The Society Portal

Ant (formicidae) social ethology

Ant (formicidae) social ethology


A society is a group of individuals involved in persistent social interaction, or a large social group sharing the same geographical or social territory, typically subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations. Societies are characterized by patterns of relationships (social relations) between individuals who share a distinctive culture and institutions; a given society may be described as the sum total of such relationships among its constituent of members. In the social sciences, a larger society often exhibits stratification or dominance patterns in subgroups.

Societies construct patterns of behavior by deeming certain actions or speech as acceptable or unacceptable. These patterns of behavior within a given society are known as societal norms. Societies, and their norms, undergo gradual and perpetual changes.

Insofar as it is collaborative, a society can enable its members to benefit in ways that would not otherwise be possible on an individual basis; both individual and social (common) benefits can thus be distinguished, or in many cases found to overlap. A society can also consist of like-minded people governed by their own norms and values within a dominant, larger society. This is sometimes referred to as a subculture, a term used extensively within criminology.

More broadly, and especially within structuralist thought, a society may be illustrated as an economic, social, industrial or cultural infrastructure, made up of, yet distinct from, a varied collection of individuals. In this regard society can mean the objective relationships people have with the material world and with other people, rather than "other people" beyond the individual and their familiar social environment.

More about society…

Selected article

The Chaser pantomime horse stunt performed on 5 September 2007
The Chaser APEC pranks constituted a series of comic stunts that targeted the 2007 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders Summit, which occurred from 2–9 September, in Sydney, Australia. They were coordinated and performed by the Australian satire group The Chaser for the television series The Chaser's War on Everything. The most prominent prank was the breach of an APEC restricted zone in the heart of Sydney's CBD on 6 September. Julian Morrow directed a fake Canadian motorcade, which was allowed through the restricted zone by police and not detected until Chas Licciardello alighted, dressed as Osama bin Laden. Although pranks that involved public locations, figures, and organisations were always a feature of the series, the APEC pranks yielded unprecedented local and international publicity, both positive and negative. Some team members faced charges for breaching the APEC zone, but these were dropped because police had allowed their entry in the restricted zone. Other less controversial and less publicised stunts were also shown on The Chaser's War on Everything, with ratings peaking at almost three million Australian viewers for the APEC wrap-up episode.

Featured picture

Punch (magazine)Credit: John Tenniel; Engraver: Joseph Swain;
Restoration: Adam Cuerden

A Punch cartoon from 17 June 1876 showing Russia preparing to let slip "the dogs of war", its imminent engagement in the growing conflict between Slavic states in the Balkans and Turkey, while policeman John Bull (representing Britain) warns Russia to take care. The Slavic states of Serbia and Montenegro would declare war on Turkey at the end of June, and Russia formally joined the war in April 1877.

Did you know...

Buryat people

Anniversaries this month

≠→

American Association for the Advancement of Science

Selected biography

Su Song (simplified Chinese: 苏颂; traditional Chinese: 蘇頌; pinyin: Sū Sòng; style name: Zirong 子容) (1020–1101 AD) was a renowned Chinese polymath who specialized himself as a statesman, astronomer, cartographer, horologist, pharmacologist, mineralogist, zoologist, botanist, mechanical and architectural engineer, poet, antiquarian, and ambassador of the Song dynasty (960–1279). Su Song was the engineer of a water-driven astronomical clock tower in medieval Kaifeng, which employed the use of an early escapement mechanism. The escapement mechanism of Su's clock tower had previously been invented by Buddhist monk Yi Xing and government official Liang Lingzan in 725 AD to operate a water-powered armillary sphere, although Su's armillary sphere was the first to be provided with a mechanical clock drive. Su's clock tower also featured the oldest known endless power-transmitting chain drive, called the tian ti (天梯), or "celestial ladder", as depicted in his horological treatise.The clock tower had 133 different clock jacks to indicate and sound the hours. Su Song's treatise about the clock tower, Xinyi Xiangfayao (新 儀 . 象 法 要), has survived since its written form in 1092 and official printed publication in 1094. The book has been analyzed by many historians, such as Joseph Needham. However, the clock itself was dismantled by the invading Jurchen army in AD 1127, and although attempts were made to reassemble the clock tower, it was never successfully reinstated. Although the Xinyi Xiangfayao was his best known treatise, the polymath had other works compiled as well. He completed a large celestial atlas of several star maps, several terrestrial maps, as well as a treatise on pharmacology. The latter discussed related subjects on mineralogy, zoology, botany, and metallurgy.

Featured audio

Categories

Society categories
Society

WikiProjects

Selected quote

R. H. Tawney
R. H. Tawney, The Acquisitive Society (1921)

Recognized content

Featured article star.png

Featured articles

Featured lists

Good articles

Featured pictures

Things you can do


Here are some tasks awaiting attention:

Related portals

Web resources

Associated Wikimedia

Society on Wikibooks  Society on Wikimedia Commons Society on Wikinews  Society on Wikiquote  Society on Wikisource  Society on Wikiversity  Society on Wiktionary 
Manuals and books Images and media News Quotations Texts Learning resources Definitions