The Sense Of Community Cohesion In Britain Sociology Essay

Socio-anthropologists hold the opinion that people think, feel and react in certain ways based on the environment in which they have become. The environment in this framework could be inferred as the community that has influence their make-up or personal information. Recently, public debates in the media by politicians, journalists, experts and other stakeholders have centered on what is or constitute being British. These debates have sharply bordered on socio-religious identities, and elevated questions such as: Does religious values supersede community bonding? To what level is ones' loyalty to the city where one lives?. Other debates have been on

"profiling and condemnation of racially motivated assault and harassment, a palm wringing debate on institutional racism following a publication in 1999 of the Macpherson Survey into the loss of life of Stephen Lawrence" (Amin, 2002).

Government procedures and legislatives on equal opportunity to spotlight awareness of sense of community, presuppose that the fabric of the concept of community is weakened and threatened inside our modern Britain.

Community is "A body of men and women having common rights, privileges, or passions, or living in the same place under the same regulations" (http://www. brainyquote. com/words/co/community146100. html) The meaning of the term 'Community' has transformed over time. Smith (2001)explores the idea of community in the article entitled Community and outlined on why the interest on social capital and community may make a difference.

"the utilization of the term community has continued to be to some extent from the wish and the wish of reviving once again the closer, warmer, more harmonious type of bonds between people vaguely related to past age groups' (Elias 1974, quoted by Hoggett 1997: 5). "

People resided in groups posting faith, religious beliefs and other sociable norms during pre industrialization age. Community was redefined after this when people became personnel in industries. These were many studies about community in the center of the 20th century leading a deeper research of the term.

The free Dictionary however defines individualism as "a perception in the importance of the average person and the virtue of self-reliance and personal independence". This description highlights on the word 'notion' - anything kept as true. Thus in this framework the individuals opinion is presented in high esteem and supplants that of any others. Hofstede (1991) in his social dimensions represents individualism as pertains to societies in which the ties between folks are loose: everyone is expected to take care of himself or herself and his / her immediate family. Hofstede scaled Britain on high individualism index of 89, and that folks thinks in terms of 'I' rather than 'We'.

Researchers found that Britain was the most individualistic world on the globe - one which valued the self above the group more than every other country. (Richard A, 2009) Based on the Kwintessential website certain traits are normal to countries which may have high individualism.

"personal goals and achievements are strived for, it is appropriate to pursue specific goals at the expense of others, 'individualism' is inspired whether personality, clothes or music likes and finally the right of the average person reign supreme; thus regulations to protect options and flexibility of talk. " (http://www. kwintessential. co. uk/intercultural/individualism. html)

A recent article for the Children's Society highlights the above facts.

"Leading experts today identify excessive individualism as the greatest threat to our children. In a landmark article on AN EXCELLENT Childhood, commissioned by The Children's Population and shared by Penguin, they show that children's lives have grown to be more difficult than previously, and they trace this to excessive individualism. "

(http://www. childrenssociety. org. uk/whats_happening/media_office/latest_news/14758_news. html)

Other organisations like Joseph Rowntree Foundation have express the fear on the changes that are taking place in Britain. They have classified increased individualism as a interpersonal evil.

"The JRF's recent open public consultation revealed a solid sense of unease about a few of the changes shaping British society. This Viewpoint continues the discourse about modern 'communal evils' on the theme of 'inequality'. Chris Creegan argues that until we can reconcile the issues of high individualism, consumerism and greed in the centre of contemporary modern culture, life opportunities will continue to be lost, limited and wasted. " (Creegan C, 2008)

To enable various different groups to can get on well in every communities, community cohesion should take place. A cohesive community is the one that affords the individuals in the community understanding of their rights and responsibilities. People from differing backgrounds in this community must have similar opportunities. They must also trust their local organizations like the authorities and the courts. They must believe that the local council will offer fair services to all or any in the community rather than for example place new immigrants looking for accommodation from social landlords into areas that are deprived and unwanted by the rest of the community.

The community must realize the contributions of both new arrivals and those already settled rather than be intimidated by the change it brings. A typical example is the arrival of the Polish immigrants. Some people in Britain could not recognize the skills, experience and knowledge they taken to the nation but instead were fearful that they had taken careers from the British. Also, that there are positive connections between people of different backgrounds at institution, work and home. Corresponding to Ted Cantle "Community cohesion ismicro-communitiesmesh into a built-in whole. These divided neighborhoods would have to develop common goals and a shared perspective" (OFFICE AT HOME, 2001b: 70). In his tips, Cantle attracts on the value and the need for Internet sites and public capital, social order and cultural control, public solidarity and reductions in prosperity disparities. Worley (2005) also shows how the idea of 'community' is essential to the community cohesion, and shows that whilst the concept of 'community' is highly ambiguous, it offers continuing relevance in New Labour policymaking.

Excessive Individualism is concerned with each one for him/herself and God for us all and therefore undermines the sense of community cohesion in Britain. Folks have become more and more self-reliant. Families are not so extended any longer but reliant on one, two or the most three people. Folks are not connected so much using their relatives and have a tendency to rely on their immediate family only. Family homes are attained to support the immediate family rather than the prolonged family. People work with child minder, nannies and don't rely much on their relative anymore. Everyone aspires to be wealthy or amass riches that will meet his and her individuals needs. Some analysts have even blamed the recession on individualism.

" From the general public consultation we do last year, there was clearly a strong sense that the decline of community has corresponded with a growth in individualism. Individuals suggested that individuals increasingly take care of their own individual or family hobbies without taking into consideration the needs of culture or the city. " (Urwin J, 2008)

People are forget about enthusiastic about what the community achieves but what they the individuals can perform. Even industries encourage people to be individualist by offering DIY plans which take attention from tradesmen to the individual. Thus a sense of togetherness is non existent.

If the advent of industrialization has promoted individualism, then how about information years. Computerization, in terms of video games development such Wii, Playstation and Xbox 360 are all means and mediums that does not encourage visitors to venture out and socialize locally, rather it encourages people to build relationships themselves. Online shopping has brought the benefit for purchasing items from the comfort of your homes; however, this will go a long way to kill interpersonal interaction. Most social activities are now targeted at the average person in his home. Folks have become 'lazy' at building connections with others especially those who are in cities.

The East end of London was once a upon a time referred to as 'dark in the night and deep in day' deep in the day meaning it had not been lit up by the middle class's Christianity. Which has diminished in the current Britain leaving little light bulbs of religion here and there making religious beliefs or beliefs very individualistic. Yet the old east end is often held up as the epitome of 'community'. People's beliefs vary and individual behaviour has become very personal and can't be corrected by community as before. You can't right other people's children without having to be murdered or abused. Everyone helps to keep themselves to themselves and it's hard to get to know your neighbours. There are some very sweeping generalizations in these preceding claims - they referencing or at least phrased with better nuance. This is what took place in Oldham, Burnley and Bradford when areas lived in different areas visited different institutions and acquired little to do with one another.

"Whilst the physical segregation of housing estates and interior city areas came up as no real surprise, the team was particularly struck by the depth of polarisation of the towns and metropolitan areas. The amount to which these physical divisions were compounded by so a great many other aspects of our day to day lives, was very noticeable. Separate educational preparations, community and voluntary bodies, employment, places of worship, language, social and ethnical networks, means that lots of communities are powered by the foundation of some parallel lives. " (Independent Review Team, 2001; 9)

People's failure to relate with others goes quite a distance to impact community cohesion. It creates fear, tensions and misunderstanding which is what was experienced in Bradford, Burnley and Oldham.

"Worries about the frustrating and negative aftereffect of diversity on communal cohesion and nationwide personal information have been portrayed by journalists and policy makers alike. For example, David Goodhart, the editor of THE CHANCE, targeted his February 2004 article at the damaging impact of ethnic diversity in modern Britain on the sense of community and solidarity among residents, and on the viability of the British welfare status (Goodhart 2004), while Trevor Philips, Couch of the Commission rate for Racial Equality, reiterated this argument by stressing the need for strengthening common values and "core Britishness" (Baldwin and Rozenberg 2004). " (http://www. nuff. ox. ac. uk/Politics/papers/2005/NLetki_social%20capital%20and%20diversity_final. pdf) This paragraph is all a offer - authors citing other authors. It needs some connect to your debate - pulling out those elements that straight bear on it.

Having said every one of the above, community cohesion issues are multifaceted and function in a different way in specific areas. "There are various parts to building community cohesion, from tackling inequalities to expanding people's understanding and tolerance of others. "

(http://www. nottinghamcity. gov. uk/index. aspx?articleid=2627)

Excessive individualism is not the only factor that works against community cohesion. There are other factors like integration which must happen for new residents and existing residents to understand and accept each other. Within the Cantle report the problem of intergration emerged up and the feedback were as follows

"The other difficult issue is that of levels of integration/segregation. Again there is a perception within the established white community that minority communities do not do enough to incorporate into what they see as British isles culture or contemporary society, instead forming a separate community (a view which seems at odds with the recognized "white airfare" when such integration is attempted). Yet with an extent segregation will always arise through choice- whether normally gravitating towards people who discuss your views or seeking minority-specific facilities such as places of worship or particular outlets and services that could not be fiscally viable in a far more dispersed community- and this is not necessarily a reason for concern. The Cantle Independant Review team notes:"

(Wntrmute 2003)

A cohesive community must have the ability to create opportunities to bring people collectively, confront myths and intolerance so that folks locally can realize their full potential. Every area is unique and will therefore face different difficulties. Britain has a wealthy diversity in cities, cities, metropolitan and picturesque villages. Community cohesion must have the ability to meet up with the differing needs of its residents before cohesion can be marketed.

For community cohesion to operate well there must a feeling of safe practices. People must feel safe and pleasant. There should be jobs so that establish residents do not commence to blame new residents of taking their careers.

"Social trends also have influenced the knowledge of poverty within Great britain. For instance, unemployment statistics are roughly equivalent with those of the 1970s, but changes in sociable structure (more single property owners or solo parent individuals) imply that a lot more homes lack a source of income. THE UNITED KINGDOM is the only EU country in which homeowners with children are much more likely than homeowners without children to include nobody with employment. This is related to the high percentage of UK lone parents with no employment. (from the Sociable Inclusion Country wide Action Plan)" (Wntrmute 2003)

Lack of careers in certain areas in Britain has created a space of have and one half not in neighborhoods. Priorities should be given to regenerating run down areas in the community to market community cohesion. If run-down areas are not regenerated residents will commence to become bitter and it'll create tensions locally. This can also attract businesses to the region which will subsequently impact on the city.

The provision of affordable property will also help promote community cohesion. Enclosure is recognized as a significant determinant of the form of neighborhoods (Independent Review Team, 2001; Home Office, 2001) In communities like Slough where there has been a large in flux of immigrants, there are accusations that local residents are being exceeded over in social enclosure. Also, when you can find housing, areas do not break up and move away looking for housing elsewhere. Recently, we've seen teenagers move away from villages because properties there are very costly. Residents locally should also discover the opportunities for training for jobs. This will increase confidence and boost job seeking opportunities.

There should be good transportation links locally. This will put the city on the map. Make people reach places quickly and conveniently. Give usage of shops and amenities. There should be good environmental improvement which will enhance neighborhoods. An insert of social and leisure facilities should help the promotion of your cohesive community. Ethnic and community centres which promote owed.

Britain is currently made up of men and women from differing backgrounds and to allow them to get on well jointly community cohesion must happen. This will however, be difficult if unnecessary individualism is common. Having said that, community cohesion can't be undermined by unnecessary individualism alone other factors like enclosure, poverty, race etc are contributing factors.

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