Who are the outcasts?

Jan Veselova
Jan Veselova
April 25, 2012
Who are the outcasts?

Today we will define one interesting concept that occurs even in colloquial speech of people. So who is the margin? The meaning of the word: marginal (from Lat. Margo - edge) is a person who is outside a social group and does not fit into it because of its position in society, lifestyle, origin or world outlook.

Who are the outcasts, and what is their role in society? Initially, the term "marginal" was used to designate entries in the margin. But the word had another meaning - “unprofitable, economically close to the limit”. This term was first used by the American sociologist and one of the founders of the Chicago school, Robert Ezra Park, in 1928. In the Park, marginality meant the position of individuals who were on the border of two conflicting cultures. Thus, at first, the main problem of marginality was cultural conflict. But in the 1940s-1960s, the concept of marginality began to be actively developed in American sociology and ceased to be limited to cultural and racial hybrids.

Social marginals

To understand who the marginals are, you need to know what marginality is. Marginality is a state in the process of movement of an individual or a group, as well as a characteristic of social groups that are in an intermediate position of the social structure. Marginalism also includes breaking social ties between society and the individual. According to sociologists, the cause of social marginalization is the transition of society from one socio-economic system to another. At the same time, due to the uncontrolled movement of a large mass of people, the stability of the former social structure is destroyed. In this regard, there is a devaluation of traditional norms and the deterioration of the material standard of living. Thus, marginalized in society are people who avoid or deny public foundations.

Modern marginals are individuals, social strata or groups that are outside the framework of social and cultural norms and traditions that are characteristic of a given society.

There are many marginal groups in society, here are some of them:

  • ethnomarginals: national minorities;
  • sociomarginals: groups of people in the process of unfinished social displacement;
  • political marginals: such people are not satisfied with the legitimate rules and legal possibilities of the social and political struggle;
  • biomarginals: their health is no longer a matter of public concern;
  • age marginals: are formed when the links between generations are broken;

At present, marginalization is not a progressive process, but it should pay its attention in order to keep abreast of developments in public life.

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