normative order

normative order

a system of rules and standards appropriate to a given social situation. In the work of PARSONS, a normative order is said to comprise two elements: VALUES and NORMS. Norms are rules which are specific to a given social situation, e.g. an assembly, a Christmas party. Thus they are seen as regulating action and relations within a group or system. Values are also moral and regulatory, but they have a wider significance in as much as they go beyond a specific situation and are seen as informing norms in different contexts and thus as serving to connect different systems. In Parsonian terms, therefore, the value aspect of the normative order is crucial in ensuring pattern maintenance (see SUBSYSTEMS MODEL).
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