Since the last centuries, human society has changed from simple to complicated individual society. The concept of human society is as old as man. In the beginning, man wandered in search of food and got his food from hunting, fruit and vegetables.
Hunting and Gathering Society :
Afterwards, man domesticated animals and needed herds of cattle and he got his food, dress and other needs from them.
Pastoral Society :
In that age, man wandered here and there. When the population increased, it became difficult to change place in search of food.. Then he began to live at specific places after selection of proper places and began to grow vegetables for his need and this made the achievement of food easy and he also began to hoard
Horticulture Society :
The invention of plough produced easiness in agriculture and it produced a revolution in agriculture. Six thousand years before agricultural society came into existence. Social structure changed and social classes were established. The demands and needs of life increased. New inventions and discoveries were made.
Handicrafts developed and industries came into existence and an industrial revolution took place and for the last two hundred and fifty years have become from individual society to industrial society. Before definition of society, it is necessary to explain the difference between society and community and it should be understood that both the words are synonymous.
DEFINITION OF SOCIETY :-
1. Datson : "A society is a spatial or territorial unit of social organization in which people have a sense of identity and a feeling of belonging." (Datson 1986)
2. R.T. Schaefer : "A society is fairly large number of people who live in same territory, are relatively independent of people outside their area, and participate in a common culture".
3. J.W. Wander Zanden : "Society refers to a group of people who live within the sane territory and share a common culture."
4. Young,and Mack : "Society is such the biggest group which has common cultural manner or way and that encompasses all basic institutions."
5. Samuel Koenig : "Society is such a group of individuals that has common traditions, values, customs and style of life."
TYPES OF SOCIETY :-
Societies have lived a long evolutionary period before reaching the present stage of a modern society. In this evolutionary journey, different societies came into existence and changed forms and nature according to the changes of time. The evolutionary forms of the society is given rise to kinds of societies and the detail of these is given below:
1. Hunting and Gathering Societies :
These societies depended upon hunting and fruit for their food. In other words, "A hunting and gathering society is one relying upon for its subsistence on such wild animals and vegetables as its members can hunt or gather."
From the beginning of the human society to few hundred years, all societies adopted this way of life. Even today, the segregated societies still depend on hunting and vegetables for food.
Hunting societies consisted of a few individuals and were scattered in the form of wandering groups because in case of a big group to provide food was difficult. Hunting societies lived in a primary group of about forty ,people who belonged to one family and forefathers. Apart from primary group, no other basic
institutions were in existence and only the family did all functions of religious, educational and economic institutions. Any elder of the family did the service of solving problems temporarily and generally decisions were made by discussion and the jobs and duties were, assigned according to age and sex on the concept of personal property, therefore, there was no gradation due to rich and poor. Since wealth had no existence, therefore, there was no conflict. The time for getting food was very short and that is why, in that hunting society people had a spare time most of all other societies.
According to Lee and Sahalines (1972) :
"Their needs are simple and easily satisfied, and they spend less time working for their living so they are among the most leisured people on Earth."
2. Pastoral Societies :
"A Pastoral society is one relying for its subsistence primarily on domesticated herd animals, emerged between 10,000 to 20,000 years ago." The hunting people societies started catching animals, training and domesticating those animals. Goats and sheep were suitable for milk and meat. Therefore, people living in deserts started to domesticate those for their food. The population increased and the society began to take shape of semi-resident society. The herd of cattle became a source of wealth and spare economic sources which made some families more powerful and gradation of rich and poor started. Though these tribes remained mostly but the geographical area became limited. A limited culture began to come into existence. Handicrafts developed and a track started to some extent and contacts among tribes. The preliminary belief of religion began to appear relating to natural phenomenon. Every tribe had their own specific beliefs based upon their observation and experience which produced a somewhat complication in the social structure and manner of culture.
3. Horticultural Societies :
"A horticultural society is one relying for its subsistence on the cultivation of domesticated plants."
When in the deserts and mountainous regions, pastoral societies were coming into existence, apparently during the same period from ten to twenty thousand years, the horticultural societies were coming into existence in the plains, near the banks of rivers and streams. The members of the hunting society tried to grow vegetables by conscious efforts and started cultivation and protection of plants and fruit, then from nomadic society's resident societies came into existence. In that age, herbs were destroyed to make clear the forests and ashes were used as manure (which was type of burn technology). Since the getting of increased population, spare food was stored which made some families rich and wealthy. Political and social institutions came into existence. Hereditary leadership started. Trade activity contacted different societies. Resident societies came into existence and agricultural implements were invented. Cultural activities became complicated which gave rise to cultural diversities. Beliefs began to appear in powerful rites and form to the extent of sacrifice of men. Wealth and beliefs accumulation brought about classes and class differences.
4. Agricultural Societies :
"An agricultural society is one relying for its subsistence primarily on the cultivation of crops through the use of plough and draft animals." Almost six thousands years back, the invention of plough brought about a revolution in agriculture which was called agricultural revolution. This increased the agricultural production. With the combination of huilting and pastoral societies, agricultural society came into existence and with the help of draft animals in the agriculture field, the societies acquired the shape of resident societies. Food production was increased which gave more food for trade purpose. Population increased rapidly because there was need of more people for agriculture. Specialization in handicrafts started and professions like blacksmith, carpenter, cobblers and cloth weavers came into existence. From village turns into town and then big cities began to come into existence. The agricultural protect was thought an alternative for buying and selling other things.
The relations between individuals and groups got promotion and this stability increased depending. Political institutions became more functional and a clear form of state arose. The power and working sphere of a political leader became vast. Social classification became more clear part of society. Wealth went into hands of landlords and majority became farmers and handicraft men which divided the society into class distinction. With the start of a state, army and war has been started and conquests were made to make states big. Indus valley civilization, Mohenjodoro, was an exemplary agricultural culture. Culture was taking the shape of individual social life and every aspect of life and every movement had an individualistic position as culture determined. Beliefs, customs, traditions, habits and skills merged into social life and society became organized. Society had more status than that of an individual. The duties were assigned according to sex, skill, power and wealth. Social stability became a very important social value. The agricultural societies became the first human culture.
5. Industrial Societies :
"An industrial society is one relying for its subsistence primarily on mechanized production."
These societies came into existence when the individuals began to live their life depending on the mechanical production. Since two and a half century before, the industrial revolution began, when new scientific inventions were made and mechanical production increased due to use of machines and social activities took a different direction and as compared to agricultural societies, the social
variation became very rapid.
In an industrial society, a few individuals can produce so much food and other things of need which are sufficient for many people and this increases the population in the beginning because people can get good food and work load is less than their work. Better residence facility is available and this changes rural
societies into urban societies. Employment chances increase. People pass most of the time in secondary instead of primary groups. Shallow and impersonal interaction takes place. Government becomes an institution controlling the whole life. Economic circle becomes complicated, vast and overpowering. A family is unable to perform its basic functions. The influence of religious institutions descends from collective life to personal and industrial level. Educational institutions become important and knowledge of science becomes a social value. Social control becomes important duty of the political institution. Security from foreign aggression becomes a great concern of the society.
Army, police and bureaucracy become very much organized. Culture takes a new direction. Social norms appear in the form of laws instant of complimentary attitude. Acquired status takes the place of quality status. Modern life is liked very much instead of old values and traditions. According to grading, the middle class emerges as the biggest class. In the beginning of the industrial society, the poor are in majority but afterwards poverty ends and the poor becomes a minority in the society. Division of work becomes complicated and regard of sex, age and status ends and knowledge, skill, and technical expertness count which makes the
life complicated and seriously detached. Rapid social variation gives a feeling of danger of disintegration, complication and social' structure.
In the words of Robertson, 1987, "Rapid social change threatens to
disorganize the existing social structure."
Social Needs :
The society has to fulfill certain needs to keep itself alive to which the functionalists give the name of Functional pre-requisites. Its detail is given here:
1. Subsistence Needs :
The completion of physical and subsistence needs is necessary for men to live. Physical needs include air, water, residence, sleep are called biological needs and psychic needs are love, avoidance from excessive stress, participation in system of shared belief etc. These physical needs help to complete the subsistence
needs which enhance the effort for residence and getting food.
2. Distribution Need :
Subsistence sources arc required to be distributed away the individual of a society but it happens less that this division is equal and because of this, elders of a family arrange for food and residence of their children and young people.
3. Need of Biological Reproduction :
It is necessary to keep the society alive and to ensure its survival. Most of the members of the society should do this duty of biological reproduction.
4. The Need of Transmission of Culture :
It is necessary for the survival of the society to transmit the present culture to the next generation, so that the new generation may be able to sustain the culture and society.
5. The Need for Protection :
It is a must for a society that its individuals avoid to ruin one another. By this activity, the society can be divided into two basic kinds. The German sociologist Ferdinand Tormies has told as Rural (Gemenichafft) and urban (Gaseochafft) societies.