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Social Norm Violation.Entering one’s Apartment without Knocking
Barkow, (1978) defined social norms as behaviours that the society expects from its habits. Therefore, when people demonstrate these social norms in the public, the society observes them with satisfaction and acceptance. Consequently, when the social norms are violated or confused, people react strangely or become annoyed. For the social norm violation assignment, I had a pool of ideas, walking on the wrong side of the footpath, reading in the elevator, eating sloppily and so on. However, my desire was to violate a norm that will make me act in the most casual way.
However, for this assignment, I decided to violate the social norm of entering into people’s apartment without seeking their welcome or without knocking at their doors. Typically, in my society people knock at the door and waits patiently for a response from the owners of the apartment. Ideally, one will wait until someone responds “come inn” before stepping inside the apartment. Therefore, I made up my mind and entered the apartment without knocking. Besides, I decided to act comfortably like the residents or tenants of the apartments that I could make myself at home.
So, to make sure that I could not be accused of trespass or entering someone’s home as a stranger, I decided to ask my friend Daniel to keep me company. Previously, I had visited his apartment on one occasion with another classmate for a dinner. At this moment, it was obvious that I was not a frequent visitor of the apartment to comfortably feel at home or walk in without knocking at the door.
When I decided to implement my experiment for the anthropology class, I decided to take to his apartment. As I approached his door, I was a little bit shaken of what will transpire once I was in the house. Furthermore, his blinds were shut and, therefore, it was difficult to predict whether he was at home or I would find Sam, his friend whom they stay with. After a standstill outside on the door for a couple of minutes, I managed to summon adequate courage and finally entered.My experience when I entered was astonishing. Immediately after I stepped inside the house, the room went on a silent mode. It seemed that his family members were in the middle of delicate or confidential information and had no signs of continuing in my intruding or presence. I had kept for a couple of seconds before I inquired if Daniel was home. Luckily, he was in the backyard sorting some staff. One of his family members rushed to get him as I remained seated with the rest of his family members. Notably, they still wore a shocking look on their faces because I kept myself at home by comfortably getting seated on the pew. Honestly, they appeared quite annoyed as I could observe from the experience reflection point of view (Holy & Stuchlik, 2006). When Daniel approached, I had already prepared a question to ask him and depart the awkward apartment.
Throughout the experiment, my experience remained awkward, and I remained ashamed of my act. In truth, I was idealess that violation of such a small societal norm of knocking before entering to one’s apartment could severely upset people or the inhabitants. However, I was confident because my friend Daniel was well aware of my intentions. Later in the evening, I called him and requested him to explain to his family members that it was a course experiment for my university studies. I hope he explained the situation to and the information for this assignment to his family members so that my reputation can be rehabilitated in their minds and salvaged.At the end of the experiment, I realized that people get terribly annoyed, confused and even show their anger if you enter their apartment without their knowledge, a sentiment equally observed by Hamnett, (2007). Even though I felt weird breaking the social norm, I concluded that my weird feelings represented all that was happening than the specific act of violating the norm. I have to confess that it was not enjoyable at first, but it did assist me realize how people in my society value the protection of their social norms. It is something I would never attempt to do by choice, and if I spot someone doing the act, I will feel so weird and disappointed in him or her.
It is comparative to mention that the experience of violating the social norm through entering into Daniel’s apartment without knocking was uncomfortable and embarrassing. However, I enjoyed the experience after the family members of the apartment salvaged my reputation. When I went back on a normal visit, we revisited our experiences with lots of fun. Honestly, I later learned that the experiment was enjoyable. It is interesting norm in my society that is well safeguarded for ethical purposes in the society. Overall, it was a virtuous experience, planning it made me anxious and nervous but once I implemented it I gained the experience.
Barkow, J. H. (January 01, 1978). Social norms, the self, and sociobiology: Building on the ideas of A. I. Hallowell. Current Anthropology.Hamnett, I. (2007). Social anthropology and law. London: Academic Press.
Holy, L., & Stuchlik, M. (January 01, 2006). Anthropological data and social reality. Anthropology in Theory : Issues in Epistemology.