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According to Durkheim, the term refers to the state or condition whereby there is a total breakdown regarding guidance and social norms for citizens within the society.

In my own words, anomie is an unfortunate situation within the society that is characterized by broken-down social norms, values, and systems. In this case, it describes decadence of the beliefs and values of the societal members.

The term is used in the text to show how the guidance systems within the society can fail to exert an influence that can enable various individuals to adhere to the set rules and values. The term is also used to show how individuals can get detached from the society due to the lack of guidance.

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The strength of the term is that it provides a sense of identity to a society since it will be known for a set of values and beliefs. In turn, this will help in the shaping of the belief system of people. The major weakness of this term is the lack of capacity to determine the moral code of conduct in the society since morality is relative.

Division of Labor

According to Emile Durkheim, division of labor refers to the allocation of people in the society in accordance with their merit that makes them receive rewards accordingly. Durkheim also defines division of labor as a concept that focuses on a societal shift from simple to complex environment.

In my own words, Durkheim defines division of labor as the societal mechanism whereby people are given job opportunities and receive compensation based on their qualifications.

Division of labor is used differently in the text. Firstly, it shows that there is work that must be done in the society. However, according to him, these job opportunities must be allocated to competent people who will receive rewards for the quality performance of their work. The definition also identifies that there is a need for the distribution of work in the society. Durkheim understands that rewards must be given for the work done in the society.

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In terms of strengths, division of labor can help in social governance to determine the labor force versus the number of qualified professionals required for the work. In turn, this will help in social and economic planning within the society. The greatest weakness of this term is that is creates segregation within the society since work and rewards can only be allocated based on merit. As a result, individuals without qualifications are locked out of any opportunities in the society. Ultimately, this may create a great imbalance between the poor and the rich within the community.


It is a term used by Durkheim to refer to the need for societal equilibrium. In this case, the author states that anything that interrupts the normative flow of systems in the society must be eliminated immediately to achieve stability. Functionalism champions for a society that is described and analyzed based on functions.

In my own words, functionalism refers to a concept that denotes the importance of a society achieving a state where every system has an equilibrium status. In this case, any aspects that bring instability and disharmony must be eliminated immediately to cater for the state of equilibrium.

The term is used in the text to describe the equilibrium state where the government takes the initiative to provide public education for the children. In this case, the parents of these children engage in tax payments that would cater for the public education enjoyed by the students. The term is also used to demonstrate that delinquent behavior and crime are normal functionalism occurrences of a social system.

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The first strength of the term is that it creates a system of economic independence since every governmental decision must be made alongside a counteracting step that makes it sustainable. It is clear that the issue of sustainability is vital for the functionalism system to operate. The second strength is that it reduces malpractices within any governmental system due to the need for constant accountability. On the other hand, functionalism cannot operate in a democratic space where the majority’s voice rules. In this regard, it is difficult to convince everyone of the need to establish a counteractive mechanism that will ensure equilibrium despite any unforeseen circumstances.

Mechanical Solidarity

According to Durkheim, mechanical solidarity is a term that used to refer to a situation whereby the people within the structural units are self-sufficient and alike.

In my own words, the term ‘mechanical solidarity’ is a situation whereby individuals from a particular region or place share similar beliefs, value-system, and habits. In this case, it refers to the common goals of particular people within a specific place in society. They have to share a similar belief regarding something in the society.

The term is used  differently in the text. Firstly, it is used to refer to traditional societies whereby individuals cultivated their own foods, formed their own respective clothes, and exhibited a small need for socialization due to the high level of independence that existed. Secondly, it is used to show the importance of shared values within the community. According to Durkheim, there is a need for the current society to share similar goals that will increase the level of output in every household within a particular continent in the world.

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The first strength of the term is that it enhances economic independence. In this case, mechanical solidarity forces the people of a particular region to focus on financial freedom by working hard to conform to the shared beliefs of the region. Secondly, it facilitates social freedom. People do not have to live at the mercy of others. The term presupposes the individuals’ ability to work and find social independence since they do not need to depend on others for the daily needs. On the other hand, the term has weaknesses. The first is that it can create an imbalanced social atmosphere since it encourages social independence. In this regard, antisocial tendencies may develop in the society leading to unhealthy human habits such as rape. Secondly, the term promotes economic independence which may be dangerous in case the structural unit such as a country lacks other goods which they have to import from other places.

Organic solidarity

Durkheim defines organic solidarity as a social cohesion that is based on individuals’ dependence on each other in advanced societies. In this case, Durkheim states that organic solidarity originates from the complementarities that people hold and their specialization of work. The term suggests that organic solidarity cannot be achieved without the existence of a working society. In this case, the term can be used to refer to the interdependence of component parts. For instance, a society that produces food to feed workers is considered to possess organic solidarity. The division of labor in the society enables it to achieve organic solidarity.

Durkheim uses the term in establishing the factors that play a role in holding the society together. Additionally, he uses the term to show a difference from mechanical solidarity. The term is also used in reflecting on complex societies that are composed of individuals who engage in different tasks and have varying interests and values.

The term is weak based on its similarities to mechanical solidarity. As a result, the terms can be easily confused. On the other hand, the term is considerably strong since it reflects on complex societies from a working community perspective. It is also helpful in the assessment of societies and the aspects that hold them together with regards to the division of labor among individuals. Moreover, it is essential in the evaluation of individuals who engage in different tasks and have varying interests and values and their influence on the formation of complex societies. The term can also be used to broaden the definition of cohesion, which is the state of working together by reflecting on the aspects influencing the society to cooperate.

Social fact

Durkheim defines social facts as representations and actions that cannot be confused with either physical or organic phenomena based on the fact that they lack existence in an individual’s consciousness. He also states that a social fact is an action that many people engage due to the influence of the socialized community that they belong to. Additionally, he defines the term as a way of acting that attributes to an external constraint over the individual. The term suggests that a social fact is an action that is used to define an individual’s everyday life. For instance, it could be employed with regard to language and religion because they influence an individual’s interaction with other members of the society. The term is also applied to ideas and actions that people engage in on a daily basis and the effect they have on their lives.

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Durkheim uses the term to examine the behavior of societies by pointing out to a particular individual’s actions in the society. Additionally, the term covers the way individuals classify and perceive particular acts. Durkheim also uses the term in a bid to deviate from the norm by taking into consideration the individual’s interactions with the society.

The term is strong due to its reflection of social practices and classification  as well as their influence on the society. In this case, it would be helpful in the examination of issues in the society. It would allow an individual to take into account the problems and their effects on everyday interactions among individuals in the society.


Durkheim defines sociology as a science of social institutions. According to Durkheim, sociology is grounded in the fact that individuals’ facets and their conception of the world are influenced by the society. The term suggests that a person’s ideas, shared beliefs, and language are determined by social milieu. Additionally, it presupposes that the society plays an essential role in establishing the knowledge of the world. The term reflects on the society and its influence on the existence of humanity with regard to the way it affects and forms its life.

In the text, the term is used in reference to the topics reserved for philosophical investigation. Additionally, the term is applied to express the elements of the society and their influence on an individual’s knowledge and conception of the world. It is used to understand humanity from a social relations’ perspective.

The strengths of the term are expressed through its role in acquiring knowledge about the society. In this case, the aim of sociology is to enhance humanity’s adjustment to life through the development of objective knowledge in regards to social phenomena and its application in solving social problems. However, the term is weak because its definition has been disputed by critics, leading to the establishment of different meanings. As a result, it is difficult to give a comprehensive definition of the term. It is applicable in various fields concerned with humanity and its relationship with the society.

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Durkheim defines solidarity as a social cohesion based on the dependence of individuals on each other in the society. In this case, the term is used to reflect on the homogeneity of individuals. Durkheim also defines the term with regard to a bond of unity that individuals hold due to sharing a common goal. It suggests that people in the society are connected in various ways such as education and religion. Additionally, it suggests that people feel connected to each other by sharing such aspects as a common enemy. According to the definition, the order of the society depends on the individuals’ reliance on each other to engage in various tasks.

Durkheim uses the term to describe social order by reflecting on the influence of individuals’ interdependence. Furthermore, the term encompasses the development of societies by specifying how individuals feel connected to each other. It is also used to assess the development of societies by taking into consideration the influence of familial networks and kinship ties.

The term is strong because it incorporates the development of the society by focusing on the influence of unity and bonds established between individuals. As a result, the term would be helpful in the assessment of societies and establishment of the reasons why people feel connected through different networks that exist in the society.