One day, you decide to wear pajamas to the grocery store. While you shop, you notice people giving you strange looks and whispering to others. In this case, the grocery store patrons are demonstrating _______.
b. formal sanctions
c. informal sanctions
d. positive sanctions
The Correct Answer Is:
c. informal sanctions
The Pajama Grocery Store Incident: Understanding Informal Sanctions
The scenario described involves an unconventional choice – wearing pajamas to a grocery store. As you navigate the aisles, you notice the reactions of fellow shoppers, who give you strange looks and engage in whispered conversations.
These reactions are indicative of a form of social control known as informal sanctions. Informal sanctions are unwritten, implicit rules and norms that guide behavior in society.
They are not enforced by official authorities but are instead upheld by the collective judgment and reactions of the community. In this case, the patrons of the grocery store are employing informal sanctions to express disapproval and reinforce societal norms surrounding appropriate attire in public spaces.
Explanation of c. Informal Sanctions:
Informal sanctions operate as a form of social feedback mechanism, shaping individual behavior based on societal expectations. They are typically non-coercive and may involve a range of responses, such as approval, disapproval, ridicule, or gossip. In the given scenario, the strange looks and whispered conversations are clear indicators of disapproval.
These reactions serve to communicate to the individual (you, in this case) that their behavior is not aligned with the established norms of appropriate dress in public places like a grocery store.
Why Other Options are Incorrect:
Deviance refers to any behavior, belief, or condition that violates cultural norms or societal expectations. In this scenario, wearing pajamas to the grocery store is an example of deviant behavior because it goes against the established norm of wearing more appropriate clothing in public spaces.
However, the question is specifically asking about the reaction of the grocery store patrons, not the behavior itself. Therefore, “deviance” is not the correct answer.
b. Formal Sanctions:
Formal sanctions are official, codified consequences for behavior, enforced by an authoritative body such as a government or institution. Examples of formal sanctions include fines, imprisonment, or other legal penalties.
In this scenario, the strange looks and whispers from the grocery store patrons are not formal sanctions because they are not legally enforced consequences. They are informal, socially-driven responses to the deviant behavior. Therefore, “formal sanctions” is not the correct answer.
d. Positive Sanctions:
Positive sanctions are rewards or positive reinforcements for conforming to social norms. They can be verbal praise, smiles, or other forms of positive feedback.
In this scenario, the strange looks and whispers from the grocery store patrons are not positive sanctions, as they represent a negative reaction to the deviant behavior of wearing pajamas in public. Therefore, “positive sanctions” is not the correct answer.
The incident of wearing pajamas to the grocery store highlights the influence of informal sanctions in regulating behavior in society. These unwritten social norms are upheld by the collective judgment of the community, shaping individual conduct through expressions of approval or disapproval.
In this case, the strange looks and whispered conversations of fellow shoppers serve as clear examples of informal sanctions, illustrating their role in maintaining societal order and reinforcing established norms. These reactions serve to reinforce the established norms of appropriate public attire and discourage deviant behavior.