The two broad reasons for conformity are informational influence and normative influence. Informational influence refers to situations where the person looks to others' behavior to behave correctly himself, particularly in social or work environments. Normative influence causes people to submit to the influence of others chiefly to avoid punishment or to gain a reward.Continue Reading
When conformity is caused by informative influence, individuals may look to group behaviors because they feel that people within the group have more information or experience than they do in specific situations or contexts. Thus, the individual seeks clues or cues from the group to determine how to act. One may consider socialization among children and adolescents as an illustration of this form of influence. Similarly, an individual new to a workplace may look to colleagues as models of how to carry himself or interact with the boss.
In cases of normative influence, the individual looks to conform out of a more precise fear of consequences. Following class rules to avoid detention is one example, but the differences between these two categories are often hazy. A teenager may look to the group for information as to how to fit in, but he may also fear the consequences of not doing so or feel the strain of peer pressure. This can be interpreted as a negative consequence, as conforming to the group is a way of avoiding social criticism, ridicule, teasing or bullying. Ultimately, conformity is a vehicle through which the individual isolates the norms of a particular group and then seeks to adhere to them in order to represent himself as a normal and acceptable member of that group.Learn more about Types of Government
Although a good president is somewhat subjective, most people will agree that a good president is someone who takes quick action whenever problems threaten the nation, addresses key issues using his or her platform, communicates often and honestly with the people, is intelligent, is knowledgeable about government and has a strong character. It is also important that the president has had experience working within government, which is a rule for anyone who wishes to run for president of the United States.Full Answer >
Democracy, in simplest terms, is when a government is controlled by the people it governs, such as the United States of America or France. Democracy started in ancient Greece and has evolved over the centuries. Whereas ancient democracy was typically direct, with the people literally having a voice in every issue, modern democracy is typically representative, where people elect others to represent them.Full Answer >
The term "oligarchy" refers to a form of government that concentrates power in the hands of an elite group, rather than a central figure, an elected assembly or the people at large, and the primary advantages appear to exist for the benefit of that elite group, while the disadvantages apply to the rest of the citizens who have to follow laws written to benefit that small group. Oligarchies often come about as a response to social disaster, such as the fallout in Germany after World War I or the ruling group in the fictitious country of Oceania that emerged in George Orwell's novel "1984."Full Answer >
Democracy has a number of advantages, foremost among which are safeguarding and representing the interests of the people. Equality is also key to democracy, and this includes equality before the law and equal rights to power.Full Answer >