Symbolic And Social Boundaries

1108 Words5 Pages
This essay looks at symbolic and social boundaries. It provides a definition of how symbolic and social boundaries and how symbolic boundaries become social boundaries. It also provides an overview of Thorne’s study on borderwork and how symbolic boundaries of gender become social boundaries. The paper also provides a description of Levine’s study on “William Shakespeare and the American People”. It looks at the social factors that led to the elevation of Shakespeare, changes made to Shakespearean performances and how these changes helped create class distinction. The paper concludes by tying together all the three sections and provides the importance of symbolic and social boundaries Symbolic boundaries are differences that define and include individuals or groups while excluding others. These differences include factors such as cultural practices as well as preferences. These factors play an important role in the exercise of power and creation of inequality. Symbolic boundaries also include visible distinctions and internal classifications. They are conceptual distinctions that separate people into groups and give them membership to a group. Symbolic boundaries that are widely accepted can act as a limiting character and create social boundaries. As people engage in a struggle for scarce resources, they limit competition by discriminating towards various groups based on their cultural characteristics such as race, education, language and religion. An example of a
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