The 3 Types Of Solidarity (explained And With Examples)

Types of solidarity

Solidarity is a concept that we can understand from different perspectives. At first glance, one could think that it is an essential value that all human beings share based on their nature. This can be seen through the support of others that is given through words and actions.

On the other hand, solidarity can imply empathy with those who are similar to the group to which the subject belongs, but at the same time it can imply going beyond differences, connecting with people of different ethnicity, social class, or nationality, among other characteristics. .

Next, an exploration of the history of this concept will be carried out and we will see what the different types of solidarity that we can observe in everyday life.

Solidarity is a concept deeply rooted in human connection and mutual support, emphasizing unity and cooperation among individuals or groups, especially in times of adversity or struggle. It embodies the idea of standing together in solidarity, offering assistance, empathy, and collective action to address shared challenges and achieve common goals. Here, we explore the concept of solidarity in more detail, along with examples of how it manifests in various contexts.

Understanding Solidarity

Solidarity goes beyond mere sympathy or compassion; it involves a sense of shared identity and collective responsibility. It is based on the recognition that we are all interconnected and interdependent, and that our well-being is intertwined with that of others. Solidarity implies a willingness to support and advocate for the interests of others, even when they may differ from our own.

What is solidarity?

The concept of solidarity begins to develop from the legal field in moral and social philosophy. Various philosophers worked around this concept, such as Cicero, Aristotle, the Stoics, the scholastic tradition, Rosseau, the English school of ethics of sympathy, among others.

Solidarity has a fundamental origin related to law with the concept in solidum, which means the legal obligation of a relationship where all debtors must respond for the debt or commitment they have acquired. From this concept, the nature of solidarity begins to become evident, where everyone takes responsibility for the individual, and where the individual takes responsibility for everyone. One could then think that solidarity expresses two things at the same time: the union and connection between people and the individual reciprocal responsibility for each one and for the whole.

The concept of solidarity It was also studied by the author Peter Kropotkin, who stated that solidarity arises in the context of cooperation in societies, which becomes fundamental for the survival of any society and species. For this author, solidarity is a fundamental component of mutual aid. For the author, solidarity is not something that is born from the desire for retribution but from an instinctive desire to help other people.

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However, one of the main influencers of the development of this concept was David Émile Durkheim who allows us to understand that solidarity is ambiguous in two senses: on the one hand, it is a social fact, while on the other it can be conceived as an ideological aspiration.

This concept of solidarity goes beyond the traditional notion of the concept as something that is demonstrated through actions and words, being also something that is necessary to maintain society and that can be seen reflected in the actions and moments in which which one would think that solidarity itself does not exist, for example, in robberies, murders, or acts of corruption. These actions and moments make it possible to make visible the true principles that generate cohesion within society and for which we want to work.

The most important types of solidarity

The development of the concept of solidarity by Durkheim allows us to understand various types of solidarity that will be explored below.

1. Mechanical solidarity

This type of solidarity could be classified as evolutionarily prior The fact that this is usually developed is part of the identification with others.

It usually occurs in the midst of small communities that share close characteristics, such as ethnicity, religion, social class, or culture.

It can be considered a very ancient type of solidarity although it can still be found present in the context of modern communities, being the basis for solidarity within the family or contexts shared by several people. This type of solidarity is more related to the classification of solidarity as a fact.

An example of this concept is found in farming communities, where there are no major differences between people and the same social fabric is configured based on affinity. In this type of society there would be no possibility of marginalization, and if it existed it would be minimal.

2. Organic solidarity

This type of solidarity It is visible in cooperation and is subsequent to the social division of labor This concept is related to the arrangement of various organs that act for the global functioning of a system. This type of solidarity is more related to the ideological dimension of the concept, because social integration and cooperation between different people in the midst of differences after having overcome differences functions as a moral ideal.

An example of this type of solidarity can be found in the midst of the societies in which people have specialized in a particular way in specific tasks that they carry out and that contribute among themselves to the well-being of other people For example, people can work as teachers, public servants, engineers, security guards, or health professionals within the same society, who mutually contribute to the well-being of others who may not share characteristics with each other but who belong to the same society. same society.

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This kind of solidarity can be seen as something characteristic in societies where the community-creating social media characteristic of the mechanical society have been surpassed.

Solidarity classes

3. Social solidarity

This type of solidarity could be considered as derived from the notion of solidarity developed by Kropotkin. in relation to the natural tendency of human beings towards helping other people instinctively and without the pursuit of another type of interest

This can be visible in the formation of religious and social communities whose main mission is focused on collaboration with other people who do not have similar characteristics, such as the case of the Mennonite community that has sought to mediate in the midst of different developed internal or international armed conflicts. in the world.

Why is it socially important to promote solidarity between people?

Based on the various problems currently presented in relation to racism, xenophobia, homophobia, and internal armed conflicts that various countries suffer, the importance of the value of solidarity for today’s society stands out.

Solidarity becomes an element that is shown through actions that contribute to the well-being of people with whom similar characteristics are shared, but It also begins to be visible to the extent to which it works for the well-being of people who do not necessarily share characteristics with us from actions that arise from our daily and professional work, as well as on other occasions this solidarity emerges voluntarily towards people or situations in which it appears “innately”.

The issue of solidarity becomes important in contexts such as the conflict that places like Afghanistan are currently experiencing and the international reaction developed to it. This type of situations makes it possible to think about Durkheim’s approaches, who establishes that the critical situations that occur in societies make it possible to rescue the principles that govern them or to which they are ideally oriented, in this case, a principle of solidarity.

The Solidarity It can also be seen in the midst of the creation of social groups that seek the mutual protection of their members that they have been affected by specific conditions in which the effects have been similar for the subjects; for example in the case of workers who have been affected by the same regimes in societies, or people who have experienced similar treatment as a result of their ethnicity, culture, or sexual orientation.

In these cases, solidarity functions as mutual support and a way to generate well-being among each other to maintain themselves in hostile contexts, thus giving rise to the potential development of collectives and social movements.

The theme of solidarity It also acquires importance in relation to bioethics, where solidarity not only extends to human beings but also begins to include animals and plants, reinforcing the importance of treatment based on the Kantian principle. This concept would also be expanded around human beings, thus being one of the pillars of this field today. Some people who have currently worked on bioethics point out its importance to the extent that it allows us to focus on the human being as a person and his dignity, it allows us to place ourselves in the position of the other person and in our own suffering and experience. , highlighting the importance of connecting solidarity together with the responsibility we have towards others.

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Another important way in which solidarity could be identified and its importance currently highlighted is in the context of the Covid pandemic, where the development of various solidarity actions is necessary, which can range from the development of personal practices of individual isolation to avoid contagion of close people, as well as it can also be manifested at a much more general level in the context of international collaboration to comply with the vaccination of the world population.

Examples of Solidarity

Social Movements

Social movements often emerge as expressions of solidarity, as individuals come together to address systemic injustices and advocate for social change. For example, the civil rights movement in the United States brought together people from diverse backgrounds to challenge racial segregation and discrimination, demonstrating solidarity in the fight for equality and justice.

Labor Unions

Labor unions exemplify solidarity among workers, who band together to advocate for better wages, working conditions, and benefits. Through collective bargaining and collective action, union members demonstrate their solidarity with one another, leveraging their collective power to negotiate with employers and improve their livelihoods.

Humanitarian Aid

In times of natural disasters, conflicts, or humanitarian crises, solidarity often manifests through international aid efforts. Countries, organizations, and individuals come together to provide assistance, resources, and support to affected communities, demonstrating solidarity with those in need regardless of geographic or cultural boundaries.

Community Support

Solidarity is evident in local communities that rally together to support neighbors facing hardship or adversity. Whether it’s organizing food drives, offering shelter to the homeless, or providing emotional support to individuals in crisis, communities demonstrate solidarity by coming together to address the needs of their members and foster a sense of belonging and mutual care.

Global Solidarity Movements

In an increasingly interconnected world, solidarity extends beyond national borders to encompass global challenges such as climate change, poverty, and human rights violations. Global solidarity movements, such as the environmental movement or the movement for global health equity, unite people across continents and cultures in the pursuit of shared goals and values.

Solidarity is a powerful force that brings people together in unity, empathy, and collective action. Whether in social movements, labor unions, humanitarian aid efforts, community support initiatives, or global solidarity movements, the concept of solidarity underscores the importance of mutual support, cooperation, and shared responsibility. By fostering solidarity in our communities and societies, we can build a more compassionate, equitable, and resilient world for all.