The Stranger: A Study in Social Relationships

By Margaret Mary Wood | Go to book overview

CONCLUSION

OUR study of the relationship of the stranger from the standpoint of the group has taken us far afield and into so many highways and byways that it seems well in closing to pause a moment to consider where it has brought us and what have been its rewards. What questions have been answered, in part at least, and what others are still awaiting further study? What aspects of the problem of forming new social relationships have been explored, and what others still remain to be investigated? Obviously, but a limited part of the field has been covered in the present small volume and there is much that is still to be done. The loneliness of the stranger's position and the psychological effect produced upon him by the manner in which he is received have not been considered. This problem is closely related to the whole subject of social isolation, whether of individuals, or of groups, classes and communities. The effects of being outside the normal circle of social relationships may be farreaching and the problem is one which may well receive further attention.1 For those aspects of the relationship of the stranger which have been surveyed in this study certain conclusions seem to be justified.

First, the types of fundamental unifying relationships which form the basis of the system of social integration of the community as a whole involve some measure of sentiment and emotion, and in order for the stranger to become fully assimilated it is necessary for him to come to share these

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1
On the problem of social isolation I myself hope to throw some light by a study now in preparation.

-282-

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