Agents of social control

  • Created by: E.price
  • Created on: 16-01-18 09:52
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  • Agents / agencies of social control
    • Family
      • The family usually has the strongest control over a child, and parents usually have many ways of making children conform, and also act as role models. Children actually internalise the norms and values they are taught, calling them their own and so are unlikely to deviate from them.
    • Mass Media
      • The media, as always, can have a very powerful influence people. We are constantly reminded through news reports on crime and police dramas what happens to people who deviate from what they are expected to do.
    • Education
      • There are many ways in which students are controlled at school. They learn to accept authority and what happens if they defy it. Some sociologists have argued that this is the real purpose of schools, to teach the importance of punctuality accepting authority. Pupils who do as they are told will make ideal workers later on in life.
    • Peer groups
      • People want to belong to social groups and fear rejection which makes peer groups powerful agencies of social control. They can impose sanctions and make members conform to the group's norms.
    • Religion
      • To believers, religions offer the ultimate sanctions. Eternity in the burning flames of Hell failure to conform or eternity in blissful happiness with God for following the norms of religion, for example. This may be much more powerful than earthly motivations.


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