Society is the combination of individuals. These individuals have their various needs which they want to be satisfied. For this purpose people behave in a customary way which is controlled by norms. This participation of people for the attainment of their various needs develop social institutions. It is formed by the group activities controlled by an interrelated set of norms while the group activities have inherent purpose of action that is to satisfy human needs. The examples are schools and madrassas, offices, majids, churches, family, economy and politics
When we talk of societal processes we take society in action, while we discuss norms individuals are not taken into consideration but their shared expectations are given priority. When such norms are interrelated and crystallized pertaining to relatively limited activities of mankind at one time and a given space it becomes a social institution.
Theoretically these institutions are simple but are quite complex in practice. The functions of social institutions with slight variations are universal. The structure of an institution can be understood by understanding the force of human relationships. It is this forces which keeps the functioning and the body itself normal, stabilized and maintains equilibrium. The structure helps the individuals in shaping their behavior reliable and predictable. The structure is both means and an end in itself. It can be defined as the mechanism to perform particular functions in time and space.
Definitions of Social Institution
Malinowski defines institution as “a group of people united by common interest, endowed by material equipment, following rules of their tradition or agreement (charter) and contributing to the work of culture as a whole.”
According to Bertrand “institutions are system of social relationships for meeting various felt human needs.”
Another definition given by Maciver and Page they consider institution as “an established forms or the condition of a procedure.”‘
Another person Merrill defines institution as “the interrelated system of norms.”
According to another’s point of view “It is an interrelated set of norms”, or an established machinery to satisfy needs of human beings.
Following are the Basic Functions of Social Institution
- Replacement of members in society
- Recruiting and guiding new member
- Production, disbursement and consumption of goods and services
- Preservation and
- Awareness and establishing a sense of purpose
We can Classify Institution as
- Politics and Government