Download Citation on ResearchGate | The Norm Of Reciprocity: A Preliminary Article in American Sociological Review 25(2) · April with 1, Reads. DOI: / Cite this publication. Alvin Ward GOULDNER. Abstract. American sociologist Alvin Gouldner () was the. first to propose the existence of a universal, generalized. norm of reciprocity. He argued that almost all. (). More than four decades ago, Gouldner clarified the concept and its dimensions and assumed the existence of a universal norm of reciprocity in a.

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Insofar as men live under such a rule of reciprocity, when oneparty benefits another, an obligation is generated. Itis theoretically necessary, however, to distinguish specific statusduties from reciprockty general norm.

In otherwise contrasting discussions of the norm of reciprocityone emphasis is notable. In speaking of the norm of reciprocity as a “starting mechanism,”indeed norj conceiving of starting mechanisms, we find ourselvesoutside the usual perspective of functional theory.

I hope to explore these and related problems insubsequent discussions. The housewife may take pains with her husband’s meals notmerely because cooking may be incumbent on her as a wife; gouldnre mayalso have a particularly considerate husband. If assumptions about egoistic dispositionsare valid, however, a gouldned of rights and obligationsshould be exposed to a persistent strain, in which each party issomewhat more actively concerned to defend or extend his own rightsthan those of others.

The norm of reciprocity requires that we repay in kind what another has done for us.

Norm of reciprocity

Indeed, he is in very good company, agreeing with Recirpocity. It would seem that functionalists have but one of two choices: New philosophers discuss recognition as esteem. There is nothing in complementarity as suchwhich would seem able to control egoism. This page was last edited on 23 Julyat There is no space for such consideration here.

Low trait self-control and poor performance on a behavioral measure of self-control the Stroop task predicted poor compliance following experimental instructions over a 2-week span. The power and ubiquity of the norm of reciprocity can be used against the unwary, however, and is the basis for the success of many malicious confidence games.


Click here to sign up. The equation of reciprocity withcomplementarity is not peculiar to Parsons. While Alec and Frank were friends I never heard either oneof them discuss the services he was performing for the other, butwhen they had goukdner falling out.

Second, it is a time period that the relevant party should not do harm to people who have given them benefits; people are morally constrained to demonstrate gratitude towards or maintain peace with their benefactors.

Howeverconvenient, such a disposition would be rash, for we can readily notethe importance attributed to the concept of reciprocity by suchscholars as George Homans, Claude Levi-Strauss, and Raymond Firth, 6 as well as by such earlier writers as Durkheim, Marx, Mauss,Malinowski, and von Wiese, to name reciprpcity a few masters. Power and Sex studies generally revealed that a parallel to the norm of among Apes.

The norm of reciprocity | Hein Lodewijkx –

The interesting sociological questions, however, ariseonly when issues of empirical substance rather than logicalimplication are raised. Because identity and self-respect are affected son assaults another person due to what is perceived as a by recognition or the lack thereof, and because nonrecog- lack of respect or recognition.

The demonstration that A is functional for B helps toaccount for A’s own persistence and stability only on two relatedassumptions: In other disciplines within the social sciences, ognize others as human beings with equal aspirations and recognition has been used rather freely to denote an act of interests. In addition, it is morally improper under thenorm of reciprocity to break off relations or to launch hostilitiesagainst those to whom you are still indebted.

This is more fully developed in A. This ismost fully elaborated in his Crime and Custom32 whichopens with the following question: Becker for this and many otherinsights into what seemed to be the guiding impulses of the “ChicagoSchool” of collective behavior. That is,Ego’s conformity with Alter’s expectations reinforces Alter’sconformity with Ego’s expectations, and so on. One is that this norm serves a group stabilizing function and thus is quite familiar in functionaltheory.

A Your colleague will make a proposal as to how the money should be divided. A Paspahegh warrior took an iron hatchet from social justice or fairness, which relates to the just distribu- the English camp following the series of unrequited native tion of resources; and the norm of social commitment, offerings, but a colonist snatched it back in a confronta- which concerns the shared view that people should honor tion that nearly erupted into violence.


The norm of reciprocity qua equivalence is thuslike most other norms which also tolerate a range of variability. Some indications of the utilitarian approach to this problemmay be derived from the stimulating paper by T. Parsons uses the two concepts as if they aresynonymous 29 and, for the most part, centers his analysis oncomplementarity to the systematic neglect of reciprocity rigorouslyconstrued.

Intergroup sors or cheaters may be more satisfactory than ineffective Discrimination in the Minimal Group Paradigm: London and New York: This is animportant problem that cannot be developed here. In social psychology, positive reciprocity refers to responding to a positive action with another positive action rewarding kind actions.

When internalized in both parties, the norm obliges the one who has first received a benefit to repay itat some time; it thus provides some realistic grounds for confidence,in the one who first parts with his valuables, that he will berepaid.

Norm of Reciprocity – Gouldner

Recent studies offriendship and other interpersonal relations in touldner projects havebegun to explore this problem. It is further indicative of our terminological difficulties inthis area that this is often what Piaget spoke of as “reciprocity. The Elementary Structures of Kinship. Evenif socialization were to work perfectly and so internalize suchrights and obligations, there still remains the question as to whatmechanism can sustain and reinforce these during full participationin the social system.

For example, the implications ofdifferences in the degree of mutuality or in the symmetry ofreciprocity are neglected.