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Emile Durkheim Essay

964 words - 4 pages

Topic 2: Emile Durkheim
Many company and corporate advertisements celebrate the values of community, such as this one from Starbucks (NYT Magazine 12/17/07, p. 83). It states:

Community: “People you share space with, some that you know and some that you don’t. Your lives have a common thread, a tie that binds, whether it’s where you live or beliefs you have or the fact that you give when they need. Yes, it can be as simple as that.”
Discuss how this Starbucks advertisement captures the different meanings of community associated with Durkheim’s concepts of mechanical solidarity and organic solidarity. Find additional examples that illustrate the value of community as both a local and ...view middle of the document...

Durkheim mentions in his argument of modern, urban societies about its contrast to traditional society that the individual is less tightly enveloped and its collective conscience is much less as individuals are spread out into many different directions where sense of familiarity and kinship is diminished. Furthermore not only are individuals less enveloped but even family members spend less time together and branch out to integrate with different sectors of the economy. Modern societies differ to traditional society in that it is more diverse, for example university students may move out of home in order to attend college or university in a different state, country or suburb thus decreasing time spent with family. As people carry on with their daily lives, they are likely to meet someone who is different to them in one way or another, whether it be a person from a different social status, different political or occupational ambitions. This process of individual interaction makes adds to our environmental physical density. As people become more efficient in a specialized task people are more dependent upon one another. In regards to diversity, in modern society cultural diversity is apparent on a wide scope including religious institutions e.g. mosques, churches segregated into different ethnic backgrounds or in some cases mixed.
However even with these characteristics, specialization derived from the division of labor within modern industries create a network of social interdependence and thus a moral effect (Vasta 2010). For stronger and increased specialization to take place durkheim points out the need of cooperation among society and 'Creation' of social ties and interdependence rather than producing alienation (Muller 1994). In modern society unlike traditional society, it is difficult to find social cohesion that is developed from a single collective conscience such as shared beliefs, experiences and overlapping social relationships however it is more focused on the division of labor that is highly specialized as differentiation is necessary to carry out different tasks via those who possess various abilities to meet the...

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