What does Anomie Mean?

Anomie is a concept that refers, in a general way, to the absence of law, norms or conventions. The word, as such, comes from the Greek ἀνομία (anomy).

This etymology shows its use in the field of both social sciences and psychology, in which it refers to the absence of norms or conventions in a society or person, or their disrespect or degradation by an individual or a group of individuals

The consequences of anomie range from maladjustment to social norms, to the transgression of laws and antisocial behaviors.

Anomie, in medicine, can also refer to a language disorder characterized by difficulties in remembering the name of things. In this sense, the word is composed with the voices a- , which denotes denial, and the Latin nomen, which means ‘name’.

Social anomie

In the disciplines of social sciences and sociology, anomie is related to the lack of social norms or conventions or their degradation as a product of a set of factors.

The French sociologist Émile Durkheim considered that human nature needed an authority that would put limits (norms, conventions) on his passions and desires, since his absence could become destructive to the individual himself.

Durkheim also refers to how inequalities resulting from the social and economic dynamics of capitalism influence social anomie. Individuals, feeling that the norms and conventions under which they live lack a sense of justice and fairness, cease to respect them because they believe they have lost meaning for them.

In fact, Robert K. Merton considers that anomie can be considered as a consequence of the dissociation between the cultural aspirations of a society and the means or paths that individuals have to reach them, which means that in order to achieve these goals individuals must Sometimes violating certain social norms, which results in a breakdown from which antisocial behaviors originate.

Anomie in psychology

Anomie is a psychological disturbance that makes it difficult for a person to behave according to the set of legal, cultural or moral norms and conventions that govern life in society.

Human behavior is constantly regulated by this set of explicit or implicit rules, which constitute a model of social control, which the individual has difficulty adapting, due to his own human nature.

In psychological anomie, the individual values ​​his interests and individual motivations above social interests because he has ceased to respect them since for him all these norms and conventions have lost their meaning.

Asomient Anomie

Asylum-bearing anomie is a behavior that is characterized by the negative and erroneous vision that an individual develops of himself. In asylum-oriented anomie, the person has a distorted idea of ​​themselves and their abilities, so that they do not feel in a position to succeed in a difficult or adverse situation, rather they react by demonstrating their limitations or disabilities. It can be suffered by an individual or an entire social group.

Asylum-bearing anomie is a consequence of situations of marginalization and exclusion, whether social, racial or ethnic. Groups that suffer from this type of discrimination feel that they cannot achieve what they set out or want, nor satisfy their personal needs or motivations, although in reality they can. Therefore, it seriously affects the personal and economic growth of individuals. The opposite of asylum-bearing anomie is social resilience, which is the ability to adapt or overcome adversity.

Anomie in medicine

Anomia is known as a language disorder in which the individual has difficulty calling things by name. It can be presented partially or totally.

Anomie is one of the main characteristics of aphasic syndromes. With age, it is considered normal for most people to suffer a moderate degree of anomie.