When do social divisions take place in society? Explain with suitable examples.or When do social differences become a social division? Explain with examples.
Ans. A social difference means the difference in a group of people due to their race, religion, language or culture.
It becomes a social division when some social differences are joined by another set of social differences. -
Social division takes place under the fallowing circumstances
(i) Social division due to overlapping differences.
(ii) Social division due to cross-cutting differences.
(iii) Social division due to migration.
Overlapping differences Some social’differences overlap other differences e.g. the difference between the Blacks and Whites in USA because the Blacks tend to be poor, homeless and discriminated against.
In our country, Dalits tend to be poor and landless. They often face discrimination and injustice. Situations of this kind produce social divisions, when one kind of social difference becomes more important than the other and people start feeling that they belong to different communities.
Cross-cutting social differences If social differences cross-cut one another, it is difficult to pit one group of people to compete against the other. It means that groups that share a common interest on one issue are likely to be in different sides on a different issue, leading to a social division, e.g.
Northern Ireland and Netherlands are predominantly Christian countries but divided between Catholics and Protestants. In Northern Ireland, class and religion overlap with each other.
In the Netherlands, class and religion tend to cut across each other. Catholics and Protestants are likely to be poor or rich.
Social division due to migration Sometimes there is division or difference in society due to migration and migrants. Even, those countries such as Germany and Sweden that were once highly homogeneous are undergoing rapid change with influx of people from other parts of the world.
Migrants bring with them their own culture and tend to form a different social community. In this sense, most countries of the world are multi-cultural and have multi-dimensional social divisions.