What is Amoral familism in Sociology

Updated - August 23, 2018 12:21 am IST

Published - August 23, 2018 12:02 am IST

This refers to social behaviour that is solely focussed on the economic well-being of the family. Societies based on amoral familism are not concerned with using collective action for the good of wider society. The idea was proposed by American political scientist Edward C. Banfield in his 1958 book, The Moral Basis of a Backward Society , as an explanation for why certain societies have failed to achieve economic progress. This is in contrast to the popular view in economics, famously expounded by Scottish economist Adam Smith, that individuals focused on improving their personal economic condition also help their societies grow richer in the process.


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