Sunday, May 1, 2011

Definition of society II

Definition of society II
Society is an artificial construct that is used by anthropologists to see pattern in people’s behavior. As we group these patterns together they take on a structure, and the unit of that are called institution. An institution is simply a pattern of behavior that focuses on a central theme. We may speak of a market as an economic institution, but there is more to a market than a place where people buy and sell things. By market we also mean the activities involved in production, distribution, selling, and consumption. We refer to the patterns of behavior involved in exchanging goods, and the values and preferences and others factors that effect the exchange. Thus a market as an economic institution is much more than a matter of supply and demand or a set of sales figure – it is the whole set of behaviors involved in any exchange of goods.

The same is true for religion. When we speak if a religious institution we are referring to much more than a church and what goes on inside it. We include all behaviors that might be considered religious, such as the extent to which behavior is controlled by religious beliefs or the extent to which belief systems serve to integrate the community. When we combine all these patterns of behavior, we can begin to see how various institutions are tied together and how they affect one another. This tells is the basic structure of the society.
Definition of society II
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