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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 spatial 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 concepts 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.

So far as it is collaborative, a society can enable its members to benefit in ways that would otherwise be difficult 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, and also applied to distinctive subsections of a larger society.

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. (Full article...)

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Wehrmacht soldiers destroying Polish government insignia
Polish culture during World War II was suppressed by the occupying powers of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union, both of whom were hostile to Poland's people and culture. Policies aimed at cultural genocide resulted in the deaths of thousands of scholars and artists, and the theft or destruction of innumerable cultural artifacts. British historian Niall Ferguson writes that "the maltreatment of the Poles was one of many ways in which the Nazi and Soviet regimes had grown to resemble one another". The occupiers looted or destroyed much of Poland's cultural heritage, while persecuting and killing members of the Polish cultural elite. Most Polish schools were closed, and those that remained open saw their curricula altered significantly. Nevertheless, underground organizations and individuals—in particular the Polish Underground State—saved much of Poland's most valuable cultural heritage, and worked to salvage as many cultural institutions and artifacts as possible. The Catholic Church and wealthy individuals contributed to the survival of some artists and their works. Despite severe retribution by the Nazis and Soviets, Polish underground cultural activities, including publications, concerts, live theater, education, and academic research, continued throughout the war.

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Credit: Photo: Matt H. Wade

Nighttime photo of the northern section of Times Square in New York City, featuring billboard ads for various Broadway shows. Formerly named Longacre Square, it was renamed in April 1904 after The New York Times moved its headquarters to One Times Square. Times Square is the site of the annual ball drop on New Year's Eve.

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The former Royal Assurance Society office at 163 North Street, Brighton

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John Kenneth Galbraith
John Kenneth Galbraith, The Affluent Society (1958)

Selected biography

Larry Sanger
Larry Sanger
Lawrence Mark "Larry" Sanger (born July 16, 1968) is a former philosophy professor, co-founder of Wikipedia, and the founder of Citizendium. He grew up in Anchorage, Alaska. From an early age he has been interested in philosophy. Sanger received a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from Reed College in 1991 and a Doctor of Philosophy in philosophy from Ohio State University in 2000. Most of his philosophical work has focused on epistemology, the theory of knowledge. He has been involved with various online encyclopedia projects. He is the former editor-in-chief of Nupedia, chief organizer (2001–2002) of its successor, Wikipedia, and founding editor-in-chief of Citizendium. From his position at Nupedia, he assembled the process for article development. Sanger proposed implementing a wiki, which led directly to the creation of Wikipedia. Initially Wikipedia was a complementary project for Nupedia. He was Wikipedia's early community leader and established many of its original policies. He spearheaded an alternative wiki-based project, Citizendium. Sanger had left Wikipedia in 2002, and has since been critical of the project. He articulated that despite its merits, Wikipedia lacks credibility due to, among other things, a lack of respect for expertise. After leaving the project, Sanger taught philosophy at Ohio State University and was an early strategist for the expert-authored Encyclopedia of Earth. On September 15, 2006 he publicly announced Citizendium, first envisioned as a fork of Wikipedia. It was launched on March 25, 2007. Citizendium represents an effort to create a credible and free-access encyclopedia. Sanger had aimed to bring more accountability to the Internet encyclopedia model. He is working on developing educational projects for individuals behind WatchKnowLearn and is designing a program to teach children how to read. He started blogging on various subjects, including baby reading. He also works part-time as a writer, speaker, and consultant on the topic of collaborative online communities. (Full article...)

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  • An 1890 recording of Walt Whitman reading the opening four lines of his poem "America", from his collection Leaves of Grass.
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    Here are some tasks awaiting attention:
    • Article requests : Check article requests in Business and economics topics • Social sciences topics • Requested pictures of society topics
    • Assess : Check article deletion discussions listed at Deletion sorting – Social science
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    • Copyedit : Check Sociology article alerts for interesting articles to copyedit
    • Expand : Expand articles in categories including: Culture, Law, Education, Politics
    • Featured article candidates : Review society-related articles submitted at Featured Article candidates, especially those at FAC urgents
    • Good article nominations : Check out articles under review for Good Article candidacy, in the Social sciences and society section
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    • Stubs : Take on project for improvement of one of the Sociology stubs
    • Verify : Articles with notability concerns, listed at WikiProject Notability

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    This page was last updated at 2023-02-02 14:49 UTC. Update now. View original page.

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