Social Change

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  • A broad term referring to variations over time in a society's culture, the structure and function of social institutions, the structure and function of social roles, and the environmental stability of populations and communities. The change can occur at the macrolevel, such as with globalization or population growth; the middle level, such as with urbanization or changes in crime rates; or the microlevel, such as with changing norms of conduct. The change can be driven by forces within or beyond the society and be intentional or unintentional. Modernization and war are two powerful sources of social change. Explanations for social change include the evolutionary, cyclical, conflict, and functionalist models.


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