Short Notes on Social Morphology

In general, morphology refers to the study of the shape, form, or structure of things. But, in sociology, social morphology specifically deals with the structure of society. The term social morphology was first used in the synthetic school of thought. Emile Durkheim was one of the chief proponents of the synthetic school of thought. The synthetic school of thought arose in reaction to the formalist school of thought. It sought to make sociology inclusive or like a general science. For this to happen, he believed that society should be studied taking into consideration all its aspects. In other words, sociology should study society as a whole thus making its scope very wide.

According to Durkheim, the scope of sociology can be divided into three divisions or fields of study. They are social morphology, social physiology, and general sociology. Emile Durkheim used the term in sociology in order to classify the substratum of the society, the structural relationship between people. This classification was based on how the different types of human populations are distributed and organized across the world. This is known as social morphology and it is one of Durkheim’s approaches to studying society. It includes fundamentally geographic subjects like population and its size, density, distribution, mobility, etc.

Social morphology analyses and studies the size, density, or quality of the population to know how these factors affect the relationships between people and social groups. Be it some mere individuals, or corporate groups, or organization, the aim of social morphology is to assess their nature, number, the way they are arranged, and the nature of their interrelations.

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