Different Ways to Group Societies

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As the world becomes more multicultural, one might think that the idea of living amongst one’s own society is slowly fading away in some areas. However, this is not exactly true as new societies are emerging by the minute, which implies that even if different societies exist on the same piece of land there is a high chance that they will begin to merge and become one group. A good example of such an occurrence lies in the United States of America. This proves that human beings, as well as living organisms of several other species, tend to favour living among populations of their own society where there is no fear of.

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People segregate themselves culturally, based on whether they have the same interests, similar perspectives, similar values for certain things and common ideologies as well as cultural beliefs, to form a group with similar traits, thus, giving rise to different societies. In most cases, the people within one society speak one or more common languages. Consequently, everybody feels more comfortable living among their own society because there are not many conflicts involving beliefs, traditional practices and misunderstandings within their society.

A human society is defined as a group of people who have adopted a similar lifestyle and are related by culture, nationality, beliefs and/ or ethnicity.There are different ways to group societies. Societies grouped using anthropology (according to the group’s method of subsistence):

  • Hunter-gatherers: a society where people hunt animals for food and gather certain plants for consumption.
  • Pastoralists: a society where the people keep animals for the meat, blood, milk and skin.
  • Agriculturalists: a society where people grow and harvest crops (stationary society). Can eventually involve into industrial agriculturalists.
  • Industrial agriculturalists: a society where people use machines that run on fuel to plant and harvest crops.

Societies grouped by political scientists (according to the political structure):

  • Bands: the simplest form of human society where the leadership traditions are informal and the eldest naturally have the power over the younger population to make the decisions and guide them.
  • Tribes: a society that is more structured and is solely based on kinship (relationship by blood).
  • Chiefdoms: a society whereas there are multiple families that are under the control of one permanent leader based on kinship.
  • State: a human society that consists of different layers of authority, each controlling a different part of the society.

A coherent group is a group of people who are united as a whole due to the fact that they share common interests, beliefs, perspectives, aims and have adopted certain similar traits. Social structure refers to the stable arrangement of organisations, roles and institutions which become stable over time with changes that are almost unnoticeable. It incorporates components that constitute the social interaction between the people within the society, thereby affecting its coherence and stability.

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