Meaning of “society” in the English Dictionary

"society" in English

See all translations

societynoun

uk /səˈsaɪ.ə.ti/ us /səˈsaɪ.ə.t̬i/

society noun (PEOPLE)

B1 [ C or U ] a large group of people who live together in an organized way, making decisions about how to do things and sharing the work that needs to be done. All the people in a country, or in several similar countries, can be referred to as a society:

These changes strike at the heart of British/American/modern society.
There's a danger that we will end up blaming innocent children for society's problems.
We must also consider the needs of the younger/older members of society.

[ U ] also high society the part of society that consists of people who are rich, powerful, and fashionable:

[ U ] formal the state of being together with other people:

She prefers her own society (= likes to be alone).

More examples

(Definition of “society” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"society" in American English

See all translations

societynoun

us /səˈsɑɪ·ɪ·t̬i/

society noun (PEOPLE)

[ C/U ] people considered as a group, or a group of people who live together in a particular social system:

[ U ] Society is changing little by little.
[ C ] Societies change over the course of time.

[ C/U ] Society also refers to that group of people who are rich, powerful, or fashionable:

[ U ] He’s a part of Boston society.

society noun (ORGANIZATION)

[ C ] an organization for people who have special interests or who want to support particular activities:

Zoological societies protect and study wild animals.

(Definition of “society” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"society" in Business English

See all translations

societynoun

uk /səˈsaɪəti/ us plural societies

[ U ] people in general living together in an organized way, making decisions about how to do things, and sharing the work that needs to be done:

Society cannot expect perfection in products and services, but it can expect that corporations will always act responsibly.
These fraudsters are preying on the poorest and the most vulnerable people in society.

[ C or U ] the people who live in a particular country or area and their way of life and customs:

The prime growth engine of capitalist societies is innovation.
We live in a multicultural society.
Will we ever achieve a cashless society?
Homeownership is a linchpin of American society.

[ C ] BANKING used in the name of some UK banks to show that they are mutuals (= banks that are owned by the people who keep money in them), or that they were mutual in the past:

The building society responded to numerous inquiries about mortgages from first-time buyers.
These bonds are only offered by friendly societies.
The society says it has been passing on extra benefits to its members for some time.

[ C ] an organization to which people who share similar interests can belong:

the American Society of Civil Engineers
the Industrial Society

(Definition of “society” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

Help us add to the Cambridge Dictionary!

These examples are from external sources. Click on the icon to tell us if any are not OK.

society

The aim is to legislate for the basic interests of monopolies, thereby making conditions even worse for workers, for the weaker sections of society and for the less "powerful" countries.
We must not fear globalisation, but we must also make sure that we understand its political impact in the network society.
You have not highlighted the ageing of our population which will fundamentally alter the structure of our society, not only economically but also in terms of public health.
The information society has to date made its presence felt in the form of price quotations on a chaotic stock market.
The longer we allow the confusion to exist, the greater the delay in enabling society to benefit from its full potential.
Unfortunately, it is also those countries which most need educated people to participate in the democratic development of civil society which lack resources for education.
I understand the presidency' s conclusions as confirming the goal that every section of society should have the opportunity to benefit from new technology.
Behind the regulations was a political objective of ensuring growth, employment and competitiveness and of giving everyone access to the information society while ensuring adequate legal protection.
Women are no longer regarded as merely vulnerable people who need to be protected but as the social protagonists of change and as an essential part of society' s resources.
There is an evident need to continue to step up dialogue and cooperation with autonomous women' s organisations in civil society, politics and the institutions.