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Role set

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A role set is a situation where a single status may have more than one role attached to it. This multiplicity of roles is what sociologists termed it as such. Consider a student for instance, involves one role as a pupil, another as a user of university library, and another as a member of a faculty.[1]

The term "role set" was coined by Robert K. Merton in 1957. He made a clear distinction between a "role set" and a "status set".[2]


  1. Walter L. Wallace (1983). Principles of Scientific Sociology, Aldine Transaction.
  2. Robert K. Merton "On social structure and science" ISBN 0-226-52071-4, page 113

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