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Chris White January 29 2001 Dr Nieckars Sociology 11-C Social Control and Deviance In our textbook Sociology A Down-to-Earth Approach Henslin defines social control as a groups formal and informal means of enforcing its norms Two prime examples of social control are positive and negative sanctions A positive sanction is a reward or positive reaction for following norms A positive sanction could possibly be given to someone who tries to break and change norms in society for the advancement of the community A good example of this would be Dr Martin Luther Kings movement for civil rights A negative sanction is the opposite an expression of disapproval for breaking a norm These reactions can be severe and formal or they can be mild and informal How do these ideas of social control apply in the society created by Vonnegut in Player Piano In the book Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut there are many examples of positive and negative sanctions A perfect example of sanctions affecting lives in a dramatic way was the aptitude test taken by all citizens If you do poorly on it then you have to live the rest of your life in the Army or in the Reeks and Wrecks On the other hand if you perform well on the test you will be able to get a good job and be able to be successful So those who do not to well receive negative sanctions from the government and society while those who excel will be the recipients of many positive sanctions This example describes the exact definition of a sanction Another more formal example would be the law dealing with possession of a gun If you are caught with a gun you could face the chance of going to jail When the police find out that Paul had never turned his gun in they could have put him in jail They choose not to because Paul is a
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