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good (goods)

Definition of Good

(noun) Anything that people find, grow, or make that is then bought, sold, or traded to satisfy needs or wants.

Examples of Good

  • A basket weaver produces a basket then sells it. The basket weaver uses the money from the sale to buy food. The basket and the food are both goods.
  • Gold is a found good and is sold to make jewelry.

Good Pronunciation

Pronunciation Usage Guide

Syllabification: good

Audio Pronunciation

– American English
– British English

Phonetic Spelling

  • American English – /gUd/
  • British English – /gUd/

International Phonetic Alphabet

  • American English – /gʊd/
  • British English – /gʊd/

Usage Notes

  • Plural: goods
  • In economic matters, the term “good” is typically pluralized (goods) and coupled with “services” and written as “goods and services“.
  • The terms “good” and “commodity” are often used interchangeably, however, there is a difference: commodities can be turned into goods, but not the other way around.
  • Also called:
    • trade good
    • ware

Related Quotations

  • “In the consumer society, purchasing goods and services is not in the exclusive province of the rich or even the middle classes; people in all but the lowest income categories may spend extensive amounts of time, energy, and money shopping, while amassing larger credit card debts in the process” (Kendall 2006:41).
  • “‘The personal is political‘ is a powerful slogan that was coined during the women’s movement of the 1960s and 1970s. It means that what happens in our individual, private lives—at places such as our jobs, clubs, homes, or schools—reflects the power dynamics in broader, public society. As the twentieth-century political scientist Harold Lasswell famously said, politics is the process of who gets what, when, and how. Feminism brings that concept from the public realm into our personal worlds. It recognizes that seemingly personal issues point to larger, institutionalized practices and are therefore legitimately political issues. Another way to understand this concept is to ask questions such as who gets the goods and resources in society and who bears the burdens? Who sits in positions of power in Fortune 500 companies and who cleans the company offices? Who does the bulk of parenting and who gets paid more on the job? Who is sexually bought and who buys sexual access to bodies? Who is statistically more likely to experience domestic violence and who are the violent offenders? Who gets catcalled on the street? And while we’re at it, we can ask who risks their lives in war. Who makes the decisions to go to war in the first place?” (Tarrant 2009:8–9).

Additional Information

Related Terms


Kendall, Diana. 2006. Sociology in Our Times: The Essentials. 5th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Tarrant, Shira. 2009. Men and Feminism. Berkeley, CA: Seal Press.

Works Consulted

The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. 5th ed. 2011. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Farlex. (N.d.) TheFreeDictionary.com: Dictionary, Encyclopedia and Thesaurus. Farlex. (http://www.thefreedictionary.com/).

Ferrante, Joan. 2011a. Seeing Sociology: An Introduction. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Ferrante, Joan. 2011b. Sociology: A Global Perspective. 7th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Merriam-Webster. (N.d.) Merriam-Webster Dictionary. (http://www.merriam-webster.com/).

Oxford University Press. (N.d.) Oxford Dictionaries. (https://www.oxforddictionaries.com/).

Scott, John, and Gordon Marshall. 2005. A Dictionary of Sociology. New York: Oxford University Press.

Turner, Bryan S., ed. 2006. The Cambridge Dictionary of Sociology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Wikipedia contributors. (N.d.) Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation. (https://en.wikipedia.org/).

Cite the Definition of Good

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2013. “good.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved June 18, 2024 (https://sociologydictionary.org/good/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

good. (2013). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/good/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2013. “good.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed June 18, 2024. https://sociologydictionary.org/good/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“good.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2013. Web. 18 Jun. 2024. <https://sociologydictionary.org/good/>.