Whatis social control? Do you think the modes of social control indifferent spheres of society are different? Discuss.

Social control refers to the social processes,techniques and strategies by which the behaviour of an individual ora group is regulated.

There are two types of social control:

(i) The formal social control, which is formal,official and codified. Its agents are law and the state.

(ii) Informal social control, which ispersonal, unofficial and uncodified. For example, family, religionand kinship. This mode of social control is very effective in ourdaily life. However, this form of social control may not be adequateto enforce conformity or obedience.

Social control can also be either positive ornegative, as in the case of sanctions. It is a mode of reward orpunishment that enforces socially expected forms of behaviour. Inthis case, individuals are rewarded for their good behaviour and arepunished for their offence in the society.

The modes of social control in differentsocieties are different because in pre-modern societies, the castesystem controlled and regulated the activities of individuals andkept a check on violation against the prescribed norms. Likewise, inmodern societies the government and the state control its citizensand act as agents of social order.

Different societies have different norms andvalues, different structure and functions. Therefore, they haveaccordingly different techniques and strategies of social control.

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