 PM

Society is a simple word whose meaning is well known. Thus, society is simple and complex; Indian, American, Chinese etc.; agricultural, industrial so on and so forth. As a discipline, the study of Society acquired definitive meaning and shape in the 191h century. Prior to that we had philosophies debating the nature of the Society or the travellers writing about societies visited. It is the famous French sociologist. Emile Durkheim who is given the credit of "treating society as a reality in its own right". That is to say, it is not only an innocent 'covering term' for "things we do not know about or understand properly". If we look at the history of meanings of 'Society', we see new emphases in its meaning appearing for it, especially after the Enlightenment period. Some laid emphasis on 'order', some on 'rationality', some on 'materialism'. However, a clear distancing away from a jelly-like and disorderly existence of the humanity has been found to be a common theme in all these meanings which gave central importance to values and human co-existence with passage of years. Many famous thinkers insisted even on using different expressions for Society which was found to be an inadequate term. Marxists use the word 'social formation' to specify three levels of relationships, it comprises of economic, ideological and political.

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