Group Dynamics According to sociologists a group is defined as an interaction process between two or more individual who share the same features and have a collective sense of unity with each other. Individuals within a group are able to gain an identity and a sense of belonging. In addition, a group is mainly characterized by a common goal and objectives, cultural values and accepted norms and a similar interest. Sociologists have further established two types of groups that are based on their features; a primary group and a secondary group.
Examples of a primary group include family groups, church groups, and love relations among others. Examples of secondary groups involve community and help groups. Therefore a family as a primary group will be highlighted in the essay (Forsyth, 2-6). The functionalist perspective in understanding groups was based on the works of Herbert Spencer and Emile Durkheim. Functionalism holds that society involves an interconnection of various parts that work in harmony for the purposes of enhancing the social balance. A family contributes essential functions of socialization, nurturing and reproduction in the society.
The conflict theory is mainly based on the works of Karl Marx. In relation to existence of groups in the society conflict theorists argue that society is composed into different groups as a result of competition for power and resources. Hence, a family as a exercises its own power and benefit from the existing social arrangement. Symbolic interactionism largely the works of George Simmel argues that the sense of identity is fashioned through the process of social interaction. Thus, self-concept is developed through the interaction process that a family as a group facilitates (Mooney et. al.
1-3). Works CitedForsyth, Donelson. Group Dynamics. Introduction to Group Dynamics. Fourth Edition. Thomson Learning Academic Centre. 2006.Mooney, Knox and Schacht. The Three main Sociological Perspectives. Understanding Social Problems, 5th edition. 2007.