Overview

primary and secondary groups


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A primary group is a small group based largely on long-term face-to-face interaction, and typically based on affiliation, such as a family or a friendship group; a secondary group is one based on shared goals or interests in which the members are rarely if ever in face-to-face contact with each other, such as a political party or trade union (Cooley). Primary groups are major agents in socialization; their members tend to share values and behavioural norms. Primary and secondary relationships are those obtaining in primary and secondary groups, respectively. The distinction is not clearcut. See alsogroup identification; peer group.

Subjects: Media Studies.


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