Cover of the French edition of The Rules of Sociological Method In The Rules of Sociological MethodDurkheim expressed his will to establish a method that would guarantee sociology's truly scientific character. One of the questions raised by the author concerns the objectivity of the sociologist:
Definitions[ edit ] Normality has been functionally and differentially defined by a vast number of disciplines, so there is not one single definition. Statistics[ edit ] In general, 'normal' refers to a lack of significant deviation from the average.
The word normal is used in a more narrow sense in mathematics, where a normal distribution describes a population whose characteristics centers around the average or the norm. When looking at a specific behaviour, such as the frequency of lying, a researcher may use a Gaussian bell curve to plot all reactions, and a normal reaction would be within one standard deviation, or the most average However, this mathematical model only holds for one particular trait at a time, since, for example, the probability of a single individual being within one standard deviation for 36 independent variables would be one in a million.
The probability of an individual being within 1. He suggested that behaviors or "social facts" which are present in the majority of cases are normal, and exceptions to that behavior indicate pathology.
Crime, for instance, exists under every society through every time period, and so should be considered normal. On the individual level, people who violate social norms, such as criminalswill invite a punishment from others in the society.
Influence of social norms[ edit ] Individuals' behaviours are guided by what they perceive to be society's expectations and their peers' norms. People measure the appropriateness of their actions by how far away they are from those social norms.
However, what is perceived as the norm may or may not actually be the most common behaviour. In some cases of pluralistic ignorancemost people falsely believe the social norm is one thing, but in fact very few people hold that view.
When people are made more aware of a social norm, particularly a descriptive norm a norm describing what is donetheir behaviour changes to become closer to that norm.
The power of these norms can be harnessed by social norms marketingwhere the social norm is advertised to people in an attempt to stop extreme behaviour, such as binge drinking. However, people at the other extreme very little alcohol consumption are equally likely to change their behaviour to become closer to the norm, in this case by increasing alcohol consumption.
Instead of using descriptive norms, more effective social norms marketing may use injunctive norms. Instead of describing what behaviour is most commonly done, an injunctive norm is what is approved or disapproved of by society.
When individuals become aware of the injunctive norm, only the extremes will change their behaviour by decreasing alcohol consumption without the boomerang effect of under-indulgers increasing their drinking.
Behaviours that are abnormal for most people may be considered normal for a subgroup or subculture. For example, normal college student behaviour may be to party and drink alcohol, but for a subculture of religious students, normal behaviour may be to go to church and pursue religion related activities.
Subcultures may actively reject "normal" behaviour, instead replacing society norms with their own. If a person does not have this disharmony, then he or she is described as normal. A virtual identity can take many definitions, but in this case a virtual identity is the identity that persons mentally create that conforms to societal standards and norms, it may not represent how they actually are, but it represents what they believe is the typical "normal" person.
A real social identity is the identity that persons actually have in their society or is perceived, by themselves or others, to have. If these two identities have differences between each other, there is said to be disharmony. Individuals may monitor and adapt their behaviour in terms of others' expected perceptions of the individual, which is described by the social psychology theory of self-presentation.
While trying to define and quantify normality is a good start, all definitions confront the problem of whether we are even describing an idea that even exists since there are so many different ways of viewing the concept.
One complication which arises regards whether 'normality' is used correctly in everyday language. There can be a difference between the normality of the structure and function of a body part. Similarly, a behavioural pattern may not conform to social norms, but still be effective and non-problematic for that individual.
Where there is a dichotomy between appearance and function of a behaviour, it may be difficult to measure its normality.
This is applicable when trying to diagnose a pathology and is addressed in the DSM. Social Norms[ edit ] What is viewed as normal can change dependent on both timeframe and environment. Normality can be viewed as "an endless process of man's self-creation and his reshaping of the world".
With statistics, this is likened to the thought that if the data gathered provides a mean and standard deviation, over time these data that predict "normalness" start to predict or dictate it less and less since the social idea of normality is dynamic.The Normality Of Crime By Emile Durkheim.
Emile Durkheim: His Works and Contribution to Sociology The Life of Emile Durkheim Emile Durkheim was born on April 15, in Lorraine, France. He was born to be the son of. Deviance: Functionalist Explanations Deviance: Functionalist Explanations 3 3 What Happens if the Collective Conscience Fails The result according to Durkheim, was the development of .
Preface to the first edition Division of Labour page At the same time, we must renounce the method too often followed by sociologists who, to prove their thesis, are content with citing without order and haphazardly a more or less impressive number of favourable facts, paying no .
Biography Childhood and education. Emile Durkheim was born in Épinal in Lorraine, the son of Mélanie (Isidor) and Moïse Durkheim. He came from a long line of devout French Jews; his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather had been rabbis.
He began his education in a rabbinical school, but at an early age, he decided not to follow in his family's footsteps and switched schools.
The Normality of Crime: Durkheim and Erikson John Hamlin Department of Sociology and Anthropology UMD The idea that crime might be a normal part of society seems untenable to many people.
Yet it is the major tenant of the functional theory of crime. The. David Émile Durkheim Emile Durkheim was born in Épinal in Lorraine, the son of Mélanie (Isidor) and Moïse Durkheim.
On the Normality of Crime () Suicide () The Prohibition of Incest and its Origins (), .