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Analysis of The Stranger by Georg Simmel

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In the article The Stranger, Georg Simmel begins by analyzing group dynamism through the concept of The Stranger. He observes that sometimes for groups to grow and have something new, they should focus on the external environment and on external sources. Simmel observes that groups tend to be formed from amongst acquaintances and that only an outsider to the group can bring something new to the group. He also observes in what he calls the unity of nearness and remoteness that human relations are always in such a way that they keep relating to those who are away as well as with those who are near.

The author also observes that groups are likely to benefit from embracing diversity. This is because new members, who as usual may be perceived as innocent, contribute positively to the group through eliminating biases and promoting consistent interaction (Cohen and Kennedy, 2007, p. 78). The author also maintains that the position of a stranger is even magnified in the event that The Stranger springs into action (place of activity). He observes that positive interactions by sharing ideas may also act to enhance people’ s lives.

He uses the analogy of the trader instead of The Stranger to observe circumstances that can result as a result of taking the initiative to work together. Even so, he observes that a stranger should interact well with a group, knowing well all the boundaries to keep as pertains to matters pertinent to his/her new social group. He says that The Stranger is not the owner of the soil (Marotta, 2005, p. 19). Even so, the author still underscores the importance of group diversity by working with an outsider.

To this, he highlights that sometimes members within a group may differ and rather than be objective, they become subjective. Simmel, therefore, feels that designing a group to be diverse helps in making sure that there is the voice of reason without any biases or emotion. The author also observes that working with a stranger in the group helps in ensuring that issues that require being addressed openly are addressed as such.

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