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Affinity in terms of sociology, refers to "kinship of spirit", interest and other interpersonal commonalities. Affinity is characterized by high levels of intimacy and sharing, usually in close groups, also known as affinity groups. It differs from affinity in law and canon law which generally refer to the marriage relationship. Social affinity is generally thought of as "marriage" to ideas, ideals and causes shared by a tight community of people.
In Who is my neighbor? Social affinity in a modern world, Boston College professor, James Allan Vela-McConnell explores the emergence of the concept of "social affinity" bridging classical sociology and social psychology, identifying "the notion of social cohesion" based upon the sentiment of moral obligation.
- Who is my neighbor? Social affinity in a modern world (1997) James Allan Vela-McConnell ISBN 0-591-45078-X
- Using Group Composition Data to Measure Social Affinity: A New Method John Pepper, Santa Fe Institute