By David Brown, Michael J. Harrison (auth.)
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Extra resources for A Sociology of Industrialisation: an introduction
The part that it plays in the general integration of society evidently depends upon the greater or lesser extent of the sociallife which the common conscience embraces and regulates. (1964, p. 109) Let us summarise. Durkheim wishes to establish a set oftypical characteristics which promote social solidarity in societies of an undifferentiated nature, 'normal' societies which have a low level of division of labour. Since one cannot physically see such phenomena as 'normality' and 'social solidarity' one uses objective indices.
Since one cannot physically see such phenomena as 'normality' and 'social solidarity' one uses objective indices. For instance Durkheim used suicide rates as indices of the degrees of social solidarity when comparing various European nations and districts (Durkheim 1968). In order to ascertain which social orders contained the features of mechanical social solidarity Durkheim chose the relative presence of repressive law as his indicator. Commentators on Durkheim have criticised, perhaps correctly, his errar in taking repressive law as an index of mechanical solidarity, especi~lly when he anticipates its relative decIine under conditions of organic solidarity.
It has contrasted the gross characteristics of modern society with the gross characteristics of pre-modern societies in order to reveal just how much at variance is the modern condition with an past his tory. To summarise these gross characteristics common to an industrial societies: first, a reliance upon inanimate sources ofpower in the process ofproduction; second, large-scale industrial enterprises as the most typical modes of social organisation in the sphere of production; this entails the third feature, the radical separation of the industrial enterprise from the family; fourth, the crucial feature ofthe technical division oflabour which in turn required that, fifth, large amounts of capital were subject to constant renewal.