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Three perspectives - Term Paper Example

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Instructor Three perspectives Introduction A perspective is basically a technique of observing and interpreting the world. Sociological theories offer three perspectives to envision our social world; the functionalistic perspective, the symbolic interactionist perspective, and the conflict perspective…
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Download file to see previous pages For this reason, Dunn argues that these approaches cannot be validated or invalidated, for they have led to advance of belief systems based on individuals’ interpretations. The Functionalist Approach This approach is chiefly founded on the works of Emile Durkheim, Robert Merton, Talcott Parsons and Herbert Spencer (Ferrante 23). According to this approach, society is a structure of interrelated portions that work together in coherence to uphold a state of equilibrium and social symmetry for the whole. For instance, family offers a context for breeding, fostering, and socializing youngsters; politics offers an avenue for leading societal members, educations offers means to pass on societal abilities and understanding culture over generations, religion delivers moral leadership and a passage for worship of greater power, and economics creates means for manufacturing, dispensing and consuming goods and services (Ferrante 24-25). Consequently, this approach stresses on the interconnections of society by concentrating on how each part impacts and it is swayed by other segments. Theorists who fall in the direction of this approach refer to the disturbance of the social system to be a dysfunction. For example, the increasing single parent and double employee families in the contemporary world has led to an increase in the number of children who are deteriorating in school. This is attributed to the fact that parents are busier in their work and less available to oversee their children’s school work. This has led to an increase in the economy output, but disruption in the family set up with negative effect on education (Ferrante 26). Theorists in support of this approach argue that societal segments are functional if they add to social steadiness and dysfunctional if they disturb the social steadiness. This remains debatable because some aspects of the society can be both functional and dysfunctional depending on how they are analyzed. Such an aspect is crime that is allied with bodily violence, distress, and loss of possessions because it heightens awareness of communal morals unions, and amplified social structure (Ferrante 27-28). There are two types of functions; manifest and latent. Manifest functions are concerns that are envisioned and normally accepted. Latent functions are concerns that are unpremeditated and frequently concealed (Ferrante 28). For example, the envisioned purpose of education is to convey information and skills to the people. In addition, education institutions function as babysitters for working parents, and they also offer a medium for people of different backgrounds to meet, including potential mates. Minding and mate medley are not the intended mutually recognized functions of education institutions, thus they are latent functions. Thus, this approach confirms with Dunn report in that it acknowledges that it can be either functional or dysfunctional and thus it is not easy to validate the consequences. Conflict Approach While the functionalist approach views the society as dissimilar sections working together in harmony, conflict approach views the society as composed of dissimilar segments, or groups, who have competing interests for power and resources. (Ferrante 30). There are two schools of thought under this approach; feminist and Marxist. According to feminist, mankind exists in patriarchal civilization, that is, a classified system of organization organized by men. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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