Social integration is the movement of minority groups such as ethnic minorities, refugees and underprivileged sections of a society into the mainstream of societies. Social integration requires proficiency in an accepted common language of the society, acceptance of the laws of the society and adoption of a common set of values of the society.
Healing longstanding conflicts is certainly one understanding of social integration. Temporal integration is what we might call the process of constructing inclusive historical narratives. Like collective memory in general, the construction of urban history is necessarily selective and exclusive. The state and the ruling class attempt to integrate and order society with a single set of orientations, while social movements contest the society's dominant cultural model using the same historicity.
In times of personal crisis, because we are less well integrated into social groups, we lack the social support required to cope with the stresses of modern life. More recent sociological studies of mental health and illness have supported this original hypothesis. The family, religious practices, along with other `integrating institutions' such as work/employment, are recognised as binding individuals into wider social relationships and so offer a sense of belonging and meaning.
In his first systematic study (1897) Durkheim demonstrated that year after year, the suicide rate in Protestant regions was higher than the rate in Catholic regions. He linked this finding to a general theory of social integration: social bonds that were neither too loose (isolation) nor too tight (engulfment) protected its members from suicide. Durkheim’s theory of social integration (solidarity/alienation) is central to modern sociology, and his statistical method forms the basis for quantitative studies.
Where we once raised barns to build commonality, we now pay property taxes. Normal patterns of socializing have eroded because people no longer live, work and socialize in the same place. Overlay race, and the challenge of integration is heightened.
People with high social integration and low social integration had similar memory scores in 1998 but that changed over the subsequent 6 years. People who were highly socially integrated in 1998 suffered slower rates of memory decline over time than their less social peers. Memory among the least socially integrated declined at twice the rate as among the most socially integrated.
Social integration prevails in a group if bonds of attraction unite its members. Persons interested in becoming integrated members of a group are under pressure to impress the other members that they would make attractive associates, but the resulting competitions for popularity gives rise to defensive tactics that block social integration.
At lower levels of social integration, the ﬁndings here suggest that female students’ level of subsequent institutional commitment is signiﬁcantly lower than that of male student. In other words, when both male and female students have low levels of social integration, the subsequent institutional commitment of female students appears to be attenuated in comparison to male students. At higher levels of social integration, however, this attenuation does not appear to occur.
In accordance with the social skill deﬁcit framework, socially isolated students are not only less popular compared to nuclear and less integrated classmates, but tend to lack social skills as lower categories of integration were characterized by an decreased social-skill pattern. At first glance, the positive effect of relational aggression contradicts the idea that social integration is associated with higher social skills. However, research suggets that aggression and social status do not necessarily contradict each other, because aggressive children can be perceived as cool, powerful, and popular.
Economic integration contributes to social integration, but does not guarantee such integration. Despite success, if the second generation feels excluded and demoralized, significant social costs may be incurred. The social integration of minorities is likely to be affected very little by academic debates over the extent of discrimination.
Until the mid-1960s, the chief aims of black protest were the abolition of segregated public facilities, the achievement of legal equality, and the encouragement of eventual racial integration at all societal levels. It was the third of these objective that came under attack for black leaders like Malcolm X and Stokely Carmichael, who pronounced the need for independence of black action and the establishment of black control of black community institutions. Integration was rejected in favor of a separatist position, coalitions with white liberal organizations were severed, and whites were generally purged from the movement.