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  • Learn the roles of families and peer groups in socialization
  • Understand how we are socialized through formal institutions like schools, workplaces, and the government

Socialization helps people learn to function successfully in their social worlds. How does the process of socialization occur? How do we learn to use the objects of our society’s material culture? How do we come to adopt the beliefs, values, and norms that represent its nonmaterial culture? This learning takes place through interaction with various agents of socialization, like peer groups and families, plus both formal and informal social institutions.

Social group agents

Social groups often provide the first experiences of socialization. Families, and later peer groups, communicate expectations and reinforce norms. People first learn to use the tangible objects of material culture in these settings, as well as being introduced to the beliefs and values of society.

Family

Family is the first agent of socialization. Mothers and fathers, siblings and grandparents, plus members of an extended family, all teach a child what he or she needs to know. For example, they show the child how to use objects (such as clothes, computers, eating utensils, books, bikes); how to relate to others (some as “family,” others as “friends,” still others as “strangers” or “teachers” or “neighbors”); and how the world works (what is “real” and what is “imagined”). As you are aware, either from your own experience as a child or from your role in helping to raise one, socialization includes teaching and learning about an unending array of objects and ideas.

Keep in mind, however, that families do not socialize children in a vacuum. Many social factors affect the way a family raises its children. For example, we can use sociological imagination to recognize that individual behaviors are affected by the historical period in which they take place. Sixty years ago, it would not have been considered especially strict for a father to hit his son with a wooden spoon or a belt if he misbehaved, but today that same action might be considered child abuse.

Sociologists recognize that race, social class, religion, and other societal factors play an important role in socialization. For example, poor families usually emphasize obedience and conformity when raising their children, while wealthy families emphasize judgment and creativity (National Opinion Research Center 2008). This may occur because working-class parents have less education and more repetitive-task jobs for which it is helpful to be able to follow rules and conform. Wealthy parents tend to have better educations and often work in managerial positions or careers that require creative problem solving, so they teach their children behaviors that are beneficial in these positions. This means children are effectively socialized and raised to take the types of jobs their parents already have, thus reproducing the class system (Kohn 1977). Likewise, children are socialized to abide by gender norms, perceptions of race, and class-related behaviors.

Questions & Answers

What is the role of secondary group in the process of socialization in contemporary society
Wasfa Reply
What is the role of secondary group in the process of socialization
Wasfa
What is culture?
Aniefuna Reply
Is a total way of life
Fahad
What was Durkheim's definition of religion
Christian Reply
India is characterized by ?
Tumbemo Reply
What is the different between social static
Brendah Reply
define religion
Nayyar
what is social facts?
usman Reply
How many types of central tendency
khatun Reply
we have 3 types which are mean, median and mode
Ann
ya explain it.
Awusu
How far is Marxist Assession true. That religion is just an opium of people
Thulani Reply
what is social mobility
Hacking Reply
how in the he day-to-day world is religion ruling socialogy
Mugimba Reply
By setting it's own standard of acceptable norms and behaviours, using the Holy books etc
Chimba
what are the social institutions that maintain social control in the society
Uzair Reply
what is socialization
Uzair
what is sociology
Nayyar
sociology is study of the society. it's also a social science course or mirror through which human beings look into the society.
Ameh
the social institutions are : family education religion politics
ravi
sagars siddant ke janak kon hai
Md
explain the characteristics of planned social change
Hellen Reply
important of culture
Owolabi
what is social research
Rafaqat Reply
what is soft science
Rafaqat
what is fertility
gleyn Reply
what is social interaction
Zakir Reply
the 2 pespetives
Bendu
relationship between two or more individuals through social media, peer group, groups etc
Ann
conversation between two or few people in a organisation e.g school, peer group
Zaki
hi
benny
What is a perspective
Christian

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Source:  OpenStax, Introduction to sociology 2e. OpenStax CNX. Jan 20, 2016 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11762/1.6
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