The Social Change - Part 1 - Innovative Change by Minorities

in psychology •  last year  (edited)

Social Reality: Violence, Power, and Change
The Social Change - Part 1 - Innovative Change by Minorities

"We can change the world or be changed by it." - charlie777pt


In this new Era, we must have a focus in learning to develop our emotional intelligence, with a positive attitude that supposes self-motivation and confidence to continue with an action to know how overcome obstacles and barriers and the desire to explore reality.

Minorities are groups of agents of social change with individual representations on social norms and societal perceptions, bringing alternative and functional ideas, actions and behavioral changes, which oppose the existing views and mechanisms of reality.
A minority can alter the matrix of social behavior patterns of a majority and influence collective thinking at the level of social norms and consensus.
Minority social influence happens when a small group of people influences a majority to interiorize their beliefs or conducts.

One minority can begin a process of social influence, with the objective of changing social norms and rules in a group's dominant system.
Minorities with their nonconformity are agents of creativity and social innovation to benefit the group as a whole.
Norms, values, attitudes, and behaviors are products of the process of socialization through social interaction inside groups.

1 - Types of Change

Levy in 1986 defined two types of change in a system:

The first-order change or transactional (doing thinks better) happens when individual parameters change in a continuous and incremental way, with slight adjustments, not changing the overall system mechanisms but maintain balance and adaptation or to redefine the currents processes and procedures as defined by Watzlawick, Weakland, and Fisch in 1974.
People are less resistance to this kind of change because they don't have to question their main beliefs.

The second-order change or transformational (doing things differently) means a discontinuous change in the qualities of the organization of the system making the old ways obsolete, bringing new insights and stages of development.


As Levy said this type of change is called 'radical', 'transformational' or ‘revolutionary’ or ‘large-scale change’ with long lasting results in structures, processes, and behaviors.
Resistance to this change can be strong because second order is more like a mutation type of change to break systems and organizational paradigms, requiring the acceptance of innovative and challenging ideas because there is a deep personal influence in attitudes and behaviors, as well as, implications in social norms and systems by realignment between beliefs and systems.

2 - What is a Minority

A minority group existing or emerging within a social majority that also holds the social power in a society, sometimes supported by the rule of law or norms of behavior
Moscovici wanted to understand the matrix of the processes of influence in the social interactions to solve the discrepancies between the two instances of the majority and minority that with their "deviant" behaviors challenge and change the attitudes of Goliath.
He saw social influence as a mutual pressure like a game of negotiations, where the small forces of one or more people less than 50% of the whole drive a collective change.
Dooms and Moscovici found out two ways to look to the minority and its influence:

A minority has a potential source of change when they stand up against the points of view of the majority making clear their positions and the force of the influence, and it depends on the messages of the minor group.
The minority is a force of influence to make a change by standing up for new ideas and behaviors that will change the major group of reference.

3 - Social Influence of Minorities

Moscovici in 1976 in his book Social influence and social change introduced the subject of minority influence in the social psychology mainstream.
Minority influence can be social change and innovation that challenge social order stability, and dynamics to transform the established norms for evolvement in human society.

Influence is "a set of processes that modify the perceptions, judgments, attitudes or behaviors of an individual from the knowledge of the perceptions, judgments, and attitudes of others," according to W. Doise.
Some majorities create laws to submit a minority that can create an anti-movement that will overthrow the existing dominating rules.

4 - How Minorities make influence

Change as a minority innovation depends on two conditions defined by Moscovici, its character as active or passive and the degree of social visibility.

4.1 - Active or passive

Minorities adopt collective actions and individual behaviors from bombing violence (Red Brigades) to total peaceful movements(Gandhi), from extreme activism to total passiveness as a form of resistance.
Moscovici distinguishes the "orthodox minority" or "pro-normative" the one pushing to maintain and exaggerate on the norm of the majority and the "heterodox minority" that wants to change the dominant norms.

4.2 - Visibility

If a minority have social references and is recognized by the majority and be accepted as a focus for action to produce change.

5 - Conclusion

Social reforms are always restrained by the fear of the consequences of change to the instituted social order.
If a minority of the population is really active, persistent and committed to the change it can turn into the overwhelmingly dominant force over a society's majority.
Nowadays majorities or instances of power succeed in infiltrating, spread counter-information, and try to create division among the minority to lose the strength and to break the influence that was exerted.

A minority, in order to be active, must be coherent and conscious in the intentions of its actions and in its behaviors, which by its force can become a conformity of a future social order of reality.
The persecution and discriminations of minorities can disrupt the system, and lose the skills and talents of minority-group members who could be contributing to the system.

We have seen what is a minority and how it can influence societal change, and in the next post, we are going to talk about the way minorities act and change the majorities.



Last posts in this series on Social Reality: Violence, Power and Change
Social Reality: Violence, Power and Change

A - Violence:

An Introduction to Violence
The Concepts of Violence, Aggression, and Aggressiveness
The Theories on Violence
The influencers of Violence -Part One - Culture and Social Context
The influencers of Violence -Part Two - Social , Cognitive and Environmental Factors
The ascend of Today's Violence

B -Power:

What is Power? - Introduction
The Nature of PowerThe Dynamics of Power:The Effects and Consequences of Power

C - Change:

Change and Culture The Theories and Concepts of Change Factors determining Change - Part 1 - Lite version Factors determining Change - Part 2 - Complex version The Ways of Change - Part 1 - Concepts and Theories The Ways of Change - Part 2 - The Process of of Attitude Change A Social Change - Part 1 - Innovative Change by Minorities- this post

Articles from the next series of posts about Social Reality, Violence, Power and Change: C - Change:(cont.)

A Social Change - Part 2 - Minorities as Social Influence A Social Change - Part 3 - Minorities as Social Change A Social Change - Part 4 - The minority of Decentralization and the Blockchain Conclusion - The Series that changed to a Saga

References consulted:

Les concepts fondamentaux de la psychologie sociale - Gustave-Nicolas Fischer La psychologie sociale - Gustave-Nicolas Fischer The social-violence dynamics, Power, change - Gustave-Nicolas Fischer, Planeta / ISPA, 1980 Gustave-Nicolas Fischer is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Psychology Laboratory at the University of Metz.

French, J. R. P., and Raven, B.H. (1959). The bases of social Power.
Raven, B. H. and Rubin, J. Z. (1976). Social psychology: People in groups
Castel, R. The metamorphoses of the social question. Voices, 1998.
Moscovici, S. (1976). Social influence and social change. London: Academic Press
Michel Foucault, Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison
Festinger, L. (1954). A theory of social comparison processes.
French, J. R. P., Morrison, H. W., and Levinger, G. (1960). Coercive Power and forces affecting conformity
Dahl, R.A. (1957), The Concept of Power.
Giddens, Anthony, Capitalism and Modern Social Theory: An Analysis of the Writings of Marx, Durkheim and Max Weber, 1971.
Grabb, Edward G., Theories of Social Inequality: Classical and Contemporary Perspectives,1990.
Weber, Max, Economy and Society: An Outline of Interpretive Sociology, 1968.
Lewin, K. (1948) ‘Action Research and Minority Problems’, in G.W. Lewin (ed.), Researching Social Conflicts , New York: Harper and Row
Parsons, T. (1966). Societies: Evolutionary and comparative perspectives.
Levy, A. (1986) Second-order planned change: Definition and conceptualization, Organisational Dynamics
Watzlawick, P., Weakland, J.H., Fisch, R. (1974) Change: Principles of Problem Formation and Problem Resolution. New York, Norton.

Authors get paid when people like you upvote their post.
If you enjoyed what you read here, create your account today and start earning FREE STEEM!
Sort Order:  



Well written as usual! I guess the topic of change never runs dry:)

And I agree, in a sense all here on Steemit are innovative in that we know and feel what the future will need. A groundbreaking idea is key, yet the idea alone is never enough, for there need to be adopters who can make use of it. Often times we say:"How creative and savvy they are, why can't I be that way?" We are all creative, yet most simply have no faith in their ideas or faith in themselves. In the same way, many people don't trust in others' ideas so long as there hasn't been adoption by many.