11 Things That Are Social Constructs
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

11 Things That Are Social Constructs

We have created a lot of the concepts we are so familiar with.

176452
11 Things That Are Social Constructs
hyperallergic.com

What is a social construct?

Well, it is exactly as it sounds. It is something that is not inherently natural, but created by society. It is an extremely important concept in the social sciences because without them, society would not be the same. The constructs very much shape our lives. But we also shape them. If the existing society changed, new constructs would develop and old ones may weaken. Different societies have different constructs; what is the "norm" here may clash with what is the "norm" in another country.

1. Government

If government wasn't a social construct, there wouldn't be so many differing opinions on what is the "best type of government".

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F10%2F17%2F6361230971285009621627989385_obama.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=425&h=bb051cd4a791fa440c131a913fa89dbbc490c9acf79aa3f618f119ca640f7afb&size=980x&c=428629562 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F10%252F17%252F6361230971285009621627989385_obama.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D425%26h%3Dbb051cd4a791fa440c131a913fa89dbbc490c9acf79aa3f618f119ca640f7afb%26size%3D980x%26c%3D428629562%22%7D" expand=1]

2. Race

"Race is not biological...There is no gene or cluster of genes common to all blacks or all whites. Were race “real” in the genetic sense, racial classifications for individuals would remain constant across boundaries."

3. Gender

Gender is not inherent. Genders are the socially constructed roles, behaviors, etc. that society considers appropriate for "men" and "women".

4. Femininity/Masculinity

Society tells us what is feminine/ masculine and how it can be displayed. The values tied to masculinity have been generally seen as superior to those associated with femininity.

5. Illness

Societies diagnosis differently, and treat the patients differently. Therefore, the concept of illness is constructed. If it wasn't there wouldn't be as much of a variety of treatments for the "same illness".

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F10%2F17%2F636123099323030348-311184247_hospital.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=890&h=71d1904daa12a41932a9b189adf4635a4eb4c4334f7ac04b1408549c488ed8f1&size=980x&c=3992552342 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F10%252F17%252F636123099323030348-311184247_hospital.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D890%26h%3D71d1904daa12a41932a9b189adf4635a4eb4c4334f7ac04b1408549c488ed8f1%26size%3D980x%26c%3D3992552342%22%7D" expand=1]

6. Marriage

The concept of marriage is not universal. Some versions are more inclusive than others.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F10%2F17%2F636123089351537371-1969127882_marriage%2520.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=306&h=ad81cac2d0e762f085750c2bfdabc184a80720cc3e12e58d63fd4158d259d5d1&size=980x&c=3948532980 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F10%252F17%252F636123089351537371-1969127882_marriage%252520.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D306%26h%3Dad81cac2d0e762f085750c2bfdabc184a80720cc3e12e58d63fd4158d259d5d1%26size%3D980x%26c%3D3948532980%22%7D" expand=1]

7. Family

The stereotypical family dynamic varies from culture to culture; there is no inherent family structure.

8. Organized Religions

Among other things, organized religion was created by humans as a way of connecting to each other.

9. Technology

The importance and impact of technology isn't the same for every society. Some heavily rely on it, while some oppose it.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F10%2F17%2F636123090150600776-1330567868_technology%2520.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=7&h=11009748e2cb8d2223ae4507773a0c0d2ab4dd5c8d4f60a1be7546f06ae1da88&size=980x&c=3677079428 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F10%252F17%252F636123090150600776-1330567868_technology%252520.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D7%26h%3D11009748e2cb8d2223ae4507773a0c0d2ab4dd5c8d4f60a1be7546f06ae1da88%26size%3D980x%26c%3D3677079428%22%7D" expand=1]

10. Deviance

Deviant behavior is extremely relative. One society may consider something to be wrong or different, while another may not.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F10%2F17%2F636123103446558859347892983_divergent.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=361&h=c438a27a4ac67076f2439bf767a95c035db00fcb69ad5ffa94100e65166d25e8&size=980x&c=2269910570 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F10%252F17%252F636123103446558859347892983_divergent.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D361%26h%3Dc438a27a4ac67076f2439bf767a95c035db00fcb69ad5ffa94100e65166d25e8%26size%3D980x%26c%3D2269910570%22%7D" expand=1]

11. Education

The process of learning is socially constructed. There is no universal outline for education. The values of a society play into the "education experience".

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F10%2F17%2F6361230945658270601507978559_classroom.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=333&h=5bad9851aa1ecc2399fb64cfd5326c81e936f18b1ddff76953d7f251e9bd2f78&size=980x&c=1292793835 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F10%252F17%252F6361230945658270601507978559_classroom.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D333%26h%3D5bad9851aa1ecc2399fb64cfd5326c81e936f18b1ddff76953d7f251e9bd2f78%26size%3D980x%26c%3D1292793835%22%7D" expand=1]

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Featured

Because self confidence is sexy

And as a woman, I want us all to love ourselves a little bit more today.

30

Women have such high standards to live up to today. We’re expected to do and be so much. The great Tina Fey said “Every girl is expected to have Caucasian blue eyes, full Spanish lips, a classic button nose, hairless Asian skin with a California tan, a Jamaican dance hall ass, long Swedish legs, small Japanese feet, the abs of a lesbian gym owner, the hips of a nine-year-old boy, the arms of Michelle Obama, and doll tits. The person closest to actually achieving this look is Kim Kardashian, who, as we know, was made by Russian scientists to sabotage our athletes." This quote is not only hilarious, but also incredibly true! How many of you feel insecure every time you walk on campus, or every time you walk into a party? Even the girls you think are perfect are insecure. Everyone has flaws. Sure some flaws may be more exaggerated than others, but that doesn’t mean that the girl still feels bad about them. My point here is that it doesn’t matter how “perfect” you are, what matters most is how “perfect” you feel.

Keep Reading... Show less

With the dawn of social media comes an entirely new character: the Facebook politician. Usually, articles or posts about politics are fairly sporadic. That is until a major event happens. Suddenly, everyone knows everything about everything. Everyone seems to have a very strong opinion. Everyone is super knowledgeable, and what better vessel of information than they themselves? Which is pretty reasonable, given that people’s emotions run high when something major happens. And I don’t blame them, emotions are good!

Keep Reading... Show less
Sports

The Gift Of Basketball

The NBA playoffs remind me of my basketball journey through time

3112
Syracuse Basketball

I remember that when I was very little, my dad played in an adult basketball league, and I remember cheering him on with everything in me. I also remember going to Tuscola basketball games when the old floor was still there and the bleachers were still wooden. I remember always wanting to play basketball like my dad, and that's just what I did.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Plus Size Appreciation: How I Learned To Love My Body

Because it is okay to not be "skinny."

4502
www.hm.com

In America, we tend to stick up our noses at certain things that aren't the norm. For example, people who are overweight, or the politically correct term “obese." Men and women who are overweight get so much backlash because they are not skinny or "in shape," especially, African-American women, who are typically known for having wider hips and thicker thighs. Robert Darryl, an African-American filmmaker, explains the overall intention of the body mass index in his follow-up sequel, “America the Beautiful 2: The Thin Commandments."

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

It's More Than Just A Month

Mental Awareness reminds you that it's always darkest before the dawn.

5183
Wordpress
Odyssey recognizes that mental well-being is a huge component of physical wellness. Our mission this month is to bring about awareness & normality to conversations around mental health from our community. Let's recognize the common symptoms and encourage the help needed without judgement or prejudice. Life's a tough journey, we are here for you and want to hear from you.

As the month of May begins, so does Mental Health Awareness Month. Anxiety, depression, bipolar mood disorder, eating disorders, and more affect millions of people in the United States alone every year. Out of those affected, only about one half seek some form of treatment.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments