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Portal:Society

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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.

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.

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Young residents in the Bunun village of Lona, Taiwan
Taiwanese aborigines are the indigenous peoples of Taiwan. Although each group holds a variety of creation stories, contemporary research suggests their ancestors may have been living on the islands for approximately 8,000 years before major Han Chinese immigration began in the 1600s. The Taiwanese Aborigines are Austronesian peoples, with linguistic and genetic ties to other Austronesian ethnic groups, such as peoples of the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Oceania. For centuries Taiwan's Aboriginal peoples experienced economic competition and military conflict with a series of conquering peoples. Centralized government policies designed to foster language shift and cultural assimilation, as well as continued contact with the colonizers through trade, intermarriage and other dispassionate intercultural processes, have resulted in varying degrees of language death and loss of original cultural identity. The bulk of contemporary Taiwanese Aborigines reside in the mountains and the cities. Many Aboriginal groups are actively seeking a higher degree of political self-determination and economic development since the early 1980s.

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Walter JohnsonCredit: Photo: National Photo Company; Restoration: Staxringold

U.S. President Calvin Coolidge shaking hands with baseball player Walter Johnson and presenting him with a "diploma" for the Washington Senators winning the 1924 American League championship. Johnson was one of the most accomplished pitchers in Major League Baseball history. He established several pitching records, some of which remain unbroken, including career shutouts (110) and most consecutive seasons leading the league in strikeouts (8).

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Constitution of May 3, 1791

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Ursula Franklin in 2006
Ursula Franklin (born 1921) is a Canadian metallurgist, research physicist, author and educator who has taught at the University of Toronto for more than 40 years. She is the author of The Real World of Technology, which is based on her 1989 Massey Lectures, and The Ursula Franklin Reader: Pacifism as a Map, a collection of her papers, interviews, and talks. Franklin is a practising Quaker and has been active in working on behalf of pacifist and feminist causes. Franklin has received numerous honours and awards, including the Governor General's Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case for promoting the equality of girls and women in Canada and the Pearson Medal of Peace for her work in advancing human rights. Franklin is best known for her writings on the political and social effects of technology. For her, technology is a comprehensive system that includes methods, procedures, organization, "and most of all, a mindset". She distinguishes between holistic technologies used by craft workers or artisans and prescriptive ones associated with a division of labour in large-scale production. Franklin argues that the dominance of prescriptive technologies in modern society discourages critical thinking and promotes "a culture of compliance".

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