Traditional and Modern Societies
Simranjit Kaur
214493498
Introduction to Social Science
AP/Social Science 1000 9.0 B
Andrew Paul
Tutorial 11








Traditional and Modern Societies
Throughout history, society has been changing. Society has become more advanced in all aspects. Traditional and modern are two different terms used to classify ways of governing society. Even today, traditional societies exist where culture and religion are very important. Yet, societies that have been traditional across the world have managed to keep traditional values and become partially or entirely modern. Looking back in time, individuals have more freedom and rights now than before. Change is important because it encourages new opportunities and our mentality is different than individuals from before the Industrial revolution. Traditional and modern societies have many similarities and differences, and this paper will look at both viewpoints. The most important differences between traditional and modern societies are the social hierarchy, mass consumption, and family structure. This paper will also argue why modernity is more beneficial for society than a traditional viewpoint.

The first type of society to be examined is known as the traditional society. Traditional society has very strict division of labour and honour. There are specific roles for both the men and women within the family. According to Bell (2015), "Significant proportion of the population the relation of social position to cultural style-working class, middle class, and upper class- no longer holds" (p. 38). Today in society, no individual of the higher working class can dictate where individuals stand in society. Where as in traditional society, people were born with prescribed roles and had little to no freedom to change their position in the social structure. Campbell states, "Members of the traditional society were also held to be responsible for the action of any other member" (p. 101). Traditional society has a closed belief system, which includes the values of tradition, magic and superstitions. Prestige is very important in traditional society, as it is an indicator of high status within the community. Conlin states, "The family\'s task is to always enhance their prestige, honour and respect. (Conlin,2015).

The second type of society is known as the modern society. Unlike traditional society, where family was the most important aspect, individualism and freedom is the central aspect. Freedom is essential and opposition towards forces which attempt to restrict individual freedom. Modern society values ambition and upward mobility, whereas in traditional society an individual was prescribed a role at birth and through out their life. (Conlin, 2015). Modern society is also concerned with the latest fashion trends and technology. For example, people want newer versions of phones constantly or the latest style of purses. Competition is everywhere in this society, individuals want to have the best of everything, this allows the society to move forward and advance. Where as in traditional society, there was a lot of stagnation and since their roles in society were limited, there wasn\'t room for creativity or advancement.

In modern society self-indulgence is a key trait. People want to buy luxury items and spend money, where as in the traditional society you only made your earnings for the only purpose of surviving. Another difference between modern and traditional societies is the concept of achievement and ambition. In traditional society, ambition is not valued or accepted due to the fact that it is seen as a threat to social order. (Conlin, 2015). Where as in modern society ambition is a key trait in being successful. Position in society is attained by achievements. For example, graduating from university and having a career is considered an achievement and brings happiness into a person\'s life. Enjoyment in traditional society was disregarded. Traditional society weighed heavily on prestige. In modern society prestige is linked with an individual\'s occupation, where as in traditional society it was connected to family status in society. Religion played a huge role in the traditional society. They believed that God is above everyone and many of their principals came from God\'s teachings. People of traditional society believed that debt is a sin and it was morally a weakness. On the contrast, in modern society debt was common and not to be worried about. Today, religion does play a role in society, but individuals have more freedom on their religious beliefs. Since modern society