Media & Society
1.Discuss the concept of new media.
Answer: New Media is a 21st Century catchall term used to define all that is related to the internet and the interplay between technology, images and sound. In fact, the definition of new media changes daily, and will continue to do so. New media evolves and morphs continuously. What it will be tomorrow is virtually unpredictable for most of us, but we do know that it will continue to evolve in fast and furious ways. However, in order to understand an extremely complex and amorphous concept we need a base line.
Wikipedia defines New Media as:
“… a broad term in media studies that emerged in the latter part of the 20th century. For example, new media holds out a possibility of on-demand access to content anytime, anywhere, on any digital device, as well as interactive user feedback, creative participation and community formation around the media content. Another important promise of new media is the "democratization" of the creation, publishing, distribution and consumption of media content. What distinguishes new media from traditional media is the digitizing of content into bits. There is also a dynamic aspect of content production which can be done in real time, but these offerings lack standards and have yet to gain traction.
Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia, is an example, combining Internet accessible digital text, images and video with web-links, creative participation of contributors, interactive feedback of users and formation of a participant community of editors and donors for the benefit of non-community readers. Facebook is an example of the social media model, in which most users are also participants.
Most technologies described as "new media" are digital, often having characteristics of being manipulated, networkable, dense, compressible, and interactive. Some examples may be the Internet, websites, computer multimedia, computer games, CD-ROMS, and DVDs. New media does not include television programs, feature films, magazines, books, or paper-based publications – unless they contain technologies that enable digital interactivity.“
As a consequence of the quick embrace of New Media by business, causes, communications, and a multitude of others, the question of “what is new media?” did not receive an official or standardized response. Instead, responses to this question have often entailed a series of hackneyed keywords or empty phrases whose effectiveness is yet to be determined. The question of new media isn’t a question that merely indexes new toys and tools. Rather, there is a qualitative question that lurks beneath the shining surface of the screen brandishing the images we associate as products or elements of New Media. A good question to ask instead of “what is new media?” is “what isn’t new media?” To be sure, there are some definite signposts to guide the twenty-first century user’s query.
The term “new media” seems to escape its very definition. Loosely, new media is a way of organizing a cloud of technology, skills, and processes that change so quickly that it is impossible to fully define just what those tools and processes are. For example, the cell phone in the late 1980’s could be thought of as part of new media, while today the term might only apply selectively to a certain type of phone with a given system of applications, or even more commonly, the content of those apps. Part of the difficulty in defining New Media is that there is an elusive quality to the idea of “new.” The very prospect of being new denotes an event just beyond the horizon, something that has only just arrived and which we are just beginning to get our hands on. Perhaps in searching for a suitable characterization for this network of tools and ideas is the idea of limitless possibility. Limitless possibility for communication, for innovation, and education is certainly a fundamental element that shapes our conceptions of new media usage from now on.
Nevertheless, in seeking a definition of “New Media” we need some basic tenets that can help us get a better positive understanding of what New Media is beyond what New Media isn’t. New media can be characterized by the variegated use of images, words, and sounds. These networks of images, sounds, and text data are different from old media formats such as hardcopy newspapers because of the nesting characteristic.
Nesting is a way of organizing of the presentation of information according to subjects while paying secondary attention to context. In the place of context, nesting (most commonly seen in text or image hyper-linking) is a format that fosters organization in a way in which elements interact with one another instead of simply following a straight order. This new organization of data does not require a “back story” and each interactive element of information stands alone. New media requires a non-linear interpretation, since many sources are often oriented around the same subject-center, but are not always collated. At the end of the day all this means is that one of the primary characteristics of new media is that it is freed from the linear restrictions of older formats such as newspapers, books, and magazines.
2.Discuss the theoretical approach in relation with role of media in society.
Answer: Mass media is communication—whether written, broadcast, or spoken—that reaches a large audience. This includes television, radio, advertising, movies, the Internet, newspapers, magazines, and so forth.
Mass media is a significant force in modern culture, particularly in America. Sociologists refer to this as a mediated culture where media reflects and creates the culture. Communities and individuals are bombarded constantly with messages from a multitude of sources including TV, billboards, and magazines, to name a few. These messages promote not only products, but moods, attitudes, and a sense of what is and is not important. Mass media makes possible the concept of celebrity: without the ability of movies, magazines, and news media to reach across thousands of miles, people could not become famous. In fact, only political and business leaders, as well as the few notorious outlaws, were famous in the past. Only in recent times have actors, singers, and other social elites become celebrities or “stars.”
The current level of media saturation has not always existed. As recently as the 1960s and 1970s, television, for example, consisted of primarily three networks, public broadcasting, and a few local independent stations. These channels aimed their programming primarily at two‐parent, middle‐class families. Even so, some middle‐class households did not even own a television. Today, one can find a television in the poorest of homes, and multiple TVs in most middle‐class homes. Not only has availability increased, but programming is increasingly diverse with shows aimed to please all ages, incomes, backgrounds, and attitudes. This widespread availability and exposure makes television the primary focus of most mass‐media discussions. More recently, the Internet has increased its role exponentially as more businesses and households “sign on.” Although TV and the Internet have dominated the mass media, movies and magazines—particularly those lining the aisles at grocery checkout stands—also play a powerful role in culture, as do other forms of media.
What role does mass media play? Legislatures, media executives, local school officials, and sociologists have all debated this controversial question. While opinions vary as to the extent and type of influence the mass media wields, all sides agree that mass media is a permanent part of modern culture. Three main sociological perspectives on the role of media exist: the limited‐effects theory, the class‐dominant theory, and the culturalist theory.
The limited‐effects theory argues that because people generally choose what to watch or read based on what they already believe, media exerts a negligible influence. This theory originated and was tested in the 1940s and 1950s. Studies that examined the ability of media to influence voting found that well‐informed people relied more on personal experience, prior knowledge, and their own reasoning. However, media “experts” more likely swayed those who were less informed. Critics point to two problems with this perspective. First, they claim that limited‐effects theory ignores the media´s role in framing and limiting the discussion and debate of issues. How media frames the debate and what questions members of the media ask change the outcome of the discussion and the possible conclusions people may draw. Second, this theory came into existence when the availability and dominance of media was far less widespread.
The class‐dominant theory argues that the media reflects and projects the view of a minority elite, which controls it. Those people who own and control the corporations that produce media comprise this elite. Advocates of this view concern themselves particularly with massive corporate mergers of media organizations, which limit competition and put big business at the reins of media—especially news media. Their concern is that when ownership is restricted, a few people then have the ability to manipulate what people can see or hear. For example, owners can easily avoid or silence stories that expose unethical corporate behavior or hold corporations responsible for their actions.
The issue of sponsorship adds to this problem. Advertising dollars fund most media. Networks aim programming at the largest possible audience because the broader the appeal, the greater the potential purchasing audience and the easier selling air time to advertisers becomes. Thus, news organizations may shy away from negative stories about corporations (especially parent corporations) that finance large advertising campaigns in their newspaper or on their stations. Television networks receiving millions of dollars in advertising from companies like Nike and other textile manufacturers were slow to run stories on their news shows about possible human‐rights violations by these companies in foreign countries. Media watchers identify the same problem at the local level where city newspapers will not give new cars poor reviews or run stories on selling a home without an agent because the majority of their funding comes from auto and real estate advertising. This influence also extends to programming. In the 1990s a network cancelled a short‐run drama with clear religious sentiments, Christy, because, although highly popular and beloved in rural America, the program did not rate well among young city dwellers that advertisers were targeting in ads.
Critics of this theory counter these arguments by saying that local control of news media largely lies beyond the reach of large corporate offices elsewhere, and that the quality of news depends upon good journalists. They contend that those less powerful and not in control of media have often received full media coverage and subsequent support. As examples they name numerous environmental causes, the anti‐nuclear movement, the anti‐Vietnam movement, and the pro‐Gulf War movement.
While most people argue that a corporate elite controls media, a variation on this approach argues that a politically “liberal” elite controls media. They point to the fact that journalists, being more highly educated than the general population, hold more liberal political views, consider themselves “left of center,” and are more likely to register as Democrats. They further point to examples from the media itself and the statistical reality that the media more often labels conservative commentators or politicians as “conservative” than liberals as “liberal.”
Media language can be revealing, too. Media uses the terms “arch” or “ultra” conservative, but rarely or never the terms “arch” or “ultra” liberal. Those who argue that a political elite controls media also point out that the movements that have gained media attention—the environment, anti‐nuclear, and anti‐Vietnam—generally support liberal political issues. Predominantly conservative political issues have yet to gain prominent media attention, or have been opposed by the media. Advocates of this view point to the Strategic Arms Initiative of the 1980s Reagan administration. Media quickly characterized the defense program as “Star Wars,” linking it to an expensive fantasy. The public failed to support it, and the program did not get funding or congressional support.
The culturalist theory, developed in the 1980s and 1990s, combines the other two theories and claims that people interact with media to create their own meanings out of the images and messages they receive. This theory sees audiences as playing an active rather than passive role in relation to mass media. One strand of research focuses on the audiences and how they interact with media; the other strand of research focuses on those who produce the media, particularly the news.
Theorists emphasize that audiences choose what to watch among a wide range of options, choose how much to watch, and may choose the mute button or the VCR remote over the programming selected by the network or cable station. Studies of mass media done by sociologists parallel text‐reading and interpretation research completed by linguists (people who study language). Both groups of researchers find that when people approach material, whether written text or media images and messages, they interpret that material based on their own knowledge and experience. Thus, when researchers ask different groups to explain the meaning of a particular song or video, the groups produce widely divergent interpretations based on age, gender, race, ethnicity, and religious background. Therefore, culturalist theorists claim that, while a few elite in large corporations may exert significant control over what information media produces and distributes, personal perspective plays a more powerful role in how the audience members interpret those messages.
3.Discuss the concept of globalization.
Answer: obalization has become a familiar enough word, the meaning of which has been discussed by others before me during this conference. Let me nonetheless outline briefly what I understand by the term. I shall then go on to consider what has caused it. The bulk of my paper is devoted to discussing what we know, and what we do not know, about its consequences. I will conclude by considering what policy reactions seem to be called for.
It is the world economy which we think of as being globalized. We mean that the whole of the world is increasingly behaving as though it were a part of a single market, with interdependent production, consuming similar goods, and responding to the same impulses. Globalization is manifested in the growth of world trade as a proportion of output (the ratio of world imports to gross world product, GWP, has grown from some 7% in 1938 to about 10% in 1970 to over 18% in 1996). It is reflected in the explosion of foreign direct investment (FDI): FDI in developing countries has increased from $2.2 billion in 1970 to $154 billion in 1997. It has resulted also in national capital markets becoming increasingly integrated, to the point where some $1.3 trillion per day crosses the foreign exchange markets of the world, of which less than 2% is directly attributable to trade transactions.
While they cannot be measured with the same ease, some other features of globalization are perhaps even more interesting. An increasing share of consumption consists of goods that are available from the same companies almost anywhere in the world. The technology that is used to produce these goods is increasingly standardized and invariant to the location of production. Above all, ideas have increasingly become the common property of the whole of humanity.
This was brought home to me vividly by a conference that I attended four years ago, where we discussed the evolution of economic thought around the world during the half-century since World War Two (Coats 1997). We debated whether the increasing degree of convergence in economic thinking and technique, and the disappearance of national schools of economic thought, could more aptly be described as the internationalization, the homogenization, or the Americanization of economics. My own bottom line was that economics had indeed been largely internationalized, that it had been substantially homogenized, but only to a limited extent Americanized, for non-American economists continue to make central contributions to economic thought, as the Nobel Committee recognized by its award to Amartya Sen a few weeks before this conference took place. Incidentally, the nicest summary of the change in economic thinking over the period was offered by the Indian participant in that conference, who remarked that his graduate students used to return from Cambridge, England focusing on the inadequacies of the Invisible Hand, while now they return from Cambridge Mass. focusing on the inadequacies of the Visible Hand! In the same vein, one of the more telling criticisms of my phrase "the Washington Consensus" was that the (substantial though certainly incomplete) consensus on economic policy extends far beyond Washington.
However, there are areas where globalization is incomplete, even in the economic sphere. In particular, migration is very far from being free. Highly skilled professionals have a relatively high degree of mobility, but those without skills often face obstacles in migrating to higher-wage countries. Despite the difficulties, substantial proportions of the labour forces of some countries are in fact working abroad: for example, around 10% of the Sri Lankan labour force is now abroad.
Moreover, globalization is much less of a reality in other fields than it is in the economic one. Culture still displays strong national, and even regional and local, variations. While English is clearly in the process of emerging to be a common world language, at least as a second language, minority languages are making something of a comeback, at least in developed countries. Sport is still very different around the world: the Americans have still not learnt to play cricket, and most of the rest of us have still not learned to understand what they see in baseball. Although the nation state is far less dominant than it used to be, with significant powers being devolved both downwards to regional and local authorities and upwards to international and in Europe to supranational institutions (and although "interfering in the internal affairs of another state" is less frowned on than formerly), politics is still organized primarily on the basis of nation-states.
What explains this globalization? It is certainly not attributable to conquest, the source of most previous historical episodes where a single economic system has held sway over a vast geographical terrain. The source lies instead in the development of technology. The costs of transport, of travel, and above all the costs of communicating information have fallen dramatically in the postwar period, almost entirely because of the progress of technology. A 3-minute telephone call from the USA to Britain cost $12 in 1946, whereas today it can cost as little as 48 cents, despite the fact that consumer prices have multiplied by over eight times in the intervening period. The first computers were lumbering away with piles of punched cards in the early postwar years, and telegrams provided the only rapid means of written communication. There was no fax or internet or e-mail or world-wide web, no PCs or satellites or cell-phones. Today we witness phenomena that no futurist dreamed of half a century ago, such as Indians with medical degrees residing in Bangalore who earn a living by acting as secretaries to American doctors by transcribing their tapes overnight.
It is clearly the availability of cheap, rapid and reliable communications that permits such phenomena, just as this is the key to the integration of the international capital market. I presume the same factor is important in nurturing the growth of multinational corporations, since it is this which enables them to exploit their intellectual property efficiently in a variety of locations without losing the ability to maintain control from head office. But in this context I would surmise that other factors are also at work, such as the spread of consumer knowledge about what is available that comes from travel and from advertising, itself encouraged by the communications revolution and its children like CNN. The reduction in transport costs is also a key factor underlying the growth in trade.
Of course, it needed a reasonably peaceful world to induce economic agents to exploit the opportunities for globalization presented by technological progress. But the technological basis for the phenomenon of globalization implies that, barring an end to the "Pax Americana" or else extremely vigorous conscious actions to reverse the process, globalization is here to stay.
Globalization certainly permits an increase in the level of global output. Whether as a result of the old Heckscher-Ohlin theory of the basis of comparative advantage as lying in different factor abundance in different countries, or as a result of the new trade theories that explain trade by increasing returns to scale, trade will increase world output.2 Likewise FDI brings the best technology, and other forms of intellectual capital, to countries that would otherwise have to make do without it, or else invest substantial resources in reinventing the wheel for themselves. It may also bring products that would otherwise be unavailable to the countries where the investment occurs, which presumably increases the quality, and therefore the value, of world output. And international capital flows can transfer savings from countries where the marginal product of capital is low to those where it is high, which again increases world output.
Globalization must be expected to influence the distribution of income as well as its level. So far as the distribution of income between countries is concerned, standard theory would lead one to expect that all countries will benefit. Economists have long preached that trade is mutually beneficial, and most of us believe that the experience of widespread growth alongside rapidly growing trade in the postwar period serves to substantiate that. Similarly most FDI goes where a multinational has intellectual capital that can contribute something to the local economy, and is therefore likely to be mutually beneficial to investor and recipient. And a flow of capital that finances a real investment is again likely to benefit both parties, since the yield on the investment is expected to be higher than the rate of interest the borrower has to pay, while that rate of interest is also likely to be higher than the lender could expect at home since otherwise there would have been no incentive to send it abroad. Loose talk about free trade making the rich countries richer and poor countries poorer finds no support in economic analysis. Nor is there any reason for supposing that the North benefits itself at the expense of the South by imposing import restrictions like non-tariff barriers or agricultural subsidies: standard theory says that, while this does indeed impoverish the South, the public in the North also suffers, and it loses more than the producers gain. This suggests that a promising strategy for eliminating such barriers is to seek a coalition with Northern consumers, rather than to engage in North-bashing which will simply alienate potential Northern allies.3
The effects on domestic income distribution are less clear. Standard theory says that trade will tend to hurt unskilled labour in rich countries and to help it in poor ones, since the poor countries will be able to export-labour-intensive goods like garments to rich countries, thus increasing the demand for unskilled labour in the poor countries and decreasing it in the rich ones. That is, within rich countries, there is a good analytical reason for arguing that trade will tend to make the rich richer and the poor poorer. There has in recent years been a lively debate among economists in the developed countries as to whether the increase in imports of labour-intensive goods has been a major factor in causing the fall in the relative (and sometimes absolute) wages of the unskilled in these countries: the majority of economists seem to have concluded that it is a contributory factor, but that the major part of the explanation lies instead in the skill-intensive form of technological progress (Cline 1997).
It seems more difficult to doubt that exports of labour-intensive goods have been a factor that has done something to increase the demand for unskilled labour, and therefore to equalize the income distribution, in the exporting countries like Sri Lanka. Hence I find it betrays a sad lack of concern with the prospects of the poor to hear, as I have during this conference, garment exports being denigrated as likely in some unexplained way to bring negative impacts. On the other hand, some of the effects of the communications revolution must surely have had a disequalizing effect on income distribution in these countries: think of the Indian doctors who are acting as secretaries to American doctors rather than treating Indian patients, thereby earning more for themselves and also tending to pull up the pay of other doctors in India, who are relatively affluent by Indian standards. Similarly, differential mobility of skilled versus unskilled labour tends to pull up the salaries of the skilled in developing countries toward world levels, thereby leaving less for the immobile poor. The same result will occur if the owners of highly-mobile capital are able to evade taxes by investing abroad, and also if governments are induced to avoid imposing high tax rates on internationally mobile capital, or on those who might be prompted to emigrate, in the hope of keeping these factors at home. Thus the net effect of globalization on income distribution within developing countries seems to me distinctly ambiguous.
4.What are the distinctive features of a globalised economy? Discuss
Answer: The main features of globalization are stated below.
The freedom of the industrialist/businessman to establish industry, trade or commerce either in his country or abroad; free exchange of capital, goods, service and technologies between countries;
- Free Trade:
Free trade between countries; absence of excessive governmental control over trade;
- Globalization of Economic Activities:
Control of economic activities by domestic market and international market; coordination of national economy and world economy;
Localities being connected with the world by breaking national boundaries; forging of links between one society and another, and between one country and another through international transmission of knowledge, literature, technology, culture and information.
- Borderless Globe:
Breaking of national barriers and creation of inter- connectedness; the ideal of ´borderless globe´ articulated by Kenichi Ohmae.
- A Composite Process:
Integration of nation-states across the world by common economic, commercial, political, cultural and technological ties; creation of a new world order with no national boundaries;
- A Multi-dimensional Process:
Economically, it means opening up of national market, free trade and commerce among nations, and integration of national economies with the world economy. Politically, it means limited powers and functions of state, more rights and freedoms granted to the individual and empowerment of private sector; culturally, it means exchange of cultural values between societies and between nations; and ideologically, it means the spread of liberalism and capitalism.
- A Top-Down process:
Globalization originates from developed countries and the MNCs (multinational corporations) based in them. Technologies, capital, products and services come from them to developing countries. It is for developing countries to accept these things, adapt themselves to them and to be influenced by them.
As a result, the values and norms of developed countries are gradually rooted in developing countries. This leads to the growth of a monoculture - the culture of the north (developed countries) being imposed on the South (developing countries). This involves the erosion and loss of the identity and the cultures of developing countries. Globalization is thus a one-way traffic: it flows from the North to the South.
But this view of globalization has been contested. Some scholars have argued that globalization tends to provoke backlash at the community, local, regional and ethnic levels when the national government fails to resist or counter the invasion of globalization.
In the face of aggression of globalization, the people, in protest against the failure of the national government to defend them, develop or strengthen their allegiance to their community, locality, region or ethnic group. In this process, local identity, regional identity and ethnic identity take root and get strengthened. Thus globalization goes hand in hand with localization, regionalization and multiculturalism.
- Global State vs Global Civil Society:
In protest against the harmful effects of globalization on the vast multitude of people all over the world, particularly in developing countries, protest marches, demonstrations and meetings have been organized in different countries. These protests have taken militant forms in the last decade. Protest groups have tried to disturb and paralyse the meetings of WTO, World Bank and IMF.
They charge that these UN-based organizations have been the agents of globalization and that they have been used by developed countries as their instruments to exploit and dominate developing countries. These protest groups-environmental groups, human rights groups, women´s groups, farmers´ groups and peace groups have interlocked themselves at the global level.
As a result, a global civil society, though yet not fully developed, has come into being, but a global state is a distant dream. The UN and its affiliated organisations which could have been the foundation of a global state have been weakened by many forces including globalization.
5.Discuss the structure and set up of the society.
Answer: In the social sciences, social structure is the patterned social arrangements in society that are both emergent from and determinant of the actions of the individuals. On the macro scale, social structure is the system of socioeconomic stratification (e.g., the class structure), social institutions, or, other patterned relations between large social groups. On the meso scale, it is the structure of social network ties between individuals or organizations. On the micro scale, it can be the way norms shape the behavior of individuals within the social system.
Social norms influence social structure through relations between the majority and the minority. Because those who align with the majority are considered normal while those who align with the minority are considered abnormal, majority-minority relations create a hierarchical stratification within social structures that favors the majority in all aspects of society.
These scales are not always kept separate. For example, recent scholarship by John Levi Martin has theorized that certain macro-scale structures are the emergent properties of micro-scale cultural institutions (this meaning of "structure" resembles that used by anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss). Marxist sociology also has a history of mixing different meanings of social structure, though it has done so by simply treating the cultural aspects of social structure as epiphenomena of its economic ones.
Since the 1920s, the term has been in general use in social science, especially as a variable whose sub-components needed to be distinguished in relationship to other sociological variables.
The notion of social structure as relationship between different entities or groups or as enduring and relatively stable patterns of relationship emphasises the idea that society is grouped into structurally related groups or sets of roles, with different functions, meanings or purposes. One example of social structure is the idea of "social stratification", which refers to the idea that most societies are separated into different strata (levels), guided (if only partially) by the underlying structures in the social system. This approach has been important in the academic literature with the rise of various forms of structuralism. It is important in the modern study of organizations, because an organization´s structure may determine its flexibility, capacity to change, and many other factors. Therefore, structure is an important issue for management.
Social structure may be seen to influence important social systems including the economic system, legal system, political system, cultural system, and others. Family, religion, law, economy, and class are all social structures. The "social system" is the parent system of those various systems that are embedded in it.
As noted above, social structure has been identified as
the relationship of definite entities or groups to each other, enduring patterns of behaviour by participants in a social system in relation to each other, and institutionalised norms or cognitive frameworks that structure the actions of actors in the social system.
Lopez and Scott (2000) distinguish between institutional structure and relational structure, where in the former.
Social structure is seen as comprising those cultural or normative patterns that define the expectations of agents hold about each other´s behaviour and that organize their enduring relations with each other.
Whereas in the latter. social structure is seen as comprising the relationships themselves, understood as patterns of causal interconnection and interdependence among agents and their actions, as well as the positions that they occupy.
Social structure can also be divided into microstructure and macrostructure. Microstructure is the pattern of relations between most basic elements of social life, that cannot be further divided and have no social structure of their own (for example, pattern of relations between individuals in a group composed of individuals - where individuals have no social structure, or a structure of organizations as a pattern of relations between social positions or social roles, where those positions and roles have no structure by themselves). Macrostructure is thus a kind of ´second level´ structure, a pattern of relations between objects that have their own structure (for example, a political social structure between political parties, as political parties have their own social structure). Some types of social structures that modern sociologist differentiate are relation structures (in family or larger family-like clan structures), communication structures (how information is passed in organizations) and sociometric structures (structures of sympathy, antipathy and indifference in organisations - this was studied by Jacob L. Moreno).
Social rule system theory reduces the structures of to particular rule system arrangements, that is, the types of basic structures of . It shares with role theory, organizational and institutional sociology, and network analysis the concern with structural properties and developments and at the same time provides detailed conceptual tools needed to generate interesting, fruitful propositions and models and analyses.
Sociologists also distinguish between:
Normative structure – pattern of relations in given structure (organisation) between norms and modes of operations of people of varying social positions
Ideal structure – pattern of relations between beliefs and views of people of varying social positions
Interest structure – pattern of relations between goals and desires of people of varying social positions
Interaction structure – forms of communications of people of varying social positions
6.Explain the basic elements of society
Answer: Some of the basic elements of the society are as follows:
(i) A System of social relationship
According to Maclver Society is "a web of social relationship". Social relationship is the basis of Society. The family alone is said to have as many as fifteen relationships based on age, sex and generation. Outside the family there is no limit to the number of possible relationships. Reutor says" Just as life is not a things but a process of living, so society is not a thing but a process of associating". The meaning of social relationship shall be clearer if we draw a distinction between physical and social relation. The relationship between pen and ink, earth and sun, a book and bookshelf, fire and wood is physical relationship because these physical objects do not have any reciprocal awareness what so ever. On the other hand, the social relations exist between the mother and the child, the teacher and the thought are determined by reciprocal awareness. Without this awareness, there can be no social relationship, and therefore no society.
Likeness is an essential prerequisite of society. Maclver Says," Society means likeness". It exists among the like beings, like-bodied and like-minded". It is likeness or similarity, which provides for understanding each by the other. An understanding of this sort lies at the root of our friendship, intimacy, association, institution and any such other type of social relationship. In the primitive society, the sense of likeness was focused on kinship that is real or supposed blood relationships. But the scope of likeness has broadened in modern societies. People establish similar social relationships in a society on account of similar traditions, folkways, mores etc. Thus, similarity or likeness is the basis of society.
Society also implies difference. If individuals are exactly alike, their social relationship would be very much limited. There would be little reciprocity, little give and take Family, for example, rests on biological difference of sexes. People differ from one another in their attitude ability, talent; personality etc. people peruse different activities because of these differences.
Interdependence is another essential element of society. Family, for example, is based on the biological interdependence of sexes. One depends upon the other for the satisfaction of one´s needs. Today not only countries but also continents depend upon one another.
(v) Co-Operation and Conflict:
Society is based on co-operation. It is the very basis of social life. Unless people cooperate with each other they cannot lead a happy and comfortable life. No society can be healthy and prosperous without co-operation. Family rests on co-operation with one another to live happily. In the words of P.Gisbert “co-operation is the most elementary process of social life without which society is impossible”. Co-operation avoids mutual destructiveness and results in economy.
Along with co-operation, there is conflict in society. It is the cause of evolution. It makes us think of the process of struggle through which all things have come into existence. Maclver says that "Society is co-operation crossed by conflict".
Every Society is unique because it has its own culture. Culture is a thing which only human beings possess. It refers to the social heritage of man. It includes our attitude, moral values beliefs, ideas, ideologies, our institutions, political, legal economic, our sciences and philosophies. The member of a society shares a common culture.
(vii) Society is abstract
Society is an organization marked by division of labour of some kind or other. It consists of social relations, customs, laws and mores etc. These social relations are abstract and intangible. It cannot be seen or touched. It can only be realized. In this way, abstractness is an element of society.
7.What do you understand by interdependence and cooperation?
Answer: One possibility is that an altruist might benefit not from the active return of a benefit, but as a secondary consequence. This suggestion is not new (Brown 1983; Connor 1986; Leimar & Connor 2003), and has been developed in the context of group augmentation where helpers at the nest benefit from rearing more group members (Kokko et al. 2001). Nevertheless, it has received remarkably little attention. Here, I argue that such a mechanism deserves further attention and I provide a theoretical underpinning for when we should expect it to be found. The basis for this is interdependence: many apparently altruistic acts have as their beneficiary an individual in whose welfare the altruist has some interest or ‘stake’. Where this is true, altruists can be expected to benefit as a secondary consequence of their behaviour. This means that being altruistic could be in one’s own long-term best interests, so cooperation could be favoured without reciprocation. This can be formalized by noting that altruists pay a cost c which benefits a recipient by b. Then, unlike in reciprocal altruism where the recipient actively benefits the original altruist, the altruist gains secondarily as a function of the beneficiary’s gain.
We have seen that an individual can achieve a net benefit through being altruistic when the secondary benefits received through its interdependence with the beneficiary more than offset the costs (equation 1). However, for the expected case where interdependence is less than complete (s ! 1), the beneficiary of the altruistic act will increase in fitness more than does the altruist. This means that although individuals can increase their absolute fitness by being altruistic, they suffer a decrease in relative fitness with respect to their recipients. It would therefore seem that those accepting altruism without performing it would do best, and so that interdependence could not lead to altruism becoming established in a population. To investigate this we need to take a game-theoretical approach (Maynard Smith 1982)
8.Discuss the significance of society and relationship.
Answer: In social science, a social relation or social interaction is any relationship between two or more individuals. Social relations derived from individual agency form the basis of social structure and the basic object for analysis by social scientists. Fundamental inquiries into the nature of social relations feature in the work of sociologists such as Max Weber in his theory of social action.
Categorizing social interactions enables observational and other social research, such as Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft (lit. "Community and Society"), collective consciousness, etc. However different schools and theories of sociology and other social sciences dispute the methods used for such investigations.
According to Piotr Sztompka, forms of relation and interaction in sociology and anthropology may be described as follows: first and most basic are animal-like behaviors, i.e. various physical movements of the body. Then there are actions - movements with a meaning and purpose. Then there are social behaviors, or social actions, which address (directly or indirectly) other people, which solicit a response from another agent. Next are social contacts, a pair of social actions, which form the beginning of social interactions. Social interactions in turn form the basis of social relations. Symbols define social relationships. Without symbols, our social life would be no more sophisticated than that of animals. For example, without symbols we would have no aunts or uncles, employers or teachers-or even brothers and sisters. In sum, Symbolic integrations analyze how social life depends on the ways we define ourselves and others. They study face-to-face interaction, examining how people make sense out of life, how they determine their relationships.
The term “society” means relationships social beings, men, express their nature by creating and re-creating an organization which guides and controls their behavior in myriad ways. Society liberates and limits the activities of men and it is a necessary condition of every human being and need to fulfillment of life. Society is a system of usages and procedures of authority and mutual aid many divisions of controls of human behavior and of liberties. This changing system, we call society and it is always changing. Society exists only where social beings “behave” toward one another in ways determined by their recognition of one another.Society not confined to man. It should be clear that society is not limited to human beings. There are many degrees of animal societies, likely the ants, the bee, the hornet, are known to most school children. It has been contended that wherever there is life there is society, because life means heredity and, so far as we know, can arise only out of and in the presence of other life. All higher animals at least have a very definite society, arising out of the requirements their nature and the conditions involved in the perpetuation of their species . In society each member seeks something and gives something. A society can also consist of likeminded people governed by their own norms and values within a dominant, large society moreover; a society may be illustrated as an economic, social or industrial infrastructure, made up of a varied collection of individuals. Finally, we can say that the word “society” may also refer to an organized voluntary association of people for religious, benevolent, cultural, scientific, political, patriotic or other purposes. Society is universal and pervasive and has no defined boundary or assignable limits. A society is a collection of individuals united by certain relations or modes of behavior which mark them off from others who do not enter into those relations or who differ from them in behavior. In this way we can conclude that, society is the whole complex of social behavior and the network of social relationship.
CASE STUDY: FROM BIG MAC TO RICE BURGER — GLOBALIZATION:
MCDONALD’S IN JAPAN
Multinational corporations like McDonald’s are prime examples of how globalization works. While the concept of ‘globalization’ is not always easy to grasp, the ubiquitous big bright yellow triple ‘M’ is easily recognized from America to Africa.
McDonald’s, embodying the concept, is therefore a great case-study when exploring the effects globalization. This short essay explores the impact of McDonald’s spread around the world- specifically, of its growth in Japan. Has the coming of McDonald’s restaurants brought American culture to Japan? To what extent does this process involve cultural imperialism? Before we go further into the case study of McDonald’s to Japan, we will briefly explain the concept of globalization. After a short history of McDonald’s, we will illustrate its introduction to Japan, followed by a brief conclusion on how McDonald’s has found its way in Japanese society.
Globalization exists in many forms. One can speak of ‘globalization’ in economic terms: countries all over the world are becoming more dependent of each other when it comes to trade and computer connections. Cities like London, Tokyo and New York are closely connected in these ways. Globalization also works politically when countries develop closer ties (Wilterdink and Heerikhuizen 2003, 34). One also speaks of globalization in cultural terms. In “Global Culture: Dreams, Nightmares and Skepticism”, John Tomlinson writes about a ‘world culture’. This illustrates the idea that, as Hannerz points out, the world has become a network of social relationships where cultural practices and experiences are spread across over the globe (Tomlinson 1999, 71). By world culture he means the circumstances where these practices integrate and flow together.
When discussing the topic of globalization, the term ‘cultural imperialism’ is often coined. This popular ‘cultural imperialism thesis’ involves the idea that dominant cultures (generally American or Western culture) overrule others that are culturally weaker. One can especially perceive this idea of imperialism with worldwide consumer goods like food, clothes or music. It also reflects on how certain Western key institutions, like industrialism or urbanism, spread around the globe.
Although Tomlinson’s article mainly focuses on the concept of cultural imperialism, he is highly critical in his use of the term. He makes two general observations. First, he speaks of ‘cultural deterritorialization’ to explain how modern-day globalized culture (dominated by the West) is not experienced by Westerners as being their own (local) culture. This points out that global modernity is ‘placeless’ and ‘decentred’. It seems to be nobody’s culture; it is deterritorialized. The West is not convinced of its own cultural superiority, and therefore, as Tomlinson says ‘(...) it seems unconvincing to speak of the present or future global cultural condition as the ‘Triumph of the West’’.
Secondly, Tomlinson does not believe that other (non-Western) cultures will disappear through the domination of the West. On the contrary, he believes that every culture applies new cultural systems or goods to its own society in unique ways. This is called ‘indigenization’, where the receiving culture gives its own ‘flavour’ to imported cultural goods.
Although Tomlinson does not deny that globalization evolves unbalanced processes where there are winners and losers, he points out that cultural imperialism might not be as bad as it sounds. It does not necessarily imply that the whole world will become
Americanized or Westernized.
McDonald’s in Japan
The first 1954 McDonald’s in Los Angeles was not more than an ordinary drive-in where people could buy cheap hamburgers (no need to tip the waitress!). It was Ray Kroc, salesmen of paper cups and mixers, who signed a contract with owners Dick and Mac McDonald to expand the McDonald’s concept. In 1974, the analysis of the McDonald’s company was as follows: “The basis of McDonald’s success is serving a low-priced, valueoriented product fast and efficiently in clean and pleasant surroundings. While the Company’s menu is limited, it contains food staples that are widely accepted in North America” (Ray Kroc 1977, 177). Ray Kroc was a risk taker who believed in the simple formula of clean and cheap McDonald’s restaurants. The Big Mac was introduced in 1968. In 1976, the 4000th restaurant was opened in America. At present McDonald’s has globally spread to 118 different countries
McDonald’s has gone a long way from being a simple drive-in. In 1971 the chain reached Japan, where it immediately became a huge success. McDonald’s Japan preserved the original McDonald’s concept, but did apply slight adjustments to the menu in order to comply with Japanese taste. McDonald’s Japan introduced the Teriyaki Burger, the Rice Burger and, amongst other products, Green Tea ice-cream.
Except for slight changes in the menu, other differences emerged between McDonald’s US and McDonald’s Japan. These differences relate to how McDonald’s restaurants were perceived by Japanese consumers. In “McDonald’s in Japan: Changing Manner and Etiquette”, Ohnuki-Tierney writes how most Japanese consumers consider McDonald’s products as snacks rather than considering them to constitute a ‘real’ meal. McDonald’s therefore did not pose a serious threat to the Japanese lunch or dinner market (Ohnuki- Tierney 1997, 164). Several factors explain this perception of McDonald’s products as snacks. The first important reason is that most products on the McDonald’s menu, such as hamburgers, cannot be shared amongst several people. Sharing is an important part of
Japanese dinner or lunch time, because it brings a sense of community (169). Secondly,
McDonald’s food consists mostly of meat and bread. The majority of the Japanese population does not consider meat as a part of their traditional lifestyle; it is typically considered to be part of the Western diet. Before McDonald’s was introduced in Japan, the combination of meat and bread was quite alien to many Japanese. Additionally, the overall lack of rice in McDonald’s food makes it unsuitable for a proper dinner or lunch. According to most Japanese, a ‘real’ meal always includes rice, which is not only seen as good nutrition but also as an important part of Japanese national identity.
McDonald’s did not only introduce a new type of food to Japan, it also introduced a new way to eat. The ‘table manners’ at McDonald’s clashed with traditional Japanese ways to eat. At McDonald’s, one eats whilst standing instead of sitting, and uses his hands instead of chopsticks. McDonald’s also made it more common to drink soda’s directly out of the bottle, and to finish a meal with some ice-cream . Although many facets within this new style of eating were initially associated with bad etiquette, McDonald’s turned them into something trendy. But, as Ohnuki-Tierney writes: ‘In the public sphere the “new” forms of etiquette gradually became the norm; the fashionableness of eating fast food wore thin as the restaurants became a routine feature of everyday, working life’. McDonald’s became a mainstream phenomenon within Japanese society.
Global goes Glocal
Whilst McDonald’s initially symbolized American culture (or rather, symbolized how the US was perceived by Japanese), it has now become part of Japanese ‘local’ culture. I would rather refer to this as ‘glocal’; a concept to illustrate the intermingling of the global and the local. McDonald’s has become indigenized by Japanese; is has been adapted to suit Japanese society as a place to have a quick snack. One can eat a quick Teriyaki or Rice Burger there while sipping on an Oolong tea and reading the Japanese McJoy magazine. In the case of McDonald’s in Japan, Tomlinson is quite right that cultural imperialism is not as bad as some people claim it is. McDonald’s presently is embedded in Japanese culture. This reveals that the concept of McDonald’s is not interpreted univocally across the world. Different cultures somehow mix the concept with existing societal norms.
In this way, no matter how globalized the world becomes; diversity will prevail amongst its many cultures. Global becomes glocal. After all, the Big Mac and the Rice Burger simply are not the same burger.
1.Critically analyze technological progress at Mc Donald’s.
Answer: The term restaurant is an establishment where food is prepared and served to the people and always/almost refers to any sort of dine-in. Restaurants range from simple dining places where food is catered to people nearby or tourists for a reasonable price to expensive eat-outs serving food and wine in formal outfits depending on the local culture and tradition. Restaurants are classified based upon the range of menu, pricing and the mode of preparation. The changing trends in economy and income changed the purchasing power. The change in purchasing power also reflected in the market preferences and consumer behaviour. The industry has started becoming customer centric. This lead to the change of historic serving method (food served to the table by a waiter) to evolve into of fast-food and take away restaurants. There is quite a lot of difference between different types of restaurant. A coffee shop serving breakfast and lunch is completely different from the fast food industry (Rainsford, 2001, P.208) Fast food restaurants ranges from small road side vendors to American giants like McDonald’s and KFC (Caterersearch, 2011). But they have one thing in common. They deliver their service to the customers very quickly when compared to typical restaurants.
The case study is to develop an organisation as the restaurant of the future (2025) and to predict the possible challenges and opportunities in achieving it. The study has also tried to suggest methods to overcome the odds and capitalise on the possible strengths. What began with a handful of hot dog and hamburger has spread its influence into every aspect of the society as an industry (Schlosser, 2001, p.3). This case study has considered McDonald