What is a Social Problem?

Wallace Weiver defines Social Problem as a particular incident or a condition or an action which gives rise to feelings of tension, pressure, conflict or frustration.

For certain people in the society the problems are obvious. For example, if a certain section of population is drug addict or alcoholic then they have to face all the physical and mental problems associated with it. Hence drug addiction and alcoholism are called as Social Problems.

We can say that the social problems are salient features of our society. This is because for some people of the society a certain social problem is not a social problem at all. They feel that it is normal and is needed for the benefit of an individual. For example, the western society and the high class Indian society do not consider alcoholism as a social problem at all. They call alcoholics as “Social Drinkers”. The “Social Drinking” is carried out without any shame during marriages, functions or parties. Even we find that in many families the parents themselves encourage their children to start “Social Drinking”. So when the children start the so called social drinking it soon becomes an habit which ultimately leads to social abuse of alcohol. Thus “Glorification of Wrongs” by the family itself leads to the growth of social problems.

Thus we can say that social problems depends on the outlook of the family, on the upbringing of children, on the degree of modernization of a society and on a particular situation at a given time.

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