Types of Societies

Subject: Social Studies

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Overview

Human beings have created and lived in several types of societies throughout the history. There are different types of societies. The societies have varied experiences from hunting and gathering to industrialized society.
Types of Societies

Society is the aggregate of people living together in a more or less ordered community. Society is a group of people involved in social interaction or a large group of people sharing the same geographical or social territory. We have discussed about a society, its characteristics, social development in the previous lesson. Now, let's discuss the types of Societies. The Societies are broadly classified on the basis of level of development, inequality, urbanization, level and political organization.

Classification of Society

There have been six types of societies throughout history:
  • Hunting and gathering societies.
  • Pastoral societies.
  • Horticultural societies.
  • Agricultural societies.
  • Industrial societies.
  • Post-industrial societies.

Hunting and gathering Societies

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The members survive primarily by hunting, trapping, fishing, and gathering edible plants. A majority of the members' time is spent looking for and gathering food. They spend most of their time for looking and gathering food. A hunting and gathering society has following characteristics:

  1. Family is the society's primary institution. Family determines the distribution of food and how to socialize children.
  2. Hunting and gathering societies were nomadic.
  3. Societies used to be small in size.
  4. Family was the society's primary institutions. Family used to determine food and to socialize children.
  5. Members of hunting and gathering societies are mutually dependent upon each other.
  6. Male are supposed to be hunters and female gathers as there was division of labour on the basis of sex.

Pastoral society

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Unlike hunting and gathering societies, pastoral societies only have to move when the land in which the animals graze is no longer usable. Pastoral societies also allow for job specialization, since not everyone is needed to gather or hunt for food. For example, while some people breed animals, others are able to produce tools or clothing, which allows for specialization in these areas.

Some major characteristics of this type of Society are:

  1. The society was common in areas where crops couldn't be supported.
  2. The society was divided on people having more animals and less animals.
  3. In Pastoral society, the system of job specification started. For example some people bred animals, some to produce tools or clothing etc.

Such society exists even today in Middle East, Africa, Tibet, Middle Asia and Northern part of Nepal.

Horticulture Society

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These societies rely on the cultivation of fruits, vegetables, and plants in order to survive. Horticultural societies are often forced to relocate when the resources of the land are depleted or when the water supplies decrease.The technological advances led to an increase in food supplies, an increase in population, and the development of trade centers. Some characteristics of horticulture society are:

  1. Animals are used to pull plows.
  2. Plowing allows for cultivation of larger areas of land.
  3. The primary source of food and income is fruit production.
  4. Such society is often forced to relocate when the resources of the land or water supplies decrease.

Agriculture society

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In agricultural society, Increases in food supplies then led to larger populations than in earlier communities. The society where people get survived by carrying out agriculture activities is agriculture society. Some characteristics of agriculture society are as follows:

  1. The primary source of livelihood and residence is from agriculture products.
  2. This sort of society is categorized into landlord and farmer class.

Industrial Society


The society in which people are involved in producing different sort of products, either for survival or business is called industrial society. Industrialization brought about changes in almost every aspect of society. As factories became the center of work, “home cottages” as the usual workplace became less prevalent, as did the family's role in providing vocational training and education. Some characteristics of this society are as follows:

  1. The primary focus is given to industrial development.
  2. The investors are owners and who work are laborers or workers.
  3. There lies cultural differences in such society.
  4. In the previous societies, there wasn't much gap between rich and poor but there lies a huge gap between wealthy and poor now.
Things to remember
  • Hunting and gathering societies were nomadic.
  • Pastoral society was common in areas where crops couldn't be supported. 
  • Horticulture society is based on the cultivation of fruits, vegetables and plants in order to survive.
  • The Agricultural Society is categorized into landlord and farmer class.
  • The Primary focus of Industrial society is the industrial development, its product and people's livelihood.
  • It includes every relationship which established among the people.
  • There can be more than one community in a society. Community smaller than society.
  • It is a network of social relationships which cannot see or touched.
  • common interests and common objectives are not necessary for society.
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Questions and Answers

In this societies, the members survive primarily by hunting, trapping, fishing, and gathering edible plants. A majority of the members' time is spent looking for and gathering food. They spend most of their time for looking and gathering food.

The characteristics of hunting and gathering societies are listed below:

  1. Family is the society's primary institution. Family determines the distribution of food and how to socialize children.
  2. Hunting and gathering societies were nomadic.
  3. Societies used to be small in size.
  4. Family was the society's primary institutions. Family used to determine food and to socialize children.
  5. Members of hunting and gathering societies are mutually dependent upon each other.
  6. Male are supposed to be hunters and female gathers as there was division of labour on the basis of sex.

The horticultural societies rely on the cultivation of fruits, vegetables, and plants in order to survive. Horticultural societies are often forced to relocate when the resources of the land are depleted or when the water supplies decrease.The technological advances led to an increase in food supplies, an increase in population, and the development of trade centers. Some characteristics opf horticulture society are:

  1. Animals are used to pull plows.
  2. Plowing allows for cultivation of larger areas of land.
  3. The primary source of food and income is fruit production.
  4. Such society is often forced to relocate when the resources of the land or water supplies decrease.

In agricultural society, there was the Increasement in food supplies then led to larger populations than in earlier communities. The society where people get survived by carrying out agriculture activities is agriculture society.

The society in which people are involved in producing different sort of products, either for survival or business is called industrial society. Industrialization brought about changes in almost every aspect of society. As factories became the center of work, “home cottages” as the usual workplace became less prevalent, as did the family's role in providing vocational training and education. Some characteristics of this society are as follows:

  1. The primary focus is given to industrial development.
  2. The investors are owners and who work are labourers or workers.
  3. There lies cultural differences in such society.
  4. In the previous societies, there wasn't much gap between rich and poor but there lies a huge gap between wealthy and poor now.

There have been six types of societies throughout history:
  • Hunting and gathering societies.
  • Pastoral societies.
  • Horticultural societies.
  • Agricultural societies.
  • Industrial societies.
  • Post-industrial societies.

The differences between pastoral and horticultural society are as follows:

The Pastoral Society was established when people's basic needs were not addressed by hunting and gathering societies. W

Pastoral Society Horticulture Society
The Pastoral Society was established when people's basic needs were not addressed by hunting and gathering societies. Horticulture society is based on the cultivation of fruits, vegetables and plants in order to survive.
Pastoral societies also allow for job specialization. Horticultural societies are often forced to relocate when the resources of the land.

The society was divided on people having more animals and less animals.

Horticultural societies was based on cultivation of larger area of land.
In pastoral society, people bred animals. In horticulture society, animals are used to pull plows.

The society in which people are involved in producing different sort of products, either for survival or business is called industrial society. Industrialization brought about changes in almost every aspect of society. As factories became the center of work, “home cottages” as the usual workplace became less prevalent, as did the family's role in providing vocational training and education.

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