Which Is More Important in Shaping Individual Identity: Social Structure or Social Interaction?

1288 words 6 pages
Social structure and social interaction are the building blocks of present life. The need for people to interact with each other is crucial and has always been the key action to survive and sustain existence. Sociologists now refer to this as socialisation, to establish the important components of living and a person’s social identity. Social structure is more important than social interaction in shaping individual social identity, the reason for this to have more importance in shaping someone’s social identity, is because without social structure there would be no social interaction both are important in discussing macrosociology (social structure) and microsociology (social interaction). Within social structure is class, status and …show more content…
An example of this is Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson being the controlling class and all his employees below him represent the other classes which all in turn benefits him.
Social Status in sociology has been given two meanings. One refers to the position that a person occupies in the social structure, such as teacher or priest. The other more specific meaning refers to the form of social stratification in which social positions are ranked and organised by legal, political and cultural criteria into status groups. These social positions may carry a great deal of prestige, as in the case of a judge or an astronaut, or it may bring little prestige as in the case as a grocery store worker or a waitress at the local pub. The status can also be looked down on as in the case of a homeless person, an ex-convict or a thief. Social status is a major shaping component of social identity status set all the statuses or positions that an individual occupies are generally all ascribed statuses that are inherited such as your race/ethnicity, sex and the social class of your parents as well yours statuses as female or male, daughter or son, niece or nephew. Our identity as ‘male’ or ‘female’ is one of the most basic aspects of our being. As Sigmund Freud observed a century ago, when you meet a person for the first time, the very first thing you notice about them is whether they are a man or woman (Bessant & Watts, 2007 p. 209).
Social Institutions are the organised, usual


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