Simmel defines society as “merely the name for a number of individuals connected by interaction…It is not a ‘substance,’ nothing concrete, but an event: It is the function of receiving and affecting the fate and development of one individual by another”. In class today we learned that we are all apart of different groups each with different forms of interaction. Some of these groups may be family, friends, work, and religious communities. Everyone acts a different way in each different group that is appropriate for that setting. For example the way we act with our friends may not be the same way we interact with our family or coworkers.
Simmel defines sociability as the “play form of association”, driven by “amicability, breeding, cordiality and attractiveness of all kinds”. As human beings, it is natural to want to socialize with others, even if there is no cause or purpose. Some ways people find themselves in sociable conversations is by starting a conversation on the train with the person sitting across from them. There is no purpose, its just a friendly gesture and it makes the time pass quicker. There is no motive to these social interactions, its just something that happens naturally. People are social beings so this leads to a feeling of satisfaction for many. However, sociability is somewhat artificial, because there is no room for deep conversation. When someone asks, “how are you”, we are socialized to answer with “good”. No one would start listing their problems right away without getting into a much deeper form of conversation and connection.