DEPARTMNENT OF URBAN AND INFRASTRUCTURE ENGINEERING
AR–203: URBAN SOCIOLOGY
Department of Architecture and Planning
NED University of Engineering and Technology
LECTURE # 04:
TOPIC: TYPES AND FORMATS OF SOCIAL RELATIONSHIP
In social science, a social relation or social interaction refers to a relationship between two, three or more individuals (e.g. a social group). Social relations, derived from individual agency, form the basis of the social structure. To this extent social relations are always the basic object of analysis for social scientists. Fundamental enquiries into the nature of social relations are to be found in the work of the classical sociologists, for instance, in Max Weber's theory of social action. Further categories must be established in the abstract in order to form observations and conduct social research, such as Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft i.e. Community and Society") or "collective consciousness". Disputes over the conduct of investigating social interaction relate to the core debates in sociology and the other social sciences: positivism (quantitative research) against antipositivism (qualitative research), structure against agency, structural functionalism against conflict theory, as well as the philosophy of social science itself.
FORMS OF SOCIAL RELATIONS AND INTERACTION:
Forms of relation and interaction in sociology and anthropology may be described as follows: first and most basic are animal-like behaviors, i.e. various physical movements of the body. Then there are actions - movements with a meaning and purpose. Then there are social behaviors, or social actions, which address (directly or indirectly) other people, which solicit a response from another agent. Next are social contacts, a pair of social actions, which form the beginning of social interactions. Social interactions in turn form the basis of social relations.These divisions are illustrated in the table below:
An interpersonal relationship is an association between two or more people that may range from fleeting to enduring. This association may be based on limerence, love and liking, regular business interactions, or some other type of social commitment. Interpersonal relationships take place in a great variety of contexts, such as family, friends, marriage, associates, work, clubs, neighborhoods, and churches. They may be regulated by law, custom, or mutual agreement, and are the basis of social groups and society as a whole.
Although humans are fundamentally social creatures, interpersonal relationships are not always healthy. Examples of unhealthy relationships include abusive relationships and codependence. A relationship is normally viewed as a connection between two individuals, such as a romantic or intimate relationship, or a parent-child relationship. Individuals can also have relationships with groups of people, such as the relation between a pastor and his congregation, an uncle and a family, or a mayor and a town.
Finally, groups or even nations may have relations with each other, though this is a much broader domain than that covered under the topic of interpersonal relationships. See such articles as international relations for more information on associations between groups. Most scholarly work on relationships focuses on romantic partners in pairs or dyads. These intimate relationships are, however, only a small subset of interpersonal relationships.
Interpersonal relationships also can include friendships, such as relationships involving individuals providing relational care to marginalized persons. These relationships usually involve some level of interdependence. People in a relationship tend to influence each other, share their thoughts and feelings, and engage in activities together. Because of this interdependence, most things that change or impact one member of the relationship will have some level of impact on the other member. The study of interpersonal relationships involves several branches of the social sciences, including such disciplines as sociology, psychology, anthropology, and social work.
DEVELOPMENT OF INTERPERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS:
Interpersonal relationships are dynamic systems that change continuously during their existence. Like living organisms, relationships have a beginning, a lifespan, and an end. They tend to grow and improve gradually, as people get to know each other and become closer emotionally, or they gradually deteriorate as people drift apart, move on with their lives and form new relationships with others. There exists a model of relationship development that is applied to every kind of interpersonal relations. According to the model, the natural development of a relationship follows five stages:
Acquaintance – Becoming acquainted depends on previous relationships, physical proximity, first impressions, and a variety of other factors. If two people begin to like each other, continued interactions may lead to the next stage, but acquaintance can continue indefinitely.
Buildup – During this stage, people begin to trust and care about each other. The need for compatibility and such agents as common background and goals will influence whether or not interaction continues.
Continuation – This stage follows a mutual commitment to a long term friendship, romantic relationship, or marriage. It is generally a long, relative stable period. Nevertheless, continued growth and development will occur during this time. Mutual trust is important for sustaining the relationship.
Deterioration – Not all relationships deteriorate, but those that do, tend to show signs of trouble. Boredom, resentment, and dissatisfaction may occur, and individuals may communicate less and avoid self-disclosure. Loss of trust and betrayals may take place as the downward spiral continues.
Termination – The final stage marks the end of the relationship, either by death in the case of a healthy relationship, or by separation.
1.The Official Website of Wikipedia From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_relation (Retrieved July 8, 2010).
2. The Official Website of Wikipedia From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interpersonal_relationship (Retrieved July 8, 2010).