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Nu putem s nelegem corect "omul" dac l considerm o fptur biologic izolat, un mnunchi de reflexe sau un grup de instincte, un "cmp

inteligibil" sau un sistem n sine i despre sine. Orice ar mai putea fi el, omul este un agent istoric i social care nu poate fi neles dect ntr-o relaie strns i complex cu structurile sociale i istorice. (Mills, Imaginatia Sociologic)

Societatea nu este numai ceva care absoarbe, cu intensitate egal, sentimentele i energia individului, ea este i puterea care le regleaz. (Durkheim, Sinuciderea)

Crima este normal, fiindc o societate n care ar lipsi este cu totul imposibil. (Durkheim, Regulile metodei sociologice)

Nu exist cuvinte, chiar i printre cele pe care le folosim n mod obinuit, a cror accepie s nu depeasc cu mai mult sau mai puin limitele experienei noastre personale. Un termen exprim nu de puine ori lucruri pe care nu le-am perceput niciodat, experiene pe care nu le-am fcut sau la care nu am fost niciodat martori. Chiar i atunci cnd cunoatem unele dintre obiectele la care se refer, ele nu ilustreaz dect n calitate de exemple particulare, care, prin ele nsele, nu ar fi niciodat suficiente pentru a o constitui. Cuvntul condenseaz prin urmare o ntreag tiin la care nu am colaborat, o tiin mai mult dect individual. (Durkheim, Regulile metodei sociologice)

Deviana este non-conformism fa de un set dat de norme, care sunt acceptate de un numr seminficativ de oameni, n cadrul unei comuniti sau a unei societi. (Giddens, Sociologie)

Social scientists attempt to understand the world from the subjects points of view and unfold the meaning of their lived world. (Kvale, Dominance through interviews and dialogues)

By primary groups I mean those characterized by intimate face-to-face association and cooperation. They are primary in several senses but chiefly in that they are fundamental in forming the social nature and ideals of individuals. The result of intimate association, psychologically, is a certain fusion of individualities in a common whole, so that one's very self, for many purposes at least, is the common life and purpose of the group. Perhaps the simplest way of describing this wholeness is by saying that it is a ''we.'' (Cooley, Social Organization: A Study of the Larger Mind)

The social self is simply any idea, or system of ideas, drawn from the communicative life, that the mind cherishes as its own. Self-feeling has its chief scope within the general life, not outside of it; the special endeavor or tendency of which it is the emotional aspect finds its principal field of exercise in a world of personal forces, reflected in the mind by a world of personal impressions. As connected with the thought of other persons the self idea is always a consciousness of the peculiar or differentiated aspect of one's life, because that is the aspect that has to be sustained by purpose and endeavor, and its more aggressive forms tend to attach themselves to whatever one finds to be at once congenial to one's own tendencies and at variance with those of others with whom one is in mental contact. It is here that they are most needed to serve their function of stimulating characteristic activity, of fostering those personal variations which the general plan of life seems to require. (Cooley, Human Nature and the Social Order)

Civilization is itself the necessary consequence of the changes which are produced in the volume and in the density of societies. If science, art, and economic activity develop it is in accordance with a necessity which is imposed upon men. It is because there is, for them, no other way of living in the new conditions in which they have been placed. From the time that the number of individuals among whom social relations are established begins to increase, they can maintain themselves only by greater specialization, harder work, and intensification of their faculties. From this general stimulation, there inevitably results a much higher degree of culture. From this point of view, civilization appears, not as an end which moves people by its attraction for them, not as a good foreseen and desired in advance, of which they seek to assure themselves the largest possible part, but as the effect of a cause, as the necessary resultant of a given state. It is not the pole towards which historic development is moving and to which men seek to get nearer in order to be happier or better, for neither happiness nor morality necessarily increases with the intensity of life. They move because they must move, and what determines the speed of this march is the more or less strong pressure which they exercise upon one another, according to their number. (Durkheim, Social Division of Labour)

Innovation occurs when an individual accepts the goals of society, but rejects or lacks the socially legitimate means of achieving them. Innovation, the mode of adaptation most associated with criminal behavior, explains the high rate of crime committed by uneducated and poor individuals who do not have access to legitimate means of achieving the social goals of wealth and power Rebellion occurs when an individual rejects both culturally defined goals and means and substitutes new goals and means. For example, rebels may use social or political

activism to replace the goal of personal wealth with the goal of social justice and equality. (Merton, Social theory and social structure)

The fundamental starting point is the concept of social systems of action. The interaction of individual actors, that is, takes place under such conditions that it is possible to treat such a process of interaction as a system in the scientific sense and subject it to the same order of theoretical analysis which has been successfully applied to other types of systems in other sciences. (Parsons, The Social System) The psychological basis of the metropolitan type of individuality consists in the intensification of nervous stimulation which results from the swift and uninterrupted change of outer and inner stimuli. Man is a differentiating creature. His mind is stimulated by the difference between a momentary impression and the one which preceded it. Lasting impressions, impressions which differ only slightly from one another, impressions which take a regular and habitual course and show regular and habitual contrastsall these use up, so to speak, less consciousness than does the rapid crowding of changing images, the sharp discontinuity in the grasp of a single glance, and the unexpectedness of onrushing impressions. These are the psychological conditions which the metropolis creates. With each crossing of the street, with the tempo and multiplicity of economic, occupational and social life, the city sets up a deep contrast with small town and rural life with reference to the sensory foundations of psychic life. The metropolis exacts from man as a discriminating creature a different amount of consciousness than does rural life. Here the rhythm of life and sensory mental imagery flows more slowly, more habitually, and more evenly. Precisely in this connection the sophisticated character of metropolitan psychic life becomes understandableas over against small town life which rests more upon deeply felt and emotional relationships.(Simmel, The Metropolis and Mental Life)

the fact that someone is poor does not mean that he belongs to the specific social category of the 'poor' . . . . It is only from the moment that [the poor] are assisted . . . that they become part of a group characterized by poverty. This group does not remain united by interaction among its members, but by the collective attitude which society as a whole adopts toward it. . . . Poverty cannot be defined in itself as a quantitative state, but only in terms of the social reaction resulting from a specific situation. . . . Poverty is a unique sociological phenomenon: a number of individuals who, out of a purely individual fate, occupy a specific organic position within the whole; but this position is not determined by this fate and condition, but rather by the fact that others . . . attempt to correct this condition. (Simmel, The Stranger)