The Group in Society meets the challenges of teaching courses on small groups by revealing the full complexity of small groups and their place in society. It shows students the value of learning how to carefully study a group's history and context, rather than merely learning a fixed set of group participation skills. This text brings together disparate theories and research (from communication, social psychology, organizational and managerial studies, and sociology) in a way that helps students make sense of a complex body of scholarship on groups.
Features & Benefits
Part I – Theorizing Groups: builds a strong theoretical foundation, exploring social theory and the group, forming and joining groups, the life and death of the group, and changing society through group life; Part II – Understanding Groups in Context: explores the histories, purposes, memberships of a variety of groups—including juries, families, executive committees, study groups, and political action groups—thus enabling the student reader to speak clearly about group formation, norms, roles, tasks, and relationships. Detailed end-of-chapter case studies explicitly connect with the concepts, theories, and empirical findings introduced in each respective chapter; examples include the powerful group bonds of the modern terrorist cell; the wired network of groups in the anti-Globalization movement; and the deliberation of a jury in a murder trial
Teaching & Learning Ancillaries
Teaching resources are available at http://www.groupinsociety.org/ and include chapter summaries, discussion questions, and practical applications; a sample course schedule; Embedded Systems Framework PowerPoint slides; group project assignments, group project worksheets, and a group project description and contract; and links to useful Web resources such as small group teaching resources and active wikis on small groups; An open-access student study site at http://www.sagepub.com/gastilstudy features e-flashcards, practice quizzes, and other resources to help students enhance their comprehension and improve their grade.
Chapter 10: The Power of Knowledge
The Power of Knowledge
Through a broad review of small-group research, this book has aimed to provide the reader with useful knowledge about how small groups operate in different contexts. The theories we reviewed, and the researchers who created them, have always aimed to create practical knowledge—models of reality that can help us in our daily lives. We can use such theoretical insights to make more educated choices about how to engage with the groups we choose to join. A more accurate grasp of group behavior also can improve our analysis and navigation of the wider network of groups that extends through the social world.
Small groups have tremendous power, and if we fail to understand their inner workings and their connections to ...