Blog#2 Durkheim Anomie and different societies

Durkheim talks about anomie briefly and I think it has an important relationship with “The Division of Labor in Society.” Anomie is having a sense of normlessness, where the individual has a disconnect with themselves as well as with their society in which they live in. The division of labor Durkheim studies “explains how characteristics of modern societies affects individuals as well as society as a whole.” Durkheim talks about mechanical solidarity where everyone pretty much does the same type of work in a smaller society, so everyone has the same things to do and they really is no hierarchy because everyone is at the same level. This gives people as Durkheim puts it a sense of “oneness,” and this makes the society feel “one in the same.” However there is organic solidarity which is “based on specialization” and is related to societies that have larger populations, such as a city or an urban place, rather then a small village in a third world country. Because of the larger population there is a lot of variety where jobs are concerned, and there are different needs for things so you have people who possess different qualities that add the function of this large society. Some people will have a job that has a greater need to that society or at least is viewed as greater and so they will get paid more money for it then others. There is no sense of “oneness,” in this type of society because there is a hierarchy of people. I think this relates to our society in the present because we have a hierarchy where the elite are the 1%, and we have the middle class workers some that are better off then other, and then we have the poor people who are only getting more poor. In this society it is hard to find who you are. Within this large society there are many smaller societies which fit with all of the social classes, and with job cuts, and hiring freezes people even in the middle class have been suffering through this depression. I know that there is a fact that states now the average person changes their career over 7 times. This is after they have graduated college in whatever field they were in. Someone who is changing careers that frequently yes might have to because they want the money and want to be able to provide for their family, but how are they suppose to find themselves on an individual level, they probably change something about themselves when they change their career. They can’t stay the same person that they were before they lost their job because their life was different, now they have had to make major spending cuts, maybe less vacations, things in their life are different and that makes us change as well.

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One response to “Blog#2 Durkheim Anomie and different societies

  1. Very useful stat on the rising and high frequency of job changes for the typical worker. Like you suggest, this would seem to relate to anomie — especially in a society like ours where there’s a tendency to have your work/career dominate your identity and sense of self, frequent (usually forced) career changes can be quite traumatic and disorienting.

    Anomie is more like a disconnect from your *values* and from the *values* of society or your community, whereas egoism refers to social disconnect, or lack of connections to others.

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