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solidarity (social solidarity)

Definition of Solidarity

(noun) The ties (e.g., kinship, religion) that bind people together in a group or society and their sense of connection to each other.

Solidarity Pronunciation

Pronunciation Usage Guide

Syllabification: sol·i·dar·i·ty

Audio Pronunciation

– American English
– British English

Phonetic Spelling

  • American English – /sahl-uh-dAIR-uh-tee/
  • British English – /sol-i-dAr-i-tee/

International Phonetic Alphabet

  • American English – /ˌsɒlɪˈdærɪti/
  • British English – /sɒlɪˈdarɪti/

Usage Notes

  • Plural: solidarities
  • The terms “solidarity” and “social solidarity” are used interchangeably in a sociological context.
  • Also called:
    • cohesion
    • social cohesion

Related Quotations

  • “But if the division of labour produces solidarity, it is not only because it makes each individual an ‘exchangist’, as the economists say; it is because it creates between men a whole system of rights and duties which bind them together in an enduring way” (Durkheim [1893] 2004:38).
  • “[I]f the division of labour does not produce solidarity, it is because the relationships between the organs are not regulated, they are in a state of anomie” (Durkheim [1893] 2004:37).
  • “In order for the division of labour to engender solidarity, it is not, therefore, sufficient that each person has his task: this task must also suit him . . . In effect, if the institution of classes or castes sometimes gives rise to painful wrangling, instead of producing solidarity, this is because the distribution of social functions on which the solidarity is based, does not correspond, or rather no longer responds to the distribution of talent” (Durkheim [1893] 2004:37).
  • “Such a society is small, isolated, non-literate and homogeneous, with a strong sense of group solidarity. The ways of living are conventionalized into the coherent system which we call ‘a culture‘. Behavior is traditional, spontaneous, uncritical and personal: there is no legislation or habit of experiment and reflection for intellectual ends. Kinship, its relations and institutions, are the type categories of experience and the familial group is the unit of action. The sacred prevails over the secular; the economy is one of status rather than the market” (Redfield 1947:293).

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Additional Information

Related Terms


Durkheim, Émile. [1893] 2004. “The Division of Labour in Society.” Pp. 19–38 in Readings from Emile Durkheim. Rev. ed., edited and translated by K. Thompson. New York: Routledge.

Redfield, Robert. 1947. “The Folk Society.” American Journal of Sociology 52(4):293–308. doi:10.1086/220015.

Works Consulted

Dillon, Michele. 2014. Introduction to Sociological Theory: Theorists, Concepts, and their Applicability to the Twenty-First Century. 2nd ed. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.

Encyclopædia Britannica. (N.d.) Britannica Digital Learning. (https://britannicalearn.com/).

O’Leary, Zina. 2007. The Social Science Jargon Buster: The Key Terms You Need to Know. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE.

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

Stewart, Paul, and Johan Zaaiman, eds. 2015. Sociology: A Concise South African Introduction. Cape Town: Juta.

Taylor & Francis. (N.d.) Routledge Handbooks Online. (https://www.routledgehandbooks.com/).

Wikipedia contributors. (N.d.) Wiktionary, The Free Dictionary. Wikimedia Foundation. (http://en.wiktionary.org).

Wiley. (N.d.) Wiley Online Library. (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/).

Cite the Definition of Solidarity

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “solidarity.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved May 23, 2024 (https://sociologydictionary.org/solidarity/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

solidarity. (2014). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/solidarity/

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

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “solidarity.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed May 23, 2024. https://sociologydictionary.org/solidarity/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“solidarity.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2014. Web. 23 May. 2024. <https://sociologydictionary.org/solidarity/>.