Informal Social Control

385 Words2 Pages
Peter L. Berger claims that informal social control is more powerful than formal controls like law, police, and prisons. What makes informal social control like ridicule and gossip so powerful? Social control discusses as a set of values and norms that are considered acceptable within society. There are two types of social control; informal and formal. Formal social control is that which is practiced by specific social agencies which have the role of maintaining order in society such as the government, the police, the judicial system etc. informal social control is about how people are made to behave through the cultural norms and values, and how this is held in place by the sanctions, for example, disapproval by friends for differing from them, or the rewards given by others to make people comply. Both types of social control are effective in controlling the behavior of individuals. What makes “ridicule and gossip” so powerfull is Informal social control is more subtle and reflects on the social interaction between people for example education. Formal and informal are designations that are given by an empowering body, usually the government but can also being a church etc. Formal social control agencies are then those agencies of the government that are authorized with social control roles, the police for example, and informal social controls agencies are social networks or organizations that are implicitly supported by the government but not directly created or controlled by the government. Both types of social control are effective in controlling the behavior of individuals. I believe that formal social control keeps society together. The legal system gives people boundaries and creates a system of what is wrong and what is right. Moreover, Tribunal provides a means of checking whether those laws reflect the majority of society. Therefore the law exists

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