Social Control, Ethnocentrism & Utilitarian Modelling

Theme 4: Understanding alternative realities, and the utility of social control

Social control is a huge realm so I want to narrow the scope. The intention here is to cover agents and mechanisms of social influence, pressure, leverage, compliance, and punishment. It isn’t about state punitive power in the law enforcement sense. For example, I might like hunting, so if you don’t what options might you or the others have to affect me? This is important to understand because stigma, shame, fear, and guilt intersect with social control to inhibit the uptake or even the exploration of certain solutions to problems.

Ethnocentrism can be explained according to Wikipedia:

“applying one’s own culture as a frame of reference in order to judge other cultures, practices, behaviours, beliefs, and people, instead of using the standards of the particular culture involved”

I want to utilise ethnocentrism as a means to deconstruct, reverse engineer and hypothesise about cultural building blocks and modules. Before I heard about ethnocentrism I was trying to use pleiotropy as an analogy to explain how alternative realities form.

Utilitarian Models, this section is about exploring methods we could use to assess utility, again not in the law-making sense but as an assessment approach to, for example, to understand the motives behind creation of policy.

This is a contents page leading to pages that explore the area.

  1. Moral progress, and cultural differences
  2. Social control
  3. Ethnocentrism
  4. Utilitarian modelling

You can look at my notes and ideas here, not all of them will be published in the final versions, there you will find links to associated groups, people, research and ideas.

This is a picture of Jeremy Bentham, he founded utilitarianism.

A Project to Deconstruct Elements of Shame, Fear & Guilt.